Know When to Fold ‘Em

“Incredible. There’s Smith and he’s standing there and he’s got the iceberg warning in his hand, and he’s ordering more speed. Twenty-six years of experience working against him.”

You know that scene in Titanic? Well, that perfectly describes my attitude (and hubris) toward injury. You see, I’ve been injured. A lot. A LOT. So, when I take a spill on a run, my instinct is to pick myself up, dust myself off and keep going. Generally, tweaks and twinges aren’t a big deal, and you shouldn’t let them get in your way.

So there I am, half a mile into a run on a beautiful afternoon, when out of nowhere, I miss the curb and fall on my face. I dust myself off, wash the pavement out of my hands, shake out my ankle and figure I might as well keep running. So I do. I run over not one, not two, but three bridges, when I realize that things ain’t cool. My ankle HURTS.

So there I am, three miles away from my office, with a bum ankle. I finish walking over the bridge because it’s a beautiful day, and stop and do push-ups and sit-ups, because I figure I might as well get something out of this run, because clearly, I’m not going to do it running.

Well, the stopping was my worst mistake. My ankle swells up to the size of a Buick, and I have a long-ass way to painfully hobble. It was bad. Real bad. I wanted to cry, but figured it wouldn’t get me back any faster.

In my mind, I’m thinking, “No big deal, just two or three miles to get back to the office. It’ll be nice!” Now, we all know that runners have a funny way of rethinking distances. Well, if there’s anything that puts distance back into perspective, it’s being forced to walk any distance at a slow limp.

No bueno.

No bueno.

So anyway, that sucked. And now my damn ankle is ANGRY. All because I’m an idiot trying to be a hard ass and keep running.

So learn from my mistake. If you fall on a run, by all means, pick yourself up and dust yourself off. If you’d like to keep running, good for you! Go for it. But stay within a reasonable distance of your endpoint to allow your body the time it needs to really assess the carnage.

Kay, Imma need some more wine now. —Aidz


4 thoughts on “Know When to Fold ‘Em

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