This past Saturday I was supposed to have my longest bike ride yet - 40 miles. I spent most of last week being
nervous terrified. If you don't know by now, my bike and I, we haven't really become friends. I'm afraid he's trying to hurt me on purpose. I need to become friends with him (or maybe her?). We have a lot of miles to cover over the next six months. I haven't named the bike, I bought it used, and it had a name when I got it - Max. I'm not positive, but I'm starting to think he wants his old owner back. Maybe a new name would help? (Suggestions are welcome.) To the bike I have this to say, I'm sorry, you're stuck with me. Can we please start being friends? I would like to make it through this training and race in one piece, if possible, thank you.
So, anyway, two weeks ago I crashed on my bike. You don't need to hear about it again, you can read about the thigh/hip pain in this post, if you're curious. I did everything the doctor told me to do. Well, not the first doctor, cause he told me absolutely no physical activity for 6-8 weeks, except some light swimming. So, obviously, I called another doctor and got another opinion. Six to eight weeks of nothing while in the midst of training for an ironman is unacceptable. Second opinion agreed with first on one thing only - no running, at all, for at least a week, then proceed with caution. But, the second doc said to cycle on the trainer and see how it felt. He also agreed that the 40 mile ride might be "aggressive," but if I was feeling okay, then it was fine. And, he said normal activity for swim was fine. Much better opinion. And, I had physical therapy prescribed, lets get me fixed, ASAP.
I was taking it as easy as possible. Even though I was super nervous about the bike ride I wanted to get it done. Forty miles is a scary number (especially when you're slow on the bike, like me), and I wanted to get past that hurdle. I definitely had a couple more meltdowns during the week, thinking about the leg and the ride. I don't know what my deal is. Apparently triathlon training makes me cry. Lame. I went to a physical therapy appointment on Friday night, and it aggravated the pain. Crap.
So, I woke up on Saturday morning, ate my breakfast (oatmeal with nutella, almond butter and bananas) and drove out to Zuma Beach. By the time I got there I felt like someone was stabbing me in the inner thigh. Not good (I'm wondering if it was all physical, or if some it was from my anxiety about this ride). So, I wound up not going out on the bike ride. Instead I put my bike on a trainer in the parking lot and pedaled away with three other injured teammates and one expecting coach. I made it through 45 minutes (getting off the bike every 15 minutes to stretch) before the pain got worse. I spent a lot of the morning talking to my other injured teammates about life and stuff and Coach Erin about nutrition, Carbo Pro, electrolytes, changing flat tires - and asking her a million questions about her life, sorry Erin, I'm a little nosy!
|injury/expecting squad (PS - I feel like my calf looks kinda awesome/super muscular here, no?)|
At physical therapy appointment number 2, this morning, I saw a different physical therapist and I got more information. Actually, the physical therapist told me that he thinks the bike crash started the pain in my leg, but that some bad habits on my part are exacerbating it causing it to need more time to heal. Bad habits? Me? Never. Oh wait, that's probably right. Apparently my poor posture and slouching at my desk are irritating a nerve and causing the pain in my leg to be worse. Basically, he told me that if I do the exercises he has given me, every 2-3 hours and practice good posture while at my desk and at home, and everywhere (and when I find myself slouching do the exercises again for a bonus) then when I see him on Friday he should be able to clear me for ALL physical activity. I'll still have to see him a couple more times after that, I'm good with that, as long as I'm cleared for regular activity.
What does this all boil down to? Well, I didn't ride 40 miles, and I still have to get past that threshold, and physical therapy is interesting. I learned a lot this morning. And, I think I said the word interesting about a thousand times in our session. I was really shocked at what made my leg feel better - stretching my back - and what didn't - slouching.
Also, this week was the dog's birthday. We had a little celebration. Just me and him. I got him special dog cupcakes and a new toy (a soft cow with a water bottle inside, which he LOVES) and made him wear a party hat (only for a minute out of fear that if I left it on him longer he might try to bite me). Happy Birthday Rocky! My fur baby is 5. If he could stop aging and stay right where he's at right now, forever, that would be perfect.
Crossing my fingers for a good prognosis on Friday! (If you could keep yours crossed to I'd be grateful, and if you see me slouching, throw something at me, or just tell me.)
And, as always, I'm still fundraising with Team in Training for Vineman. Please consider making a donation here: http://pages.teamintraining.org/los/vinefirn13/ewallersco