I haven’t wanted to talk about this.. However, it has become more clear to me that it’s time to lay it out there. Once I talk about it, I’ll start to get over it a little bit. I’ll lose the chip on my shoulder… With that being said, I’ve been trying to write this since Sunday night and I keep allowing myself to become distracted. Obviously, there is a part of me still not ready to come to terms with things.
You know those moments that flash before your eyes in slow motion but you just can’t stop them? Well, one of those situations happened to me Saturday morning. I awoke bright and early that day to get in 4 easy-paced miles before work. I headed down MLK toward campus just like I do every weekend. Campus is practically empty on the weekend mornings, making a peaceful and beautiful route to run. I turned up my tunes and completely lost myself in my thoughts as I entered the UT Campus. I was ticking along when I suddenly got the urge to go a different direction through campus than I typically do. I find myself taking a right turn toward Robert Dedman, and up past the Football Stadium. Then the moment came. I’m chugging along and suddenly I launch my foot off the ground to notice (too late) that there was a step down on the sidewalk. The moment passes so slowly that I can feel myself realize that I’m about to do some damage on the landing. Yet, it was too late to do anything about it… I had already launched off the ground. My foot slammed into the ground funny and rolled to the outside.
Down I went.
There was an instant pain shooting up the outside of my left ankle and top of my left foot. Every single curse word in the english (and even some from the italian) dictionary came out of my mouth. There was a super nice, helpful gentleman running the opposite way and came to my rescue when he saw me go down. He asked me if I was okay. I just kind of sat there… No words came out of my mouth. He knelt down on the ground next to me, as if to see if there was any life in my eyes or something. I shook myself, literally, and told him quite frankly “I don’t know. I think so” and hopped to my feet. I couldn’t put my weight on my left foot. I started crying.. Not out of pain (which yes.. I was in pain, but not enough to cry) but because I was terrified I had ruined my chances of running SFM in June. The pain felt exactly like I remember it feeling when I was diagnosed with Peroneal Tendonitis in high school when I was a gymnast… I had to take nearly a month off and very very slowly build my training back up once I returned. AINT NOBODY GOT TIME FOR THAT!
The kind gentlemen swooped me up and helped me hobble to the bus stop. It was time to swallow my pride, thank the guy, and take the metro home to dump my foot into a bucket of ice before heading to work. All day at work I was favoring my left foot as much as possible and cringing with every step. Several hours later, I yanked my shoe off as soon as clocking out….
Sunday morning I crawled out of bed to discover it was even more stiff, and the swelling/bruising hadn’t gone down at all. I was supposed to close the bar that night, I am 20 weeks out from San Francisco Marathon, and I work 5-6 shifts a week on my feet. I wasn’t taking any chances to do serious damage and off to Urgent Care I went for X-Rays and to pray for the best. A chuckle from the doctor, something silly.. Maybe a “just lay off it for a few days and you’ll be good as new.”
Of course, we never get what we’re hoping for in the doctor’s office, now do we? Nope. The doctor came back, films in hand, chart in the other, just shaking his hand. “I have good news and bad news. Which do you want first.” I hate when they say that. Don’t give me options, just lay it on me flat.
The verdict? I will not be running the Austin Half-Marathon in February. I will however, if I take the right amount of time off, do the PT exercises, and ease back into training, be able to catch up on Marathon Training!!
I know what you’re thinking, Give me the DEEETS!
It turns out it’s a Grade II Ankle Sprain.
I get to sport this super stylish air cast and compression brace until I’m able to put weight on my left foot while it’s straight. At which point I will start adding in dorsiflexion–plantar flexion (aka pumping my foot up and down) Which I’m not allowed to start doing until the end of the week. (insert fit of frustration, here) At which point I’ll start adding in other ankle exercises and some walking. I’m hoping within 3 weeks I’ll be able to run again and ease back into Marathon Training. At this point, I’m just thankful this happened at the beginning of Marathon training, rather than when I’m only a month or two out.
If I’m not able to run on February 7th… Just watch out world, that’s all I have to say.
I’m kind of freaking out, because yes… I know that an ankle sprain, even a grade II, isn’t exactly the end of the world or the end of marathon training. With the proper time to heal I will bounce back from this.. However, I work on my feet. I work long, and hard, exhausting hours that make my feet and ankles hurt even when I’m not injured… How does one go about healing properly while marathon training, when they have bills to pay, and those bills are paid by running around a crazy busy restaurant for 10+ hours at a time? I’ve taken this entire week off… But I can NOT afford to take any more time than that off. I just can’t afford it. I also can’t afford to be injured for more time than I already will be.
Anyone out there who has been injured while working a job on their feet? How do you deal? How do you prevent yourselves from becoming more injured while still putting food on the table and a roof over your head?