Monday, February 8, 2010

Horrible, horrible news...

Last weekend, during the last 5 miles of my 15-mile run, my right knee started hurting. It wasn't unbearable, just hurt a bit. I was able to finish, no problem. But it was sore as heck for the rest of the day. But by evening... all better!

All last week... no problem at all with the knee.

Yesterday, I got 3 miles into my last 15-mile run before the big marathon next Sunday and my knee starts hurting. So, not wanting to push it too hard, I started speed walking. It felt much better. After another couple of miles, it started hurting again. So I started walking at a regular pace. It got worse.

After 7 miles I had to call my husband to come pick me up because it was excruciating. I was limping like a cripple.

I went home, kicked my feet up and it got better. Just a slight twinge of pain. This morning, no pain at all.

I went to the doctor this afternoon, though, just to make sure it was okay and that I'd still be able to run the marathon next Sunday.

The doctor said no.

No running for two to three months.

(Pause while I wipe the tears away and compose myself.)



I ... can't ... run ... my ... marathon.



He sent me to get an X-ray done but he suspects I've torn a tendon or ligament. Either way, he said if I keep running on it, it'll only get worse.

I do not want it to get worse. I want to be able to run for the rest of my life.

I don't even know what to type next. I'm just so beside myself with sadness. I don't know how to type tears. I can't believe I can't run my marathon...

I asked him if I could see if I could switch to the half marathon and just walk it. I didn't figure they'd let me walk a full marathon, but maybe a half marathon. He said he'd rather me not push it but that decision was up to me.

I got to talking about it with my husband tonight and he's right, I won't be happy with walking a half marathon. I've already proven I can run the distance of a half marathon so walking it would only be like putting an ballerina on stage, starting the music, but telling her not to dance. What would be the point? So I walked a half marathon. I could do that any weekend.

The doctor said I pushed too hard too fast. I really did try to take it easy. I started out with only 4 miles at a time, then 6, then 8, then 10, etc. I had no intentions of ever running 26 miles before the marathon. I had hoped that the most I would run would be maybe 16 or 18 miles. And I only made it up to 15 miles. So I really didn't push too hard. And whenever I felt too tired or sore or over exerted, I'd stop running or I would take a rest for a while.

But what the doctor said made sense. He said, "first of all, you're not a spring chicken any more. You're over 40. Now, there are plenty of marathon runners over 40, but runners don't have that much weight on them." He said, "now, don't get me wrong, I know you've lost over a hundred pounds (which is commendable and I'm so proud of you for losing) and I know you're still trying to lose the last 20-30 pounds, but you still have those extra pounds hanging around that put extra stress on your body that healthy runners don't have."

He's right, you know. It makes total sense. I was always perplexed as to why I couldn't get my pace up any faster. I think I always knew but I just didn't want to admit it. It was the extra pounds that I have hanging around that are slowing me down. That, coupled with the fact that I've never run like this in my life. The last time I was "active" I was a teenager. And on top of that, I've only been running long distance since the beginning of December. Put all those things together and you get someone who isn't prepared for a marathon. And that's where I am right now.

I just don't know what to do now. As soon as I'm done typing this, I'm going to see if I can get a refund for the entry fee and cancel the hotel reservations. Its the last thing I want to do, but there's no sense wasting the money on something I KNOW I won't enjoy doing—walking, that is.

I asked the doctor if it was okay if I started running again in June, when the marathon training starts. He said definitely. June is perfect. He said to take it slow this time, though.

So, dear marathon, I'll race you one day, I promise I will, but it'll have to wait until my body is ready. Maybe next year.

.

25 comments:

Angela McClanahan said...

I am so sorry to hear about your injury. :( But I Love your positive attitude about it. There will always be more marathons but you only have the one right knee. Find something to do this weekend so you aren't just sitting around thinking about the marathon. You worked hard for this, your body just wasn't ready this year. It just means next year you will be even more amazing!!

BlueRaspberry said...

A friend was to go teach kidlets under the trees somewhere in Africa in a few weeks time, but has had some medical news that is going to prevent it. She would be foregiven for curling up in the corner over the medical news, but her sadness is because she cant go to Africa. Truth is, that she can go to Africa, but she needs to take care of some medical things first...and the fact is, that had she been in Africa, she might well be in medical doodoo. Its disappointing when you have striven to do something, to have it ripped from your grasp, I am sure, but your body is telling you in the only way it knows how - 'not this time, I cant do it yet'...Seasoned runners, enter the London Marathon, and take a whole year preparing for it, this way you get to run lots and lots of marathons eventually...the other way you might have done one - or three quarters of one, and then never been able to run another. Its probably the silver lining to the cloud that you couldnt see.

BR.

MaryFran said...

I'm soooo sorry! Take care of yourself. There will be other marathons out there!!!!

Anonymous said...

