Posts filed under ‘injury’

accountability

it’s time to come back. to here and to the run. and since the two have always gone hand-in-hand, it’s my last ditch effort on accountability before i admit defeat. i have forgotten that i am an athlete. sure, i run. sometimes. a few miles here. 15 miles there. it’s inconsistent at best and i’m no longer ok with it.

back in january. good god it’s been that long since i’ve written. i ran the croom zoom 100 miler. correction, i attempted to run the croom zoom 100. i try not to call that day a failure. i made it further than the body had ever allowed. 62 miles. but i didn’t make it the 100 i had set out for and in my mind, the means i failed.

my knee was shot. i mean SHOT. and after a few weeks down i did the obligatory X-ray that found arthritis. bone on bone. minor but enough that i had to consider options. after months of insurance company battles that option ended up being a series of injections of a joint lubricant. since then i’ve struggled. physically i’ve been ok. not 100 percent but good enough. but mentally i’ve yet to regain what i lost.

but i’m ready. not sure exactly what for yet. i toy with the idea that i still want to do a full iron man. but i hate that i have yet to check the 100 off my bucket list. then there’s still that pesky sub-4 marathon. do i dare leave the comfort and security of the woods and hit the road again in quest of speed?

but i’ve waffled over the debate for too long. so a few days ago i made a commitment. a small one. just a sprint tri in october. but a commitment nonetheless. yesterday i got back on the bike for the first ride in more than a year. and this week comes the water. i’m also on the waiting list for AO. a 100 mile race in december. that one is a “we’ll see” at best. it’s a free race and i can say no at any time so no skin off my back to stay wait listed as long as i need to decide.

hopefully i can commit to things. the races and the words. i miss both.

July 24, 2016 at 6:38 am Leave a comment

new year. new start.

i made a comment to a friend on new year’s day how i find it funny that my writing seems to correlate to my running. i know this blog is in some ways mostly running related so i suppose that would make sense, but the last month has had had so many stories to tell yet with no miles i’ve had no words.

on new year’s day i also ran for the first time since the florence marathon. time down due to an injury from one of those tales not yet told. the basics … minor calf muscle tears mid-race (that i of course stupidly pushed through in spite of numerous attempts to try and convince myself to quit) followed by major swelling from back-to-back flights home that led to more tearing and the concern of a blood clot in my leg. an ultrasound cleared me of the clot, but the calf needed to heal. i didn’t argue and i didn’t push. i simply stopped running with a very uncharacteristic acceptance of the fact that this injury would likely take my 100 off the table. and though i probably could have handled a few miles earlier in the week it seemed fitting to wait until jan 1. a new start per se. and this year who i ran with made the relevance of a new year’s day sunrise run far more symbolic.

i know some of you are waiting for that story. you’ve seen pictures or the status update on facebook. i am officially <gulp> in a relationship! so i guess it’s time to tell.

i’m not sure what made me go there again. i long since gave up on the world of online dating. maybe it was not being able to run and needing something to fill my time. or maybe it was the thought of spending the impending holidays alone again but mere days into the temporary lapse of sanity i knew it was a mistake. the same faces. the same bullshit. i was about to delete, yet again, but then someone caught my attention. a click of a wink and a line or two later we bonded over 4 a.m. sleepless emails that eventually turned to texts then talk. when we finally agreed to meet for a drink i almost prayed he’d be nothing like i expected. disappointment is familiar to me. the fear hope of something more wasn’t.

they say that you’ll know. you won’t know how. you certainly won’t understand why. but from the moment your eyes meet or your skin touches it simply all makes the most irrational sense and you know better than to try to find the ever elusive answer. i’ve felt it once before. with boston. and truth be told it’s likely the reason why a part of me never believed i would feel it again. a soulmate is forever. a once in a lifetime that only a lucky few get to experience. and in spite of the tangled web of love we wove, i’ve always treasured every memory of boston as my one and only chance. so who was i to think i ever deserved a second.

but it feels as though that’s exactly what i’ve been given. my rationality screams at me to breath. take it slow. but with time off work and off the run the last month has been all about us and it’s felt right. but now starts the real test of balance. his world there. my world here. back to work. back to the run.

but for some reason i’m not too concerned. i trust his feelings in a way i haven’t trusted in a long time. and maybe even more important i trust my own.

