Saturday, June 9, 2012

A Journey through Injury

Running is a journey.  It is an experience of ups and downs, trials and tribulations…some good, some bad.  Running comes with massive rewards, such as reaching a PR or finally beating that rival of yours.  But it also can come with disappointments and failures. 

With running, also comes injury.  And when a runner becomes injured, it can feel like the end of the world.  Sometimes.

I have been suffering through an injury, as most of you know, for the past month.  I recently stopped running and gave myself some time to heal, but I try to maintain my cardiovascular shape by completing pool workouts about four times a week.  Although I am not especially happy with taking some rest days, I know it is best for my body in the long run. 

On Thursday I went to my first physical therapy session.  Unlike when I went to PT for my IT band, it was a much less painful experience.  First, John {my therapist} did an evaluation on my Achilles and foot, complete with measurements.  He told me that my foot flexibility range should be between 10 and 15 in terms of range of mobility.  Mine was only 6.  I wasn’t sure what those numbers actually mean, but all I know is that I need to start doing some serious stretching.

To start, he gave me some strengthening exercises and stretches to do.  I am to try to accomplish these approximately 2-3 times per day and I have to do each stretch 4-5 times for a total of 20 seconds each.  

For one stretch, he used an angled board.  He asked if I knew anyone handy who could build me one for my home and I was thinking about asking my dad.  But then an idea popped into my head...I can use this...

My husband's "very sturdy" slate quoit board.  Genius!  But my husband immediately turned me down with a big, NO. 

John also would like me to continue icing the area a few times per day because if there is pain, there is inflammation.  I still have some slight pain so I will continue my ice routine as well.

Finally, my doctor prescribed some type of steroid that I picked up prior to my appointment.  John told me that it could either be given via injection {which wasn’t my preference}, or through some type of machine in their office where I would sit there for an extra 20 minutes after my appointment {not for me either}.  He decided to use option number 3 – dispense the medication through a patch that I wore on my ankle for 2 hours.  That’s exactly what we did.  

While I was there, John took the medicine and swabbed it on one portion of the patch that was marked with a {+} positive sign.  Then he placed some other liquid on the {-} part of the patch and placed the whole thing on my Achilles.  For three minutes, he attached a charger, which provided some sort of electrical current and when he did this, it felt tingly.  You can see the port where that charger was attached.  Once the charger was removed, I was instructed to wear the patch for two hours and then dispose of it after the time was up.  Easy as that!

My future appointments are scheduled for Monday and then again on Thursday.  I am hoping that by the end of next week, I will get the green light to run again.  I’m getting a little anxious! 

For today, I’m about to head off to a local 5k race to hand out brochures and information about the LVHN Marathon for Via.  Then I hope to hit the pool after my stepdaughter’s last softball game. 

Have a good one!!


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