As many of you know I am currently training for the Boston Marathon but just recently ran into a low level Achilles tendonitis issue. I was not worried, it was just a twinge but I knew I had to nip it in the bud before it became a bigger problem.
Coach GP and I decided that the best course of action was a few days of complete rest before transitioning to cross training modalities.
Everything went smoothly and I was back to running in just a few days. However the twinge returned. A couple of days off and then a few more days of cross training. In total about a week off of running the second time around but during this time I pool ran and rode the elliptical.
I continued to strength train and also started to incorporate some massage work on a weekly basis with more specific stretching. I am now twinge free and I was able to pick up right where I left off upon the resumption of running.
I lost ZERO fitness ! I share my story because I know of so many people who push through an injury and wind up hurting themselves more because they don’t want to lose fitness or miss a race. Pay attention to how you feel and how your body is reacting to training. If you feel something out of the ordinary, take the time to take care of yourself and minimize recovery time so you can get back to training.
Don’t rush the healing process. A few days off in a row won’t ruin your training. You’re body will thank you for the rest! If you don’t take the couple of days now, you may be looking at a few weeks/months in the future. Make sure you are eating right and drinking enough to get the proper nutrition your body needs to recover and heal in between workouts. Strengthen your weaknesses and stretch well. Take care of yourself! I will tell you I receive regular massage and it has been an incredibly helpful tool both in terms of keeping me injury free but also in helping me to heal faster from an injury. If I feel something is ‘off’, I will go for massage once a week to work on a specific area until its better otherwise its usually once every other week for what I call maintenance work. I do not go all year round, but once I get into heavy marathon training, it becomes part of my training program.
To be honest I resisted at first , for no reason other than I was stubborn but I can tell you it has become one of my best investments in my running and myself. Of course there are times you do everything right and you still get injured. It happens. It comes with the territory of running. However, if you train properly and take care of yourself, you can minimize your risk of injuries and/or time off due to injuries.