I have been riding a high for the past month or so that was just unprecedented. I PR’d the half at Soma, had a great race as Silverman and PR’d my 10K on Thanksgiving. In addition to that my training was going very well and I was starting to settle into my winter running. This Saturday I went for a three hour mountain bike ride down along the Rio Grande and Sunday I went for an easy trail run with some friends and a mile and a half in BANG!
It felt like someone had thrown a rock and hit me hard on my left Achilles tendon and I was brought to an immediate stop as pain radiated up the inside of my leg all the way to my hip. It was a brief shot but the pain was nauseating and then everything went pretty numb. I hobbled back toward the car as my friends ran ahead to come back and pick me up. I was unable to push off my left foot and anytime I accidentally did there was a weird watery grinding feeling. I immediately took some anti-inflammatory meds and drove myself to the nearest gas station to get some ziplock bags and ice.
Since I was able to walk/hobble I decided to wait until this morning to make an appointment with my family doc, who I trust, and didn’t go to the ER. This morning I got in to see doc, he poked and prodded and said the tendon felt really strong and there was no pain. I then said, well, it hurts when I do this and I got off the exam table and stood up on my tip-toes and GASP, immediate pain. He grimaced and said, “Ok, there it is, about four inches up from the heal. I’m going to set you up for an MRI.”
I can’t claim to know what exactly is going on until the MRI results come back but I did some reading and apparently you can rupture or partially rupture your Achilles tendon and not immediately crumple into a heap writhing in pain. Apparently the sensation ranges from feeling like getting hit hard in the tendon to feeling like being shot. I would say mine felt like getting hit by a champion rock skipper…I have no idea what it feels like to get shot.
If indeed this is a rupture I and done for the winter and might be able to start coming back early spring, maybe March or April depending on how things go and what the treatment may be, either immobilization and physical therapy or surgery, immobilization and physical therapy. At a minimum I am unlikely to do a marathon this weekend. Best care scenario, I wrenched a muscle or the tendon really good and will only be out a couple weeks, doc said I heal surprisingly fast.
So here is a new challenge, being an invalid, not of my own choosing but one that I guess I do need to work on. I suck worse at being an invalid than I do at the iron distance but at least I love racing the iron, I REALLY REALLY HATE being an invalid.
So here I am in bed typing away between readings of a truly unusual but interesting book “C.C. Pyle’s Amazing Foot Race: The True Story of the 1928 Coast-to-Coast Run Across America” determined to be a good patient. Of course I’ll keep folks updated as to my condition and start trying to figure out what I can do to stay in shape if I get bad news.
In the mean time I went ahead and registered for the new November Ironman Arizona, after all, this is only a temporary setback.