When I began training for my first half marathon I never really worried about succumbing to injury. I thought that if I just gradually increased my mileage and stuck to my training schedule I would go injury-free throughout the training process. Unfortunately, about a month away from my half marathon I began to suffer from ankle tendonitis. After almost a two week layoff I was able to resume training and successfully complete my first half marathon. What I didn’t realize was that every training run that followed would be accompanied by fear that another injury was on the horizon.
I wish I could say that I never suffered another injury during training, but unfortunately I did. As I began training for my second half marathon I noticed a pain in my left knee. Eventually I would find out I had runner’s knee, which sidelined me for a little over two weeks. By the time I was able to run again I only had two weeks to prepare for my second half marathon. Luckily, I somehow was able to avoid further injury and complete that half marathon as well. I went on to run another race a month later, slightly injury-free, but still nervous that another injury would resurface.
I take as much precaution as possible with my body to ensure adequate recovery, but sometimes you just can’t prevent an injury. I would be lying if I said I wasn’t worried about getting injured while training for this full marathon. Every single run, even the short ones, are met with a slight bit of fear. I have already begun to feel a tinge of pain in my right ankle since beginning training and it is similar to the tendonitis I suffered before. I know I can’t dwell on the possibility of injury, but if you have suffered one then you know the feeling of uneasiness that can surface when you feel something out of the ordinary.
Running injuries are scary in that you never truly know how long the pain will last. You are constantly questioning when you will be able to run again and obsessively checking the area of pain for any signs of improvement. The determination to run again circumvents any rational thoughts of returning to full health. But, that’s what happens when you really want something and you will do anything in your power to never give up.
I don’t know if another injury is surfacing. All I know is that I am committed to training hard for this full marathon. If an injury sidelines me, I guarantee you I will be waiting for the moment I can continue my training once again. In life there are a lot of bumps in the road, but what’s most important is how we get around them. I am determined to arrive at my destination, no matter how long it takes to get there. To all my fellow runners…keep running!