I have no idea what to expect but i can’t wait to see what 2015 has in store for me … and for us!

January 2, 2015 at 1:38 pm 6 comments

going the distance

after my semi-failed 18-miler, i wasn’t sure how to best approach my long run for this past weekend. the pilot suggested i take the time down and short run only. let the body recoup and rest pretty much until race day. and i was tempted to do so. but with four weeks to go and wavering confidence, i felt it best i make one final attempt to see if last week’s cortisone shot, trip to the chiro and continued massage made any sort of difference. i knew there was only one number that would leave me feeling race ready ~ that is assuming i could even do it ~ so intelligent or not i wanted 20.

i always long run saturdays. sundays are rest days. but a shift in mini-me’s skating schedule means weekends she’s home we’re now at the ice rink saturday morning. and it was there that i got the first bit of hope. i’ve maintained all along that every issue i have stems from my SI joint. a few years back my chiropractor determined it was locked and months later when she finally released it my body felt as though it shifted back into place. since then i’ve always been able to pop it. manipulate it. fix it. that is until a few months ago. but saturday, while aimlessly stretching at the rink i thought i felt a little give. but i tried again ~ all damn day long ~ and felt nothing.

after careful consideration, i opted to keep the run on pavement. i thought it smart to stick to race surface. and after little consideration, i opted to wear brand new shoes ~ new make new model new everything. i knew it was risky but i haven’t felt right in asics as of late. in spite of just coming off the air force marathon, my wingman agreed to see me through the run and we planned for a 5 a.m. start which meant he would pick me up at 4:30 a.m. but at 4:44 a.m. my phone rang … and woke me up. it took me two seconds to realize that ~ creature of habit that i am ~ i set my alarm for saturday instead of sunday. i flew out of bed, threw on running clothes, grabbed my gear and made it out the door in 15 minutes. a very bad start. there is no feeling in the world i hate more than rushing. it throws off my entire type-A need for control and leaves me flustered. add to the mix that i didn’t have time to eat breakfast and had to stop at 7-11 for some random protein bar and i was starting to question everything about the run.

we got to the planned route and while the wingman was in starbucks for a pre-run potty break, i finished getting ready. new mizuno wave inspires on my feet, body glide slathered on, gels stocked and an extra set of stretching. and in that last stretch, that final knee to nose, my entire pelvis shifted and the SI joint released! i can not explain to you the immediate change i felt in my body. and not just in the bones. it’s like it opened up a flow from head to toe. reconnected everything that’s been so off. when the wingman walked up i was still sitting on the curb with the biggest shit eating grin on my face.

the run certainly wasn’t perfect. you don’t go from broken to fixed in a mere moment. but for 20 miles i had zero knee pain. yes there was a little hip pain and my calf was sore. but i ran a strong 20 and without a doubt knew there was another 6.2 left in me. so with a renewed confidence i’ll take the next 26 days relatively easy. this coming weekend a step back to 15ish and the following weekend 12. and i think i’ve neglected to mention that the weekend before MCM i’m actually racing a sprint tri. but at this point i can finally say i’ve gone the distance.

October 1, 2013 at 11:55 am 1 comment

my a-b-c’s

i get it pointed out to me way too often lately that there’s little update on the run. maybe that’s because i don’t want to admit that i’m going to be lucky to even run MCM in five weeks nonetheless do with it what i wanted! the A-goal of 3:45 went out the window months ago and at this point i’ve even accepted ~ sort of ~ that i can kiss goodbye the B-goal of sub-4. i feel like i’ve been fighting a losing battle. for every one step forward i get shoved back two. a couple weekends ago i had a great long run complete with stair running fun and a mile eight pit stop at a food truck rally where the wingman and i might have indulged in a vodka infused watermelon beverage before finishing up the last few miles. but three days later i aborted a four mile run due to knee pain. i followed that up with a killer massage and then this past saturday i set out for 18.

