Vince Lombardi once famously said “It doesn’t matter how many times you get knocked down, but how many times you get back up.” I’m slowly getting back up, slowly starting to move forward again and focussing on what lies ahead.
I won’t lie it’s been a difficult five weeks since I came off my bike, in terms of trying to stay positive and in dealing with the pain. I didn’t sleep for two weeks, I was so uncomfortable and just in constant pain. I was tired beyond compare but sleep just wouldn’t take me, and when it did it was only toying with me. I tried to stay positive, and for the most I did but there were times when I just wanted to scream, so instead I had a chocolate biscuit. Not good. I know that stress and boredom are trigger switches for my unhealthy eating and in the last few weeks I was destructively trigger happy. But enough gloom, life is too short.
A lot of positives came my way too. My family and friends were amazing, it’s times of adversity that make you value what you have, and I have a lot. My daughter Charlotte gave me a ‘magic plaster’ to help my arm heal. And you know what I really think it helped 🙂 . A second surgeon was much more interested in my questions about triathlon and how I could come back, he explained the injury and we discussed physio and rehab. That appointment immediately erased all the negativity and gave me a renewed energy to come back. I started walking, I got back on the turbo and I started eating well again. Working on undoing the self-inflicted damage of the previous ‘feeling sorry for myself moments’. And on the surgeons suggestion I started running again.
The feeling of dread that consumed me as I walked through Williamsons Park in Lancaster was very real, I was about to slowly jog for a couple of minutes, I expected my displaced collarbone to be like a hot poker poking into my shoulder as the two bones grated together. I closed my eyes and pushed off with my right leg, gently placing my left foot to the floor as I became a born again runner. My eyes opened, where was the pain? Where was the discomfort? I plodded on, still I was pain free. The fear etched on my face was replaced by unadulterated jubilation. I felt good, that planned 2 minutes turned into 30 minutes. I was slow, but I was happy. This one moment gave me the boost that I needed to get myself back on track. Granted it will be a while until I swim or cycle outside but I felt like I was back, I felt like I could start to focus on 2015 and what I could achieve.
I have now run 6 miles pain free in an hour. This is great progress. I’m working with a new coach, a man I trust and respect and he has me training in completely different way. We’ve gone back to basics and I’m seeing results in the data I’m recording. I’m listening and learning, and feel more focussed than I have in years. I’m eating healthy and hopefully I’ll shift a significant amount of weight before next summer when I take on the Outlaw Half Ironman. My pb is 5.35 for a half, I feel confident that I can get under that. We’ll see.
So I’m back up, I’m moving forward and I’m having fun. What more could a simple ironman want out of life? Until next time, have fun and stay safe.