Thursday, February 07, 2008

"Strain, Don't Sprain"

I blame Duncan for all of this. Awhile back he was on a kick about a band called The National, and since taking his suggestion and buying their Boxer I've been bringing it along on a few of my easier runs. Yesterday I found myself bounding down a tilting section of Dog Poop Trail and entering a short section of road while listening to "Start a War". The sun was just coming up over the mountains and I was cutting through the cold air with ease. I had the full-on feeling of looking down on myself running as the lyrics resonated, free and easy. I remember saying to myself, "This is why". I was answering any number of questions I get from time to time about what makes me get up and do this, why I feel compelled to do it daily, and why I do it so often. This is why. When it's good it's very good.

A few seconds later I crossed back onto the sandy edge of the trail from the short section of road. My foot sank into a wet sandbar and rolled under as my body kept moving. A few expletives later I surveyed the damage. I could put weight on it but it hurt like hell. I could feel the hot swelling coming on immediately as the outside of my ankle started pressing against the edge of my shoe. No cell, no cars. After about a half mile of walking up the Poop Trail I started running. It was ugly, but as long as the road was even it was ok. Since it was only another three miles to the house I loped along as best as I could, skipping the opportunity to make a collect call home at the grocery store a mile and a half out. It was nice to get home.

It looks like a strain, which is better than a sprain, and as a precaution I'm skipping the run today. The swelling is down a bit with ice, ibuprofin, compression and as much elevation as I can manage. I'll hopefully get out for a bit tomorrow if the swelling goes down some more. I guess this is my last recovery week post-marathon, like it or not.

Training: 2/6, 7.6 miles, mostly running and hobbling

6 comments:

Marc said...

Ack! I winced when you described the incident - I could feel it, and it hurt.

You should definitely take tmorrow off as well lest you hear a hue and cry from your critics - not to mention your ankle.

I hear cinnamon buns help speed the recovery.

Ron said...

Sorry about the injury Mike. I like your attitude though, sometimes we need those forced recoveries. Rest easy and get back to 100% soon.

seebo said...

Having learned a thing or two about sprains the hard way, I'll just say be careful, Mike. Sprains impact your ability to maintain balance and thus put you at risk for reinjury. Take heed of the surfaces you'll be running on. Really.

The National is indeed excellent running music.

Here's to a quick recovery.

Mike said...

Seebo, you are the man when it comes to the "kankle" so I'll follow your advice and stay on the pavement.

Thanks for the comments. Marc, you're definitely right about the critics. I'll have to keep the successive runs on the down-low.

Michael said...

Much like Marc said, "ack", sorry to hear about the strain, hope your ankle comes around soon. All the best!

duncan said...

Mike, sorry to read this. I just got caught up on your blog. I agree with Seebo: don't mess around with sprains and strains. I still feel mine from a year ago; the scar tissue can build fast if you don't treat the injury with proper care. But that mess and the beauty of the National's Boxer aren't related. Write some National-inspired songs as you elevate, ice, and rest.