ok so mind you … i’m not stupid. i can hear you asking “why attempt 18 when only days earlier you couldn’t run four?!” i know i know i know i’m not always the sharpest tool in the shed but i also think i understand the issues going on and after my massage i felt capable of tackling it. and lord knows my confidence needed a boost. and it was working. the miles were slow but a long overdue run with the governor to catch up on life was making them enjoyable. the first six on pavement then we ducked down into the trails after the sun came out to play. all was going well until mile 16. it was like someone flipped a switch. the sudden pain in my knee completely unbearable to the point that even walking was agony. the only way to avoid was to keep my leg straight on the walk. but i felt like an ass. it was getting hot as hell. and the governor had to finish up. so i pushed through best i could.

rash decision made. i went home, took a shower and headed straight for the relief of a cortisone shot. i don’t do needles. i reach for natural remedies before drugs. i hate putting anything in my body that shouldn’t be there. but i’ll be damned i no longer gave a crap! and three hours later i was a happy camper for it! i took sunday down and monday morning went out for four. i could still feel the ache but not the pain. yesterday rain kept me cozy in bed and this morning i faced the never ending downpour for another four with little to no discomfort and a few hop, skips and jumps in every puddle along the route 🙂 add in the trip to the chiro yesterday that may have started what i hope will put me back in alignment and suddenly i feel a renewed hope.

all i want at this point is my C-goal. a PR. sub 4:15. a 9:41 average. not long ago i would have scoffed at that. even my training runs were faster. but i’m coming to terms with the reality of where i am and that it’s time to accept that now i know my a-b-c’s.

September 25, 2013 at 11:37 am 1 comment

wood i

after two weeks down, i finally ran again last saturday. just six miles. in the time i’d normally cover nine. but we took it slow ~ my wingman and i ~ and made it fun. something i’d been missing since the official training began. new to us park. wet trails. an archery range we skirted through hoping no one showed up to shoot or if they did, that they couldn’t hit the fast moving targets we liked to think we were. at one point i even insisted we stop for me to swing on a vine. why not. the woods are fun.

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screw tarzan. me jane!

i can’t say i came off that run feeling physically whole but i was reminded why i run. what i love about the freedom of the open trails. why i hate the constraints of concrete sidewalk prison walls.

i took another two days down after. focused on stretching. putting the SI joint back where it belongs. shifting the body in hopes of completing the puzzle. and something got better. tuesday i ran four. wednesday five including one with a mini-me guest appearance. and this weekend i’m revisiting the sight of the fools for as many as the body will allow. maybe healing the body is as simple as healing the heart.

August 29, 2013 at 11:38 am Leave a comment

re-read

after the diagnosis of ganglion cyst, i felt pretty secure getting out and trying some miles. my level of pain hasn’t been intolerable for some time but my fear was that running was going to cause more damage to whatever was wrong. but from what i read, running with the ganglion, though potentially uncomfortable, wasn’t necessarily a stupid thing to do. so the day after i quietly asked the realtor to join me for a few test miles. and i did ok. and a few days later while at sanibel beach for the weekend i pulled a mid-day five miler. hot as hell but awesome and followed by a refreshing dip in the ocean. then tuesday one more four miler before the impending wednesday appointment with my doctor to get her opinion on the MRI. i guess i knew there was a chance the diagnosis could change and i wanted the allowance of miles before i was told otherwise.

and as expected things changed. but not as expected, they changed for the better. my doctor doesn’t think there is a ganglion. slight potential but even if so, location was too far from my pain. she maintains her initial diagnosis of inflamed fat pad and patellar tracking. but also, clearly visible on the films, i have quite the bone bruise on about a third of my kneecap. i was a little discouraged to hear that pain from a deep bone bruise can take up to six months to subside but was happy to hear~ and believe me i asked about five times if she was sure ~ that as long as i wore the tracking brace, i was fine to keep running. the fat pad inflammation is an issue and she offered cortisone but i’m not a huge proponent of so we compromised. for now i’m trying an anti-inflammatory gel patch. twelve hours on the knee. twelve hours off. if come the very end of the month i’m still dealing with the discomfort, i’ll turn to the needle.

