Thursday, October 22, 2009

Running with an injury.


I've been having problems.

It started straight after finishing a half marathon - I noticed that it hurt a little when I leaned forward or flexed the big toe on my right foot. It has slowly been getting worse and if it hadn't been for running Chi style last night I don't think I would have made it.
I realised that this wasn't a good idea - probably about the same time that I found out that every time I slowed to a walk I was limping.

The question is - Is it ever OK to run with an injury?

I really think that if we don't run with small injuries we will never actually find out how bad they are. We often test and push ourselves a little but the problem is that by doing so we can sometimes end up making the injury worse.
This is a gamble that we feel we have to take. After thinking through this I think a different approach is called for. We already know it is all about listening carefully to our bodies. We all know when we are pushing things a little too far. The critical question is why do have to make things worse to get these warnings?

Instead of testing my injuries whilst running I am going to try something new. I am going to start to take five minutes before I run to take stock of my body. Whilst I am stretching or shaking out I am going to start to go through a mental inventory of each major part of my body and give it a quick assessment.

I am going to try to imagine it to be similar to a pilot's pre-flight check - though I'll try to stop before my mind starts wandering to air-hostesses. ;)

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