If you would have asked me a couple years ago if I would have been excited to run .75 miles on the dreadmill in 8:01 minutes, I probably would have laughed at you. Back then, if I was going to go for a run, it was going to be at minimum 3.1 miles at a pace of at least 8:30 minutes per mile. I rarely ever ran on the dreadmill because I preferred to run on either the beautiful trail along the water by my office or on the convenient streets of my neighborhood. I liked to run on a terrain similar to what I would be running on during the races I used to compete in EVERY.SINGLE.WEEKEND.
Fast forward to the present where I’m still rehabbing from a car accident that took more of a toll than anyone would have guessed. Only this week, almost two months after my accident, have I been able to start running again. Now, that .75 miles at a previously slow-for-me pace no longer seen laughable to me, but more like a gift.
They always say you never realize how much you love something until it’s gone and that couldn’t be more true for me and my relationship with running. I never realized how much I loved being alone with my thoughts, listening to the sound of my feet hitting the pavement (aka treadmill in this scenario) and watching the miles add up on my GPS watch until this week when my physical therapist gave me the green light to try .75 easy, flat miles.
I can tell you everything about those .75 miles, from what I was thinking about, how it felt and who was on the treadmills around me. I carefully selected two of my favorite workout songs, “Comeback Story” by Kings of Leon and “Love Runs Out” by OneRepublic, to listen to and got down to business. It was clear to me that I wasn’t going to be able to keep up with my previous pace, but that no longer mattered. What mattered was I was there… and I was running.
My return to running is going to be a smart one. I plan to take it easy and not push my speed or mileage and work closely with my therapist to find a plan that’s best for me. I also plan to continue to incorporate cross training, yoga, stretching and some quality time with my foam roller into my routine.
I’m happy to report that I’ve been able to stick to my plan so far. I cross trained in physical therapy 3 times this week, went to spin class 2 times and did yoga once so far. I stopped running at exactly my prescribed .75 easy, flat miles and immediately went home for some bonding time with my foam roller and compression socks (the compression socks weren’t really necessary, it was just an excuse to wear my new pair!). I want to be able to continue to run for a long time, so I’m going to take all precautions in need to make sure that happens!
Questions of the Day:
Have you ever rehabbed from an injury?
Are you able to take it slow or do you usually do too much too soon when it comes to exercising?