I'm so sorry! I know how much you were looking forward to your marathon. My friend who was running the half with me just told me yesterday that she can't run it because her doctor told her to stop for 3 weeks (she got rear-ended about a month ago, but is still having some problems). She called and was told they would apply her money toward next year's run. Take care of yourself now so you can go out next time! Deanna

F. McButter Pants said...

Well Shoot! So sorry about the marathon. I think you are being wise. I have struggled with that myself. I know that I need to get a tear fixed but I don't want to stop walking. I would like to run, but I know that would just make thigns so much worse.

You'll get 'em next time!

Bre said...

I'm so sorry to hear the bad news! But you will take the doctors advice and get the knee 100% and then go back out there and train again! I know you will! You got spunk!

Anonymous said...

so sorry to hear that, Cara! but you look great! congrats on getting into great shape.
Drew

Beth said...

First of all, I am very sorry about your disappointment.

Second of all, they must learn the "spring chicken" monologue in medical school, and it must have to do with turning 40! When I got pneumonia in my early forties, my doctor told me I needed to take some time off work, saying, "You're not a spring chicken any more, you know."

Tay said...

Yeah, your doctor was right on all counts. If you keep pushing yourself on an injury like that you'll make it worse and possibly injure yourself to a point where you have to sit it out for much longer than two to three months. It sucks because you were so close to the marathon, but you have to take care of yourself.

screwdestiny said...

Oh Cara, I'm so sorry this happened. I know you were really excited about it. But all things happen for a reason, so maybe you really weren't ready to run it, and later next year, when you do get to run one, you'll be in better shape and you'll do better than you could have hoped to do this time. Maybe just take this three month break as a time to try and lose as much of that excess weight as possible so that it isn't a hinderance when you start up again. Anyway, try to keep a positive attitude. :)

Will said...

Im sorry to hear about your injury :(

I like your blog though. And wow, you've done such an incredible job. I think just the idea of running a marathon would be really neat.

I've lost over 40 pounds so far with diet and exercise. I blog at Fitness Achievement Check it out!

David Showers said...

If you want to run this weekend, I'll be happy to chase you around the bedroom. At least now I may have a chance of actually catching you! :-)

Jen said...

UGH! This brought tears to my eyes... I am so sorry. It is almost liek a death.. you will get your marathon... just have to hang in there.

Listen to your doctor... and ask what other types of exercise you can do. After my ACL and Menincus surgery, I was on the stationary bike for months.

Shelley said...

Oh Cara, I'm sorry. That's a disappointment, for sure, but I'm glad you are looking ahead to when you are all healed up. What a tough break.

GinasBookkeeping said...

Cara that is really sad but look on the bright side...now you can really train for the next one and cross the finish line BEFORE they take everything down!

I'm so impressed that you can run as much as you do. I can't imagine being able to run 2 miles let alone a marathon!

Kelly said...

This is easier said than done, but don't let it discourage you. You have come SO far! Think about it. Think about where you were when you first started. You've already completed a marathon of sorts! You've completed the marathon of losing 100 pounds...that's one that not many people can brag about.

There will be other marathons but you only have 1 set of knees to carry you through life. Take care of them, continue to lose weight, and get ready for a future marathon.

spunkysuzi said...

I'm so sorry to hear you have an injury!! I know how much you were looking forward to the race. Please take care of yourself! Hope you have a speedy recovery

Mama Bear June said...

I'm so sorry about this disappointment. Definitely put your well-being FIRST! A permanent injury is not worth it, that's for sure. Sending hugs your way.
Path to Health

ON THE JOURNEY said...

Just found your blog. I love the way that it is set up.

I'm sorry to hear that you will not be able to accomplish your goal of running in the marathon. However, from what I've read so far, the journey you have been on thus far has been been an amazing one. Just because you can't do the marathon this year, you can keep on the journey which is the ultimate reward!

http://ontheweightlossjourney.blogspot.com/

Sheilagh (60 x60) said...

What a disappointment for you, you have worked so hard for this. But you MUST look after yourself, heed the doctor's advice, rest up and recover. There is alway next year and you can be fitter and stronger.

You are inspirational.

Lori said...

I'm so sorry to hear that. Let yourself heal and start slowly to train again. There are plenty of people who run marathons that are much older and have a little extra weight. It's all in how you train and a little luck with injury.

BlueRaspberry said...

Its Saturday Morning, and I just wanted to come and add a supporting shoulder for the weekend. Perhaps going to do something totally different - a day out, go visit some place or another - as divorced from running as you can get might be a way to go. Will be thinking of you today.

Blue~

Sue said...

Hope you are over the disappointment and on the mend phsyically too.

Davon Jacobson, Md said...

As a medical doctor myself, I have seen this problem occur with many runners. Just relax and give it time to heal. Work yourself up to the longer marathons. Anyways you have a wonderful blog and I like how you have gotten a healthy grip on your life. Keep up the great work with your articles and please stop by my health blog sometime. The web address is http://healthy-nutrition-facts.blogspot.com/.

justjuliebean said...

That's really too bad, surprising that extra weight can have so many far-reaching impacts, especially when you're so much smaller than you were. I'm over 40, too, and not as unbreakable as I used to be, and I respect that, even when I don't want to. At least you're not off running forever, you'll get your marathon yet!