Sometimes you do everything right: you train, you plan, you eat right….on paper everything looks good as you prepare for your race…but something goes wrong. Sadly, that’s what happened to me and, as we approach Disney’s Marathon Weekend, I’ve spend a bit of time feeling sorry for myself, but also have pushed myself to keep things in perspective.
After three years of feeling like I was “runner-ish” versus a real runner, in the year 2010 I found myself making great strides (pun intended) in my running. I ran three half marathons (and had a personal record), did a 10K, and a few 5Ks. I spent the summer cross training, adding biking, tennis, and strength training to my regimen. I also worked through a pesky IT band problem and found myself in the best shape ever and ready and excited to meet Team AllEars and to run my 5th half marathon.
With 10 days to go, things started to go downhill. At the end of a 6 mile run, I found that my foot was aching. This was unusual, as I’ve never had any foot problems at all. I rested and then a few days later went out for a short run…and that is when I knew something was really wrong. Sharp pains in my foot. Not good.
One of the things that I never bargained for when I started running was the fact that I would gain a whole community of wonderfully supportive running pals…. Running folks are very supportive in general (in my experience), but combine this with Disney-loving folk and, let’s just say you’ve got the makings for a very helpful and supportive group…and this is where they come into the story. I shared my concerns with a few people on Team AllEars. Up until this point my plan had been to rest and run my ½ as planned, but my running peers urged me to get it checked out at the doctor….just to be on the safe side. Thank you Amanda, Deb, Jamison, and Mike…this turned out to be a very good idea.
To make a very long story short, I quickly found out that I had a stress fracture and that it had been there for a while. When I asked why I hadn’t felt any pain before, the doctor said that sometimes with this injury it just feels ok until… BAM…one day it doesn’t. He also said that if I’d run with this fracture I might have done permanent damage to my foot. He said no running for at least six to eight weeks.
I’m not going to lie. I left the doctor’s office feeling very sorry for myself. One year’s worth of training and now… no ½ marathon with my friends, no 5K with my son Liam, and no walking around Walk Disney World. I allowed myself a bit of a cry and to feel sorry for myself, but then I pulled myself together and put things into perspective.
Team AllEars is running to raise money to support people who have real problems: breast cancer. I have been sidelined, but I know that I will heal and be out there on the road running with my buddies again very soon. There will be other Disney races, but I need to keep in mind those who can’t run for themselves, who can’t raise money for themselves, those who struggle every day to fight against cancer.
So…as I approach race weekend, I’m no longer feeling sorry for myself and I’m content with my new roll….to take my place alongside Team AllCheers and support my wonderful Team AllEars members who are raising money for a courageous group of people who are fighting a horrible disease.
If you’d like to support Team AllEars, please visit the following link:
Last year the team raised over $26,000. Let’s see if we can join together and do more this year.
As for me…
I promise you all, I’ll be out there training again soon and will join you next year.
UPDATE: Well, I learned another lesson as a runner: sometimes the first opinion isn't the correct opinion. After I'd been sidelines, I asked to see a specialist, who told me that I have something common in runners -- a neuroma (painful growth on nerve tissue). I was given a simple orthotic, told to take some pain killers, and given the best news...that I could safely run with my team without doing further damage.
I had made peace with not running, but am happy that I'm going to be able to give it a shot.
You can follow members of Team AllEars by clicking on the link below:
Please wish us luck!
The previous post in this blog was WDW’s Inaugural Wine & Dine Half Marathon: A Review.
The next post in this blog is Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend 2011: Ready, Set, Go!.