After Big Shoulders, I sort of took a blogging hiatus. I was getting adjusted back at work with the start of a new school year, then October seemingly never happened, and low and behold it’s now the middle of November. It has been quite a long time since I had a hip-specific blog update, and thanks to my most recent follower (shout out to Joanne!), I decided it was a good time to talk labral cartilage.
It has been 10 1/2 months since my surgery and I am 100% pain-free. Since my adventures in swimming Lake Michigan, I’ve turned my attention fully towards building back up in my running. In fact, I have only been in the lake once and the pool twice since September.
Despite Steve telling me the last time I saw him back in September that I could try to run on pavement whenever I feel like I’m ready, I’ve been ultra conservative in choosing my running locales. Taking full advantage of the beautiful trail systems we have in the Lorain County Metroparks and the Cleveland Metroparks, I have turned into a trail runner/walker. I still use the treadmill from time to time, and now that the weather is starting to turn colder and windier, I’ll probably use it more often. Still, most of my running has been in the great outdoors.
During that time, I’ve been working on building up my increments. I started running in 4 minute intervals, and I am now up to 6 minutes. Yesterday, though it was on the treadmill, I completed my longest amount of total time running (24 minutes) in the longest increments (6 min. intervals) at my fastest speed (5.0 mph) thus far. I woke up this morning expecting to feel sore, and I felt absolutely nothing. I do attribute much of that, however, to my new best friend: the foam roller. If you do not own one of these, stop whatever you’re doing and go buy one right now. I’ll wait…
So, now that you have your foam roller, first and foremost, you’re welcome. Secondly, look up online how to use it if it didn’t come with suggested maneuvers. It’s quite easy, and though it may not seem like it’s helping you, it is. After every workout I do – swimming, biking, running – I roll myself out. Don’t know what to do with your significant other on a Saturday night? Roll each other out! Just a little tip from me to you. Seriously though, by using the foam roller, you will reduce if not eliminate your post-workout soreness, guaranteed.
At this point in my year-long recovery, I’m focusing on long-term goals instead of the short. I will run for 20 consecutive minutes by the end of November. Ok I guess that’s more a medium-term goal. I will put on 5 lbs of muscle by the end of January. I’ve already signed up for two races. I know, I know, I said I would never sign up for races this far out from a race season ever again, but this is a special circumstance. Cleveland will be hosting the Gay Games in August, and in honor of some of my friends and my great city, I will be competing in the 5k and the sprint triathlon. These are probably the only two races I will do all year, and I am absolutely competing to win my age group in both events. Long-term. Boom.
In a nutshell, I feel great. And though my double-H scars are a daily reminder that I went through some pretty tough times last year, I appreciate that they now mean something completely different: I made it. A little bit of labral fraying has turned me into a completely different person. I’m tougher both mentally and physically as a result of my injury, surgery, and recovery. I’m educated and aware of my limitations, as well as how to go beyond them in a safe and correct way. I’m the Million Dollar Woman: I have been rebuilt and I am stronger.