Being injured… Only when I laugh!
Frustration, jealousy, cynical and moody! That’s me in a nutshell when I’m carrying an injury. My diet goes out the window as well.
I’ve been the soldier that’s come back too early and/or tried to work through an injury.
I’ve seen others do the same and it’s always the same result. The body gives in. As they say ” time heals all wounds ”
After a bit of time out after my triathlon calendar/season I was excepted into the half iron man in kenmare about 4 weeks before the event. At this stage I’d taken about a month off. So I took the challenge on with gusto. Diving straight into a training regime with mike Heaney. All was well until I took to running the roads and to my horror my calf gave in and I had to except with a week to go that this time it wasn’t going to happen. This all took place at the same time I fell in love… With mountain biking. So instead of wallowing in self pity I took to the mountains and trails of Bally houra With my brother from another mother Laurence Kelly. Like two boys we risked all wrath from our better halves and stayed away for hours taking in the challenges that the nature put before us. Kristina likened it to broke back mountain!
It wouldn’t be too long before one or two of us got lost or hurt! And we did! First lost, after my chain snapped half way down the white trail(white knuckle ride!) and miles from base. Laurence took it upon himself to navigate us home. I love Laurence, he is the devil that sits on my biking shoulder. He is always always there for me and everyone else on our club especially when u want to spend money or your bike is goosed. He is the most generous man I’ve ever met. Generous to a fault! But please never ever get him to navigate the way home….. 8 hours later I was sitting down to my silent treatment Sunday dinner! That’s all ill say about that.
That wasn’t enough to deter the bromance. A week later in what can only be described as a monsoon. Myself and my other half again snaked our way out to our special place to attack the Tyrian that was ahead. At this stage ,I’m a brave man!
We are flying the adrenal is pumping. We hit the boards and I’m cautious but cocky. ” follow my lead “says Laurence as he effortlessly and calmly over comes these awkward slippy heights and starts to disappear into the distance. ” keep calm, peddle, consistency, easy gear, peddle peddle peddle, shit shit shit!! Can’t free my leg, I’m in the air and heading for the bog ground below. Bamm! The wind is taken out of me, my legs are gone to jelly and now pain is shooting through my rib cage out my back. All my senses come into play and I can smell the dampness and freshness of the forest floor through my nostrils as i gasp for breath. I let out some sort of sound and before I know Laurence is beside me trying to make little of this situation as the worry flashes across he’s face. He knows this may put an end to today’s adventure and/or future rendezvous . ” it’ll be better before u know it big man, sure your made of hard stuff, if it was broken you wouldn’t be able to stand up or breath .Just sit for a minute lad”. Your a ham actor Laurence Kelly!!
Being injured doesn’t put things into perspective ! Does it?
It’s funny how your friends in the club react to your injury. Some stop texting or ringing, some really really want u to get back as soon as possible because u train with them, some ask u every time see u about your recovery. Most are too focused on their own training to care “Trevor who?” One close friend told me by text that I was always injured and that I was weak! All I’ll say is u know who u are and u will pay as soon as I’m not injured! (Joanne o donnell)
Our beloved couch has he’s own tactics! He lets things lye for a while, then sends an annoying text to see if he can get some reaction before telling u “I told u so” before putting on the coaching cap and giving u a bit of encouragement and advice.
I met my beloved coach for a coffee recently and I must say it was nice. Me Being a sponsor and an athlete can be a challenge for him as we are both head strong in our own ways and there’s always a bit of tension between us. Let me explain. I put him under pressure when it comes to the business side of our sport and he puts me under pressure when it comes to the sports side of the business. U get my meaning? Neither never ever want to back down. Anyways it’s a healthy relationship even though I sometimes walk away biting into my fist! I was doing my usual complaining about my latest injury when he said that he had an ankle injury which lasted a couple of years. He mentioned the 5 stages of denial. He was laughing at my predicament but at the same time he was hearing me barking big dog ! This made me think so I’ve done a bit of reading into to be more accurate the 5 stages of grief. Normally these follow a traumatic life event like the passing of a loved one but these can also be associated with everyday life happenings like losing your car keys or being late for your first day at a new job. Jane Hamilton ( ma, rcep, cscs) of web page running strong wrote a very appropriate article associated with an injured runner.
In my case the injured triathlete!
Denial. Laurence is right, this is nothing. I’ll go for a swim. I’ll be fine. I’m out in the university pool and Ten minutes later. Ohhhh my god, somebody phone an ambulance I think I’m having a heart attack ! Severe pain!
Anger. This can’t be broken. I’m just back and I’ve so much training to do. This is all Laurence Kelly’s fault and Liam kennedys and as for STL…..
Bargaining. Ok ok, I can’t swim or run but I can bike. Ohhhhhh yes I can baby….. “No u need at least six weeks rest” dr Liam Kennedy. Am I being paranoid or is he getting a bit of enjoyment out of all this?
Depression. Fk this pain, it’s never going to go away. I’ve put on a stone in weight, I’m getting a Indian and a few bottles of heino. What’s the point! Why is everyone so fkn happy on the clubs face book page?? High fiven each other for every little achievement bah!!! Now I know how Ringo star felt when he had to get he’s appendix out and the Beatles all went off to Australia without him. The jealousy is eating at me as I read all those positive posts about how well the swim went or the run or the coffee club blah blah blah blah!!
Acceptance. Ok my ribs aren’t broke but badly bruised. What do I need to do to fully recover and what do I do to make sure I’m not going to be in this position again? Time heals all wounds! I’ve heard that said somewhere before!
I’ve been jumping around all of the above for a few weeks. It’s only now I’m realising that acceptance is the only sure way to get well. Then as Jane Hamilton says. Go back slowly with a plan when the time is right. Get advice from your coach!
In the meantime stay involved if you can. Encourage your team mates, lend a hand at events. Enjoy the down time and get things done that you’ve been putting on the long finger. Stay someway active!
(Poppycock ? ) depends on your inclinations towards optimism or pessimism I suppose. That’s for another day. Personally though I’m more into cynicalism if there’s such a word. It suites me. “I like to wallow in my own “cynicalism”!! I was never a scrabble type of bloke. Cynicism is the word.
Been injured is a learning curve nothing surer. It brings out your demons. It’s as much psychological as it is physical. Training makes me feel good. I sleep better, I’m an easier person to get on with, my outlook is far more positive despite the cynicism, Life’s hurdles seem a lot easier to jump. In the mean time? Well I’m doing bikram yoga which is brilliantly challenging, calming and exhausting all at the same time. Great for improving your breathing, lung capacity and flexibility amongst other things.
All I’ll say is please have pity on me, indulge me with words of encouragement, tell me how much I’m missed and how great I am. High five guys. Don’t I just love face book!
Go Tri baby.