The 10 Week Itch

At just past 10 weeks post-op, I’m back to working out 5 to 6 days a week, running 3 days a week with about 25 minutes of running at a time.  It’s a far cry from “normal” for me, but there’s certainly a light at the end of the tunnel.  Because I have to build up carefully, I am doing far more cross-training than I ever have before.  Thankfully, I have a great road bike that doesn’t limit me to indoor cross training.  I switched back to flat pedals before surgery because the motion of clipping in and out (for those that don’t ride, to clip out, you have to twist your foot to the side) was too painful.  Post-surgery, my ankle is to weak to get out efficiently, and the last thing I need is to do a slow-tip.  Although this limits how hard I can ride, I’ve been able to get out for 20 to 30 mile rides a few days a week.  It always amazes me how gentle biking can be on the body compared to running.  A 20 mile run is a production; a 20 mile ride can happen before work with no problem.

I’m finally starting to plan my return to racing.  To give myself adequate time to rebuild and to take the pressure off of myself for the fall, I’ve decided to not race a full until January or February.  I am planning on running a full with friends at a training pace for fun in October, pacing a friend through her first half in November and racing a half somewhere this fall to begin to test my fitness.  Beyond that, I am only planning on racing 5K or 10K races for speed work and a good test of fitness and progress. This gives me 3 solid months of base building before I head back into a training cycle. Once I race in January, I go to Boston and then (hopefully) to seek revenge on Vermont City. 

This next year brings considerable challenges in terms of balancing training, work and coursework.  I am preparing to go back to school to be a Physician Assistant (with an Orthopaedic Surgical focus of course :)) and am taking the requisite sciences to achieve that, working full time in Research and planning to support a 60 to 70 mile per week mileage base. This fall in particular will likely be a serious test of time management.  I suspect that I will become a recluse, running in the mornings and at lunch, and residing in the library at night.  I am committed, however to trying to maintain some strength and yoga work as well.  We’ll see what has to give when fantasy meets reality in the fall…

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