Slowly Coming Back from Injury

by - Thursday, February 09, 2023

It's been nearly a year and half since I first started experiencing my hip issues, which then turned into hamstring issues. The last race I ran before shifting into rehab mode was the Rehoboth Beach half back in December 2021. 

That is a long time for me to not lace up my shoes for a race morning starting line.


Recovery from this injury has been slow and full of set backs. I spent several weeks trying to rest, and then do my regular mobility/rehab routines at home. I'd make some progress, but never fully recovered.

After being frustrated with my own lack of progress, in June I visited my orthopedic doctor and got myself into PT. 

This is hands down the longest amount of time I've spent in physical therapy, and let me tell you that is hard for me. I am not patient. When I felt like I was suffering setbacks in August, I was so disheartened. 

But I stuck with all the PT. I've done a million and one balance and stabilization exercises to help provide support for my loose joints. My PT focused on building stability up the entire length of my body. My hips are in a better place and so are my knees. My right ankle is still really wobbly though, so I'm still working on stabilization exercises for that. 

By building all this balance and stability, my body is better able to support me through the motion of running without having to overtax muscles or recruit muscles that really should have anything to do with running and then causing injuries. 

I've mentioned in previous PT posts that I was on a run walk plan starting back in the fall. 

Over time, I've been building up my running stretches and reducing my walking. Yesterday, I felt like I hit a really big milestone. I ran for a full 30 minutes with less than 90 seconds of walking over the course of the run. (See Garmin pic at top of post).

I've also managed to increase my distance from the 2.5 miles that I had been doing during most of my recovery up to 3 miles. 

That might seem like such a small thing, but to me it's a huge sign of improvement. These runs, while so, so much slower than I used to be able to go, have been fairly pain free. 

I definitely feel like I'm starting over, which is hard, but I'm also really grateful that I might finally be seeing the light at the end of this injury tunnel. 

I know I still have a lot to do in terms of maintenance of everything I've been working on in PT as I slowly rebuild my endurance, and then hopefully my speed. But I'm finally seeing some progress, and that's huge.

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