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Showing posts from February, 2014

You're That Runner ...

Day 40.

40 days without a run.

14 days of nothing but the pool and upper body/core work.

I'm starting to get the hang of the crutches. I take the stairs up to the second floor at the gym. I could take the elevator but the effort of crutching up the stairs seems like some of the best cardio I get these days.

My weight is up. In the past 40 days, despite my best efforts, I've put on 6 lbs.

I feel Every. Single. One.

My body feels heavy and woefully out of shape.

This weekend I signed up for a race that I'm unsure I have a chance of finishing. It's 6 months away.

The trip up the stairs leaves me a little bit breathless.

I make it to the top of the stairs (finally) and look around trying to decide where I want to go first.

"Wait, how do I know you? You're ... you're that runner." It takes me a minute to realize that a woman is talking to me. I'm trying to place her but she doesn't look remotely familiar. Am I wearing a race shirt? No. There's …

Recovery

In July of 2010 my doctor thought I had a stress fracture in my right foot. She ordered me onto crutches and told me no weight bearing activity for three weeks. I made it home from that appointment, called a friend and became hysterical. I don't think she was even able to understand me on the phone. I could barely breathe. The gist of what I was saying "I can't do this. I need to run. I'm not strong enough to handle this."

I'm not strong enough. 

I thought I would break, mentally and physically, if I had to take three weeks away from my drug of choice - exercise.

I refused to accept this diagnosis and treatment. I put on my rigid mountaineering boots and hit the stepmill and bike. I figured if my foot wasn't flexing it could heal. July in Portland isn't exactly boiling hot but it isn't cool either. I wore those boots everywhere for 6 weeks. I followed that with a week long canyon trip in Arizona and Utah. Then I ran for the first time in 7 weeks. T…

Injury Part II: Diagnosis

"What happened?" I was asked as I limped my way into the house.

"I think I just broke my foot."

Right off the bat instinct told me that this was a real injury. Fortunately, or unfortunately as it may turn out, I had a doctor's appointment that morning for another issue. While there I mentioned the foot and my doctor ordered an x-ray. She called me with the results a few hours later. "You have a stress fracture to the 2nd metatarsal. You should get a walking boot and go non-weight bearing for the next three weeks." Well that didn't sound good. But it also didn't seem right to me. The pain wasn't anywhere near the 2nd metatarsal and referred pain in that area didn't seem to make sense. Not being one to take injury or the idea of not exercising lightly I made an appointment with the podiatrist who had done my toe surgery in 2011 to get a second opinion.

I walked into his office with my walking boot 5 days later. After a quick exam he info…

Injury Part I: The Beginning

In September 2013 I decided it was time to re-evaluate priorities. 2012 and now 2013 had been disappointing years for running and racing. Between health issues and injury I never seemed to find a good groove. While I was lucky enough to get picked in the lottery for Western States 100 and have the satisfaction of crossing the finish line, in total I dropped out of more races in 2013 than I was able to run. A two week trip to Europe in the beginning of September was a forced two week running break. Upon returning from the trip the goal was to start over. I  needed another round of IV therapy to get more iron into my system, so this seemed like a natural time to return to lower mileage, faster turnover, tempo runs, hill training, strength training, etc ... Get quality sleep. Eat well. Rebuild and recover. Then allow myself to build back up to long distances. 
As they tend to do, the injury gods had other plans. While in Europe I started to have pain and numbness down my right leg. I not…