February 2, 2015
It has been two weeks since I visited the chiropractor after my trip to California for Star Wars Weekend. I went to the chiropractor again today to confirm what I pretty much already know; I have a stress fracture.
During the last race of Star Wars Weekend; the half marathon; sometime between mile five and six, I felt a really sharp pain in a spot on my shin. I managed to make it through the race by lathering some Biofreeze on the spot. But, it never stopped hurting. I described the pain as feeling like my bone would pop out of my skin.
I flew back to Florida the afternoon of the half marathon and was fortunate enough to be able to get an appointment with my chiropractor the next morning. My chiropractor is fantastic; he deals with a lot of sports related injuries and has helped me deal with a lot of my nagging muscle issues since I have been running. The money I spend to see him every two weeks is well worth it!
When I saw him the day after the race, I told him exactly what I had said during the race; I felt like my bone was going to pop out of my skin. I showed him the specific spot on my leg where it hurt. It was so bad that it was excruciating to lift my toes towards my shin. Walking didn’t hurt much but many other normal movements did.
After working the muscles in my lower leg to loosen them, he manipulated my foot and leg in some different ways to see how it affected me. Basically, he was gauging my pain when he moved my foot. At the end of it, he told me I likely have a stress fracture. And, since stress fractures don’t generally show up well under an x-ray when they are new, he offered me two options.
My first option was to go for a bone scan. This is likely an expensive option. My second option was to promise to take it extremely easy for two weeks. This means only non-impact exercising; if any exercising at all. Come back in two weeks for an x-ray. After two weeks, any new bone growth will show in white on the x-ray. This would confirm the stress fracture and we could go from there.
Of course, I opted for option two. I don’t want to spend money I don’t have to spend. And, two weeks isn’t really that long. I can manage two weeks. Though, not being able to exercise for two weeks is not my idea of happy.
During these two weeks, Doc suggested I wear a compression sleeve on my right leg. This helps with circulation and provides some compression for the bone. He also gave me some stretches to do for my calves and suggested I rekindle my friendship with my foam roller. Working out the knots in my legs and keeping the muscles loose will help keep the muscle from pulling at the bone.
I tried to go to the gym twice. I tried working out with my trainer once and I tried to do some elliptical. The elliptical wasn’t too bad but I had trouble keeping myself slow enough to keep my leg from hurting. And, my rule to follow for going to the gym was “if it hurts, don’t do it”; specifically if it hurt my leg. Everything seems to use your legs in some way, so after a couple of tries, I just gave in to not doing much for the two weeks.
Now I’m back in the doctor’s office for my follow up.
The x-ray confirmed the stress fracture. There was a light, white line along the bone indicating new bone growth. Yay for me. Not really. This sucks even though I pretty much already knew this was coming.
Stress fractures generally take about six to eight weeks to heal. That means I have another four to six weeks of doing relatively nothing. Swimming would be awesome and Doc encouraged me to do that. But, I have no access to a pool. To top it all off, I also have to wear a walking boot. I found one of these on Amazon though and, thanks to Amazon Prime, I had it in two days and for about 1/3 of the cost that I would have paid at the medical supply store.
Seeing as how I am now officially sidelined for another four to six weeks, and Gasparilla is in just less than three weeks, I have already made arrangements to defer my Gasparilla registration until 2016. I was running the Michelob Ultra Challenge; a 15k and 5k on Saturday and a half marathon and 8k on Sunday. I have no shot at running anything.
Since I won’t be running anything, I’ve signed up to volunteer at Best Damn Race Orlando on February 28. I ran this race last year and it is my current PR. I may not be able to do much but I can give out medals to finishers. That in itself is bound to be a happy experience.
So…no running or much of anything for me for a bit. This will be a good time to catch up on some TV I suppose. I can binge watch episodes of Revenge that have been on my DVR for ages. And, I’ll try to not to get too testy with people since my exercise-therapy is off-limits for the time being. May the force be with me.
Gotta run…errr, sit.