You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘Running injuries’ tag.

runningshoemay2017 (2)

Trina Lambert (c) 2017

Wow, 70 degrees forecast for November. I just had to go running over my lunch hour the next day. While packing my backpack that night, I ticked off my list: running shoes, socks, skort, shirt (sleeveless!), jogging bra, visor, running belt, and inhaler. Packed lunch in the fridge that I could take to eat while working at my desk afterwards. Office clothes hanging in the bathroom. To bed too late—as always.

A “woman of a certain age,” I was not surprised when I woke later to go to the bathroom. However, what I didn’t expect was to almost fall when one of my knees didn’t want to bend as I hobbled down the hall. Strange—returned to bed with care, resolving to sleep with my leg lying straight out instead of curled in. That ought to fix that knee trouble, I thought.

Only it didn’t. Dawn arrived along with the tinny tune from my phone alarm, but my leg was decidedly unfixed. As I worked through my daily physical therapy stretching exercises, my right knee continued to resist my attempts to loosen it up.

And it hurt. A lot. Did not help that the shower is in a 1940s bathtub—making its side a little too tall for a knee that won’t bend—but I grimaced and brought it along with me anyway. By the end of the shower I had realized I was going to have to walk at lunch. Maybe I should grab a warmer shirt, but I could still go.

Hmm, bet I could have my husband massage it and check for any swelling or other problems. I stretched out on the bed to receive some help. After he finished his assessment, I bent back my leg and said, “Look it won’t go back any farther.” Then I dropped to the floor and started to walk—until my knee just screamed “no” at me. I joined in the screaming, with my husband staring at me for a few seconds before he ran to get me a chair.

And was it hot in there or what? As a roaring began in my ears, I wondered, “Can heart attacks start in the knee?” Then the heat left as quickly as it began. But I knew I wasn’t running—or walking much that day. In fact, I wasn’t even going to wear the skirt I’d put on—better to wear pants if I might end up on the floor.

My husband packed me into my car for my three-minute commute. When I arrived, my co-workers rolled me, sitting in a wheelie chair, to my office. With my leg propped on a fitness ball, I massaged arnica into the knee and gently stretched the muscles. Wasn’t feeling too bad anymore, so I popped up to go to the bathroom—and almost screamed again. Stuck halfway between the bathroom and my desk—and my pride—I debated what to do. But you can bet I didn’t ask for more help. Finally, I sidestepped, as I do on skis when I am unwilling to commit to the steepness of a slope, back to my desk, leaving a pattern in the carpet that looked as if one truck tire (by itself) had driven from the door to my chair.

I lowered myself and sighed. And then I reached for my cell phone.

Several hours later, carrying a CD with an X-ray of my (thankfully) not-very-arthritic knee, I stepped from the urgent care center into that balmy 70-degree day, skies still blue. It appeared I was going to live to run another day—just not that day or any day soon. A detour, but not the end of the road yet.

And in that moment, it was enough—or close enough to enough for this “woman of a certain age”—for now.

Advertisements

(c) 2009 Christiana Lambert

(c) 2009 Christiana Lambert

Yoga is funny—there you are being all mindful—or at bare minimum focusing on how long you have been in the moment of one particular pose—when something else pops into your mind. Maybe something about moving a certain part of your body brings that thought to surface or maybe it’s just another mystery of how your own mind works.

At the end of Wednesday’s class, I thought I was relaxing into savasana when somehow my mind turned to who I was when I was growing up. Too many heart-chakra opening poses so soon after my recent high school reunion trip must have jogged my brain into thoughts of, well, jogging/running.

And just like that I was mad at running.

Oh, Running, I thought you were The One. My first True Love. I was devoted to you—monogamous. Sure, when I met you, I did so with my teammates at my side. Unlike some of those girls, I never shirked on workouts or pretended I didn’t see the coach’s signal to start. You should have loved them more—with their longer legs and easy breathing—but they would not commit to you as I did.

And when that school year ended, I began taking those baby steps that lead toward what eventually became an obsession. We began to meet almost daily. Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night—nor unrelenting winds that ranged from 95-degree furnace blasts to sub-zero chills that froze my eyelashes together—kept me from my appointments with you.

