Monday, April 18, 2011

The Verdict Is In

And it isn't in my favor.

warning: this is a long and emotional post, so feel free to skip it and come back tomorrow when I recap last week's Nutrition on the Run event.
I woke up Friday morning feeling really good. It was a rest day, so I got ready for work, made my commute and went on with my day as usual. My leg hardly felt funny at all and I didn't need any pain reliever all day. So, I felt pretty confident that all was going to be okay when I went to see Sports Doc.

The super-nice nurse took me into the exam room and pulled this up.

I could somewhat figure out what I was looking at but, of course, I had no idea what it meant. So when Sports Doc came in, she asked me a few questions and then dropped the bomb:

Mild stress reaction in the left femur

This was not what I wanted to hear.
Bomb number two:

Crutches for two weeks. No running. No elliptical. No stationary bike. No race.

I'm not going to lie. As positive as I had been during the week, I was trying to prepare myself for bad news, but it didn't help. Tears weld up in my eyes immediately and Sports Doc handed me the tissues. Being an athlete herself, who suffered a stress fracture in nearly the same spot during her senior basketball season in college, she understood why it was so hard for me to hear. But even with that, it really didn't make me feel all that better.

I've always felt so bad for anyone on crutches in this city. I've spent my fair share of time wearing a boot cast on both feet, but it's nothing like having crutches. I was terrified at the thought. I only used crutches after my knee surgeries in high school, and even then, I was off them after just a few days each time.

Sports Doc explained to me that because of my osteopenia, running long distances is going to be really hard on my body. She said it's not definitely ruled out of my future, but I'm going to have to start my training long before a runner with healthy bones. So, instead of starting my training for the Broad Street Run a few months ago, I should have started it last year. Even though I'm always pretty active.

After my first visit with Sports Doc, I had my Endo's office send over all my test results - blood tests and bone density scans. She had looked them through and wanted a few other tests run so after I was fitted with crutches, and spent a few minutes in an empty exam room trying to control my sobs, I made my way through hidden tunnels to the main building for Hospital for Special Surgery. My first outing on crutches was not fun. The whole way I felt like a liar because my leg felt fine to me and I could have walked with no problem. I felt like a total scammer!

Thankfully the blood draw didn't take long and then I was back out on my own on crutches. I tried to hail a cab but it must have been shift change because every single one had their 'off duty' lights on. I finally got to a bus and made my way back to work.

I'm a bit overwhelmed by this. I hardly left the apartment over the weekend, trying to just stay off my leg as much as possible. I guess I'll take the bus to/from work, which means my commute will be tortuously long and cancel a few plans over the next few weeks. I hate being dependent on people. Not being able to carry my own food to the table, grocery shop, go where I want, when I want. But what hurts the most is that my Birthday weekend is ruined. Instead of celebrating my 30th by getting off the island and taking a long weekend trip with my husband to run an awesome race in the city of brotherly love, I'll be sitting at home trying to figure out how I can make it to the start line of the half in Seattle without another injury. Our Philly trip has officially been cancelled.

Yes, I know that sounds dramatic, but that's really how I'm feeling. My follow up with Sports Doc is the day before my birthday, so I'm praying that I'll finally get some good news.

I didn't skip the gym on Saturday though and I went again today. My cardio came in the way of the arm bike (I guarantee, this is even more boring than the treadmill) and I spent most of the time focusing on my arms and core. The bright side is that I'll gain some major strength in some areas that I tend to ignore when I spend more time running. My leg feels pretty great today, which makes it harder to stay off. Like all of you, I'm an active person and just want to be on the go. All the time!
  • What gets you through a running injury?
  • Have you ever been to see a sports psychologist?
  • How are you taking in the Boston Marathon today?
Saturday's workout -
6min arm cycle
3x12 cable-pull push-down
3x12 bicep curls
3x12 seated row
3x10 supermans
3x12 overhead tricep extensions
150 crunches
2x50 laying side leg lifts
3x10 back extensions

Sunday's workout -
None. Full day rest day.

Today's workout -
8min arm bike
200 crunches
3x10 weighted side bends
3x12 straight front arm raise
3x10 hammer curls
3x12 seated row
lots of stretching
foam roller


Barbara said...

