There is certainly lasting glory after completing a half marathon. You find yourself with a huge self-esteem lift and carry your shoulders a little bit higher.
What I didn’t take into account were the injuries.
A couple of weeks after running the grueling 21 kms race, I felt a painful twitch at the top of my left knee. Thinking it was a bruise, I was curious to find there was no ugly, blue prominent mark.
Finally, I called on my worse fears and went to the physio. Yup. Post halfie injury.
It was text book stuff apparently and it has a name, patella tendonitis.
What? Paella? Isn’t that a yummy Spanish dish?
For the past 2 months, I’ve been nursing an inflamed tendon, sticking to the routine stretches strictly instructed by Jeff.
And of course that also means absolutely no running.
Right smack bang in the middle of pavement pounding season.
How to kill me slowly.
Firstly, I had to sadly decline a fine invitation from Matt at Dad Down Under to join him in a 10km run in the Sydney CBD. I was so ready to fly like the wind and have a cold beer with him at the end of it.
But last Sunday was the beloved City2Surf run. And missing out on my favourite running event hurt my feelings.
Simply for the fact that it’s a race that first got me believing in myself; helping me prove that just because I was now a mother, I could still have goals and challenges; I could still learn and enjoy how to be a runner.
Life teaches lessons through all different paths and avenues. My knee injury, for all of its pain and dissapoint, was a very unlikely one.
Luckily this year, I had a childhood friend come up from Melbourne to hang out for the weekend but also decided to sign up and walk the City2Surf.
Pre-injury, the plan was for us to meet at the finish line.
When I told her I was injured, I realised that a 14 kms walk was a perfect opportunity for us to enjoy the sights, have a chat and catch up.
As I waited for her at the starting line, watching all the keen competitors doing their serious stretches, fixing their caps and sunglasses, rubbing in last minute Deep Heat, I decided to soak in the atmosphere.
It was like being the only sober person at the party. I started seeing things from a very different perspective.
Basking in the unusually warm winter sun, I took better notice of the community spirit that was happily bouncing around me.
Maybe I was getting a little high from the smell of the Deep Heat but taking it down a couple of gears from “Challenging” to “Chillaxin’” helped me see that graciously sitting out this year’s City2Surf wasn’t necessarily a bad thing.
I had the past 3 events under my running belt, with now a half marathon to add.
I was fine. I just had to stop think that I was chasing my next big personal best with every single bloody run I signed up for.
Taking time to appreciate past achievements is as good as planning for the next. And there will always be another. Just not right now. And that’s okay. For now, let’s just do some basking.
Basking in some IBOT with Essentially Jess