Ouch, my hip hurts

Posted by on September 10, 2013 in Training

It’s been a fun season, albeit with ups and downs.  I’ve completed seven triathlons and a bunch of running races, but had a brief setback back in late July.  While out riding with my Terrier Tri teammates in Bergen County, NJ, I hit a depression in the road (I initially called it a hole, but upon further inspection, it was just a little dip) and wound up crashing hard.  I was in third position behind one of our strongest riders and our head coach, and I was at full attention and doing everything an alert responsible rider should do, but it didn’t matter.  We were probably going 25 mph or so, and my body hit the pavement on my left side fairly hard.  My feet instantly came out of the pedals and I slid a good 10-15 feet (maybe longer) with skin shredding in the process.  In slow motion, I recall looking back to see if I would be run over by other teammates or worse yet, a car behind us, but the only thing I saw was another teammate avoid me and run into my bike which caused her to crash.  Lucky for her, it was a minor fall and she wasn’t hurt at all.  I got up quickly and ran to the side of the road to lie down in some grass.  Once there, I rocked back in forth moaning; I was in shock physically and mentally.  After a couple of minutes, I calmed down, did a self-assessment and realized that I had no broken bones or major cuts/gashes.  What I did see though was raw flesh on my lower and upper arm.  I knew immediately it was bad and air hitting against it made it sting uncomfortably.

I got up cautiously and performed another self-assessment.  I realized then that the entire group was huddled around me with looks of shock and concern.  Trying to make light of it, I told them that they shouldn’t just stare, but in fact take pictures and post them on Facebook.  Some obliged.  Thereafter, I sent the team on their way while one of them stayed with me.  We rode to a nearby CVS (and that short half-mile ride was excruciating), and I called my dad to come pick me up while she cleaned and dressed my wounds.  Once I got home, I remained there for a week; it was incredibly painful and I was concerned about the wounds getting infected.  Roya dressed them 2-3 times a day and I only left the apartment to walk the dogs.  Two weeks after the crash however, I raced at the USAT National Championships in Milwaukee.  I didn’t do particularly well, but I was so grateful to just be there and be a part of the spectacle.  It was a great trip.

So, to the title of this post, my hip hurts.  Not sure why and I’m hesitant to believe that the crash has caused this.  I think instead that it’s an overuse injury and also possibly due to sitting in the same spot on our futon couch for long periods of time.  It’s not a particularly forgiving futon and I do recall that from time to time, I do feel a little out of whack, but can a couch really cause this kind of thing?  The other day, a friend suggested that I was out of alignment at the hip/pelvis; that somehow resonates with me and the more I evaluate my discomfort, the more I believe he’s right.  I’m going to see a musculo-skeletal specialist when I get back from vacation later this month.

In the mean time, I’m having a devil of a time getting in my running miles in advance of the NYC Marathon.  I really want to bail and not race it with how I’m feeling, and that’s a real possibility at this point, but another part of me says that I should do it anyway and if I’m slow or have to walk a lot, so be it.  We shall see.  For now, I look forward to the good days when I can run without discomfort, and emotionally process those days when every step sucks.  This morning was one of the latter kind.  I’m sure that this will improve once I see a specialist, and my God, I’ve gotten so many recommendations from friends for this PT, or that Chiro, or this other person… I’m sure they are all good in their own ways, but I think going to a specialist of an MD capacity is the right move… for now.

I’m thinking a lot about next season and it’ll probably be one that again features short courses, e.g. sprint and Olympic distances.  Probably will have the same volume of races, and also hopefully include a couple of new ones in interesting locales.  One of our friends just bought a stunning house on the Oregon coast, so I’ll be looking to do an event out there during a potential visit, and the Capital of Texas Triathlon remains a bucket list event for me.  The usual suspects will also likely be on the schedule, e.g. Philly, NYC, Central Park, but variety is the spice of life.

More to come soon…

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