Last week I shared my experience training for and running a half marathon in April 2013.
True or False: After running more than you’ve ever run before, your body will hurt.
The answer is True.
In the aftermath of that race, I was so sore (which was to be expected). I had planned to take a few days off of running to let my body recover, then do some cross training, and begin running again.
This all went according to plan…except for one small issue: the pain in my left hip. The rest of my body returned to normal, but not my left hip. I had pain that originated on the outside and radiated inside the joint.
I visited my family doctor who directed me to visit a physical therapist. So I did. I went to a PT center for a few weeks where they stretched me, analyzed my stride, located my pain.
The conclusion that therapist came to was that I most likely had a torn labrum.
So I was sent to an orthopedic specialist in Lancaster (it was June 2013 at this time). Within 5 minutes he had my injury pegged as trochanteric bursitis and the solution as a cortisone shot.
5 inch needles don’t scare me, thankfully.
But the fact that neither that first cortisone shot nor the one a few weeks later provided relief did.
By the end of summer 2013, my orthopedist told me that since I loved cross country so much, I could run through the season, through the pain. If I did not have relief closer to the end of the season, he told me to visit him again, and then we would discuss… surgery.
At that time I was just happy to be cleared to run XC again. My great fear was that I would not be able to run my sophomore season. I don’t think I really considered the ramifications of pushing my hip through miles and miles and weeks and weeks of running, all the while ignoring and justifying the pain.
Doctors are always right, correct?
Doctors are always correct, right?
If there is any lesson I have learned about the medical field, it’s this: Medicine is often times more art than science.
Honestly, to this day, I don’t know if I made a mistake in listening to my doctor. Maybe I should never have run through that season. But I did. So I have chosen not to live in regret now.
I firmly believe that God doesn’t waste our experiences.
That season I grew a lot as a runner, improving my times and endurance. Because of my persistent hip pain, I learned the meaning of the runner’s phrase: mind over matter.
I would repeat this verse while running, 2 Corinthians 10:5.
“We take every thought captive and make it obedient to Christ.”
In October, near the end of my season, I visited my orthopedist again. We set a date for surgery, November 8, 2013.
It was time to say goodbye to my bursa.
(Don’t worry, I’ll explain what a bursa is.)