[Image: Pax runs while smiling and making a “V” sign with their fingers. Other runners and the Golden Gate Bridge are in the background. Photo by Ziggy.]
(Content note: Medical issues.)
This morning, Ziggy and I ran a 5K to celebrate the 50th anniversary of our running club, Dolphin South End Runners. I’d been racing with this club since 2009, so I was really looking forward to the race. Unfortunately, a recent injury almost prevented me from participating.
Due to ongoing depression and recurring illness, I had not run in nearly two months before this week. A slow three mile run on Tuesday left my muscles sore the next day. So when I did my biweekly injection of testosterone, the combination of the sore thigh muscle and being tense led to a normally almost-painless procedure causing lingering pain that made walking difficult.
I did not see any obvious swelling or discoloration, so hoped it wasn’t an infection (which I always worry about, even though I take care to disinfect and wear gloves when doing my shots). Ziggy, who had recently recovered from an injury himself, figured it was probably a grade two quad strain. I rested and applied ice packs, and when I went to pick up our race bibs at Sports Basement on Saturday, I bought a pair of compression tights.
I figured since I managed to walk several miles to and from the pickup location without collapsing in agony (though I was constantly aware of the pain) that I would at least be able to walk the race, if the pain didn’t get any worse. But I really wanted to run, as I have in every race I’ve ever done, no matter how slowly I needed to jog. So I decided to do 5 minute/1 minute run/walk intervals, which I’d been using for longer runs.
I walked about three miles to the race start, arriving in plenty of time. Unlike most DSE races, all runners were pre-registered, so I didn’t need to worry about being misgendered at the registration table for once. The day started out overcast, but the sun soon came out, and I felt reasonably good during the race. The pain was still present, but subsided to more of a dull ache.
The interval strategy worked, and I managed to finish over a minute per mile faster than I expected, given my injury. I even managed to do my usual finishing sprint. I suppose I shouldn’t have been too surprised at my time, as since I started on testosterone, most of my race finishes have been faster than expected for the level of training. Regardless, I’m glad that I was able to participate, even though I’ll likely be quite sore again tomorrow.
Ziggy finished with a very good time, and it was great that he was there for companionship and support. Looking forward to more DSE races in the future!