JOHANNESBURG – I have an appointment with the physiotherapist this afternoon and boy, am I dreading it.
You see, I am due to run the half-marathon of the Wanderers Race - the second of the four-race Discovery Vitality Run Series - on Sunday.
Having already done the Old Eds Race two weeks ago, it is pretty important that I continue training ahead of next month’s Sanlam Cape Town Marathon.
Races such as these half-marathons are a good gauge to see just where I am at in preparation for my Comrades Marathon qualifying.
But I’ve been feeling some discomfort at the bottom of my right toe - my medial cuneiform - for a while now.
The discomfort started some-time after Old Eds, my first race after that nightmarish 90km "down run" from Pietermaritzburg to Durban in June, which I completed in a fair time of 90 minutes.
Typical of many a social runner, I ignored the discomfort and did some training runs. But when it grew into a pain that even the Transact patch could not rid me of, I knew it was time to consult.
The thing is, I just don’t want to be told to take leave from running, helpful as it definitely will be.
I am in the middle of a process to get ready for a fantastic run in the Mother City and any kind of disturbance is to be avoided at all cost.
After all, when you are planning to run a sub-three-hour marathon, for us social runners the effort has to be at its optimum. And that includes everything from training, nutrition and kit to rest.
I know this much having booked my Comrades Marathon A seeding in Cape Town last year, albeit only just. The 2hr 57min 46sec that I ran last year was a result of a concerted training effort during which no corners were cut and, fortunately for me, everything went swimmingly on the day.
I am hoping to better that time significantly this time around and with a month to go, am I ready?
The pain under my toe obviously suggests not, hence the need to sort it out as quickly as possible.
Other than that though, I am feeling up to the task. The Old Eds race, tough as it was, said to me the fitness is there, although it can be improved on.
It is the speed that I feel needs some serious working on and the plan was to do some sessions to ignite the Mamabolo firepower in time for the race through the Mother City. That will have to wait a bit, though, as we take care of the painful toe which hopefully is not that serious.
My suspicion (and hope) is that the pain could be due to my having used old shoes during some of the training sessions.
A club mate laughingly suggested I consider switching "from your cheap stuff (Maxed) to serious running shoes like Nike and Adidas". As long as you buy them for me, I countered.
Whatever the issue is with my toe, I need to have it sorted out asap if I am to attain my Sanlam Cape Town Marathon goal.
With a month to go, I urge anyone going to do that beautiful internationally recognised race (the Sanlam Marathon is Africa’s only IAAF Gold Label Status Race) to sort out any niggles they might have to avoid disappointment at the event.
I am off to sort out mine, fearful as it might be.