Sunday, June 28, 2015

Taking It To The Next Level

     Just wanted to throw out a quick update on my injury and the road to recovery.  Last week, Alisha, my physical therapist asked me to take a complete week off from all activity and we would reevaluate on Wednesday.  During my rest I put myself on an ibuprofen regimen and a icing routine.  Slowly throughout the week the pain started to subside and I was starting to get a positive feeling that this may be all I needed, that is till Wednesday.

     I woke up Wednesday and the pain and aching had returned in full force and believe it or not all I could do was smile, shake my head and laugh.  I sent Alisha an email letting her know of my progress and regress for the week.  She felt it was time to take it to the next level and see a specialist.  I really had no idea what to do or who to see on, so Alisha recommended a doctor that is top notch in his field here in Toledo.  Alisha has been so great through my previous injury recovery and now this situation that I fully trust her opinion and who she recommends I see.  She got me his contact info and I called for an appointment.     This coming Wednesday I'll be having my initial evaluation and an x-ray, so hopefully I'll have an answer to my problem or at the very least have it narrowed down to a short list of possible issues.

     If you wonder how I am able to keep my spirits up during this situation, well its been a little rough but Jedi has been keeping me entertained!

     I am anxious to see what he has to say, but I fear that this my drag on for a couple of weeks before, one, I have a diagnosis, and two, know if I have to have surgery or not.  So for now, the goal is to get healthy enough to run again, while I hope and pray that I'll be able to run the Detroit Marathon in three and a half months!

Sunday, June 21, 2015

What Could It Be?

     So after last Sunday's run I contacted my physical therapist and gave her the bad news of how the run went.  She pretty much said what I new she would say and what I was thinking as I walked/limped back home, "you should have rested today and not pushed yourself".  She wanted me to rest on Monday and Tuesday, then attempt an easy 2 mile run on Wednesday.  

     I woke up on Wednesday and my hip joint area was aching a little bit.  I thought about not attempting the two miles, but I stretched out and went anyway.  I kept slow, around a 10 min pace and did fairly well, but I would get an occasional twinge of aching type pain.  Nothing to make me stop or want to stop, just reminding me that its there.  She wanted me to stop at the end of the first mile and do a few light stretches, so when I hit mile one I stopped and did the stretches and turned tail and headed for home.  At mile 1.66, that same twinge of aching type pain with an occasional sharper pain (nothing intense) would come and go much more frequently till I finished the full two miles.  When I was done, the aching pain hung around and lingered for awhile afterwards.  

     I contacted my PT and she decided it would be best if I came in for another session that afternoon.  She seemed concerned that the pain was coming on sooner and sooner with each run.  So after a lot of questions and the usual pushing, pulling and twisting the theory changed from a muscle issue to possibly being a tear to the hip joint cartilage know as the acetabular labrum or labral tear.  Basically from what I gathered on the Internet, that this is the cartilage that separates the ball from the socket in the hip join.  

     Obviously my PT wasn't making a diagnosis because the only true why to know if it is a labral tear is to have an expensive MRI, but based on the symptoms I have described to her she thought this to have a good probability.  According to her and what I read online, there are two main ways of treating this.  First is a non surgical option, which means a lot of physical therapy and strength training to strengthen the muscles around the hip to better support it and minimize the onset of pain.  The other is surgery which then would be followed by lots of physical therapy and no guarantee that the pain will end and running can continue.

     So where do I go from here?  Well because she is on the fence about it being a labral tear we decided for me to take one week off from all activities and completely rest it.  It was recommended, but not prescribed to take whatever anti inflammatory I am comfortable with taking and icing the area several times a day.  Next Wednesday we will talk and reevaluate our options.

     Part of me really wants to pay the money to have the MRI done just so I know for sure what I am dealing with, but the other part of me knows I don't really have the cash to pay for a test that could, even with my insurance, cost me 1-2 thousand dollars.  Mostly though, this is turning into a real test for my patience.  This could be a very small blip on my running life, but damn it, when you are going through it, it feels like an eternity.       

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Where Is The Nearest Wall

     Man I can't tell how great things are going right now.  I have been in such a great mood and run all kinds of miles and I have a dozen races on the schedule coming up, life couldn't be better with my running right what I really want to say right now, however this couldn't be further from the truth.  

