Well the theme of 2018 certainly seems to be ‘challenging’ to say the least. Just as I started to run on the alter G after my sacral stress fracture. I got ultrasound results back that stated I have a rather large tear in my hamstring and adductor. This has been a long standing issue that I was managing but I had never given it the chance to subside. So in this down time we decided it would be best to get some imaging as to actually deal with the issue. Basically I am back to square one having to deal with another fairly serious injury. *Frustrating…
I am doing my best now to not do anything that irritates my hamstring. As it turns out swimming is the only activity that does not bother my hamstring. Even pool running bothers it to some degree. It sucks! But the best plan of action is to get 100% healthy before building back to training. I have been running on this bum hamstring for 3 years now so who knows what I can do healthy! I am excited to find out. And that is allowing me to stay positive.
SO how on earth am I surviving and staying sane without running for the past 9 weeks. Well the thing is I cannot change the situation so I am trying to make the most of it. The saving grace for me has honestly been swimming. And trust me I did not ever think I would say that. But having something I could truly try to get better at has been a wonderful distraction. I am not very good at it so it has been fun to try to improve. With running I only have small improvements I can make (*like minute(s) over a marathon) and I am still super excited to chase those minute(s) but it has been refreshing to see greater improvements in a different sport. I even did a swim analysis with Team Atomica because you know… practice what you preach and it was incredibly informative. And it is fun to have things to focus on now.
As I mentioned in previous blogs changing my mindset from training to healing has been beneficial as well. And has allowed me to take the pressure off myself. I think it is also important to embrace the time as well. It is what it is and there is no sense staying hung up on it. Of course be upset but then make the most out of it. Running and racing is not going anywhere, it will still be there when I am healthy.
I have also been spending some time reflecting on the past season and where I could improve. I think allowing myself to listen to my body instead of being so focused on the plan would make a positive impact. And I truly am going to make my best efforts to do so.
I have also been spending time reflecting on why the injury happened. As I have mentioned I think this was multi-factorial but of course hind sight is 20/20. I had just done my highest mileage week ever, had a lot of emotional stress and raced all within a week. Looking back I should have backed off the gas with the other things going on in my life. But lesson learned and if I can put that in to action in the future that will be a win. When there is stress outside of running my body certainly seems to react.
In regards to the hamstring I obviously should have taken it a bit more seriously years a go and dealt with it sooner. But I didn’t and it is no one’s fault but my own. It is amazing what we can run through and not think twice about it. Again I will do my best to learn from this and take persistent injuries more seriously.
Other areas I have been working on is going back to basics. I have a tendency to turn my feet out at all times likely due to my history of dance (ballet for 14yrs). So I have been spending a lot time with basic drills and movement correction. I am guilty like everyone else and these are the things I let slide when I am in training mode. So now is the time to make more of a habit out of them.
Depending on the injury it may also be a good time to work on strength. For me right now with the hamstring my strength work is at a stand still. But if there are areas you can work on that will not aggravate your injury now is a great time to work on it.
I am writing this as I am sitting here trying to distract myself from not working out today as I am trying to give my hamstring as much rest as possible leading in to getting PRP this week. I did find I have latched on to swimming with similar obsession to running and I know I need to watch this. This is ultimately what I want to get better at. Allowing myself the rest my body needs in order to allow myself to be better. I literally have a sick feeling in my stomach as I type and am constantly questioning myself as to whether I should just go to the pool regardless. But doing the activity and strength has not been helping my hamstring so I need to try something else. And as it turns out that is rest. Bahhh!! Obviously this is not a healthy relationship with running and again is something I need to work on. I think being able to recognize is a step in the right direction.
It has been very informative for me from a practitioner stand point to go through the whole process. From sports med referral to bone scan to ultrasound and PRP. So if nothing else it has been a great learning process for me on many levels.
Truth be told I miss running. But my life has gone on without it. And generally I feel fairly positive. But it does SUCK! Despite that I have continued to remind myself that I will be back and it will be that much more sweet when I am.
So for those of you that are running enjoy every run!!
My goal going forward is to create better habits to come back to training smarter. I also want to come back with an evolved mindset in order to try to avoid injury in the future. Realistically I understand that injuries happen and sometimes it is a part of the journey. I think if you can accept that it makes the whole process a lot easier. I am excited to become a stronger, healthier and smarter athlete and see what I can accomplish. I am still coming for you sub 2:40!
I share my journey not to get sympathy but rather so others can learn from my mistakes and know that you are not alone if you are struggling with injury. So much of my identity is submersed in being a runner… but guess what I have barely run in 9 weeks and I am still me.