It’s a little while since I blogged wearing the “athlete” hat. I’ve started an occasional blog linked to some other things I’m doing. These appear under the heading “Digital Dreams and Networked Nightmares…” That’ll help my athlete readers skip the weird stuff. That writing has perhaps drained my imagination a bit. But I’m back.
Sort of. The main news is that in the last few months, the training has been going well. I decided quite early on that I just couldn’t raise enough enthusiasm to have a big indoor competition diary. Not having the target of the World Masters Indoors in Finland was contributory to that. I’ve mentioned before that I regarded the trip there as likely to cost me too much for too little. Entry numbers suggest many others have come to the same conclusion, by the way. No, I decided to limit myself to about three indoor meets, with the probability of doing a couple of events at each, with heats and finals if necessary.
I’d managed to get into a pretty good training routine, too. Being a much free-er agent than ever before has meant I can train during the day, when facilities are quiet. I train alone, so the availability of partners wasn’t an issue. Not now being in full time work also meant that I got good time to rest before and after sessions. That was something that seemed to be making a big difference. I was getting to training feeling ready to do some solid work, and not needing to squeeze sessions in between work commitments etc, which was the reality of the past few years. I was also getting a solid 90 minute session in each time.
Then it went wrong. I’ve been free of significant back problems for a couple of years, but the pain I got when standing up one day in January was a familiar one. Tightness on my left hip, discomfort when walking. Big pain next day, and over the next fortnight a series of useful but un-budgeted sessions with the very able Ben, new chiropractor at Southcote. I’d been faffing around about whether to go to the Scottish Masters in Glasgow. The recurrence of back trouble solved that one for me. It was surprisingly easy to let it go, too. I could tell myself “Its not the end of the world..” I’d said that about Finland too, though I suspect Jyvaskyla is actually a bit closer to the end of the world than Glasgow.
So, I began to focus on having a good outing at the inaugural South of England Masters event in mid February. For a week or so, my right calf would have none of it, but the deep massage, from which I still carry the bruises as I type this, sorted me.
And so we got to the Thursday before the Sunday competition. And my back went again. Today’s Friday. I’ve spent it alternating between walking around the house and lying flat on my face on the floor. The walking keeps my back loose for about 15 minutes, the lying down seems to put things back into alignment and free me up for a little more walking. I’m on alternating ice and hot packs, anti-inflammatories, every relaxation and therapeutic breathing technique I know, and for luck, I have my fingers crossed.
And yes, I can lie there and think “It’s not the end of the world if you don’t race on Sunday”, but it does worry me that on this third occasion I’ve needed to think that, the thought perhaps came to me just a little too easily. I’ve not given up hope of racing yet. I’ll be there anyway to take photos to go on my revitalised and redesigned web site. And you never know. Crossing my fingers might do the trick.
Oh, and by the way, the title of this blog is a song, in case you wondered. Full title is “It’s Not the End of the World, But I Can See It from Here” and it’s by Super Furry Animals.
I’m really hoping it’s just a song, and not a prediction in my case.
There is a sequel to this tale…..
The Friday and Saturday were painful. On the Sunday morning I spent 15 minutes lying on the floor before going to Lee Valley My intention by then was just (ha, ha “just”) going and working as photographer. When I stood up, several parts of my lower back clicked a bit, and really felt quite good. The hour’s drive there was ok, so I decided I’d go through my warm up routines and then go off and take photos. You know what’s coming, don’t you? The warm up was ok. I felt pretty good, in fact. So, I reported to race my 60 metres event. I was slow but second. That was well above my expectations. The 200 metres was not all that long after that, so I kept warm and mobile, and hey, raced to a third place! I probably would have been happier with the time if I’d raced it properly from lane 6. When will I ever learn?
I did spend the rest of the afternoon taking photos. They are here I even felt not too bad the following morning. We live to fight another day. In my case, 11 March.