Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Injured and Angry*

   Yes, I'm injured. Ugh. Just when I started to really ramp up training for the season, I developed a small tear in my calf. I didn't think it was a huge thing at first. I felt a little pain when running an easy three about a week and a half ago. Nothing really to worry about though - or so I thought.
   The issue continued during a nine-mile run two days later. Again, it didn't really "hurt" when I first started, but as the miles went on the pain became more noticeable. I stopped at seven miles to get a drink of water and my calf seized up. In hindsight, it would have been really smart to stop running then. But did I? No. Because I'm stubborn and I wanted my stupid nine miles.
   I finished the run with my calf really hurting, but I still didn't think I was injured. Denial, mostly, I'm sure. I figured I'd give it a day or two off and it would be fine. Nope! Now it's almost two weeks later and I still haven't been able to run.  I tried as recently as Monday and I got about seven minutes in before I could barely walk from the pain.
   I since have gone from denial to full-panic mode because I have races coming up and I need to be healthy. So yesterday I went to see my friend Leah Sawyer, who is a Physical Therapist. I think I should go buy her a car or something because one session with her and my calf feels SO much better. I'm not healed yet - that will still take time - but it definitely doesn't hurt as much as it did and I have hope that my recovery isn't going to take six weeks as I had feared. One of the biggest mistakes I was making while I was "resting" last week was that I was stretching too much and incorrectly. Every chance I got, I was doing the foam roller, the stick and the lacrosse ball. Leah basically told me to chill out and only do one torture device twice a day, and she showed me the proper form for my specific injury. And it helped! Imagine that. Let that be a lesson for all of you stubborn athletes out there: if you're hurt - don't wait it out. Go get help.
   I'm trying to stay positive and stay active with other workouts (swimming has to be adapted, but biking is OK), but I'm still really frustrated. I was just starting to gain some speed after last season's marathons and was training to PR at the Flying Pig Half Marathon in May. Now I'll just be happy if I'll be able to participate in the race at all. I'm taking the remainder of this week off and will revaluate over the weekend. Maybe I can start running again next week, maybe not. We'll see.

*Thank you to Daniel Hudgins for the title "Injured and Angry."  I thought it was cute, so I stole it from him.  :-)