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What I'm going to do about my back/leg pain

First off, I want to thank the pile of people who have e-mailed me and offered their support and ideas on how to take care of things (more on my problem here). Your support has been really helpful, and has gotten me motivated to take care of this in the only way that I can: I'm going to work through it.

Just a bit of background of me, here. Distance running and bike racing used to be my life. I did it all through high school, and through most of college, running for college teams as well (Division IA, mind you). I was in great shape, lifted weights and stretched all the time. I could, confidently, sign up for any race longer than 10K, and know that I could do pretty damn well. I had a pretty-much injury and pain-free running career.

My sophomore year in college, I had surgery on my foot to straighten a hammer toe that was aggravating me more now that I was racing and training more. That laid me up for about 6 months in a specials boot. Immediately after getting clearance to run again (about 10 months after the surgery), I started training again. After about a month, I was getting really weak, really fast. Diagnosis, too much class-time with little sleep (I was taking my upper-division J-School classes at the time), and I managed to get mono. I was pretty-much non-functional for about three months. Had to take incompletes in some classes, drop a couple, etc... .

Long story short, it took me about four years before I managed to get time away from my family (my wife and daughter) to drag myself into shape, and run a race again: 2002's Hood To Coast Relay. I was slow (running about 6:40/mile -- I ran 5:30s last time I ran this), but I ran it.

But I know in those years since I competed on a regular basis, I probably beat up and didn't take care of my body like I should have. I want to compete again, and I know that doing what I did prior to my surgery kept me in shape, and had no problems with my back.

I want to get back to that point. No doctor's going to be able to help me get there. I'm getting a monthly pass at the local municipal pool, and I'm going to get my strength and flexibility back. It's going to hurt like hell, and I may never be able to run a 4:15 mile again, but damnit, I'm going to run a race here someday, I'm going to do it without pain, and I'm going to love every f**kin' minute of it.

Wish me luck.

Posted by Jake on 07/11/03 @ 10:58 PM
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