Sunday, January 25, 2015

Where Do I Begin


These are some of my real images from the scan - the dark spot is the fracture. It's in a low, vulnerable spot on my bone. 

Each day the reality sinks in a little more...


This is how I am to hobble around for the next three weeks. I can take the boot off to cycle at the gym, but I have to put it back on to do weights; it's clunky but I am getting used to it.

Each time my hub and I have worked out the "what feels okay" list has been shrinking. I can't do the leg press, or calf machines I love, I can not do my sit ups on the incline bench - goodbye progress, hello belly flab, and I can't plank. Trying to put weight on my foot caused a sharp pain in my shin, so no planks. I haven't tried push ups, but I think it's safe to cross them off...it pains me to see my progress fade away.

Sunday, I did the awesome cycle with the big screen and all the different courses,



then I tried a stationary one for a half hour. My leg, which hasn't really hurt much in a few weeks (unless I put my weight on it just right) has been pulsing. I am beginning to wonder if the cycle is detrimental to my healing, or if my leg is still adjusting the weight of the boot. The first few days in the boot, both my knees were very sore and  tender. 

Void ~

Since May 2013 - I have run at least 70 miles every month, a few months were higher, but never less. 
How do you fill that void? 

January 2013 - I started trying to run a few times a week and slowly increased my miles, by July 2013, I actually had lost four pounds. Running was the only thing that finally started nudging my scale down, and helped me to shed some inches. 

History ~
After a few surgeries and several years of trying different hormone therapies, I was feeling awful because no matter what the doctor tried my blood pressure (with medication) stayed
in the danger zone. I had swelling in my joints, my exercise was constantly disrupted due to pain, and I went through a year long period where my shoulder was frozen; I couldn't even latch my own bra. I felt pretty depressed.  Ultimately, I decided to get off all the meds, let my body level out, and let it land where it may and work from there. I just wanted to feel better. 

After stopping all medicine and beginning to exercising regularly (because the pain and swelling got better when I stopped the medicine), I gained almost 30lbs. over a four month period. Initially I began to panic, since I have a history of eating very disordered, it had been about 20 years since I had dealt with any purging behaviors, but the weight gain had me worried. 
2010, I was at the height of my misery with my weight, I started dieting and ramping up the exercise with minimal results. I was doing a lot of walk/running, I would run for periods of 30 seconds to a minute and maintain about a 13  - 13 half minute mile. In 2011, I started seeing an endocrinologist and was diagnosed with my slowing thyroid, but with my history of medication issues, she encouraged me to try to manage it with more weight training, increase my walk/run min. a mile speed, and a very low calorie diet. I have struggled staying on the diet long term. 

All that leads to why I had very little confidence I would ever be able to run non-stop, but eventually it happened...and I felt .•´ ♥ ☆ ♥ `•.¸.•´ ♥  amazing! 
I never wanted to stop having that feeling and now it's come to a crashing halt. 

Running has been my hormone replacement, my anti-depressant, my weight control, my motivation, my companion, and sanity every week. 

I don't even know what questions to ask this post, I just want to thank you all for your very kind words, encouragement, support, and virtual hugs!!!
I deeply appreciate each and every comment  more than you can imagine. 

26 comments:

  1. I just hate this for you! I completely understand what it means to be able to run. Trust me. Also believe me when I say, YOU WILL HEAL. Getting through these weeks will be one of the hardest things you'll ever do but you will come out stronger than you can ever imagine. Use your blog as an outlet. We've pretty much all been there and we understand. We get it. H

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    1. Thanks :) I feel bad to keep whining, but it's taking a bit to shallow this and figure out how to proceed. I am trying to remain hopeful and believe I will heal and will running again soon. I am so glad someone gets it :)

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    2. It's not whining. Your virtual friend is here for you support. :)

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  2. This sucks, Karen, it really does and I hate that you're going through it. But this post just showed me how strong and resilient you always have been. You didn't let your blood pressure or slowing thyroid or medication get the better of you the way it does for so many people. I know a handful of people in my life who are just resolved to feeling crappy and taking medicine every day. Instead you decided you wanted something better for yourself and you got that. You'll get back to that when the boot is off!

    Do you know how long you'll be wearing the boot?

    Check out this article:

    http://runnersconnect.net/running-training-articles/how-long-does-it-take-to-lose-your-running-fitness/

    A study has shown that we retain 80% aerobic fitness even after 12 weeks of not working out due to injury (etc.). After you start running again you'll ramp back up in no time! It may be challenging at first, but I know you're not scared of a little challenge. You'll face it head on and your running life will go back to normal!

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    1. I loved that article! It made me feel a lot better :) I have taken time off after a few surgeries where i was completely inactive and it was rough at first but it didn't take long to get back on track. I guess my fear this time- it's my first real break from running and running was so hard!
      I have to wear the boot three weeks. Fingers crossed, everything will heal like it should.
      Thanks for cheering me up :)

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  3. Karen, I am stunned. I don't have much to say except big hugs and I hope you lose the boot and your recovery journey is a good one.

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    1. Thanks Marnie :)
      I am going to have a happy post soon, and stop whining, it's coming I promise lol

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  4. There is really nothing anyone can say to make you not miss running. I have been there and for 5 months. I did stupid things like making a book of running pictures in case I never ran again. I was overly dramatic. You will heal and be stronger (mentally & physically.)

