I don’t seem to have done very well with running lately. Actually that’s not entirely true. Two weeks ago I set a post-lockdown Parkrun PB, which I was pleased with (but still over a minute off my pre-lockdown PB!). But in general I feel slow and achy. My hip/groin has been bothering me for a while and last week I somehow strained both hamstrings a few days apart such that they really tightened up and made the back of my knees feel stiff. The groin issue has been getting quite painful at the weekends, with doing a fast Parkrun Saturday mornings and then about 18km on Sundays. The Sunday runs are generally a bit awful, my legs feel like they don’t want to move properly and I get achy in the front of my hips and groin by the end.
Last week I possibly made a breakthrough when I realised that the groin pain is actually groin pain rather than abdominal pain and it hurts when I stretch my adductors. My left adductor was in a real state and I could barely move my leg towards the right across the front of my body. So I keep stretching it and I keep doing cossack squats when I’m at my standing desk, and slowly but surely it hurts a little bit less to stretch. Will that translate to less running pain? We shall see, but I feel optimistic. Will it translate to becoming faster and being in better shape? Doubtful, but maybe.
My sister went to a Ukraine protest at the weekend. It seems kind of pointless to protest against Russia in the UK, but anyway, she did, because she was accompanying her Ukranian friend. The friend was born in and grew up in Kyiv and is very upset about it. I don’t really know what the right thing to do about it all is. People say that direct military intervention would trigger nuclear apocalypse but I think that’s a little bit hysterical. I imagine that a lot of western governments are very pleased that we are weakening the supposed superpower Russia and all we have to do is keep pushing weapons into Ukraine and they’ll sort it out for us, but is that ethical? It’s the Ukranian civilians who are really paying for it and they’d be in a much better position if there were western troops in there.
Every few days a news article pops up about how you can phone Russia or send them emails or text messages and explain to an average Russian citizen what’s going on, but I think that’s pointless at best. Imagine if you got phoned up by someone with a thick accent speaking broken English trying to convince you that he had special insight into your domestic politics. You’d say “errr” and hang up. I used to work with a Russian lady around the time that Russia invaded Ukraine the first time around in 2014 and despite living in the UK she was completely hyped up on Russian nationalism and propaganda. I’m not sure that average Russians are going to be as sympathetic to western messaging as you think…
The whole thing is desperately sad and horrifying.