Taking the First Steps

Taking the First Steps

These shoes were made for running, and that is what they want to do!

As of this Sunday, it will be 7 weeks since my injury first appeared. It was in the middle of a short, 3-mile run around my neighborhood when the knee pain started. I thought it was very odd, as I wasn’t running faster than normal, and I had just done 3 miles on the trails the day before and was fine. I took a week off as I had a upcoming trail race the next weekend and wanted to be cautious. I raced the next week, and from that moment on my knee pain reached a new level. I have self-diagnosed myself with IT Band syndrome. I’ve done my homework and have all the classic symptoms.

I have been resting, which means no running and hardly any other working out (although I need to change this). I tried to run a few times over the past 7 weeks but it didn’t go so well. I’d feel okay and put my shoes on and within 500 feet the pain would make itself known. I’ve been foam rolling…

Foam Roller

The foam roller, such a simple thing, yet it helps so much.

…and stretching and more resting.

Today I decided that I’m not getting any better and it is time to see a doctor. I dread going to the doctor and was hoping this would just go away, but it is not happening. I’ve already canceled my May half marathon plans. 😦

I am one of those with HMO for insurance, which means that I can’t just go to a physical therapist or specialty doctor. I have to go to my primary care physician, and hope that he refers me to the right doctor. So today I drove 30 minutes to the doctor’s office, where I sat in the exam room by myself for 50 minutes. The actual meeting with the doctor was only about 5 minutes. He seems to think that I may have a stress fracture. I didn’t want to go in there saying “I have IT Band Syndrome!” because I did not want to sway his professional opinion. I was very surprised he mentioned a fracture, as I really doubt that is what it is. At that point I brought up my IT Band thoughts and he just nodded, but seemed to discount that, and sent me off to a nearby facility to get x-rays. I balked at the idea, but he wouldn’t give me a referral without the x-rays first.

I went straight to the x-ray facility to Jamba Juice after the doctor (it was lunch, and I knew I didn’t have time to sit down and eat, so a smoothie sounded like a perfect on-the-go healthy option) and then went to the x-ray facility. Thankfully that was a very quick visit, no waiting at all. Now I’m just sitting and waiting to hear the results and find out what happens next. He said depending on the results I’d probably go to either an orthopedic or a PT next.

Going to the doctor was hard for me, because by doing so I was admitting that I had a real problem. For the first few weeks I was optimistic that it was just something minor and I’d be back running any day. The realization struck that it is fast approaching 2 months and this is the longest I’ve gone without running since I started 3 years ago.

In a way I feel relief, as I’ve taken those first steps to help fix it.

I’m also going to get out of this slump and try to find new physical activities to do in the meantime. I find myself so focused on just running, that I have to remind myself there are other forms of exercise out there. Just because I’m injured doesn’t mean that I have to sit on the couch feeling sorry for myself.

While I was out today, I ran a few errands. Stopped by Trader Joe’s for some groceries for dinner. A quick meatball, bok choy, mushroom, jasmine rice concoction. No real recipe, just threw some things together.

I also stopped by the health food store for some hemp protein powder. The brand I usually buy, Nutiva, has changed its packaging and I must say I’m disappointed. The new design just seems so plain compared to their old one.

Nutiva's New Hemp Protein Packaging

Nutiva's new hemp protein packaging.

What do you think?

Next up, a short trip to Ulta. My favorite blush is MAC Ladyblush Cremeblend. Unfortunately they changed their formula and the shade is not quite what it was with the old formula (or so I’ve heard) so I decided not to buy it. I’ve been hearing about this dupe from NYX, their Rogue Cream Blush in Natural. At $6.99 it is a lot cheaper than MAC which runs for $19.50.

Mac Ladyblush & NYX Natural

MAC's Ladyblush with its dupe NYX Natural.

The packaging is identical and the shades are close. Ladyblush has more magenta in it, while Natural has more of an yellow undertone make it a tad peachy, although the difference is subtle. I found that NYX has more pigment to it and I can use less of the product. I do apply both formulas with MAC’s 188 brush, it blends way better than using your fingers.

Going to do some more foam rolling, and I hope to hear from the doctor soon. I heard he was going on vacation for a week, so I’m not sure what that means for my diagnosis…

Have you ever been injured from running or another sport? How did you deal with it?

Categories: Running | 4 Comments

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4 thoughts on “Taking the First Steps

  1. Ilona Meagher

    Absolutely love your new blog! Injuries are so extremely complex and painful…not only for the (obvious) effect on the body, but our mind and spirit, too. Here’s to finding your way through with your usual wit, creativity and aplomb. Cheering you on all the way, and looking fwd to reading more!

  2. Ilona Meagher

    P.S. And I’m w/you on the hemp protein pkging redo…definitely not better!

  3. I’m loving your new blog – it’s beautiful, and a great way to showcase what Ilona perfectly described as your “wit, creativity and aplomb” 🙂

    I have a balky ankle – I sprained it about 4 years ago at work (slipped on a puddle in the kitchen), and every now and then it flares up, usually in response to a mis-step (like off a curb) or a sudden stop. I am constantly doing stretching and strengthening for it, but I have a feeling it will never be 100%. Like you, it took a long time to admit it wasn’t getting better on its own and go to the doctor. She told me I would have been better off breaking it, as healing would be easier. Alas. Hang in there!

    • Thanks, Crysta. That means a lot.

      Who would think a simple kitchen slip would create a 4-year long problem? Glad you stretch and strengthen it, that is all you can do, besides a little wishful thinking!

      Can’t wait until Sunday!

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