my eugene marathon hopes are dashed. I have a torn hip flexor. it's been a persistent problem since last summer but has never been so bad that it's sidelined me from running. then at the end of january, for no obvious reason, I finally tweaked it badly enough to warrant a trip to the doctor. he spent a half hour with me, hearing all about the injury, checking my biomechanics, watching me run, and finally told me to take a month off of running. "at the very least," he said. "these things can take months to heal."
it was in some ways a relief, because I had already taken two weeks off of running and had basically come to the heart-breaking conclusion that I didn't have enough time to adequately train for eugene. if he'd told me I could get by with ice and caution I would have wasted those two weeks in vain. this way, at least I know it's the right thing.
I'm supposed to be biking, spinning, walking, swimming, etc, and stretching the crap out of it. I asked about riding; I was afraid I was going to have to take a long break from that too. 'does it hurt when you do it?' he asked. no, I said. 'then it's probably neither good nor bad.'
I don't belong to a gym, so many of the activities he suggested are sort of hard for me to do consistently. I'm a baby and don't want to bike in the forty degree rain. I have a week-long trial membership at 24-Hour Fitness, and I guess I'm going to trial-gym hop for a few weeks to see what happens. if I can convince my neighbors to cope with it for awhile, I'll probably also borrow a certain someone's bike trainer so I can bike at home. we'll see.
a funny thing has happened, though, as a result of the injury. just after the streak, when I was beginning my marathon training, I struggled really hard with the feeling that I wasn't a legitimate runner. I felt like I wasn't fast enough, wasn't running enough, wasn't enough of a part of the running community. it was making me crazy. I didn't know what to do about it. I was frustrated and angry and I felt a great sense of loss, even though I was running almost every day, and had just come from one hundred straight days of running! now that I'm injured, I feel legit. it's crazy. this isn't my first runners injury, nor the first one to sideline me completely. I miss running like crazy, but I also feel a certain sense of belonging. hey -- all serious runners know what it's like to be injured, and now I'm one of them! I'm part of the club!
I do miss my friday running friends, though, and I hate that I can't ever run with scott, nor go on group runs. I don't even run up the hill to the barn because it hurts.
I have a secret hope that I'll be able to slowly jog the half-marathon at eugene, and I won't lie: I mainly want to participate in the race because I spent $85, and god damnit, I want that tee shirt.