Saturday, August 13, 2011
Met with the doctor (Dr. Yemm) at Orthopedic Center of the Rockies, after my MRI. They were able to get some very clear pictures of my right ankle (I'm good at holding still for long periods of time- something I didn't know I could do).
It was the best news I could have hoped for.
There is no tendon tear, and everything looks intact except for some inflammation around my peroneal tendon. No evidence of achilles tendinitis, no degenerative or arthritic changes in my ankle joint. I still have the little bone fragment near my subtalar joint from the rock that fell on me in the 1992 Mosquito Marathon, but it isn't doing anything. Everything looks good.
I am so relieved knowing I won't need surgery! That would have been awful, I would have had to be non-weight bearing for weeks, and I wouldn't have been able to work, and then it would have been a long rehab.
I asked about all the things I can do to rehab it now. I asked him if he thought it would respond to a couple of months off. He told me he never hears runners suggest that, usually he has to say it and they don't like to hear it. I told him I want to be running at least another 27 years, and preferably when I'm 90, if I live that long. He said he thought I probably would be running then.
So the plan is, take 6-8 weeks off with no running, no uneven surfaces, not even hiking. Allow the inflammation to subside somewhat, using ice in favor of anti-inflammatories. (So nice to hear a doctor suggest THAT!)
After 2 weeks, start physical therapy with some ultrasound or other modalities and peroneal strengthening exercises, which I'll be able to do on my own. Then another 6 weeks or so of non-running before I slowly re-introduce it. Meanwhile, the bike and deep water pool running are my substitutes.
Sounds like a great plan to me. I can enjoy the beautiful fall Colorado weather on my bikes, and do a little deep water running to give myself some intense interval workouts. I could end up with better fitness after this layoff than I have right now. I have not planned any additional events this year.
This solves my problem of figuring out whether I would do Across the Years if it's held this year. The answer is, No. But I will go down and volunteer if the race happens!
We just got back from 2 days at the cabin, where we took the girls hiking, my last hike for a while, and it did hurt my ankle somewhat. But it was an easy 6 mile hike with only a few rocky places.
I do hope I'll be able to return to trail running and hiking by next summer. It's hard to be away from mountains and all the great trails. But 8 weeks is nothing, and I know my long-neglected Surly cyclocross bike and Fat Chance mountain bike will be so happy to go for daily rides!