I wanted more from you—I dreamed of glory but what I got was quiet time and peace in the moment and a chance to hear the thoughts in my own head. As the miles passed beneath my feet, I learned to love the process and how not to focus only on results.

But you turned out to be a fickle lover. You broke my heart with a kind of pain I didn’t expect. I knew the pain of working hard and strengthening my body. I knew the pain of keeping moving through all sorts of weather or feeling as if my lungs could not catch air—which was ironically the result of an undetected medical condition that would not be discovered until 13 ½ years after we started together. What I didn’t know was that though my body was designed to keep up with you, it wasn’t necessarily designed well to do so for as many miles as I did without adjustments to how I moved. That pain didn’t exactly make me stop, but it made me understand I couldn’t just all out follow you without possible repercussions. What I did for love was not enough—I had to protect myself by not trusting you with abandon as I first had.

We’ve had that kind of on-again, off-again relationship that friends will warn you about. I don’t expect so much from you anymore. I set boundaries for myself and—mostly—live with them. Though I still have the speed to try to catch you, I’m not ready to push myself just to have another piece of me break again. I see you more as an old friend these days than as the focus of my passion. And that’s mostly OK. That we can still meet is almost good enough—except for during those rare moments when my heart remembers that I thought we could have so much more together.

Maybe if I keep working, one pose at a time, I’ll find the peace that brings me to accept that however many miles you and I get to share, those miles belong to a good-sized portion of the best days of my life—past, present, and future. May all that practice help me to open up to releasing what was in order to make space for whatever is yet to come.

(c) 2014 Trina Lambert

(c) 2014 Trina Lambert

Though I’ve been quiet for awhile now about running difficulties and physical therapy—because those topics are so darn frustrating and BORING—I am still busy running (short distances), doing my (mostly) daily exercises, and getting physical therapy. By now I have two physical therapists, plus one who is on medical leave but advising my current PTs—as you can see I am a real trouble-maker.

I can walk, run, dance, and do most activities in my life with ease—what I still can’t do is sleep well. Unfortunately, what I’ve noticed is that when I’ve taken breaks from running, my sleeping pains have diminished. That insight does not please me and so I haven’t considered stopping again after I’ve worked so hard to get to run once more.

Both my active PTs have stated to me how I’m a really committed runner so I started arguing about how that couldn’t be true. I don’t run far or often—partially because I’m getting messages from my body not to do so—but maybe because I wouldn’t anyway. But the thought of giving it up? That—I’m too stubborn to do. So I realized, maybe I am strongly committed in my own casual way?

When our kids were infants, Sherman’s parents invited our family, his brothers and family, and my parents to spend Christmas in the mountains with them. As such we went to Christmas Eve mass with his family—even if we didn’t quite make it out as late as to attend Midnight Mass. Christmas brings a variety of semi-straying sheep back to the fold, including those still in their ski pants in ski resort areas. What the priest said that night has stuck with both Sherman and me. The priest said, “To the world—even if you only go to church at Christmas and Easter—you are the Christians.”

If you think about it, that same logic can be applied to anything we do—religiously, so to speak—even if we don’t do it enough to be considered committed in the same manner as people who dedicate their daily lives to a practice. Compared to those fast women in my running club who put in miles and miles on the roads, trails, and/or treadmills all year, every season, in all sorts of weather and lighting conditions, I am only dabbling at this activity.

And yet to many of the people who drive by me on the road, I am out there doing this activity that they don’t ever do—and often don’t even understand why I do it—or why I would even want to do it, much less work so hard to be able to keep doing it.

This afternoon I’ll be going to the club track practice where almost all the women there run more than I do. I know that most of them are way more committed than I am, but I’m starting to understand that doesn’t mean I am not committed. These evenings at practice are sacred time to me and that track is holy ground under my feet.

In the end, it’s about me and my practice and what it means to me. I still have faith in this thing that is bigger than me, though my body—and I—have often strayed. All I know is I am not ready to commit myself to my couch—or just to giving up this particular pursuit—any time soon.

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 607 other followers

Blogging AtoZ Challenge 2012

Advertisements