Well I have had to do it, I have had to pull out of running the Milton Keynes marathon. On a training run last night I 'tweaked' something in my left knee, and managed to turn my intended pre-race sports massage with the physio into a diagnostic session. Good news, nothing huge is torn or broken - bad news small ligaments or some cartilage is likely damaged and will need time to heal (or be investigated further even) over the coming weeks - the bad news making running a marathon in three days time foolish. I can walk slowly just fine, I can run just fine, but the transition causes pain as does particular changes of direction of travel. So with other runs in mind, not wanting to do any major damage, and not wanting to DNF a big organised run I've had to take the hard choice.
I really wanted (somewhere in the quieter recesses of my brain) to make Milton Keynes that thing I do every year having attended their first ever marathon last year, but that ambition didn't get much past the starters pistol. I wanted to run for the enjoyment, the challenge, the fulfilment of crossing that line at 26.2 miles. I feel pretty empty just now and can't quite believe how close I came to getting there after the ups and downs of the last few months. Training hasn't been perfect, that I admit, it has not been consistent enough or in all actuality varied enough (with respect to strength and flexibility - hence perhaps the injury).
After a good long chat with Leon the awesome physio things were in good perspective and I have already armed myself with a plan towards the biggest challenge of my running 'career' Berlin this September. That plan is alive and vital (knee injury permitting of course) but it is the loss of the Milton Keynes plan that makes me feel heavy hearted and down beat. I will now be contacting the kind folk who sponsored me or were going to, and in some cases offering refunds where they have paid already... marathons become much bigger than the long distance and much more part of your thinking than you realise. I will learn more lessons and I will roll forwards it is just that in this particular moment 42.2 km or 26.2 miles seem an awfully long way away.
If you did still want to donate to my chosen charity then please follow the link below...
I'm going to have to find something else to do with my intended blog post on Tuesday (post-marathon day) and indeed something else to do with the day off I booked for a day of solid recovery (pampering)... I think I'll write that Berlin plan down make it real and bring that 42.2km a little closer.
Happy running and race well if you are going to be in the next few days / weeks.