Friday, February 24, 2012

Hard Core…..or just hardly able to move

A post by Carla

So you may have noticed that I have been very quiet lately about running.  That, dear readers, is because I have sustained an injury that I have been struggling with since December.  Unfortunately, I have a butt injury.  Yeah….okay…..that is not exactly the truth but it sounds far more dramatic than the real diagnosis which is gluteal tendonitis and sacral torsion.  This injury stems back to the Bruny Island Ultra Marathon that the S7 did back on the first weekend of December.  I chose to do the first leg of the run which was 16km.  Unfortunately the first 11km was on a dirt road which, while breathtakingly beautiful, was also sloped.  So I was running with one foot hitting the road lower than the other and thus putting my hips on an angle.  I pulled up with a sore hip that day that just would not go away.

When I finally went to find out what was going on I was told not to run.  While I pretended to the S7 that I was shattered, I was actually secretly delighted because it gave me the perfect excuse to spend the summer focusing on strength training and trying to 'lift like an animal' [Humungousaur's words….hasn't happened yet but I remain hopeful].

So anyway, the point of this post is to wax lyrical about the ignorance of youth and how we take our nimble, able bodies for granted when we are young, only to come to a screaming halt somewhere in our late thirties as we approach middle age and start to suffer injuries.  Joints wear out, tendons start to protest, toenails fall off, and muscles just ain't what they used to be.  At any given time, at least one member of the S7 is nursing some sort of injury.  It doesn't help that most of us are pretty hard core and refuse to stop training.  In fact I often joke that even if I was in plaster I would still ask to train the remaining able limbs.

So I did stop running, but I did not stop weighted squats, plyometric work or spin classes which have all triggered my tendonitis off just when things seemed to be getting better.  This is my own fault…I take full responsibility.  This brings me to my next point.  I may be an average middle aged stay at home mother….but I have an elite team of professionals helping me to achieve my health and fitness goals.  WTF????   How on Earth did that happen????  Twelve months ago I just had a gym membership… I have 'people' [you know as in 'get your people to talk to my people'].  So let me introduce you to Carla's team of awesomeness……

Personal Trainer
Well firstly, of course, there is Humungousaur who keeps me on the straight and narrow.  A particularly patient man who humours my many athletic whims such as 'I want to be able to do unassisted pullups' and 'I want a 6 pack by the end of the summer'.  He never responds "Are you out of your freaking mind?"  he just smiles his little bemused smile and says "C'mon then".  And then he uses my goals to torture inspire me whenever I am hurting really bad and in a hole and about to die needing a little bit of motivation.  As much as I hate to admit it, Humungousaur also has a really annoying habit of always being right…I don't know how his wife puts up with it…..

Sports Masseuse
That's right, I have a sports masseuse.  Let's just call him "Mr Hurts so Good".  Now I have actually written a blog post about him and I don't want to give too much away.  So lets just say that Mr Hurts So Good was instrumental in fixing my shin splints.  He also has an uncanny knack of feeling your weaknesses through your muscle definition [or lack thereof].  For example, The Machine went in for  a massage for sore calves after a speedy run and left with instructions on how he needed to develop his glutes.  Mr Hurts So Good does not advise me like this because seriously, where would he start?

Sports Physio
Yes, I have also seen a Sports Physio over the summer holidays for a shoulder issue that has now [thankfully] resolved.  Humungousaur actually picked up the problem [always right remember?] which was that as I started to lift heavier, I would roll my right shoulder forward.  This along with too many tricep dips triggered off some tendonitis [again with the tendonitis - bit of a theme here, isn't there?].  Nothing some massage, taping, and proper technique [enforced by Humungousaur] couldn't fix.

Lastly I have my lovely Osteopath, Miss Magic Fingers, who has been helping me with my hip and sacrum.  The hip issue I know was the result of the Bruny Island run but the sacrum problem goes back to my last pregnancy.  Once again Humungousaur picked this up [always freaking right remember?] and expressed his concern that something was going on in my lower back.  I have to admit that I am a bit in love with my Osteopath and her Magic Fingers.  I can walk in hurting and leave pain free - what's not to love??   I did suffer a moment of panic when she suggested we start pushing our appointments out from weekly to fortnightly and now every 3 weeks.  It sort of feels like breaking up.

So there you have it, behind every fat middle aged woman trying to dominate the athletic world is a team of people working on her sore, battered body so that she can live to turn up to another training session.  But at the end of the day, I would far prefer to have these people in my life keeping me fit and healthy than a team of medical people tending my 'dis-ease'.  Sometimes reaching your fitness and health goals is difficult [and sometimes downright painful] but the secret is to never give up, never lose sight of your end point, and to keep on trying.

In case you can't read this quote from Arnold Schwartznegger, it says "Strength does not come from winning.  Your struggles develop your strengths - when you go through hardships and decide not to surrender. That is strength".

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