It was December 2017, and I had been running for two years consistently. I had just completed a physically and mentally demanding block of training in preparation for a race, which was ultimately cancelled due to snow. My body and mind were tired and Christmas was approaching. I granted myself some rest in the form of two easy weeks. In week 1, I did 3 runs and none of the usual supplementary training (yoga, strength & conditioning). In week 2, I did 2 runs and had 4 straight days of complete rest. My mind enjoyed the break and the festivities. The persistent pain in my right Achilles tendon, which I had for the previous 4 years, also began to settle down. January began in earnest with a swift return to my pre-Christmas routine. I did not foresee a problem; after all, it had only been a short rest period. My Achilles tendon thought otherwise and the pain soon began to soar to unprecedented levels. In this instance, rest had signalled the beginning of the end of my consistent streak. I would be forced to stop running not long afterwards.
Doing too little can be just as dangerous as doing too much when it comes to the risk of running injury. Studies on astronauts or patients confined to bed rest demonstrate…
Come back Friday May 7th for an extract from Chapter 6: I’m a foot get me out of here. Pre-order the kindle version of the book now on amazon, out June 28th 2021.