Today is the 8th day of the August Healthy Living / Fitness Blogger Writing Challenge – if you’re new to the challenge, feel free to just pick up and join in! Today we’re talking about our WORST injuries:
I’ve definitely have had my share of injuries – some caused by being accident prone (I swear I’m like a bull in a china shop), and others caused by overtraining, but thankfully I’ve never been injured in a motor vehicle accident (this is when I knock on wood). I’ve broken fingers, legs, and ribs and I’ve dealt with IT Band friction syndrome, piriformis syndrome, lateral epicondylitis, plantar fasciitis and an SI joint ligament sprain. That said. It’s really hard for me to pinpoint which of those would be the *WORST* injury as that would mean I’d have to define what I mean by worst. So instead I’ll just list my injuries under the following three classes: the most painful, longest to heal and mentally the toughest to recover from.
Most painful injuries:
- Plantar fasciitis – it crippled me with pain. I have a ridiculously high pain threshold (gave birth to all 3 of my daughters naturally and without any painkillers – no epidurals etc) but this left me unable to walk and crying in pain. I hobbled in on crutches to see my awesome physiotherapist Barb, who by the end of that first session was able to reduce the pain spasm cycle to the point where I could gingerly walk out of the clinic. Seriously, Barb Butler from Sports Medicine Specialists in Brampton is amazing. Truly amazing.
- Sprained ligament in my sacro-iliac (SI) joint – over the first four years of university I gained 25 lbs, had horrible eating habits and wasn’t all that active. One evening as I started my shift at a restaurant, I bent over to tie my shoe and wasn’t able to straighten up. My entire lower back was spasming and I couldn’t straighten up. We had to call me hubby (who was still my boyfriend at the time) to come rescue me. He took me to the hospital and they gave me some Tylenol 3, and muscle relaxants which helped tremendously. I then worked with a chiropractor for several months to reduce the muscle imbalances (weak abs, tight muscles) to prevent the injury coming back. He also quite honestly told me to lose the weight, and keep my weight down in order to prevent the injury from ever coming back.
Injuries that took the longest to heal:
- All of my fractures – the two stress fractures I received from running, the two rib fractures I received from a bad fall I took from tripping over the kids toys (I landed on the corner of a wooden coffee table), the toe I broke in a drunken University brawl, and the finger I broke from riding my bike too close to a pole when I was 8.
- all of my “itis” injuries – piriformis syndrome and IT friction syndrome from increasing my running mileage too soon, and lateral epicondylitis (elbows) from waitressing for many years (10). My elbows STILL to this day bother me, especially when I have a busy day typing.
Injuries that were mentally the toughest to recover from:
- Do pregnancy and childbirth count as injuries? In my mind they do as they were the most traumatic causes of me having to take a break from training. My first daughter was born premature and I always blamed myself for that (I worked out throughout that whole preganancy, even on the day she was born) – I suffered postpartum depression (PPD) and found being active was too difficult for me to fit in amongst all of my over-parenting of her. During my second pregnancy I had a low-lying placenta and was not allowed to exercise. I was also still battling PPD which only became worse after my second daughter was born. After DD#2 was born my hubby began working abroad in Ireland for 18 months. I spent 5 years not exercising and eating right, and I feel those two births were the hardest for me to overcome.
All in all, I’ve found that injuries make me train smarter. Finding the cause of each of them has taught me what limits my body has, and how to progress despite those limitations. For instance I can’t add on distance too quickly or I will get stress fractures. Too much hillwork brings on plantar fasciitis, and adding in too much speedwork gives me IT band friction syndrome.
What are the worst injuries you’ve ever had?
PPS – Please be sure to visit some of the other blog posts linked up so that we can all support and get to know each other – Thanks!