This little blog started as See Anna Run, but if I had been posting regularly the last few weeks, it would be more like See Anna Mope. I'm still injured, with no end in sight.
I'm not going to the Little Rock Marathon.
I still can't run. My hip is better than it was in early January when I stopped running, but running is still painful. I took a solid 4 weeks off -- thinking that lots of rest, stretching and massage would do the trick. But nope. I tried running last weekend, and it was awful. All 1.75 miles of it. It hurt from the first step, but by the time I got back to my car, I was miserable and limping. I could barely walk the next day. So I decided to see another doctor -- someone who specializes in sports injuries and hips and who isn't a chiropractor or a massage therapist.
It took a while to get an appointment, so I just saw the doctor this morning. They took x-rays, which were normal and showed nothing. So he recommended an MRI. But because of where the pain is and because of how long it's been going on (years, but with a recent debilitating flare-up), I have to get a special MRI where they will inject dye into my hip joint. He said it's possible that the cartilage in the socket of my hip could be torn, and that wouldn't show up on a regular MRI. But he has no idea whether that's actually the issue or not. No way to know until I get the scan. Hopefully this will tell us whether anything is torn, or if things are just inflamed. And the kicker?
I can't get an appointment for my radioactive MRI until February 27! Three weeks from now! (It's done at a local hospital, not the clinic I went to, so there's nothing they can do to speed things up.) And I won't find out the results until March 1 when I meet with the doctor again. So the only diagnosis I received today is that I get to spend another month not running. Also not biking. Also no exercise that puts any impact on my hip -- which is basically ALL of it. He says I can swim, but I don't really know how. I've been trying to learn, and the only thing I know so far is the breaststroke.
BUT he said I specifically can't do the breaststroke because the frog-leggish kick will aggravate my hip. So...I'm not sure where that leaves me. Attempting freestyle and gasping for air, I suppose. I'm also allowed to use the recumbent bike at the gym. Not a regular bike and not the elliptical. A recumbent bike, with all the grandmothers.
So after all that, I spent 45 minutes crying in the parking lot of the doctor's office, feeling sorry for myself. I have worked so hard, only to have an injury shut it all down. No Little Rock Marathon. I won't even be able to run the Bentonville Half Marathon at the end of March. After the first two weeks of rest, I knew that when I wasn't better at that point, that I wouldn't have time to train for Little Rock. I accepted that a while ago. But this whole time, I've believed I could run Bentonville. But I can't. I won't even have a recovery plan until 4 weeks before the race. Something that I thought would be a setback for a couple of weeks has turned into an injury that's ruining my entire spring season. When (if?) I'm able to run again, I'll be completely starting over. Learning to run 1 mile at a time. 13.1 is going to seem outrageous by March.
I realize that in comparison to basically anything else, this isn't an actual problem. My gait has pretty much returned to normal. The pain has gone away enough that I can sleep through the night. I'm not on crutches or in a cast. I just can't run. For normal people, this doesn't matter. When I've been sad, most responses have been, "That sucks. Oh, well. Just go to the pool or go for a walk and you can do those races next year."
But it's about more than just these races.
It's what I've worked for. It's about watching celebration over running 6 miles for the first time, 10 miles, 20 miles, fly right out the window. It's about facing how hard it will be to start at 0. AGAIN. Yes, folks, I'm mourning my fitness. I know, I know, it's ridiculous. People have actual illnesses that prevent them from living normal lives, and I'm whining because I can do a million things, but I can't run. But I LOVE to run.
So tomorrow, I will deal with it. Tomorrow, I will go to the pool, try not to drown, and I will figure out a new plan to stay active and get me to March 1. But today? Today I'm just really sad.