Saturday, November 16, 2019

Injury and fitness recovery

Dear readers, I'm sorry for not producing a blog post since the City to Surf back in August! I suffered a hamstring injury (strain) shortly after that race, I think due to a combination of running that event off inadequate training, and sprinting at the end of a handicap run in the week following City to Surf (inadequate recovery). I eventually rested from running during September, substituting brisk walking and cycling, then resumed running at the beginning of October.

I started with light Verheul intervals, running with walking recoveries with a first continuous run of 3k on the treadmill on 6 October (5:55/km pace). My first 5k was on 11 October, 30:32 at an average heart-rate of 140. So slow, so hard! It was sobering how unfit I'd become. On 19 October I ran 28:17 for the Tuggeranong Parkrun at an average heart-rate of 144, so an improvement in speed but a very high heart-rate (my recent recorded maximum is 160). Prior to the injury, on 20 July, I raced 5k in 24:51 at an average heart-rate of 145. My last full effort race was in the Canberra Times 5k on 10 November (a hilly course), running 27:42 at an average heart-rate of 144. My fitness is returning, but very slowly.

My strategy for regaining fitness is to build mileage to 60 kilometres per week (or a little more), with adequate easy/rest days, and most of that running being low heart-rate (very easy, HR 125 or less for me), easy Verheul intervals, and short races (2k to 5k) being the only 'hard' running for the time being. My weekly mileage has progressed since the beginning of October: 23k, 29k, 31k, 33k, 41k, 50k and approximately 60k this past week. So far, so good! I hope you're all doing well and looking forward to good running and racing in 2020, year of the Tokyo Olympics!
Traditional ice-cream follows the Lake Stakes lunch run