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    1. You are so right, I am going to miss it, reading your race recap this morning made me happy and sad lol
      That sounds like me making a book of running stuff just in case...five months is along time to be out.
      It makes me feel so much better to see your strong running now!

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  5. Aw, Karen. This makes me so sad. I really feel for you, I can't imagine how hard it must be to not be able to do the thing you love. :-(

    What you are going through right now is grieving. We tend to only use that in reference to tragedies like death or the loss of a relationship, but it is exactly what you are going through and it might shed some light to think of it as such. Like any other instance with grief, though - it will pass, and it will get easier with time. And the good news is that running isn't gone forever. Keep being strong and fighting the good fight. It sounds like you've got a lot of fight in you - don't give up! Any exercise you can do is better than nothing. Just think of this period as "pre-training", training yourself to start training again!!

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    1. You are so right, anytime you have a loss, or change, you grieve a bit. I had to get some of the frustration out, but I am feeling better each day, I just have to accept where I am or I will make myself crazy!
      I have worked through bad situations and I will d o it again I guess. :) You are so sweet Hanna.
      I thought I had commented yesterday, but i guess it did one of those mystery things...where you click submit and it doesn't :/

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  6. I am so sorry Karen, BUT we are going to keep looking at the positives. You can cycle. How about swimming? Is there a pool at your gym? You can even run in a pool with a floatation vest. Push-ups, well, you will have to get used to doing them like me, on your knees! Now is the time to do all those hip strengthening exercises we are supposed to be doing! How about the elliptical, would that be OK?
    You are one determined gal, so I know you will get through this. It is natural to feel depressed. Hang in there kid! This to, shall pass! :)

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    1. I wish I had access to a pool, but I don't. I have been running around town trying to seek out options, nothing will be super convenient but hopefully I can get in the water soon. Elliptical is a no go from the doctor.
      I have to find a plan that works and I hopefully will soon, but it's hard, working full time has already taken away a few pool options because the only adult time is during the day.
      I am trying! I just feel like I am losing valuable time fumbling around, but I will get there :)

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  7. I am so sorry you are going through this, Karen! The list of things you can do may be small, but stick to it! Design workouts you CAN do and go out and do them. It is not the same as running but it will help keep you sane. If you want any help designing an upper body lifting plan I could help you! Remember, when you are lifting, you ARE working your core. And I had an idea for the plank... when I had my knee surgery, I couldn't really put weight on my left leg to plank either, so I just crossed my left leg over my right so that my right leg was doing all the work. I don't think it made the plank harder or easier, but it allowed me to plank! Maybe you could try that?

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    1. I tried your idea today and the PT at my school watched an she said I was good to go and it didn't hurt. I can do push ups for sure with my leg tucked behind the right one :) Thank you!!!!! Planking seemed harder lol Yaaa, for small gains! Thanks for the offer helping, I will let you know if we get stuck. I have been watching more free weight ideas and tips online so we can add in several more exercises :)

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  8. I am so sorry this happened to you :( I was out of running for about 3 months after my marathon due to ITBS and a torn meniscus. It was awful but it was worth it to get healthy again. And while I did lose some of my speed in running I don't feel like I lost much of my stamina. I know you will come back strong from this injury. Keep your head up!

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    1. That's a longtime, that was my original fear in trying to do the marathon, I just wasn't sure if I could get through it w/o an injury. I actually believe my problem began when I was half training though, but I guess running all those mile so something irritated didn't help. I am glad to to hear you feel like the stamina wasn't a huge loss, each time I hear something like this it gives me more hope.

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  9. So sorry to hear about your injury. Hope you have a speedy recovering and come strong. Since you are already a runner, it'll be easier to get back into the swing of things when it's time. -L

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    1. Thank you :) I am going to Disney to have fun!! That's still my plan.

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  10. Sorry that the fracture has you down. I know it's hard, but focus on what you can do and other things that maybe you haven't had time for in the past. It's one of the those injuries that is all about time, but there is still a lot you can do to maintain fitness and strength. I tried to focus on things that I haven't put as much emphasis on in the past (flexibility and balance). You can do it!

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    1. I am trying, I promise I will stop whining...soon, I just need to get the frustration out :) I am trying to increase my list of what I can do.

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  11. Oh no! Stress fractures are not fun. I know it's really hard to stay positive and see the light at the end of the tunnel with an injury, but this really is just a small blip in the grand scheme of your running career.

    I hope you heal quickly!

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    1. Thank you! I am trying to shut the spewing sadness now lol You are right, it isn't a loads of fun, but I can get through it.

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  12. Ugh, this is so frustrating. And scary! It's so hard not to know when it will heal and if you will be able to run as much as you were. I am thinking of you and hoping for the best outcome possible! :)

    Also, I work with some clients who can't do much with their legs and there is a LOT of upper body and core strength moves you can do, and even some that might engage the lower legs without moving them or putting pressure on your boot! Get creative! You will get through this in the best shape possible! :)

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    1. I am working on it :) I found a medical program I joined for 60 days and began work in the water and loved it.
      I also did my push ups last night, I just tucked my leg behind the other and did it :)
      I am worried I may not run as much after I heal, but if I can get back to about 15 miles a week I think I could survive.

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