     I visited my physical therapist on Wednesday to get my leg checked out.  She went through a series of exercises along with a lot of stretching, twisting and pulling to try and loosen things up.  I was instructed to attempt a 3 mile run with a quick stretching break at the end of each mile.  Thursday's run went pretty well and Saturday's run went even better which gave me the confidence to head out for another run this morning.  Well that is what I get for thinking I know what is best, because I didn't even make it to a mile and a half before pain set in and a short mile later I decided to shut it down and walk the last half mile home.

     I started to think of all my goals I set for this year and started to feel so defeated and depressed.  When I developed my knee injury, I thought I hit the ultra low point, but I think having come back from an injury to have another one pop up so quickly really can send you to a new low.  I really felt like just beating my head against the wall, because at the end of the day, I really don't care about my time goals or PRs, I just want to get back to a regular running schedule.  I got into this to lose weight and now I need it to maintain my weight so that is why I think I take it so hard when I can't run.   

Yeah, this is how I feel right now dealing with nagging injuries.

head banging gif photo: head banging head_banging.gif

      So I went back and looked at my goals I set for myself for this year and even though I actually have accomplished two of those goals, neither of which was a running goal.  Here is the list of goals for the year:

Get back to regular running
2015 or more total miles for the year
Run a trail race
37 miles on my 37th birthday
Complete an Ultra Marathon
Complete the Detroit Marathon
Hit my goal weight of 173 lbs
Maintain my weight within the range of 168 - 178
Try more fruits & vegetables

     I hit my weight goal, tried more fruits & vegetables and I could even say I have maintained my weight within range, but I won't count that one till the end of the year.  With the exception of one of them the rest are being thrown out the window because I think I am trying to hard to do to much to soon.  Getting back to regular running is my first and only goal, because if I can't do that, the Detroit marathon isn't going to happen, and I really want to do that one and run with my friends.  I am going to rest tomorrow and talk to my PT again and see where I go from here.

Sunday, June 7, 2015

New Injury, Just Before Marathon Training Begins

     I so want to be writing tonight on how my 10K at Kelleys Island went today, but I am not for two very different reasons.  The first and less important one is I had a really long day at work followed up by a long evening at Ohio Bike Week.  It was the last night for all the major festivities and the band Buckcherry was the evenings final entertainment.  When we got home around 11:30 the pups were wide awake so we stayed up to play with them and by the time we crawled in bed it was close to 1:30am.  Based on how tired I felt I decided I really didn't want to get up early and pay to go run 6.2 miles when I could sleep in and run 6.2 for free.  Well it was a good thing I made that decision because I would have had the worst race of my life and possibly a DNF if I had run. 

     So let me back track for a minute, on Wednesday I went out for my long run when I was about 4 miles in I started developing some pain in my upper outer thigh, just below my hip and the inside of my leg around my groin area.  The pain slowly got worse to the point I even stopped to stretch it out.  I finished the run and emailed Alisha, my PT about my pain.  She instructed me to ice and stretch and rest a couple of days, so I followed her instruction and even took one more days rest than she suggested.  I woke up this morning feeling pretty good and rested and decided to head out for a 6 mile run, which turned out to be a very bad and stubborn decision!  Two and three quarter miles in I felt a slight pain come back and by the time I hit mile three I needed to stop and stretch it out.

     Since this was an out and back run, I turned around and started a slow jog back thinking a super slow pace would help, but it really didn't.  At 3.5 miles I decided to shut it down and walk the rest of the way home.  It was the stubborn for me to think I could just go out a few days after an injury and just run six miles like nothing was wrong, but I did.  Needless to say I was quite disappointed and feeling pretty deflated.  Now you can see why I am glad I didn't head out to the race today.

     Now it would be easy for me to sit here and ramble on about how this sucks and am I ever going to return to some normalcy and injury free running, but I won't do that to you all.  I am going to speak with my PT and see where I go from here.

     Out of the darkness there is at least a little light to be positive about.  On Wednesday I had my first weigh-in in two or three weeks and I have been having success with my maintenance.  Weight has been holding steady just below my goal weight of 173 pounds.