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Old age is no fun

This bike path, suspended below the freeway, wasn't here
when I used to run this course.

I've said it before.  Old age is no fun.  I spent Thursday (two days ago) driving the 1000km down from Copa to Melbourne for a family occasion this weekend, and unbelievably, I've acquired some kind of injury.  When I left Copa I was whole and since arriving in Melbourne I have been limping around with a very painful strained adductor muscle at the top of my right leg.  I stopped for a 6km run at Reef Hills State Park to break up the journey and it's probable that after sitting in the car for so long, my ageing ligaments and muscles had trouble dealing with some very gentle running.  I did some stretching followed by about 0.5km of walking before starting my slow jog, but it wasn't enough.

Fairview Park was a favourite part of my one of my old
running courses.

It's an injury I have had before, and I'm hopeful it will come good quickly.  I took a chance yesterday morning and still ran my planned 12km along one of my old running routes.  It was slow and the adductor hurt, but not all the time.  It was a beautiful morning and I soaked it up, taking some pictures along the way, and remembering all of the times I had run some parts of the course going back more than 40 years.  Unfortunately the run aggravated the injury, or at least stopped it improving, and I was limping badly for the balance of the day.

The run travels both sides of the Yarra River.

After a good night's sleep, I decided I would still attempt a shorter run today.  The leg injury didn't feel quite so bad walking around and I drove to Wattle Park, another old training haunt, to run a couple of laps in warm and blustery conditions.  The nostalgia was enhanced by the sight of some good female distance athletes going through a track session on the park's oval under the direction of their coach.  I wondered if it ever occurred to them that runners were using the same oval for similar track sessions more than 40 years ago.  Probably not.  We never thought about earlier era athletes training on the same oval, and they probably did.  The adductor was better than yesterday and I completed the hilly course with less pain.  Maybe after another good night's sleep it will be even better.

These trees were planted just after I first
started running through here.

The whole story just reinforces to me the need to work into any run very gently if I want to avoid injury at my advanced age.  I wonder how slowly my runs will start out in 20 years time.  The signs are ominous.