I often share my New Years resolutions privately. However, this year’s is something I think a lot of you can relate to, so I thought I’d share it with all of you.
Last December, I tore my hamstring tendon playing softball (yes, in December). It’s the kind of injury that many people do not get repaired. The rehab is arduous and there’s not the best guarantee of a good result, particularly at my age. I knew I couldn’t go that route for so many reasons. So I found a good Physical Therapist and I went on with my life, though considerably gimpier.
The good news was that I was able to snowboard less than a week after my injury, though I was terrified of the pain I would be in if I fell.
The bad news was that running was very difficult. A few months after the injury, a jog was a challenge, and running for the train was hilarious – if you weren’t me.
Nevertheless, by May, I was playing softball again, though running was still difficult. At first I used a pinch runner, but I gained sprint speed throughout the summer. It wasn’t pretty to look at, but I could run the bases reasonably well. I also started going to the gym fairly regularly again and seeing results (H/T to Anthony at CrossFit Bridge & Tunnel.)
However, I really couldn’t run very far without the hamstring bothering me and I lost aerobic fitness big time. I imagine my mileage for 2022 was less than 100 miles total. My longest run – maybe 4 miles. I didn’t run a race all year. When I hurt myself, I wasn’t really very serious about racing anymore, so that was fine. However, fitness has always been important to me. Losing a level of fitness, I have always had…sucks. The increased muscle has paid off in snowboarding and if I ever figure out how to deal with the leg swinging a bat, I’m sure it will in softball. I’m not entirely convinced it’s going to help with running, but that’s besides the point and I don’t know that.
What I do know is that in 2023, I am going to commit myself to running to the best of my ability and to racing again. What does that mean at 50, going on 51 with this injury? To me it means…
Most likely, I have a couple of PW’s coming my way, but I’m a career middle of the packer, so that’s all good. My goal isn’t to beat anyone – not even myself, it’s simply to feel fit again when I’m running and at the end of the day; as far as I’m concerned that’s the best reason to run.
If you’re struggling at all with running, know that I am right there with you.