A Runners Journal – Dream, Dream, Dream

Before I can think my legs take-off along the 8000ft ascent, kicking up volcanic red ash from the iconic La Palma terrain. Pine trees, active volcanos and lush green forest blur into one as I soak it all in. What am I doing?! My knees shagged, just the other day I couldn’t walk downstairs, bend or weight bare, I shouldn’t be doing this…and yet with every stride I feel, nothing, no pain.

La Palma uphill

At sunrise warm rays burn through the mist, complementing the cold mountain air. I am happy, there is nowhere I’d rather be and nothing I would rather do. Browing the final climb I pause, feet touching the clouds without a sole to share. I beam at the thought of a swift decent, the soft yet technical terrain stimulates me…

Beep, beep, beep…beep, beep beep! Seconds pass, then I realise it was all a dream. Instinctively touching my knee I bend it, hoping my dreams transfer to reality. I grimace, the pain remains, not as bad but still there. Walking downstairs the stabbing pain continues, my heart sinks.

Early diagnosis points to Bursitis, the irritation and subsequent swelling of a Bursa behind my knee. With it resulting from my tights rubbing the wrong way you’d forgive me for feeling a tad unlucky. Bursitis can last 4-6 weeks and leave the patient open to recurrence. Thats the best case, worst case something has come loose and is floating in the joint, reeking havoc which may require surgery. I’m not thinking about the latter until my x-ray in a weeks time.

Over the last week I have done plenty of research and started rehab. From ice and heat therapy five times a day to Ibroprofen and even muscle stimulation. Just this weekend I invested in a Compex machine to aid recovery.

It seems with every injury I just reinforce my love for running and commitment to reach my peak. For this I am grateful, my mind could just as easily throw the towel in but that just isn’t me.

I will be back, it remains to be seen in what state but I am hoping not to lose too much hard work. At least I can sit on the sofa and get a six pack like Cristiano Ronaldo!

Oh and the dream wasn’t for dramatic effect, that genuinely happened. No more tea before bed.

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Darren Smith

Training with purpose since October 2016 Darren has gone from trailing the pack to winning local races and the times keep on falling. A true believer in hard work over natural talent he writes to help others realise their true potential. Darren's race schedule for 2018 includes the Hardmoors Wainstones marathon (1st place), Keswick Mountain Festival (10th place), Scafell Skyrace and Salomon Ring Of Steall (World Championship race.)

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