At the end of last week i had positive hopes for the week ahead. I had my last week of annual leave starting on Saturday 24th November, i would be able to follow my weekly regime without any pressure of having to go to work. Also i would be able to go to bed earlier and get some good quality sleep in before returning to work and the late night finishes. The morning of Friday 23rd when i went out for a run the first warning signs that something wasn’t right were felt. I was still feeling a bit bruised from the Men’s Health run and didn’t think too much of the sore feeling around my lower left calf just thinking my bruises were still healing. I finished that run ok but feeling a little sore afterwards. On the Sunday i headed out for an 8 mile run and the calf was feeling slightly sore from the off but not painful at all and certainly not bad enough to stop me running, then at mile 6 i felt a really big jolt of sharp pain in that calf. Still 2 miles from home i slowed the pace right down and managed to keep moving but could feel that it had pulled or torn in some way. Once home after showering i iced and bandaged it and wondered what had caused it to happen. I have been running regularly since March without any pulls or strains then i get this out of the blue and typically when i have a week off work! On Monday 26th i would usually run but rested and iced the area again. Tuesday 27th i did my weights circuit without any ill effects to the area, it was still feeling bruised but i decided to go to the running club on Tuesday evening. The club had a time trial night of approximately 6 miles around our Saffron Walden town circuit. Again i started well but about 3 miles in i could feel the calf getting progressively worse and faded back a little and slowed the pace. I made it around but feeling really sore again, so more ice and bandaging. Wednesday 27th would usually be a running day but i decided to take the day off and went shopping to Cambridge to get all the last bits of Christmas shopping done. This was also a good excuse to give in to some delicious cakes and coffee in town and we also had the bonus of bumping into the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge who were visiting the city for the first time. Thursday i took as a rest day and today, Friday 30th i went out for a 2 mile run to gauge how the ankle is. I went through some easy running slowly increasing the pace up to some short sprints. The lower calf area is still feeling bruised but not painful. The club has our first cross country league run on Sunday 2nd December which i am hoping to run in, so my plan is to rest for the rest of today and tomorrow with the hope it will be much better for Sunday. I have felt pretty disappointed it’s happened but am hoping that i won’t have lost much in the way of fitness and from Sunday onwards i can pick things up and get back into a regular routine. I have been in touch with Loughborugh University about a running physiology test which i may take in the new year. Details of what they offer can be found here http://www.loughborough-sports-science.com/running-fitness.html. I will report the outcome of the cross country early next week, let’s just hope i make it around!