Finding, accepting and dealing with an injury pt. III
After I had learned what my injury was, and where it came from, I was able to make a game plan. I connected to other runners and acquired some elliptical workouts (please — don’t hesitate to send me an email asking for it firstname.lastname@example.org). I studied a lot of anatomy, studied muscles and ligaments, because thats how I understand and cope. I finally knew, in my heart, that I would be able to run again, that my legs would, at some point, move by themselves and that I would move along smiling.
Not a day went by for those 2 months, where I didn’t do whatever I could do, to get back running. I didn’t forget my vitamins one single day, I ate the best food I could, walked around on my cripples and did my small exercises as much as I was allowed to. Working towards getting back into running really kept my sanity straight, and it was without a doubt the best and the easiest part of my time as an injured runner.
Time went by strengething and mobilizing my body, using simple exercises from the world wide web. I dedicated hours to physiotherapy, and staying positive, not forgetting the journey I was on, and always comparing myself to one day before.
I clearly remember the first run. I was at the safest place I could think of; with my parents, far away from the city, asphalt and from the runners that I used to run with. I told me mom I was going to try and run — searching for her doubt — I know that I put my parents and closest friends through a lot. Especially my mom, who taught me how to love movement, sports and being active. She had to give up running almost completely due to bad knees, even though she used to love running, and I knew she was worried that I was going to destroy my body completely. But she looked me in the eyes, and said; okay — you can do it, but don’t go to far or too fast.
I ran the first 2 km in 1,5 years. I was smiling all the way, and small tears was running down my chins. The first smiles and miles.
I was slowly building up, while I kept doing my small exercises and working to get more miles in. I knew that I wouldn’t be able to just jump right into running without running into some physical obstacles, but all of that was already expected. I had my fitness level set back to zero, and on top of that, my body was one big crooked business. I achieved to get shin splints, plantar fasciitis, sore knees, overworked psoas (on the other side) — the list is still being filled — but none of that matters. It is all just small injuries, small set backs, it’s not something that I even want to stress out about.
One of the things that I am still dealing with, and that requires the most patience, is the look in peoples eyes when they hear I am struggling with a small injury. Sometimes, I swear to God, I can see them thinking “poor you, always injured. Maybe you should just stop running, and find something else to do.”
The thing is, I don’t feel like I am injured a lot. I know that I am still dealing with things from the big injury, probably this will follow me for quite some time. And the best I can do is be smart about it and not stressing out.
One of the smart moves I’ve made, is taking on a personal trainer and a running coach. Both have been guiding me towards being more clever, and having a smarter and stronger body. A body that can get me to where I want be, to keep running painfree.
I now know, that I simply need a lot of strength training in my weekly routine, if I want to stay off injuries. Probably more than most runners.
It’s something I dreaded before; dragging my ass to the gym once a week or even once a month. All I wanted to do was running, and it worked really well.. until it didn’t. But now, I’ve grown into loving the gym-work as well.
I will never love the elliptical or aqua jogging, but I can handle it without getting frustrated. I am able to push myself to do more push-ups, and this spring I did 100 push-ups, something no one will ever take away from me.
My running coach is one of my good friends, who also happens to be one of the best marathon runners in Denmark. I would probably recommend any injured runners, who is getting back, to get a PT/run-coach, someone at least that can help them get back into shape. Someone who can make a schedule for the week, where your health is the top priority, and where what matters is the fact that you complete the schedule for the day!
It’s the small victories that really makes it great.
I’ve learned more about my body, and my physics. I’ve learned to love more than running, and loving being fit and strong instead. I’ve learned, that it is not all about pushing your limits and go further than you though you could. It’s about being aware of yourself, and being in symbiosis with your body and mind. And lastly, being at peace with where you are, and where you’re going towards, not getting afraid of the small set-backs, but seeing the journey in a bigger picture.
A year later, and I am able to use running as a social act again. The first run I did, with a number attached to my stomach, I was acting as a pacer for the women’s 10k in Copenhagen in June 2016. The best way to get back into it. Surrounded by happy women, supporting each other and running to experience the race — not to win a prize.
Since then, I have done COP-run (a 5x1000 m. relay race), and a half marathon in Berlin. Nerve-ragging and not telling anyone, besides my mom and my good friend Leah, I did the first half marathon in years. I was simply scared, and afraid that I wasn’t able to do it and able finish, I didn’t wanna tell anyone. I ran on endorphins and feelings, trying my best to enjoy the race more than finishing it — and I did with the biggest smile on my face!