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The road to recovery (running injury) – Part I: Emotional Roller-Coaster

Standard 10K run. Pre-planned, good spirit, fueled. Break in the weather. All felt great. Until….

I got pain in the hip/abductors area (left). Just after one mile! The pain was unbearable, I was weighing up in my mind, shall I carry on, means bite my tongue and forget the pain or turn around (for me it would mean defeat)? I started noticing that I was out of balance and my right side started to suffer too. After 2 miles I had to turn back. I just couldn’t carry on and the pain was getting too much. Luckily I was with Paul – Team PI! The 2 miles back home, were long, cold, wet, windy, flooded. I couldn’t stand on my left leg at all, no movement at all. Shooting pain! Paul tried to carry me various ways with not much luck but load of fun (I wish I really weighted only one bag of cement :)) After 40 minutes we finally arrived home. Shivering, dehydrated, soaking wet, wet and frozen feet. For me unfortunately it wasn’t meant to get any warmer. Ice bath! Oh yeah! (photo below) I have to say that at this stage I didn’t realise how bad my injury really was and from previous experiences I knew that ice bath would help speed up recovery if the injury was muscle related. (!)

That was about 2 months ago. And I am still not 100%. Though I had 3 short, easy runs in the last 3 weeks, none of which were pain-free. But the last 8 weeks were an emotional roller-coaster ride of anger, finding quick fix, determination, frustration, great depression, questions (little answers), up and downs, realisation, change of plans, resting, relaxing…. But let me give you some inside view of each of my emotions.

Anger
I was angry with myself, I couldn’t run. It can’t be happening. Not now! I cannot be injured! I had all planned out. Bath Half is only 2 months away! I had difficulties at night, no sleep, too uncomfortable, too painful. No pain-killer seem to work. No rest, not even in the mind! I started to put pressure on myself, more and more as each weeks gone by. Anger grew by the minute….

Finding quick fix
Week after the injury I went to see physio for short sports massage. She is really good and helped me few times in the past with little niggles. I was badly twisted in the hip area and lower back. Massage seems to help, but unfortunately not for long. 5 days later I went to see physio who is specialised in running injuries. After quick consultation and examination, the verdict was – high possibility of stress fracture in the abductors area! Boom! I wasn’t ready for such bad news! I didn’t come here (and paid) for that!
“Prescription” no runs, no leg workout, rest and take it easy (he doesn’t know me that “take it easy” doesn’t exist in my vocabulary!) Get Vitamin D (!) and Iron (!) checked. After 2 weeks start swimming, aqua running (!). Concentrate on upper body and core in the meantime. After 4 weeks see how it goes. Start running slowly. Bath Half possible, won’t be great time but could be done. Too early to say! I left with tears and broken heart. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on 25 February, 2013 in Health & Wellbeing

 

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The Circle of Shame – Shoes! Need or greed?

Our blogs are all about health, fitness and food, however we also think a lot about our mental health as well, so this post has some relevance to our quest for happiness through health… (it was also triggered through acquiring some cycling kit for my up-coming triathlon season)

I am lucky enough to work for the UWE (University of the West of England) who take part in the Cycle to Work Scheme where employees can receive a sizable tax break when buying a cycle directly from their gross salary. Along with my new road bike, I bought some clip-in shoes, and when I got them home I suddenly realised just how many pairs of shoes I own, and by comparison remembered some of the people I’ve met on my extensive travels who either only have a single pair of footwear to their name, share a pair with family or friends (or the entire village), or have no shoes at all!

This has led me to feel quite a lot of shame in how well-off I actually am that I not only have a roof over my head and don’t want for anything, but also have an excess of items in my possession! When I left for my round-the-world adventure back in 2008, I left very little behind, and I learned on my trip that possessions don’t make people happy, in fact they tie people down, clutter the mind and a lot of them don’t really serve much purpose. To that end I have been careful to not slip back into that lifestyle of buying and collecting ‘stuff’. Yet here I find myself reflecting on owning 13 pairs of shoes and feeling pretty bad about it knowing that there are people out there who literally have none… Each of them has a ‘use’, but do I really need each pair? Probably not if I’m honest about it! Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on 14 February, 2013 in Health & Wellbeing, Kit

 

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