Running With Rollergirls. Clickenzee to Embiggen
I got a message back from Jenetic Defect (#SLOW for the Houston Roller Derby's All Stars travel team) saying that she was in NYC and was scheduled to skate at practice with Gotham but would be up for running in the park, plus I could stash my cameras at her place.
So we ran and my foot felt good, though it's amazing how out-of-shape I've gotten in the past six weeks and I've put on six pounds. The first half mile was difficult and, although it got easier from there, it never got easy like it used to be. We ran for 40 minutes which turned out to be 3.8 miles through a beautiful park packed with people running. We ran past turtles, we ran past a castle. Every turn seemed to show some other hidden adventure. A fountain jetting water sky high ... it seemed every person in Manhattan was out there sprinting. I ran slow. I only passed people who were going in the other direction. A Marine with a purple heart blew past me carrying a five foot American Flag on a pole and a heavy backpack. I watched him for the next 10 minutes as he got smaller and smaller in the distance, never slowing down.
After we stopped I got on a train and came back home, feeling pretty good. The next morning there was a hint of that same tell-tale pain in my ankle at the fracture point, a dull, very difficult to place pain, but the same one I remembered from the early days of the injury. I fell into an ocean of disappointment. My recovery wasn't going as well as I'd thought and even with the relaxed schedule we'd come up with, I might not make it. I'd been hoping to run with Philly for Boston that night and I kept thinking what kind of schedule I could make -- I could take the subway half way and meet the pack around 16th I could just run the half mile from city hall to the Liberty Bell -- but it became obvious that anything I did would probably jeopardize my recovery. And, as my Sports Doctor has said "If the 10 mile Broad Street Run is the goal, don't get distracted by other, smaller things along the way."
The two big factors at work here are the healing of my tibia, and the building up of my endurance and it's a crazy see-saw. The more endurance I build, the more I risk re-injuring my tibia, the less endurance I build, the stronger my leg gets. There are three possibilities when when race comes up -- 1) That I won't have the physical endurance to run ten miles and I'll crap out somewhere along the way and limp defeatedly away to find a taxi home. I've never run ten miles before. Even at the peak of my fitness, the most I've ever done is 7.5 miles; most people will be training for this race for months, I have two weeks. 2) I'll hurt something while running and crap out along the way. This isn't just a re-injury of the stress fracture, there are lots of muscles that need to be built up, that I could hurt -- like my quads which I've discovered I need to keep my ilio tibital band in place ... the whole thing is a careful balance. Option C is that I have enough endurance and my leg is strong enough and I finish and nobody really cares but me but I stare at that medal hanging on my wall for the rest of my life and think if you really want, you can do things you didn't think you could do.
It's been 48 hours and my ankle feels better, but it might mean days before I can run again and I may be going way back -- to essentially start over again.
On one hand, it's just a race, blah blah blah, there will be many more but I feel like I've been through fire and up mountains for this -- and I've turned this body from a lump of clay into something that moves fast and goes far and I've earned this.
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