on not running

I should be running tonight.

But I'm not. 

In fact I haven't run in a couple of days.

It's not what you expect to hear from someone training for a marathon

Well, unless they're injured. I'm not injured. I'm not running because I don't want to get injured.

During my long run on Sunday I had pangs of tightness in my right calf. I worked through it, kept going and clocked up my miles. The tightness eased and I made a mental note to stretch more.

Too little, too late. Jumping on a treadmill on Tuesday I knew I was on to a loser. Within a mile I had hit STOP. My calf felt like it had shrunk two inches. Prodding the offending limb it felt like the flesh had been replaced with a brick...which isn't usually a good thing.

At times like this you have a choice. You can pop a painkiller, grit your teeth and chant if it ain't hurting it ain't working. That's the dumb choice. The smart choice is to stop and sort yourself out. That's the choice I made. Better to miss a couple of short runs than to miss a marathon.

On Wednesday morning I found myself face down biting a pillow while lovely Emma put all her weight in to the knots that had formed in my calf. Calf massages hurt at the best of times, this was agony. But it wasn't as agonising as the idea of not being able to run. You've got to focus on why you do what you do when your having your calves kneaded. 

Whatever Emma did did the trick. I spent all afternoon prodding my calf and revelling in it's squishy-ness. I even broke my own rules by heading out for a swift 5k with the Lululemon crew, which was lovely and didn't hurt a bit. 

For the last two days I've been stretching and foam rolling furiously, but I've not been running. It's all about the stretch. It's all about making it to race day. 

So that's why I'm not running.