Friday, August 26, 2011


Verdict is in from the bone scan - I have torn the ligament which attaches to the lesser trochanter. This is right below the ball at the top of the femur that inserts into your hip socket on the inside of the upper leg. The psoas muscle attaches to the iliacus muscle to form the iliopsoas, which attaches into the lesser trochanter. Based on other tests and findings, the Sports Medicine doctor concluded that I probably strained that as well. This area is known to many as the 'hip flexor' area and is exactly where my pain has been.

I have not run for over 10 weeks, but the Sports Medicine doctor suggests that it could take 3-4 months total time (or longer). The best thing I can do for a ligament tear is to do functional movement, but with no impact and nothing that causes pain. Ligaments heal faster when you actually move your body - they regrow fiber in a more proper fashion. When you actually put a little strain on a healing ligament (not pain), you end up with a stronger ligament in the long run. It can take up to a year to fully heal a ligament tear.

So, I am walking, cycling, swimming, and doing hot yoga and kettlebell classes. None of these are causing pain, although my fast 4 mile walk the other day (14:36 pace with one mile being 14:10) had my groin feeling a little sore the next day. I just need to be careful about speed still. I figure until I can walk really fast without pain, there will be no running.

I'm making peace with that, and I'm doing other things to keep myself busy.

I have been cycling more hills. Last week, Dallas and I cycled from home to Sabino Canyon, hiked 5 miles on Phoneline trail, which is a bit of a climb, and cycled home. 21 miles on the bike.

We had done 23 miles the week before, but with no hills.

Last weekend, I had the pleasure of going mountain biking with Ross from TTR.
Hope I am out doing this stuff years from now. Ross is amazing.

We went from his house up Redington Rd, which is super steep (for me!) Ross has some nice bikes - I was riding on his wife Pam's bike, which was perfect.

I decided to turn around at 7.5 miles, as I was starting to feel it in my groin a bit from the climbing and I wanted to be safe. The downhill was pretty scary, as we came barreling down that road at a pace that had me with a 'death grip' on the bike 'intent on avoiding disaster'. It was fun. 15 miles total.

I'm proud of myself!

The next day, Dallas and I went to Saguaro East and walked the hilly 8 mile paved loop in 2:12.

We then got on our bikes and rode the 8 miles in 46 minutes. There is one big hill that goes on for about a mile and a half, but I got up it. My legs were a little sore from the mountain biking, but I was not going to walk the bike. So, I kept on.

Almost done with the big hill

We then went swimming at DMAFB (Air Force base) at the indoor lap pool, which felt great. We were blessed with a lot of cloud cover, which was awesome on such a hot summer day in Tucson.

Dallas and I are taking 2 Kettlebell classes this week and 2 next week. We hope to add this into our regimen and get out of the gym a bit.

I'll probably be signing up for El Tour de Tucson, which is the big bike race in Tucson in mid-November. I will likely do the 40 mile option, although people are trying to talk me into the 66 mile option. I hope to get in a 25+ mile ride sometime in August, and I'll still have 2 months to work up to the higher mileage. I don't think I'm ready for 66 miles, but I'm excited to be trying something new.

I guess that is the upside of all of this. While I was cycling a bit last summer, this injury has gotten me out of my comfort zone with further distances and hills. Also, I have not gone swimming (real swimming) ever. So, I'm learning how to swim laps, which is actually a real fun thing to do in the summer here in Tucson. This whole thing will refresh my love of running in the long run and make me a more balanced athlete.

It was a bummer to skip our planned GC R2R2R, and I had to bag JJ100, but I would have never attempted a bike race otherwise (or tried swimming!). I'll attempt those goals next  year. I'll get to crew Dallas on his first 100 mile attempt at Javelina Jundred, which will be awesome.

Meanwhile, I'll keep hiking and eventually, I will heal. Lots of healing this year.