As the title of the post suggests things have taken a huge leap forward during the past two weeks on the running front. Following my latest visit to the physio last week I have now officially been given a clean bill of health on the foot / ankle.
Despite indications that my foot / ankle wasn't 100% last week it did behave rather better than hoped for but it did remind me every now and then with a little "Hello I am still here mate". I managed 32 and 37 miles during those perspective weeks most of which at an easy pace but the more I got out the better I began to feel mentally and the legs feeling stronger.
With this renewed confidence there was a temptation to ramp things up but this would of been completely stupid and foolish (lesson learnt there). I had one final trip booked to see the physio last week to see where things stood and I felt positive that by the end of the session I wouldn't need to go back until I needed an "MOT" appointment (by choice of course). We discussed how my running sessions had gone, how I felt mentally / physically and what my plans were for the months ahead. By the time he had reviewed the leg and stretched both legs fully he told me that he was very happy with things as they were and that there wouldn't be much point him calling me back again.
YES YES YES! A sense of relief swept over me. The nightmare of the last few months finally dissolved. I had an extra skip in my step and I finally felt like a runner again. By the end of last week I had clocked up 46 miles (highest since September) which is way below where I want to be at this point but I am happy with that.
It's a pivotal moment for this the running year ahead as I did have doubts that things would get sorted quickly. I can now finally focus on the Milton Keynes marathon at the end of April although I think with the 10 1/2 weeks training block left I will be rather looking to enjoy the race rather than trying to stretch for my original goal of 3:17. This doesn't mean I will be treating the build up process any differently but I have to accept that the last few months lack of consistency and fitness means I will be not at optimum fitness in this build up cycle. Therefore I will need to revise my race goal time based on the weeks leading up to and including my tune up race the Brentwood half marathon on March 25th.
I will be aiming for a sub 1:40 at that race which I think is well within reach but I don't want to take to much for granted at this stage. The primary goal though is to continue the plan of rebuilding the mileage and consistency of running. This week hasn't quite gone quite to plan so far due to busy days at work but I did get a solid 11 miles in today and it will be all about getting those daily runs in and focus on the plan week by week. Time to go up a gear!