So much truth packed into this little comic. Living with this setback (puncture wound at the front of my ankle where the foot flexes – 22 stitches) throughout these past two weeks, I’ve noticed that I remain in a place of positivity and peace when I stay in the moment and enjoy what’s right in front of me – or when I reflect on the bigger picture, this certainly isn’t the end of the world and I will get back to doing what I love. It’s when I start thinking 3 weeks out. Or about the 3 races I have planned in April. Or about what everyone else is doing in their training next weekend, while I’m struggling to get an opportunity where I can break a sweat. But what good is all that worrying doing me? It’s robbing me of noticing the many blessings that have been placed in this alternative path of mine – this time of recovery and healing has provided me with some pretty beautiful things that would have otherwise probably slipped by unnoticed.
1) Realization of what an amazing community I have. I know I roll with some pretty remarkable people, but I’ve been blown away at the encouragement sent my way, sometimes from people I wouldn’t expect, people I don’t often hear from. My sponsors have bent over backwards to make sure I’m in good spirits – TriShop fixed my slightly damaged bike right away, i360 brought me flowers, PCSM shuffled a busy schedule around to get me in right away for an adjustment, Champ-Sys called numerous times to check on me, Zico dropped by a huge stash of coconut water, Mile High gave me fun “workouts” like walk my dog Sydney for 30 minutes 🙂 …The encouragement has come in all forms, everyone has their own way of lifting me up, and trust me – I am feeding off of that right now!
2) Lesson – there might be something to that whole nutrition thing. Just because I can’t train doesn’t mean I can’t keep improving. A friend suggested I use this time to develop other areas that matter to an endurance athlete. I’ve been doing some reading on mental training, studying the courses for races I’ve planned, and analyzing my diet. (ouch!! – Generally I’ve lived by the motto that, as my husband says, If the Fire’s hot enough, anything will burn!) I’ve been experimenting with adding in and taking out certain foods and supplements (ie Iron, B12, Align Probiotic). I’ve been trying out some new recipes for dinner and snacking (see below!). And I have been attempting to lay the foundation for healthier / cleaner eating habits moving forward.
I love this quote from my Four Pillars of Triathlon book: “Losers visualize the penalties of failure. Winners visualize the rewards of success.” ~Rob Gilbert
I baked this today so that I have something sweet, yet healthy to munch on later! All the ingredients are pictured here. Email me if you want the recipe!
And this Chia Coconut Pudding is so easy, healthy, delicious. You can add fresh berries or coconut flakes, drizzle it with honey, or top it with banana.
3) Reminder that His plan is perfect. It’s definitely not my plan, but I trust that the big man upstairs knows what he’s doing and he knows just what I need right now. Right now I don’t get to know the “why” behind all of this, but it’ll be fun to see how it all unfolds down the road – I always love when I get the chance down the road to look back and realize the purpose of obstacles like this one. It’s definitely reminded me that I love what I do! So much. And I’ve realized that I’m ok with toeing the line when I’m not 100% ready to, because it’s what I love doing, and we aren’t promised tomorrow. We aren’t guaranteed anything but right now, so I couldn’t miss the opportunity to race just because I’m not 100% healthy and in peak form. I can’t wait to get back out there and carry on with my season. If that means easing my way back in a much slower pace than I’d like, and not gaining back and growing upon the fitness I had going into Panama 70.3 yet still toeing the line at the races I’d planned on, I’m ok with that. It hurts a little, but it’s not about the results. It’s the journey itself that is thrilling – the process that gets me out of bed each day – the ups and the downs that become part of our own stories along the way to finish line.
In two weeks, I’ve gone from excruciating pain, to major swelling and 4 days straight on crutches, to a boot, to a ‘wobble in my hobble’, to walking pretty normally while every so often tripping on my limp foot. I’ve learned that I can absolutely not pull off a cankle (it’s like a muffin-top but around your ankle!). There was no break or muscle damage, but as a result of the puncture wound, a couple of tendons were impaired. It didn’t slice all the way through them, it’s more like a surface level tear. It means I can’t do much flexing on my own without pain, nor can I wiggle my toes. There was also some nerve damage, but that shouldn’t affect performance. It just means there is numbing in certain areas on my foot and around my toes – so next time I stub my toe it won’t hurt! I slowly started doing some easy stationary biking (Yawn!) and rowing at the gym. I can do weight lifting too; absolutely no running or jumping. The stitches are still in, so I haven’t been in the pool either. I will refrain from showing any pictures, it’s still pretty gross! I will have one nasty scar (does anyone have recommendations on how to make a scar fade?!) – but scars are merely stories for later!
I’m SO EXCITED that I was able to get outside yesterday on my bike, for the first time! My right leg was largely compensating for my left, but I could pedal! Only on my road bike, my tri bike is at too much of an aggressive angle for my ankle flexing abilities. It’d be painful. So I got to ride before the crazy weather came in, I even got a little tan! 🙂 It was bliss!!
One step at a time, one day at a time.
“Some days the grace of God allows you to enjoy what is happening. And some days the grace of God allows you to endure what is happening.”