On most days, British runner Anji Andrews lives the athlete’s dream. She works from home—with plenty of time and flexibility to train—making a living coaching, writing about running, and handling social media for organizations like the popular UK-based podcast Marathon Talk.
But this summer, a foot injury that had begun to develop earlier this year worsened just as the country locked down due to the pandemic. Anji found the constant reminders of what she couldn’t do difficult to bear. In this week’s episode, she talks openly and honestly about the raw emotions of this combination, and how underfueling and overtraining played a role.
They’re challenges that will sound familiar to so many injured athletes, and while she’s still traveling her road to recovery, Anji has plenty of insights, advice, and encouragement to share with others in the same boat.
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In this episode, we discuss:
- How injuries are viewed in running (4:53)
- More about the challenges of being around running everyday, even when she can’t do it (7:10)
- Her big goal for the half marathon, and how the foot injury first began to threaten it (9:39)
- Why she held back from telling her coach at first (14:44)
- How the pandemic played a role in exacerbating things, as did overtraining and underfueling (23:05)
- When she finally got a diagnosis, and why it actually came as a relief (28:55)
- What it felt like to realize, after five months of pain, that she would be able to run again (36:27)
- The difficulty of revealing the depth of her struggles to those closest to her—and then the strength and hope she experienced on the other side (38:12)
- How journaling—including some of the specific exercises in Rebound—has helped her cope (44:41)
- Her advice to the friends and teammates of others who are dealing with similar issues (50:21)
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Resources/links we mention:
- Anji on Instagram and Twitter
- Anji’s forthcoming book, with Martin Yelling: Running in the Midpack: How to be a Strong, Successful and Happy Runner
- The Marathon Talk podcast
- An article about Anji’s heart condition—a topic we only barely touch on (perhaps she’ll be a repeat guest to tell this story!)
To access more resources for injured athletes:
- Join The Injured Athletes Club mailing list, for weekly news and updates
- Join The Injured Athletes Club Facebook group, for support and camaraderie
- Email us at [email protected] with questions, guest suggestions, or other feedback
DISCLAIMER: This content is for educational & informational use only and & does not constitute medical advice. Do not disregard, avoid or delay obtaining medical or health related advice from your health-care professional because of something you may have heard in an episode of this podcast. You should not rely on this information as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult with a qualified medical professional for proper evaluation & treatment. Guests who speak on this podcast express their own opinions, experiences, and conclusions, and The Injured Athletes Club podcast hosts nor any company providing financial support endorses or opposes any particular treatment option discussed in the episodes of this podcast and are not responsible for any actions or inactions of listeners based on the information presented. The use of any information provided is solely at your own risk.