I know it’s been awhile since I put some thoughts down. It’s not the easiest job in the world to blog about running when you can’t run. Thankfully, I had been through this round of cards before and know that the seasons we go through in life are often temporary,… and the“Comeback“ is more often to do with the mind than the body. I’m not sure exactly what it means to come back from an injury? Does it mean that your body goes back to the way it used to be? Or is it when you can get to the level you were at before but you still aren’t the same physically? Does it simply mean that you return to activity or is it more than that? Really, when it comes to sports, a “comeback” could mean a lot of things. I have to admit,.. the hope for myself is that coming back from a long-term injury means that I reach a point where I am better than I was before…..But who wouldn’t want that:)???
So here I am 4 months after completely rupturing my Plantar Fascia Tendon ONE-HUNDRED percent… and an attempt to “Comeback,“ is about to start. I have put in some good base miles on the Anti-Gravity treadmill and on land for the last month or so, but this week is the first time since June, that I am allowed to do my first official hard running workout.In some ways the last 4 months have flown by. In other ways, well…not so much. On a good note, I’ve had the opportunity to turn my years of personal training /coaching experiences into a small business, called “Training with Pezz”. (https://www.facebook.com/pezzruns) It has been a very great opportunity that I enjoy and am looking forward to expanding. I’ve had time this summer which I never would have had, if racing, to visit some very dear friends and family that live out of state. And among other things, I was much more available to help out with the Zap Fitness Summer Camps and get to meet some great new friends ( http://zapfitness.com/zap-fitness-adult-running-camps/) Some of these moments have been priceless!!
But lets be honest, when you are a runner of any ability and you can’t run, it’s not the easiest of scenarios. As I mentioned in my last blog and others before it, I think most runners have been there at one point or another. I hadn’t had a major injury since 2007 when I broke my talus bone off the top of my ankle in my 2nd Steeplechase race ever. I had to have a major surgery to replace bone and cartilage. From the onset, it was a “COMEBACK“ that looked and seemed doubtful to most people. Would I run again?… maybe? But would I run with Elite Runners again? Doubtful. I had only been in the sport of running for a year and a half before the injury, and though I had had some significant success under Pete Rea and Zap fitness, the reasons to try to come back and compete at the highest level were few and far between. To make a long story short; After all the doctors, specialists, 2 hour pool running sessions, gut-wrenching cycling workouts, and failed attempts to run, 2 years passed,… and in one sense, I really was ready to move on. But between the constant stirring in my heart and certain key people coming into my life in 2009, without even realizing, I started to make some baby steps that indicated there was at least a possibility. So in 2010, 3 years after the accident, I started racing again. Fast forward 4 years later and lots has happened in my running career. I have been through many highs and lows in the sport. Good races and bad races, different coaches, different sponsors, different living locations. Its been quite the ride, …. a ride worth taking filled with many cool experiences that I do not regret.
I only describe the dreaded ankle debacle once again, because I want people to know that injuries of all sorts can happen to athletes and non-athletes alike, and the “Comeback“ to health is not simple, easy or certain. It does not always go in a straight progressive line like we want. It can be frustrating, depressing and is certainly not cheap. But many times, it is truly worth it to keep plugging towards health.
As far as this potential “comeback” regarding my torn Plantar of the foot, I know that 4 months of being out does not compare to 3 years. But still, it’s never an easy process for any athlete to go through. I’ve rehabbed, lasered, and E-stimulated my foot to the max. I’ve taken weeks off with complete rest and I’ve spent more hours on the elliptical machine than I could ever imagine. THANKFULLY, I discovered the sport of cycling again and really delved into it this time around. It has been a very challenging and useful cross training tool to use and so I’ve done what I could to stay in shape by cycling my heart out. In the midst of a little “physiology” type of experiment to gain insight on cross-training for injured runners, I’ve recorded every mile I put in on the bike. Whether my heart rate was at 100bpm or 185bpm, I have noted how each of my cycling endeavors could possibly translate into running workouts such as temp, interval, steady state, long and speed efforts. To say the least, I’ve put in some work 🙂
So of course I want to believe in my mind and heart that all this has been enough to make a “comeback” and accomplish my original goals of hitting times much faster than before. But I honestly don’t know if that will happen again for sure?? I don’t think any athlete ever does, no matter how many positive mental tricks they use. What I DO believe though, is that because of the wisdom and knowledge of certain doctors and physical therapists that have been involved that I have a great CHANCE to make a “comeback.” And because of the constant support of my ZAP Fitness coaches, teammates, and a few select friends who don’t think I’m too crazy for not quitting the sport and getting a “real” job, I do have a great CHANCE to make a “comeback.” And because of my faith in a God who can make a way where there seems to be no way, I do have a great CHANCE to make another “comeback” if its in His plan. A chance may not mean something is 100% certain, but I’ve always believed that is reason enough to try at 100% effort. And so that is what I’ve done.
To close things up,… yea this summer has not been the easiest running wise or personally. In some ways it has been great, but in others it has kind of been a season of loss. And that’s ok. Sure,….. I’ve lost a Plantar Tendon, I’ve lost a place that I used to call home, I’ve lost parts of certain relationships that have hit me to the core, ….and in fact, just yesterday, I lost 2 more teeth!! But as I’ve said in many other blogs, I do believe that Rom. 8:28 will continue to ring true. ANYBODY, whether they believe in the biblical part of this verse or not, can choose to believe that some type of good, can always come out of the bad. You just have to look for it. The Olympic Trials for the Marathon are in a year and a half, and that good thought alone makes me ready to attempt the COMEBACK:)ROMANS 8:28 — “And in all things God works for the good of those who love them, to those He has called according to His purposes.”