London Marathon 2022 – HPT update

An update. I’ve been trying to remain positive, religiously following advice and completing the exercises prescribed by the physio, it’s incredibly slow process but that’s to be expected with a tendon injury.

Since my last post, I’ve experienced a lot of emotions. Mainly frustration that my body is taking so long to heal but also that of letting down the charity I’m scheduled to run for, the people that have so kindly sponsored me to date and my workplace who have publicised my fundraising with an additional offer of £250 towards the fundraising total if I complete the marathon (along with four others from the company). I decided it would be fairer to speak to the charity and let them know my situation, they were so lovely! The lady investigated other options including allowing me to defer my place to next year which would have been a great option. Unfortunately, that wasn’t possible and finding someone else to run wasn’t looking hopeful either. In parallel, I contacted the comms team at work to remove my name from the list while we thought of other options and suggested I could walk the route if we didn’t come up with any other ideas, pain permitting.

Then it struck me… My husband could run in my place if I was unable! This seemed like the perfect solution to me. Many of the people that sponsored me would have sponsored him and the charity would not be let down. I’d still have the disappointment of not receiving the donation from work and dealing with the frequent “ohh, I hear you’re running the marathon” conversations (along with the huge frustration of listening to how others’ training was going) but it was a plan that also allowed a slight glimmer of hope for me in case I made a miraculous recovery. This was in May and the plan wasn’t to start until 16th June, so all good.

Two obstacles, agreement from the charity and agreement from my husband. My husband is not a runner. He’s not a runner but he was willing to complete the 16 week beginner training plan if it meant I had longer to formulate a plan. What an amazing thing to do! We discussed how he would feel if he started the training and then I felt I could at least make it around the course, would he be disappointed? He said no and that he should probably get fitter anyway so that was perfect.

In the meantime, I visited the charity and saw the work they did first-hand. The opportunity to ask questions was fantastic and it was incredible to see the resources available to support people with mental and/or physical disabilities, have a look: https://calvertexmoor.org.uk/. It was a great experience and really made me determined to raise more and get around the course, even if I had to walk. Publicity photos were taken and a new sense of pressure to perform ensued.

That’s me, bottom left and bottom right, looking but not feeling the part

As the weeks ticked by, the pain changed but didn’t reduce. I could feel my hamstring getting stronger but it was constantly tight. Foam rollering didn’t really help and neither did stretches. My impatience got the better of me and on 23rd May I went for a little run, just to see how it felt. I ran a mile at slow pace, no pain while running but excruciating immediately after.

Unauthorised run

I told the physio when I saw him next, he didn’t seem overly impressed but not entirely surprised, he added some Nordics to the single leg bridges and suggested I could try some short runs after my next appointment. My next appointment was on the 28th June.

Fast forward a few weeks and with the 16 week training plan start date already having passed, I visited the physio again and asked the dreaded question “what are my chances of taking part in the London Marathon, still slim to none?”. His response was “slim but not none, we need to see how you get on with the next set of exercises”. My hamstring was stronger than it had been and this gave me hope. With a new exercise regime, to include super short (5 minute) runs over the next three weeks. I knew there wasn’t time to train properly to achieve a “good” marathon time but even completing a marathon is a huge achievement that many will not experience in a lifetime. Walking, jogging, Jeffing… but possible!

I came home, new plan in hand and (dare I say it) excited that I may be on the mend.

Next set

After putting the children to bed, I changed into my running things and set out. The rain was pouring and the recent warm weather was replaced with a blustery cold wind but I didn’t care, I was running for five whole minutes! It felt good to be out, my legs still worked, my lungs weren’t quite as cooperative but I was running and I didn’t feel immediate pain.

Physio approved run 1

Very sore the next day but the physio suggested I’d feel this way so I’m blindly trusting him and assuming it’s ok for now. Knowing whether the marathon is still an option is a little way off, but I’m enthused and remaining positive that I’ll at least be mobile, if nothing else.

Next dilemma… It turns out my husband is now hugely motivated to run the marathon. He’ll certainly be fitter than me, he’s following the plan more stringently than I ever thought he would and is enjoying it, which is great. I don’t feel I can take that away from him, especially after he selflessly offered to train to give me longer to heal.

So, pros and cons (love a list), assuming I’m capable of getting around the course:

Pros

  1. I’ll share a marathon day with my dear friend who, after all, is the reason I signed up in the first place
  2. The huge achievement of finishing a marathon (although there are numerous others I could enter)
  3. Completing the London Marathon has always been a dream (and after many, many ballot rejections, I never thought would be possible)
  4. An additional £250 towards the charity from my workplace

Cons

  1. Potential injury niggles
  2. May never have the chance to run London again
  3. It won’t be the experience I’d hoped it be (won’t be fully fit)
  4. Upsetting my husband

Pretty even at the moment, I guess I’ll just have to see how my (ridiculously short, for someone hoping to run a marathon in 95 days) runs go over the next few weeks.

