It seems that I can’t go a summer without having a Splat-Fest. Last summer, I tripped over some dust and learned all about road rash. This summer did not disappoint, and I even upped the ante a little bit: I fell while running with a friend. Not one to back down from a challenge, next summer I’m aiming to take a spill in front of a stadium full of people.
After having a good time not drowning at the Ridgefield Triathlon in June, I decided to sign up for the all-women’s TriFitness race, which is this weekend. Training for a tri means that you need to do a couple of “bricks” – combo workouts that consist of at least 2 of the 3 triathlon disciplines. My teacher friend Rina, who lives near the race course, invited me to do a bike-run brick a couple of weeks ago so that I could check out the course (always a good move).
We left on the bikes from Calf Pasture Beach in Norwalk and did what felt to me like a short ride. “Awesome. That was it?” I asked naively. Rina: “No, on race day you do that loop twice.” Me: “Oh.” Thought I was hot stuff on the bike there for a second.
Due to our kid-pickup restraints, we decided not to do loop #2 and instead headed out on the run with our brick-like legs (hence the name of the workout). My Garmin has been acting schizophrenic all summer, so I’ve been carrying my phone with me to run (this will be important in a moment). I had my phone, case-less, in my rear shirt pocket, but it was bouncing around too much. Being that we were only doing 3 miles, I just decided to hold the damn thing while we ran. No sooner than I had taken it out of my pocket and only 0.3 miles into the run, a giant rock leaped in front of my right foot and…
…unlike last summer’s fall, in which it happened in a blink and I’m on the ground wondering what the hell just happened, this was a slow-motion fall. Like the kind of fall that you know is happening, and you are powerless to stop it. I hear myself saying ohhhhhhhhh ssssshhhhhhiiiiitttt as I tumble onto my right side, holding up the phone for dear life as if it were the chalice of Christ itself. I felt myself skid for bit, kicking up dust across the sand-grass-pebble mix before coming to a rest with Rina stifling a giggle and me holding up my still in-tact iPhone in victory, it having never touched the ground.
Which means that my whole right side took the brunt of the fall. After Rina helped me up and I dusted myself off, I did an owie check to see what the damage was. Being that I effectively landed on my right calf and my right armpit, I had a big boo-boo on side of my calf, some scrapes on my right forearm, and my right shoulder definitely wrenched, it being sacrificed in favor of the phone.
I wasn’t bleeding too bad, so we decided to carry on. After reaching about 2.5 miles my shoulder was really bothering me, so we decided to call it a day and headed back to her house to patch me up.
I changed and cleaned up a little and she made me an ice pack for my leg. Now running late to pick up my kids from camp, my shoulder was killing me. I had Rina load my bike on my car, and I climbed in and realized I was fine to drive if I didn’t have to steer.
I made it to camp to pick up the kids, still covered in a dirt-sweat-blood mixture on my legs and walking quite stiffly. Luckily my kids were one of the last to be picked up so I didn’t have a chance to scare too many wee ones. We went home and I did the R.I.C.E. treatment: Rest, Ice,
Cocktails Compression, Elevation. The next day my shoulder was still sore, but it was functioning. I could shampoo with both hands (though I recall my hair looking shiner on one side than the other that day) and could clasp my bra on the 6th try with wincing. Progress.
My arm and leg looked like this on day 2:
Now, it’s 14 days later, it’s gone through the colors of the rainbow, and is finally starting to fade (though there’s still a knot underneath):
All is well with my shoulder now, and you’ll be pleased to know my iPhone is doing just fine. Until the next spill. As for this weekend’s triathlon, I’ll be on the lookout for that sneaky rock on the race course, and embrace my new mantra: