Rehab to Ultra - Part 2

Hope you enjoyed reading Part 1 of my journey to my first ultra. If you haven't read it,  I would suggest you go back and have a read so that it all makes sense.

This is Part 2 of that journey from September 2022 - December 2022

So I ran The Big Half on 4th September using the run/walk interval of 3/1.

I couldn't have asked for a better race. The method worked really well in the sense of not putting too much pressure on my knee and eleviating fatigue. If you want to find out more about the benefits of interval running, please read my blog post - Does interval running really live up to the hype?

So funny to hear that other people were also using the same device - Gymboss as we could her the ‘beep’ beep’ beep’. At first I thought people were looking at me and was conscious of walking straight after the sound went off so I would wait like 5 or so seconds before stopping but once I started hearing the other ‘beep’ and just started to ignore the others, I just got on and enjoyed the run. 

The next day I booked myself in at Myoset for a Normatec leg recovery session. The leg compression helps to increase circulation, revive muscles, and reduce swelling. It is widely used by elite athletes and consumers throughout the globe. I absolutely love these boots! Wish I could afford them but these sessions are the next best thing. I mean to be fair, I don't have the storage space for them either πŸ˜„. 

The compression boots is part of the resources you can access in their recovery lounge. I think the compression boots are affordable:

Taken from Myoset website as of 4/4/23

I soon returned back to rehab work using the exercises as designed by my Physio saved in the app.
 I also continued my sessions in the gym 2-3 times a week. I ran only once or twice a week max on the treadmill. Most weeks it was only once and for only as long at there was no excruciating pain. Please note that there was always some discomfort at the beginning of every run during this time as it took a while for the knee joint to warm up. I always completed warm ups and cool downs too without fail.

1 mile run 

Gym rehab session

Gym rehab session

At my next appointment I spoke to my physio Qasim about running Lea Valley 50km in March and if this was something we could work towards as I had pretty much written off 2022 at this point. I also feel less frustrated if I am working towards a goal.

Qasim was still concerned about the pain in my knee and although we were making some progress, there were days when the pain was constant and I felt like 'would this knee ever get better?' So he wrote me a letter to provide to my GP to request a 2nd MRI scan with the hope in them being more specific with the scan also looking at my tibia.

Thankfully I didn't have to wait too long for an appointment. I received a letter to attend an appointment on 12th September.

Whilst waiting for the results I continued with my rehab and run/walk sessions that I could do. During this period, I removed myself from alot of social runs as I would not be able to keep pace and didn't want to fall out of rhythm with my current set up and risk further injuries.  I either did solo runs, run with 1 or 2 people at a time who were aware of my interval running or a track session where I was in total control.

Exploring the trails - mostly walking with some short bursts of running. Running Vest

Special session with One Track with Steph Twell - track session (run/walk)

Exploring the Greenways with Caro

October London Marathon - loved cheering!

Greenways run courtesy of Camino Ultra. Trails are a perfect mix of running and walking.

Squad race with ON Running at Lee Valley Velo Park with Stronger Together crew

Kendal Mountain Festival in November

I had the pleasure of attending the festival with Merrell and then talking on stage with Sabrina and Dan. What an amazing experience to have been invited to do this. Merrell have provided me with some amazing opportunities over the past year and this has to be number 1! 

There were no new finding from the MRI and no injury to my tibia. From this I continued to work with my physio and we progressed with my rehab programme. 

In November I was fortunate enough to be offered to be coached by Camino Ultra by Paula. I jumped for joy and said yes happily! Couldn't have asked for anything more. I mean, being coached by trail and Ultra experts... grateful! πŸ™πŸΏ

My plan was personalised and worked around my family life. The sessions were delivered via the Training Peaks app and were a combination of easy runs/easy, Steady, Hard runs, rest days, cross training days and as the weeks progressed long runs were added. 

November consisted of rehab exercises and starting to train for Lea Valley 50km. The start of the training plan was very easy and my coach and I agreed that I would stick to my run/walk intervals of 3/1 which seem to be working well. 

In December as I began to feel stronger I decided to move from a 3/1 to 5/1 run/walk. This felt great and I stuck to this moving forward. It was really important that I ran my easy runs easy (how hard is this?). This is extremely hard! It takes a lot of practise especially as the norm is to naturally speed up as the body gets warmed up and into the running flow. I have to keep an eye on my pace and bring it back at times, which was really important. 

Thank you for taking the time to read Part 2 of my journey to my first ultra. 

Always happy to receive any feedback or if you have any questions, do please message me. My inbox is always open.  πŸ™πŸΏπŸ˜Š


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