Sooo sorry . I know it's terrible and disappointing for you. That's prbably an understatement.

When I was in my cast for 8 weeks , I focused as much as I could on how many days were done .
So , at least 2 days and several hours are done !
Not much comfort , but at least you and Woody aren't getting snow ! It's snowing hard and sticking here in Okemos.

Cameron Mizell said...

Aw, sorry to hear that Lisa. I know how disappointing that is for you. Take care of yourself and I'll be hoping for a speedy recovery and you getting back to pounding the pavement!

J said...

Oh no! So sorry to hear about all this. This kind of injury is so tough, But you will heal and get back to running. Keeping myself distracted with out things usually gets me through an injury but it does tend to consume all my thoughts.

Amanda - RunToTheFinish said...

oh sweetheart I feel so horribly for you. to have something that makes us feel wonderful taken away is seriously a major emotional and psychological thing. I spent a lot of time finding different ways to feel better during the 6 months i couldn't run. i have done hypnosis and listened to a lot of audiobooks which were my form of sports psychology

at least the crutches are short lived

theAlmostRunner said...

nooooooooo! i am so sorry to hear this. keep up the strength workouts and keep your spirits up. injuries are so awful!

Penny said...

Sorry to hear about your injury. Hoping you have a speedy recovery. Try focusing on the body parts we dont train very well, when we are running. Have you in my prays.

Tricia said...

boooo!!!! so sorry to hear that

Christine said...

So sorry to hear this, but I think it's great that you are still active. I know how hard these situations are; you feel guilty feeling crappy about it, but in the scheme of things it will pass, but IT STILL SUCKS! Take care of yourself and tell your husband to start planning something equally as awesome for birthday weekend.

Rose @ Eat, Drink, and Be Meiri said...

This sucks. =(

But, it's better to find out now and fix it than to hurt yourself worse.

Karen said...

So sorry to hear about your injury! Being on crutches in NYC is tough but not impossible, especially for someone like you with such a positive outlook. Focus on your recovery, listen to your body and you'll back to running in no time. In the meantime start thinking about all the fabulous ways you're going to spoil yourself for your 30th birthday!

Karen said...

Oh no! So sorry to hear it. Rest up and hang in there. Cardio on the arm bike. Pure torture, I am sure.

Lisa said...

thanks for all the compassion and words of encouragement. I knew you'd all understand what I'm feeling and let me take a few minutes to vent. Your support means so much!!

Michelle said...

Aww man I'm really sorry to hear that! Hoping for a really speedy recovery for you!

Karen said...

Oh gosh...I'm so sorry! :0( I hope your leg heals up fast!! :0)

Susan - Nurse on the Run said...

Awww I'm so sorry! I can't imagine being on crutches in the city...I always feel so bad for the people I see who are using them.

In terms of injury...while I wasn't totally out of the game, I did stop myself from running for two months last year. My foot hurt (no signs of breaks, however) and my IT band was nutso. I was able to swim and bike, but I MISSED running. It just wasn't the same. Did some yoga too, which was nice, but I stopped once I started running again. Not going to lie...I was a grumpy mess during those two months (also had major job/personal issues, but that's neither here nor there). That's probably not helpful for you to hear, but I made it, and it was fun (only at times) to concentrate on biking or seeing how far I could swim. (I did get faster!)

While it sucks, try to find something else to concentrate on...getting awesome arms and abs in time for summer? Why not? Plus, the mix of training may help you come back even stronger!

Also, let me know if you ever need someone to carry your food for you...I served my way through nursing school, so I'm a great nurse/waitress combo. :)

Raquelita said...

I'm late to reading this post, but I just wanted to let you know that I'm really sorry about your injury and its severity. I can imagine how disappointing it must be to not be able to participate in the race and celebrate your birthday the way that you had hoped to. I wish you a speedy recovery and hope that it's not going too badly with the crutches!

Suz said...

I empathize. I just got off crutches 2.5 weeks ago, after 4.5 weeks on them, for a femoral neck stress fracture. I found out about the stress fracture and got the crutches on Friday March 4 and my birthday was Sunday March 6. I can't tell you it's been easy, but you will get through it! I hope to be running in about 3 more weeks. Tomorrow will be 17 weeks since my last run. I dream of running!

Good luck and I'm thinking of you!