Still not running

It’s been a while since I last ran. First, the 90 inches of snow in Boston made running miserable if not downright dangerous outside. I’m too cheap for a gym membership. I’ve been going to Longmeadow on weekends and am now staying there short-term (long story but I decided to sublet my apartment), so I planned to take advantage of the clean sidewalks, plowed roads, and quiet streets. I planned to start running last Thursday or Friday after work.

And then I fell.

Thursday morning, my boss and I went to get coffee not too long after arriving at work. I had already spent 2 hours in the car, and my first cup of coffee was at 5:30 a.m., so I was desperate. We took the back stairwell, which is cold, dimly lit, and often slippery from wet boots. However, this one was all my fault. I completely missed the last stair, and went flying to the ground. I landed hard and my ankle collapsed under my body weight. I felt a pop, and immediately started writhing around in pain. I was scared to look, but fortunately nothing was bent backward.

I wasn’t sure I’d be able to continue on my journey for coffee, but I decided to try. Sure enough, it felt better the more I walked. However, by a few hours later, the pain was pretty bad. My ankle swelled up almost instantly, and was incredibly stiff.

I’ve damaged this ankle more times than I care to count. My first month in Florida, I joined the University of Florida Competitive Cheerleading Team. I was warming up a roundoff – YES A ROUNDOFF (the part that comes after running but before any back flips) – and I rebounded really high because we were on a spring gymnastics floor. That means I landed on my feet, then launched back into the air like a pencil. When I came back down, my ankle collapsed beneath me – it was weak from previous injuries and I was really high, and the spring floor provided no support. It was bad. We all knew it. The pain was something I’ve never experienced before, even when I had broken my right ankle falling down the stairs (sensing a pattern here?) in high school, on my way to our cheerleading team photo. Not even doing anything athletic. Anyway, it turns out I tore all three ligaments in my ankle. It was black and the size of a grapefruit. My cheerleading career ended that night in Gainesville. It was probably time anyway. I was on crutches for two weeks. I was in physical therapy for two months.

So when I fell, I had a flashback of this injury and the long road to recovery afterward. Fortunately, this time around wasn’t nearly as bad. Although, I’m older (by 7 1/2 years) and far less nimble now. By Saturday morning, the swelling was much better and it only hurt when I bent it, bumped it, or walked on uneven surfaces – which is pretty much every street and sidewalk in Boston. I’m still icing and elevating, but it’s just going to take some time before it heals, I think. I haven’t considered going to the doctor but might need to if it’s not better by next week.

Needless to say, I can’t go running. I haven’t even worked out, because my usual workout is a full-body one. Also, I’m leaving the house at 5 a.m. and getting home between 7:30 and 8 p.m., so I’m usually pretty drained. I need to get back into a routine though, even if it means doing everything but lower body on my left side.

With that said, the B.A.A. 5K is now less than two months away and I’ve done a miserable job at fundraising so far and have a LONG way to go to the $500 requirement and my $1,000 goal. Please consider making a donation because I WILL RUN THIS, even if it hurts and I’m slow and have to take breaks.


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