Fingers crossed!

Injury strikes… so soon – London Marathon 2022

27/02/2022

It was supposed to be the Castle Hill Corker today, a 10K trail run around a local picturesque estate. Unfortunately, storm Eunice had other ideas and brought trees down, the event was cancelled so I went for a 10 mile run instead, absolutely stunning weather for it. Hamstring felt a little niggly when I set out but nothing painful so I continued on. At 7K I was feeling good, considered making it a half marathon and decided how and where to extend the route. At 10K the niggle was worsening so I came straight back. Should have stopped.

28/02/2022

Very sore hamstring today. It was twinging yesterday but it’s almost unbearable today. Infuriated with myself as I’ve been running for a couple of year with no injuries… Get a marathon slot and the injuries start rolling in. Must stay positive, there’s still plenty of time to heal and train, I’ll take it easy for a few days.

01/03/2022

Really hobbling today, struggled for a lunchtime walk. A friend recommended a physio, I call and am lucky enough to get a cancellation on Thursday morning.

03/03/2022

Off to the physio this morning, thank goodness. Lots of questions, noticing of a bruise and a good poke and prod later I’m given a set of three exercises to do each day. Probably a torn hamstring, potentially nerve damage. No running for 2-8 weeks. Back next Friday to see if it can be diagnosed any further. Feeling deflated and a bit low. Don’t want to let anyone down, especially the Calvert Trust and all the wonderful people that have sponsored me so far.

Love the little stick men!

Got home, had a look for said bruise, it’s tiny. Teeny tiny – for the amount of pain, I wanted it to be MASSIVE, black and blue, but no, even had to circle it so it can be seen:

04/03/2022

Incredibly achy, in my glues as well as hamstring today, hurts to sit, stand and move! Paranoid I have nerve damage which will take forever to heal and anxious not to let the Calvert Trust down. Called the physio to see if I’m supposed to hurt this much, turns out it’s perfectly normal and I was being paranoid.

Luckily I have a good distraction today, off to court this morning to observe magistrates hearings… Turns out their chairs are more uncomfortable than school chairs, a brilliant experience though, food for thought.

09/03/2022

I’ve been using running to calm any anxieties I may have, reading/scrolling/trying new (static) things occupies me for a short while but it doesn’t expel any energy or release any endorphins. I found myself aggressively vacuuming before work today, managed to vacuum a small ember from the fire and noticed poor Henry glowing. Quickly moved him outside and opened him up, he survived with minor melting and requiring a new hoover bag. Roll on good news from the physio.

10/03/2022

Walked the children to school this morning and was in agony all day. Sitting, standing, moving were all uncomfortable, trying to get to sleep was a nightmare. in my wakefulness, I remembered I’d fallen over in January while trying to drag a branch up the drive, it gave way and I landed with force on wooden boarder, I nearly passed out at the time and the resulting haematoma lasted weeks, must remember to tell the physio.

11/03/2022

Had a second physio session today, remembered to mention the fall. He performed the same tests as before then manipulated my pectineus muscle (with his elbow!) which he thought may have adhered to my sciatic nerve – it was a little uncomfortable but I could move my leg much further after – happy! A different set of exercises this time and another session booked in on the 18th March.

15/03/2022

I woke up and felt relatively good today, the blue skies and sunshine were definite motivators. I wanted to run and felt as though it’d be possible, it’s off to work for me this morning though. Fast forward a few hours and I’m in a lot of pain after a lunchtime walk around the block. Perhaps the road to recovery won’t be as simple as I’d hoped.

London Marathon 2022 – humbled by my children

28/02/2022

My Just Giving page went live today. I came home from work and showed the children (William, 6 and Florence, 4) the page and explained a little about the marathon, who the Calvert Trust were and what they do as a charity.

On hearing about the Calvert Trust and after showing the children the website and some photos, they both went off to the other room and came back with their ‘egg money’*, wanting to donate it to help people less fortunate than themselves. They were absolutely insistent and although I didn’t want to take their savings, I honestly couldn’t be prouder of them and the kind souls they are becoming. Perhaps my parenting isn’t that bad after all.

*When we bought the house, it came with a chicken coop and an old girl which William decided to call Buck-Buck because of the screech she makes. Over the next few months we got four more chickens to keep Buck-Buck company, all lay intermittently, and, trying to teach the children the value of money, we explained they could sell the eggs for £1 a box and save up for a toy they both agreed on.

https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Lynsey-Hyde2