Just finished with my 4-week follow-up orthopaedic appointment, and it turns out that my left femur injury was a stress reaction instead of a full-blown stress fracture. What this means is that I can start the “Return to Running” program as soon as today instead of waiting an additional 2 to 4 weeks. The program will be painfully conservative, but at least it means I can get back out on the road!
I reviewed my planned training changes with him, and he was very supportive of them, especially the idea of only running 5 days a week. He said that back when he worked with Nike elite runners in California and Oregon, their coaches never had them run more than 5 days per week, even though they were racking up LOTS of mileage. He agreed that adding one additional rest day from impact would greatly reduce my chances of sustaining another stress fracture. He also said that he would be perfectly OK with me running doubles on some days during a week, as long as I still took 2 days off from running per week. He said that these days off from running did not have to be days off from workouts, just from impact activities.
All of this was very encouraging, and he said that training for New York this November should not be a problem at all. To that end, today I hope to start the slow climb back up the mileage mountain with his prescribed “Return to Running” program. It is a 10 week program, as defined below, which I will be doing 5 days per week:
- (Week 1) Run 4 minutes, Walk 2 minutes. Repeat 4 times.
- (Week 2) Run 5 minutes, Walk 2 minutes. Repeat 4 times.
- (Week 3) Run 10 minutes, Walk 1 minute. Repeat 3 times.
- (Week 4) Run 15 minutes, Walk 1 minute. Repeat 3 times.
- (Week 5) Run 20 minutes nonstop.
- (Week 6) Run 25 minutes nonstop.
- (Week 7) Run 30 minutes nonstop.
- (Weeks 8 to 10) Increase nonstop running 5 minutes per week.
- After week 10, increase time/mileage by 10% per week.
In addition to this, I am scheduled for a bone density study next week, and then will follow-up with my doctor in 6-weeks to make sure everything is progressing as planned.
Beast Mode….Back ON!