Sunday, August 02, 2020

Running Isn't the Problem; Falling Is

Thursday morning started so well. The sun is rising a little later, so I can get out while there is still color in the sky.
I'd had a good 4-mile run the day before, so I thought I'd warm up with a run on the road before trying a trail run in the direction of Ginoles.
Lovely view from up on the trail
All was going well until the tip of my foot caught a rock, and I was down on the ground before I could blink, feeling my knee, my elbow, my hands and then my head bounce on the dirt and rock trail.
I lay there for a minute stunned by the turn of events. Then, it was time to take stock.
As I sat up, I considered crying. I'm not a cry-er. I can probably count on one hand the number of times I have cried since my sister died when I was 14. I have nothing against crying; I just never seem to.
A tissue had fallen from my running belt. Its pristine whiteness clashed with the dirt on the trail. I picked it up and unfolded it, placing the clean side against my head. It came away red. Great. My head was bleeding. Next, I patted at my elbow where a deeper gash dripped.
I looked at my knee, an interchange of cuts, a secret tic tac toe game. I didn't touch it. No blood was running yet.
I picked at a few rocks on my palms.
Nothing to do but walk home, I decided.
But first, to take a selfie to share with my running friends. I know, it's a weird thing to do. I didn't even realize I had knocked off my hat.
In this picture, with my face caked with dirt, my nose definitely looks crooked. But I remember thinking as I hit the ground, thank goodness I didn't hit my nose. I've broken my nose on a running fall before. See my post here.
Post-fall
I walked home, down the trail and along the road. I passed 4 or 5 people who all said "Bonjour" and gave me curious looks. I didn't realize how bad I looked at the time -- my white sleeveless shirt was covered in dirt and mud. The waterbottles I carry must have squirted out when I fell, adhering the dirt to my shirt. Earl has washed it in the machine and by hand trying to get it clean.
The knee that I hadn't touched had started to drip blood down my shin, and dirt still caked my face.
When I returned home, I went straight to the shower, hoping to remove the smalls pebbles embedded in my palms, erasing the dirt from my head and nose, and gasping in surprise at the feel of the water on the cuts.
Earl doctored my open wounds with some antibiotic cream. He prodded at gray spots on my palms that could be rocks, and he gave me two ice packs, one for my knee and one for my eye.

Some nice purple eye shadow
Some people may wonder why I document my falls. Shouldn't I try to cover them up? But I do enjoy keeping track of all the pitfalls of running -- at least for me. Blogging is a good way to remember. And when I searched for the post on my broken nose, it helped me remember another fall last year  --we were in Massachusetts for the summer and I bruised my ribs on a fall. It keeps me honest.
I'm not really a runner; I'm a plodder or I wouldn't keep tripping.

I'm planning a hike with a friend in the coming week, and she gave me a stern lecture about taking care of myself before our trip.
Friday, I forced myself to rest. No walking; no running; no keeping track of my steps.
Instead, I kept ice on my knee and kept it elevated. My body felt like I'd been in a car accident. Stiff neck, sore ribs, back pain. I went to a friend's house and floated in the water, hoping it would realign me.
Saturday morning, I knew I couldn't have another day of inactivity. But I wouldn't push myself too much. Instead, Earl and I went on a bike ride. Not a long one. We stopped and had coffee before riding back home

Earl ahead of me on the small road

A selfie when we returned. Me -- always looking in the wrong place for a selfie. 

1 comment:

Carola Bartz said...

Ouch!! I once fell while hiking in one of our state parks and it felt so humiliating! I'm glad your nose isn't broken this time.
I ALWAYS look at the wrong "end" for a selfie! It's nice I'm not the only one.

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