Couch to Crutch 100Mile Trail Challenge 2019
Updated: Aug 20
Oh yeah, it's a thing. Im crutching up Mt. Lindsay, and let me tell you, scaling boulders with crutches is a little difficult. I'm about to ask the local mountain goats for a little assistance.....
One week + three days post op.
Life is so different not being about to weight bear on my right side, and crutching around has to be one of the LEAST efficient forms of travel (does Strava have a “slowest known time” feature?). :)
I really had little understanding that I would have to re-invent ways to live life as functionally as possible. When I am crutching, I have realized that I do not have hands to hold anything - so, I can’t even carry a mug of coffee from the coffee maker to the table. And that, that my friends, is of highest priority. My solution to this life crisis?? Using an insulated travel flask that has a screw-on cap with a hook attachment, I am able to hook my fingers around the flask hook, while still being able to fully grasp my crutch handle. I now can eagerly crutch over to the coffee maker, pour the coffee into the flask, screw the top on, hook it on my finger, adjust my balance, and hobble towards the table! Coffee!
It’s a requirement for life. So yes, this process is totally worth it.
Although it’s only been ten days, I am beginning to find some patterns that can increase my healing process: mentally, physically, spiritually, and nutritionally. Every morning I wake up at the same time, for the sake of discipline. I am unable to drive, so I cannot go anywhere. Yet, there is no benefit to sleep in just for the sake of sleeping in. I have the chance, every day, to use my time to grow myself through knowledge, interaction with others nearby, and purposeful time investment. I do my devotions every day as the sun rises, to remind me that I am so incredibly small, yet the Lord paints an enormous and unique and beautiful start for each day; and it’s 100% in my control if I choose to acknowledge it or not.
A struggle that I am working through, one day at a time, is nutrition. I am used to burning a crap ton of energy per day- through coaching athletes and being on my feet, and through my training program as an elite athlete. Plus, the random 14er excursions/ 50 mile bike rides/ finding new peaks/ and other such galavanting… I am not one to be sitting down. Like ever.
Now that these elements are removed from my daily life, my energy and metabolism needs have shifted. The recovery of my foot relies heavily on protein, collagen, and available energy. I am continuing to FUEL my body with what it needs, and with how much it needs. I have broken down my protein requirements, increasing my g/kg intake significantly! How? I use a combination of protein sources, but one that remains consistent every day is Momentous protein. Momentous has been my nutritional go-to during training: and thus, it’s still my nutritional go-to for recovery. Simply because my training is now on *pause* is no reason for my nutritional forms to change! Momentous has exactly the quality and the elements necessary to aid in my DAILY nutritional process.
The amount of time I must keep my foot elevated, seated, reclining, is absolutely sickening..it reminds me of graduate school, being “sedentary” as I poured through countless research articles and writing furiously meticulous scientific literature review as part of my thesis….I think though I would definitely trade injury status for student status! BUT. This is a challenge of perception, perspective, and foundation. Do I perceive myself as physically limited? Yep.
Do I perceive myself as unable to adapt (allowing my elite level of fitness to wane) in order to heal? No way!
I can be creative! I am not only an elite athlete, but I am also a Sports Medicine professional. What greater way to connect with those who are limited or injured, than to use this experience of being post surgery to be a platform to connect with others going through a similar process?? I am able to use myself as a “guinea pig”- to test methods of training, recovery, minimizing losses, and maximizing what other capabilities the body has while in the midst of a limitation.
Hobbling around is tough. Letting go of the pride of being so trained ( and all the time and sacrifice that it took to achieve that status ) sucks. That’s reality. And in a few weeks, the actualization of seeing my fitness decline is going to be so so hard for me. However, I have so much support around me. I have a network of incredible and beautiful souls who have already gone ABOVE and BEYOND to let me know that they care, and they are in my corner as the mental and emotional toll begin to hit. Without the community around me - near, far, family, friends- I would not be able to recover. It’s that simple. In my previous posts, I have eluded to the value of relationship and connection and investment into lives around us as being imperative. The highs, the lows, the messes, the trials, the joys, the adversities we all go through require an element of connection and relationship. I am so grateful, so blessed, so humbled, at the Lord’s provision of support through my recovery.
To all of you….thank you.
And never take for granted being able to tie TWO shoes.
To carry something in your hands.
To be able to go to the bathroom and not have to use “the big stall”….although I am having fun crutching around my neighborhood like a gangster, simply being able to walk is a gift that I encourage you all to remember not to take for granted!
Sidenote - I have never appreciated automatic toilets, paper towel dispensers, and soap dispensers more! Technology in these forms have definitely been SUCH a help in my current phase of life!
Go Explore. Because you have a body that can. Go learn, go invest, go impact. Because you have a soul and a mind that can!!
See you at the starting line,