The run felt OK at first. I did feel some achy joints, but it was mostly just the result of not running for 27 days. Initially, I also felt some achiness in my right butt/hip. I couldn't tell if this was related to my injury or not, but it eventually went away as I warmed up.
The first 3 or 4 miles went really well. I was running with Mike and John, and although they were running pretty slowly, in retrospect it was probably a little fast for me on my first run back. The last time I ran in the park, I started getting ankle pains around mile 2, and ended up jogging/walking the rest of a disappointing 4 miler. So I considered it a success that I did not feel any ankle issue even up until I turned off at the 102nd Street transverse (3 miles). Just to be safe, though, I slowed down for the last two miles. Around West 86th Street, I did feel the tendinitis coming back in my ankle. It wasn't so bad to be debilitating, but it was definitely noticeable. I slowed down a little bit more, but never felt the need to walk. Although it's disappointing that the issue is still there, I feel like I just need a few more weeks of taking it easy and my ankle will be back to normal.
The butt, though, is a different story. My butt has never really bothered me while running; it's always afterwards or the next day that I feel the pain. Well, after the run, we went to Big Nick's Burger and Pizza Joint (on 75th and Broadway) for dinner. It was the first time I went to Big Nick's. They have a massive 28 page menu, which includes everything from Greek food to burgers to pizza and more. I got a chicken souvlaki pita (pictured below), which was pretty good.
In contrast to their huge menu, though, the area inside Big Nick's is tiny. As we were standing in the entryway waiting for our table, some of us had to exit the restaurant whenever someone needed to walk by. They packed five of us into a table crammed into the back of a narrow room. Needless to say, I didn't have much legroom. Halfway through my chicken souvlaki, I was needing to stretch my legs, but felt like I was trapped in this tiny restaurant with nowhere to go. By the time we paid our check, pain was running from my right butt almost down to my knee. I was trying to discreetly massage my hamstring during dinner, but I couldn't get in deep enough. I was glad to get up when we finally left.
As I slept last night, I woke up a few times feeling that the pain in my hamstring was still there. And at work today, I've had to get up several times to stretch my legs. It's disheartening, and I know this means I should take it easy. But I still want to run.
Happy New Year!