Running injuries are nothing foreign to anyone who has ever laced up a pair of shoes and hit the pavement or trails for a mile or twenty. Whether you’ve experienced them or not, they’re always looming in the back of your mind – a fear and a reality of being a runner. From plantar fasciitis to shin splints, tight hip flexors to compressed lower back discs, rolled ankles to any number of knee problems, a running injury can strike you at any moment. Though they affect different parts of your body, they all have the same effect: they set back your training, and in the worst case scenario, cause you to stop running all together for a period of time. It can be heart breaking, frustrating, angering, relieving and humbling all at the same time. But it is how you decide to deal with an injury that sets you apart from the rest of the pack.
Being an experienced injured athlete and runner, I know this reality all too well.
In 2002, I found myself bedridden with a torn ACL. I let the injury rule my life. I stopped participating in sports, and did the obligatory physical therapy, but that was it. I figured I’d never be able to run or do sports ever again. And with that state of mind and attitude, that was my truth. Three years later, I found myself back in surgery for an injury to the same knee, a surgery my doctor attributed to atrophied muscles in my legs. It was at this time that I decided to not let the injury sideline me for the rest of my life.
I started cross training (cycling, elliptical, etc.) and strength training (strengthening […]