It was bound to happen again. And actually, I have multiple stories now so settle in.
I'll start with the really exciting one: Friday.
Friday morning I woke up with a neck ache. You know the kind...you wake up and know you "slept wrong".
Well, I totally slept wrong, and apparently did some acrobatic trick during my sleep as well, because I ended up with acute spasmodic torticollis (a muscle in my neck decided to spasm insanely). I however, just thought I had a stiff/sore neck, so I went to work and tried to get on with things.
But it got worse. And worse. And worse.
If you've ever had this spasmodic torticollis, you'll know it's super painful. I have a relatively high pain tolerance (for reference, when Dr Gent had the results of my shoulder tear 3 years ago he was dumbfounded that I was still working at all, let alone asking him to just put me on a restriction), but by noon on Friday I was ready to cry. I'd been holding back the tears for about two hours, and things got super, super embarrassing for me...
I'd been sitting there working, but it got to the point that I couldn't even turn my head to look at my phone (on my left) or my notebook (on my right) without swiveling my chair to do so, and when I tried the nagging pain in my neck and shoulder blade flared up my neck and into my shoulder and mid back. I was rapidly giving up every idea of working out after work - I'd been planning a good back workout and 1500 yard swim to start the weekend right.
But the pain was getting worse, so I caved and told my friend Tarra what was going on. I felt awful - we were already down on our team from 5 to 3, and she would have to bear the brunt of the work if I left (and we're already impossibly busy right now). She told me it was okay, that I needed to take care of things, so I asked my manager if I could leave...telling Anthony I was admitting weakness and that I didn't want to leave (unlike every other day, haha). My manager told me it was totally fine, and I finished wrapping up my tickets before I left.
On my way out, I asked Anthony to walk with me...because I couldn't put my jacket on. We walked around a corner and I was holding back tears as I told him I really couldn't move my neck...and then I stopped holding them back and started crying from the pain and frustration. He helped me put my coat on and told me to go home and lay down and take care of myself, and then walked me to the bathroom where I planned to hide for a few minutes so it wouldn't look like I'd been crying. But as I walked in one of the other managers (N) saw me and said I didn't look good, and I told her I was more than ready to head home.
Right as I headed into one of the (very nice and private new) stalls, she said she hoped I felt better...and it just happened that her manager (S, this is my manager's manager too) was walking in. She asked N what she was talking about, and N said I didn't look good.
Well...I waited for S to leave the bathroom and then scurried off to the elevator, hoping to get downstairs without being noticed. Just my luck... S's manager (the head of the entire division I work in) was waiting for an elevator.
And then S walked up...and I promptly burst into tears when she asked what was wrong, because that's what I do when something is actually wrong. They were both really great about it, and walked me out to my car, repeatedly offering to drive me or get me an Uber or call someone - basically anything other than me driving. But I assured them I would make it home okay, and that I'd let everyone know I got home safe, which I did.
I won't lie, I cried about half the way home (from the pain) and yelped a lot when trying to turn my head. When I walked into the house I burst into tears again (this time when my mom saw me) and she called the chiropractor right away to make me an appointment. This is how I found out everything I know now, and I spent the weekend icing my neck and taking it easy (while dog sitting for my friend's parents).
It is now Monday, and my neck still hurts - I still don't have full ROM and it's very achey, but at least I can function normally. I got up and rode my trainer this morning, and I had some stiffness and aches, but at least I was able to do something physical.
Annnnnnnd that said...on to the other reason I'm not running.
About two weeks after the marathon I started getting some pain in my knee when running. I gave it a few weeks of taking it easy (which is about all I did after the marathon, I think) and finally went to see Dr Gent.
The location of the pain had me worrying about a meniscus tear - medial, just inferior to the knee cap, caused pain when running after ~1.5 miles, and pain going up stairs. Dr Gent thought so too so there was an MRI that happened, and then I ran a half marathon, and then I went and got the results. (I don't necessarily recommend doing it in that order though...)
The good news is: I have good knees. I do not have a tear anywhere, my cartilage looks good, and there's no arthritis. There is some swelling though, so Dr Gent advised me to take it easy with running for a few weeks. I decided I should take some time to get reacquainted with my bike trainer and my gym's pool and weight room. I am absolutely not worried about losing the fitness from running, and I might still aim for a few miles a week (like a three mile run here or there), but I'm honestly just trying to take it easy for a while and enjoy the holidays. I can pick up really training again in the New Year!
Ooh, also - I should have a recap of the races I did this year coming pretty soon. I had a plan to take all of these pictures for it and I finally did, so that's gonna happen! There's also camping and this new building to talk about, so hopefully I can get my blog on and give you guys some fun stuff to read.
Until I do though...