so, give me an inch … i take the miles. the day after my appointment four. then saturday a first trip back to my trails for eight and this week a strong two morning start. thirty-two miles over the last 12 days. i’m not miraculously pain free. and i’m not sure the gel is working wonders but the assurance that i’m ok to run gave me the confidence to push past the discomfort. so now the plan begins. well almost. most i know started this week, but technically i’m not allowing my official training plan to start until week of july 7. sixteen weeks. that’s my mental capacity. so until then it’s a base-mile build. i’ve lost a lot. i’m slow. sluggish. tired. but i’m back!

June 18, 2013 at 10:13 am 2 comments

ganging up on the knee

i am going to try and break my pity-me code of silence. not running should not mean i can not write! i tend to think my life is meaningless without miles but there really is a little bit more to me than just dusty trails and sweat.

that said, let’s start with a running update 😉 a mile here, a mile there and the lingering pain scared me right back to the sidelines and elliptical hell. then the pilot mentioned his friend who owns an mri center who would comp my copay if he asked. and his friend the chiro who would write me the script without an office visit. he made the calls on thursday. friday i was in the tube. results were in yesterday. it certainly is proving helpful to be dating someone who knows just about everyone in this city!

let me caveat what follows by saying that though i have no reason to doubt the read the pilot’s buddy did, until i hear it from my doctor and determine my options going forward i am taking things with a grain of salt.

diagnosis: ganglion cyst in the knee. a benign soft tissue tumor that may occur in any joint.
cause: somewhat unknown but likely due to overuse (duh!)
treatment: aspiration. possible removal.
return to running: immediate if pain is tolerable.
recovery after treatment: full speed ahead days after if aspirated. a few weeks after if removed.

given all givens i am (tentatively) thrilled! i was worried about meniscus damage or almost worse a “we don’t see anything wrong so no idea where the pain is coming from” diagnosis. this gives me an answer. and one with a solution. i’m hoping to get a copy of the films this week and get into my doctor next but until then it’s nice to have a resurgence of hope as it was fading fast.

activity wise i have been trying to maintain some semblance of workouts. most weeks i’m in the gym three days a week at lunchtime and weekends i’ve been trying to get in a long ride. i did take last weekend off completely which is a story in itself but i’ve got to stop feeling sorry for myself and maintain in anyway i can. MCM training has got to start by early to mid-july ~ at latest!

as for life outside the non-existent run. my liver has no doubt been paying the price for my lack of miles. too much time on my hands tends to make me eat and drink more than i should. especially trying to date two and keep up with friends. i’ve pretty much dropped attorney number two. he’s just a tad too high-energy hyper for me. surprisingly i’ve been seeing attorney number one ~ aka the pilot ~ more. he’s cooked grilled for me twice now. and we’ve had a couple more nights out. i’m not sure he’s what i want past the immediate and it’s a discussion we’ve both pretty much suggested we don’t want to have at this point. but for now, i enjoy him. he’s out of town for the next week which is a good thing as my mom gets in this afternoon.

and an update on the mom front is happy news! last week she had her first PET scan since treatment began and she got the results yesterday and she is responding perfectly! YAY! though there is no cure for follicular lymphoma, treatment buys us time and i want all that we can get.

i really am going to try and get back to writing more. and i want to start defining monthly goals again. it’s easy for me to wallow and withdraw when what i really need to do is delve deeper and find the strength and determination to get back to where i want to be and a plan works best for the anal retentive types like me 🙂

 

June 5, 2013 at 1:47 pm 2 comments

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the best of times

5k pr ~ 24:23
10k pr ~ 52:49
half marathon pr ~ 1:55:10
marathon pr ~ 4:10:41
half ironman pr ~ 5:57:50
50k pr ~ 5:33:23
50-mile pr ~ 11:32:39

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