Resolutions 2014: June Progress Report

This month’s Resolutions post is markedly different from previous Resolutions posts this year because of reasons good and bad. On June 5th, me and my wife celebrated our 4th wedding anniversary. We went out to Leeds to go for a meal to celebrate. I dashed back to the supermarket to get my wife some water. I ran up to the train station, wearing my smart shoes, not my Sauconys. I got to the final crossing to the train station car park and checked for traffic. All clear, I stepped off the kerb. What happened next is still something I’m not sure about – I either clipped my heels together or the heel of my shoe caught on the kerb – the next thing I knew, I landed hard in the middle of the road. My glasses fell off, my elbow took the brunt of the impact, along with my right knee. I hobbled on to the train station, having mercifully not been run over. The water bottle was leaking, having been punctured in the fall. My wife was sat their at the platform, shouting ‘the water’s leaking!’ before realising exactly why I hadn’t reacted much to that and carrying a grimace. We still boarded the train and tended to cuts to my hands and elbow, including a particularly sore one on the palm of my left hand, while trying to work out if I’d done any lasting damage to my knee. Really I should I have got checked out – but instead, we went to Boots, got some cleaning wipes and spray on plaster, and off we went for our meal. It was a brilliant evening out, but one that left me having a little trouble walking stairs and worse, being unable to put pressure on my right arm without a jolt of pain shooting down it.

I saw the GP the next day and while she described my knee injury as just soft tissue damage – and not a concern – she referred me for an x-ray on my arm. I got the x-ray done and was told I’d get the results in 5-7 working days. I still don’t have them. Tsk. However, I was able to bend my arm fully within three days of the incident and so despite it being a suspected fracture, I look to have got off reasonably lightly. Although the cuts didn’t go away for a week or two and I had a whopping bruise on my elbow which has only just cleared up.

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Add to that pernickity issues in my knees, and a hamstring strain sustained while running for a bus, running has very much been at a premium this last month compared to before. So the run section is going to be fairly short.

However, there at least one crumb of positive progress to come from June, which I’ll get to shortly. But first, let’s take a look at the one thing I seem to struggle with most:

1. SLEEP

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So, there’s been this thing going on in Brazil this month, and the time difference between the UK and Brazil has meant for some excellent, unmissable late night footballing action. Hahaha. Of course, this means a lot of late nights in combination with some early starts. The recent lack of morning runs has meant I’ve been able to maintain some sort of balance, so I don’t feel to have lost out on too much sleep, although there’s been the odd shocker where the kids have woke up mega early, thwarting my plans for a lie-in! At least with the group stages gone and the World Cup now in the knockout rounds I shouldn’t have to put up with any more ridiculously late kick-offs to lure me in. Japan vs Greece was a particular corker.

In any event, given how well May seemed to go I’m a little disappointed to have regressed a little in June, but I do still take getting enough sleep very seriously and aim to whittle down that sleep debt in the second half of the year.

2. Learn to swim again

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Aaaaaaaaaat laaaaaaaaast. I’m learning to swim again. That’s right. After much promising and much more failing to deliver, I’ve got serious about this particular resolution and have actually made it into the pool for a few sessions on my own, as well as a lot more swims with the family. I’ve been for three sessions of lane swimming on my own, managing about nine or ten lengths of 25 metres a time. I’ve realised that I can still swim, and I’m not actually doing too bad – though I can still only do one stroke competently, the freestyle/front crawl, which unsurprisingly given my relative lack of upper body strength means I tire quite quickly. There’s lot of training, learning and adaption to come, but at least it’s finally underway.

Obviously I can’t take selfies in the water but as if you needed any proof, there I am above looking slightly knackered but happy after my first swim alone in all those years.

3. Run more

As previously stated, my injuries and lack of an upcoming race curbed any desire to rack up the miles, but towards the end of the month, I began my training for my planned entry to the Halifax Half Marathon on the 23rd. It’s a six-days a week plan and I’m quite aware of doing too much too fast, but even so, I managed to get up to four runs in the first week, and felt better as the week went on. The hamstring is a minor concern now, which I’m going to keep working on, and as ever I’m just going to keep working on strengthening my knees to help them sustain the proverbial punishment they could well receive.

On the race front, nothing new entered – however, I have put myself forward for a stint at marshalling, at the Leeds Xpress Triathlon on Sunday 27th July. After the misdemeanours I suffered against earlier this year, it’ll be nice to get involved on the other side of race day!

4. Run faster

Nothing new here in the way of progress, stifled by the injuries and by way of not having anything to prepare for. Yep, its been fairly easy going. But I’m now back up and running and hoping to pick up the pace in July. I managed four runs in the last week of June, the longest just over 7.5 miles, but I’ve not run since June 29th because of discomfort in my left knee again. I don’t want to lose out on too much running time, especially as I want to train for the Halifax Half Marathon at the end of August, but right now I must try and be patient and not put myself at risk.

So to summarise – let’s get sleeping back on track. Let’s continue my positive progress in the pool. And holy balls, please let me be free of these ridiculous little injuries so I can get back to what I enjoy. Cheerio!

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