After my two falls during the first race of the Four Corners Quad, I went to a hospital in Cortez, where they diagnosed a fractured rib. Here’s one of the X-ray images.
Yesterday, I had a follow-up appointment with my doctor in Minnesota. After a brief exam, he was able to confirm that I don’t have any complications.
The doctor in Cortez said I should take three weeks off from running. The doctor I see at home has a background in sports medicine, so I wanted to get his opinion. He said I can run as soon as it doesn’t hurt too much. In other words, my pain threshold should be my guide. I also asked about weight training. He said I should wait at least two more weeks before doing any exercises that involve lifting weight above me. Before attempting a bench press, I should see how I feel doing push-ups.
Since early in the year, when I started physical therapy, I’ve been doing about a dozen exercises to strengthen my hips, glutes, adductors and core muscles. I was able to do a couple of those exercises today, but I’ll have to phase the rest in gradually. In the case of planks, my doctor said I could start with a few seconds this weekend and then gradually increase the time. I used to do four minutes.
As far as nutrition goes, I’ve been emphasizing dairy products and leafy green vegetables. This kale and walnut salad is a typical meal.
Other than getting protein, the only other nutritional advice my doctor had was to cut back on carbs, since I’m not burning as many calories at my current activity level. While I was out of town, I was eating restaurant meals, and I could tell I was gaining weight. I started to feel a bit bloated. Now that I’m home, I’ll try to be more restrained until I’m able to train again.
My last question was whether I could still do the Across the Years 24-hour run at the end of the month. That was never going to be an “A” race, but was something I viewed as a long training run to help me build up to 100 mile trail runs in 2017. He said it’s OK to do that race, but I’ll probably need to adjust my goals. He also suggested I avoid falling. That shouldn’t be a problem. ATY has a flat course with no trip hazards.
It’s been six days since the injury. Since then, I’ve been resting, but I may try an easy run on the treadmill as soon as tomorrow. Breathing normally is comfortable now. There’s just a little discomfort when I take deep breaths. Coughing doesn’t hurt too much, but sneezing is still extremely painful. I’m using my right arm for more of my daily activities. The one that hurts the most is reaching for the remote control when I need to open or close our garage door. I clip the remote to the visor on the passenger side, so it’s a long enough reach to be somewhat painful. I could move it closer, but my doctor wants me to challenge myself to use my right arm for daily activities, to the extent that I can.