I’m now 3 months post op. The first month went so slowly and was a real downer, but I’ve been improving by leaps and bounds in recent weeks. I’m operating by the “stress it to heal it” mantra. Every gym visit includes a little running. I’m slow for many reasons: I’m retraining my gait to stay injury free in the future and have to think about every step. I’m still weaker on the right side – I spent three years compensating for pain and got wonky. I still don’t have full range of motion. And all that stuff that running keeps in tune is out of tune. Like my cardiovascular system. And all the other non-hip muscles that help me run, like my lower back and my calves.
I’m increasing things incrementally and erring on the side of doing less. I’m up to about 10 minutes of running every few days, broken up into 2.5 minute intervals, with plenty of walking before, after, and in between. And a top speed of 5.4 mph, but an average speed somewhere in the upper 4’s. It’s a process, that’s for sure.
A part of that process, I have registered for the Montalto Challenge. An all uphill 5k! I couldn’t pick a tougher course for my post op racing debut. Oddly enough, uphill is actually better for me than flat – I crank the treadmill to 5.0 or 6.0 elevation to help me get my weight under me, instead of in front. I’m officially registered as a walker, so I’ll have a 30 minute head start over the runners. Sill, I expect the winners to pass me in the last mile, if not before.
Before I race, I always set three goals – the stretch goal, the realistic goal, and the safety goal. For this race, the stretch goal is 50 minutes. My normal walking pace is about a 16 minute mile on the ‘mill, but this is way more uphill than that and much farther than I usually go in one session. So yes, it’s a stretch. But not impossible. My realistic goal is an hour. I know for sure I can do that. And my safety goal is not to hurt myself, even if I have to drop out. I have never DNFed, and I hope not to have to for the first time on Saturday.
Stay tuned – I’m sure my pre race freak out is bound to hit any minute now.
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Tags: hip, labrum, racing, recovery, running, surgery