Today I am taking a back seat on the blogging front and letting my husband take the reigns as he needs some advice…
Hi everyone, I’m Ben. You know of me as Anna’s husband if you read her blog! I’ve been running for 18 months now. I gave up smoking last march and running keeps me off the cigarettes. I’ve run 2 marathons – both disasters! For Portsmouth I had a torn hip flexor and was in pain from mile 8 (read about that fun time HERE). And for Paris I had cramp from mile 4! Berlin was going to be my “good race”.
I have been struggling with an injury for some time and I always expected it would recover weeks, if not months, before the Berlin marathon. However, here I am less than 2 weeks before Berlin and I haven’t ran in over 5 weeks! I need some blogger advice from runners so I thought I would hijack Anna’s blog to ask anyone reading this…
It all started surprisingly enough in marathon training. I went out and ran an 18 miler, averaging 40secs per mile slower than marathon pace and I felt my hamstring get a bit tight. It wasn’t enough to stop me but was enough that I could feel it. The day after it was tight but I thought it was just a tight muscle so took an extra rest day and then ran a local RR10 (local 4-5 mile race). Again after the race it was tight so I took another extra rest day before running Ultra 12 (a 12 hour through the night relay race).
I ran 4 x 5 mile laps and after each one my hamstring was agony. That was the start of my break. I took 10 days off. In that time I went to physio, he wasn’t bothered and said take time off. The hamstring was tight because of an issue with my back. That was also causing pain in my knee which was more painful than the tight hamstring. I listened to him and decided to take time off, not run, I kept my fitness by cycling and occasionally swimming. I expected to be running within a few weeks.
The last 6 weeks have been a pretty bad time for me, I know Anna has been injured on and off for a while and I have tried my best to support her throughout that time but it is tough to support an injured dejected runner. When it was my turn to get injured my usual positivity around injuries was replaced by negativity and almost a defeated attitude. I haven’t eaten well and have drank more alcohol than usual. Mainly because that’s what I do, if I can’t run I eat cake, chocolate, fast food and drink beer and wine.
Anyway, enough of that. There is a light at the end of the tunnel and it looks like I might be able to do a run this weekend. My hamstring is still ridiculously tight but I have to at least try the run. If it goes badly then I will have to admit defeat and say Berlin is off. I will go and support Anna and get absolutely obliterated on German beer.
But what if the run goes ok? I have kept up my fitness so that I can run the marathon but can I actually get around 26.2 miles with such a lack of miles in my legs? My plan if I run it is to go out at 9 min miles (3:57 marathon time). Ironically if I ran this consistently then I would PB. But I am not going for a time. Anyway, if I go out at 9 min miles (which is a comfortable pace for me the last time I ran) then I push that as far as I can – hopefully 15-18 miles. The next 11-8 miles are then going to be a world of pain, walk running to get to the end. I know the sensible thing would be to not run it but I mean seriously – this is Berlin. I am not after a time, I just want to get around.
What do you all think?