Well, I guess I just like to blog when I have an ankle injury. Yup, I have sprained my right ankle this time! I have had two sprains this year after having one my entire life. I guess this is what happens when you get old?
I’m not even sure how to recap 7 months, but I’m going to try! Essentially, my left ankle sprain in February was grade 1 and super mild. I was back to running within two weeks, and slowly starting building back up from my hamstring injury. Things went well and I started training for the Iron Horse Half Marathon in May. The race wasn’t until end of August, but I wanted to give myself plenty of time to build up mileage slowly. I had a great cycle and it was so awesome to be running with all my run buds. I was loving this summer with great am runs with friends. We also did a course preview twice for Iron Horse, it’s on the Twin Falls trail and is a point to point race starting at Olallie State Park then finishing in North Bend. It’s also a net downhill. I decided for my first half in over a year that I wanted to PR. Might have been a little crazy, but I had a great cycle and felt like I came back from injury even stronger than before.
Super short race recap: great weather, it was cool and cloudy for the start, carpooled with the run buds, had an awesome pacer in Dave for the last 2.5 miles, and held on and PRd by 3 minutes finally coming in under 1:50 to run a 1:46:57!
Followed race weekend with a trip to Glacier National Park and hiked over 30 miles in 3 days. I was feeling great and was thinking about running another half at the end of September…life had other plans. So how did I sprain my ankle? Poor life decisions: trampoline dodgeball. I thought how fun would it be to go to one of those trampoline gyms and hang out with friends. While it was fun until I got injured, it was not worth it! What did I do? I managed to roll my ankle both out and in and heard/felt this pop. Yup, inversion and eversion!! The worst part of it all was that I was thinking about skipping trampoline dodgeball and going for a run instead. I also thought, what if I get injured? Should have listened to that inner voice. Also, an aside, trampolines are crazy dangerous for adults. The amount of accidents I heard after mine was insane, e.g., torn MCLs and ACLs, etc. I advise anyone over the age of 13 to never get on a trampoline.
I knew immediately that this injury was bad. My friends drove me to the ER and while nothing was broken, I could not bear any weight on my ankle. Date of the injury, Wednesday, September 7th. I spent the first 5 days on crutches in my 3-story townhouse. It was horrible. I couldn’t bear weight until maybe the 5th day. I got an MRI on the 7th day, turns out I have a grade 2 ankle sprain and tore my ATFL, deltoid, and another ligament, bruised 2 bones, and angered my posterior tibial tendon. I was extremely sad for the first week and just full of regret. I knew that I wouldn’t be running for at least two months and that was a hard pill to swallow after spending all of 2016 rehabbing. I’ve had an unlucky last year and it took me a while to reconcile those feelings. On the 7th day, I started up pool walking and PT. Even in the pool there was posterior tib pain, but it was just nice to be walking.
After two weeks, I had finally accepted the injury and was just focused on my recovery and rehab. I guess the good thing about being goal oriented is that you can place milestones on injury recovery too. Mine were standing with equal weight on both feet, walking in my house, walking at work, and then taking an actual walk. For someone who loves walking, running, and being outside this injury has been brutal. After 2.5 weeks, I was able to stand neutrally and then added on taking a few half steps too. After 3 weeks, I was able to ditch the crutches and walk slowly, so slowly. After 3.5 weeks (Friday), I was able to take a short walk to the store. It was amazing! I’m still not walking normally and it doesn’t feel completely comfortable, but I do see the light at the end of the tunnel. The one lingering issue that I’m having is my posterior tibial tendon being inflamed and aggravated. I see some signs of improvement with pool walking (yup, still doing that) as I don’t feel my posterior tib in the pool now as of last Wednesday!
What rehab things have I been doing? Weekly PT, daily PT exercises, pool walking (3x a week), massage, ART, and will start acupuncture this week. Yup, I’m obsessed with rehab, but when you can’t walk, it’s pretty easy to be hyper focused. Initially, I had read grade 2 ankle sprains take 6 weeks to recover, and that seems pretty accurate based on my experience. I am hoping these next two weeks show a lot of improvement. My ankle is still swollen and hope that I can get rid of most of the residual swelling this week. I also hope to blog more and blog when I’m actually running well. This running blog has turned more into my injury blog. Still, when I wasn’t sure how serious my ankle sprain was, I scoured blogs looking for a runner who came back from a grade 2 ankle sprain. I couldn’t find a single one so figure I will write my experience in case it helps anyone. Seriously though, DO NOT GO ON TRAMPOLINES IF YOU’RE AN ADULT.