Injuries are the worst part of a sportsman’s life.
So it was a shock when I found out I needed a minor knee operation a couple of weeks ago. With the Commonwealth Game set to start later this month, the timing is not perfect but it could have been a lot worse.
The hard thing was going from discovering the injury to then needing an operation straight away. There is usually a process of does it respond to treatment. An op is normally the last resort but I was told I had to have it if I was going to be fit for the Games. It was a big shock to the system.
It is a similar injury to what Luis Suarez suffered in the build up to the football World Cup. I am frustrated but hopefully I won’t start biting people! I will look to take the good part of what he did which was he regained fitness in four weeks and he, of course, scored twice in Uruguay’s victory over England.
I have never had anything like this before so have got nothing to compare it to but I’m being told that I am making good progress from the guys in the know. I have got to take their word for it. I am hoping they are not just telling me that to make me feel better! It is just over two weeks until I am due to begin in Glasgow so the clock is ticking.
When something like this happens to you, it makes you appreciate even more your livelihood. It’s a 24/7 job trying to get fit. Esme, my wife, has had to be pretty tolerant at home because I have not been as patient as I normally am!
I had a training programme set up for the Games but I’ve not been able to do a single session of what I planned because of the injury. That plan has had to be completely ripped up and burnt!Mark Campbell, my strength and conditioning coach, has been doing intensive rehab with me. He has been pretty imaginative. I’ve been doing sitting down boxing, using the arm bike machine and doing single leg cycling drills. It’s absolutely brutal! I’ve also been using the hydrotherapy pool as well at the English Institute of Sport.
I’m very grateful too to my friend Jessica Ennis-Hill who has lent me her knee ice machine. It was one of the secrets behind her winning gold at the London Olympics so hopefully it will work for me in Glasgow.
I feel so lucky to have such a good team supporting me. We are reassessing things every two to three days. They know I am getting older and that I haven’t got much time left but they are doing everything they can to help me. I really feel very humbled to have their backing.
I have to be confident I am going to make it. If I don’t make it, I know I will have done everything that I can. I have a great team behind me at the EIS and also over in Manchester. They are telling me that I am making good progress so I will take their word for it.