OUCH! My Running Serious Injury List

I was wrapping up Week 17 of my training for the 2022 Tunnel Hill 100 and was feeling pretty good until Saturday when things took an unexpected turn. In the midst of running my Saturday 18-mile long run, it came to an abrupt halt at a little after mile five. I was in need of a bathroom break and I knew that there would be a port-o-potty at the next street crossing, just up the road to the left. I slowed to a walk and was looking for it but it wasn’t there. Was I just missing it? Did they move it? Then BAM! I walked straight into one of those metal posts in the middle of the trail that are there to keep cars from driving down the trail. All at once, I was dealing with a low blow and the feeling of falling down without having any clue what the heck was going on! I quickly put my palm down on the trail to keep myself from falling, but I was still stunned as to what was happening. Then it hit me – after many years of successfully avoiding those dumb posts on the trail, I finally collided with one.

For the record, this isn’t me, but it’s exactly what happened.

As I dealt with the pain of walking into the dumb thing, I was no longer really worried about the bathroom break.  Obviously, my next reaction to this dumb move was to look around and see if anyone saw me because embarrassment would definitely make it much worse.  The trail had been pretty busy and I had been running with other runners, walkers, and cyclists, but fortunately, I was pretty much by myself.  There were a couple dog walkers coming but I’m not sure they saw me.  Regardless, I decided to keep moving.  What did all of my baseball coaches say when I was a kid?  Rub some dirt on it and walk it off.  I always thought that was dumb advice, but walking it off is what I chose to do.  I wasn’t about to rub dirt on my now bruised groin.  

As I trudged onward, next came the expletives, as that always seemed to be my response to dumb acts, and after a few minutes of that, I started to feel a little better.  Not smarter, just a little less in pain.  I guess the pain wouldn’t make me quit the run, and I continued on for the rest of the run.

Upon getting home I was able to see how messed up I had made myself.  Pulling up my shorts revealed a huge bump on my inner left thigh.  It was definitely sore and I marveled that I was actually able to keep running with that bump the rest of the way.  I also had a bump and a cut on my lower left shin.  I inspected my running shoe and I could see rust and paint transfer on it from striking the painted post.  That had to be a serious collision to do that!

 

I’ll spare you a photo of the bump on my groin.  

In the movie Rainman Charlie Babbit pulls Ray’s neck and Ray responds by whipping out his “serious injury list.”

Charlie:
What are you writing?… What the f*** is this? “Serious Injury List”? *Serious* injury list? Are you f***ing kidding me?

Raymond:
Number eighteen in 1988, Charlie Babbitt squeezed and pulled and hurt my neck in 1988.

Charlie:
Squeezed and pulled and hurt your neck in 1988?

I’m thinking of starting my own serious injury list.  I have three entries already this year!

  1. WausaUltra Backyard Ultra – fell on loop 5, skinned up my arm, leg and knee, causing me to quit the race
  2. Hickory Creek Preserve/LaPorte Road Access – went off the beaten path and tripped on a tree root, scrapped up my arm and knee
  3. Old Plank Trail – walked into a stupid post, causing bumps and scrapes to my groin.

I chose to skip the 1.5-hour run that the plan called for on Sunday and opted to do a hike with Kari instead.  I’m happy to report there were no injuries on the hike.  But I’m sure that I will be adding to the list sooner or later.  

Kari made sure that I wouldn’t injure myself.

Continue reading “OUCH! My Running Serious Injury List”

The Dumb Running Injury

Search for running injuries on the internet and you’ll see a variety of running induced issues – Plantar Fasciitis, Achilles Tendonitis, Iliotibial Band Syndrome, Runner’s Knee, Ankle Sprains, Shin Splints, Blisters, Chafing, etc.  I’ve suffered many of these maladies over the years, as well as several I didn’t even list.  But today I suffered a dumb one, one that I had only suffered once before – I fell down, go boom.

You would think that I would have mastered not falling down while running, but sometimes dumb stuff like this happens.  The first time this happened to me was on April 22, 1991.  How do I know this?  Well, it’s written down in the running log!

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22APR91 – Fell + hurt hand. Wrote it down.

It was a memorable fall.  It was my girlfriend and future wife’s birthday and I was doing one last 10 mile run three days out from my first marathon, because that was what newbies who didn’t know any better did back in those days.  And the trail I ran on had a portion that was next to a railroad lot where they parked trucks and equipment.  In the gravel was a wire hanger that was partially buried.  I caught my foot on in it and down I went, scraping up my hands and knees pretty good.  The scariest part, I was three days away from my first marathon.  I ran on egg shells the rest of the way home.

Okay, back to today’s fall.  I was about 10.75 miles into a 12 mile run and my concentration was diverted to this minivan than had pulled up along side of an entrance next to the nature preserve running trail.  This guy gets out and starts running to the gate and I’m wondering what the heck is going on.  So I was kind of watching them over my shoulder when my foot got caught on a bumped up, broken crack portion of the trail.  Now usually I can stumble my way out of those types of trips and catch myself.  Not this time.  Fortunately for me, I was pretty heavily padded with running gear, since it was 26 degrees out and I was freezing.

The fall was pretty typical, I couldn’t get the tripped leg back under me fast enough and I put my hands out to catch myself.  It happened super quick, and I didn’t really have time to think at all.  But I was pretty impressed with my catch and roll.  It was like text book.  If I had to do it over again, I probably would eliminate the verbal “UGGGHHH” sound I made as I hit the ground, but it was pretty unavoidable.

As I got up, the palm of my hand was vibrating and I thought that I had sprained my wrist pretty good.  I got to my feet and assessed myself.  I could walk, that was good.  My hand hurt, but I could move it okay.  All that was left was to pick up my pride and finish the run.

I got home and surveyed the damage.  The palm of the hand had been what had really concerned me, but the glove I was wearing limited any bruising or abrasions.  But I could sense something wrong with my outer knee.  I pulled up my pant leg and saw a pretty good abrasion.  My son and his girlfriend where listening to my story and were surprised to see the damage.  I figured I might need to show this to my wife, you know, for spousal support reasons.  I needed a “mommy.”

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The damage.

She was shocked, but she didn’t kiss it.  I also had another abrasion on my left elbow, but it was smaller and didn’t hurt much.  Didn’t hurt until I got into the shower, that is.  Then it hurt like heck.  I put some antibacterial ointment on it, and now I’m healing.  I should be good to go again soon.

At this rate I should fall again in another 26-27 years, sometime around 2043.  I’ll keep you posted.