Returning to running after a Prolapse.

I haven't always enjoyed running but over the years it has grown on me. I wouldn't class myself as a natural runner but I definitely enjoy the freedom it gives you. There is nothing better than putting your trainers on and heading out into the countryside. 
Then one day that freedom was taken away from me and that was the moment I realised just how much running meant to me. Being diagnosed with a prolapse was hard but being told that I couldn't run was even harder. I felt that my body had let me down and the thought of not being able to run was heart breaking. What was I supposed to do now? It wasn't just the physical benefits of running that I missed but also how it help clear my head after a busy day.
To return to running I knew that I had to listen to my physio, do my exercises and be patient! Progress was slow which I found very frustrating.  I knew I could train harder but I had to keep telling myself to stick to the plan because if I didn't I might not be able to run at all.
After my physio had finished, I continued with my exercises and started training with a friend who is a running coach. He knew my background and my goal of wanting to complete a 10km in an hour. 
Each week my training had a different focus. We spend a lot of time working on my breathing, running technique, speed work, hill drills and nutrition. My love for running was growing even stronger. Rain, sun or snow we were out running and it felt so great.
Gradually, the duration and intensity of my training increased and in September 2020 I was ready to sign up for my first 10km since my prolapse diagnosed. It was a local event - Standalon 10km and one that I had wanted to do since moving to the area 9 years ago! Due to COVID it was a virtual event which meant that you had to register your 10km times via the organisers website. I pushed hard through the run. It wasn't easy and I was really happy with my time which was 01:02:21 but I really wanted to get it under the hour. 
Training continued with my coach and in September 2021 I entered the Standalon 10km again but this time the event would be in person. The day of the race I was really nervous. I must have had about 5 nervous wees before heading to the start! 
Standing on the start line I had butterflies. The race started well - probably setting off a little too quick but the pace felt good. The hardest part was between 5-8km but the crowd where amazing. Clapping and cheering every runner that went pass them. I spotted a few people that I knew which helped pushed me on. At 9km, I knew that I needed to keep my pace going and luckily it was downhill which helped! I gave the last 100m everything that I had left in me. I had no idea of my race time but knew that I had given it my all. I couldn't put into words how happy I felt when I realised my race time. I had smashed my goal finishing in 0:55:15. I couldn't believe, I was so proud of myself. 
In that moment I knew that my body wasn't broken and that my prolapse no longer controlled my life and doesn't stop me from achieving my goals. Yes I have had to make modifications along the way, take things at a slower pace and having patience which hasn't always been easy but I am the fittest that I have ever been even with the symptoms of a prolapse. 
You can live your life to the fullest even with a prolapse and still do the things that you love to do. The biggest lesson I have learnt on my recovery journey is listen to your body, she will soon show you when you have over done it and that you need to rest. 
Your body is stronger than you realise ❤️

Meet Catherine...

I'm Catherine, I love running but hate frogs and snakes. I'm a qualified personal trainer with 20 years working in the fitness industry. I have a real passion for women's health, fitness and well-being. I am the host of a podcast called Me, Myself and My Vagina which is available to download from Apple Podcasts, Amazon Music and Spotify. The aim of my podcast is to break the taboo about talking about our vaginas - the good, the bad and everything in between!
Follow me on Instagram @me_myself_and_my_vagina

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