Smiling Through The Pain


Saturday I participated in my first – and last – obstacle race. The day started with a (freezing) bang, and ended with an injury.  The Dirty Girl Mud Run was held in 28 degrees (wind chill of 17) and my coworkers and I were psyched. We were nervous but prepared.


Layers – check!

Our fingers, toes, and faces were numb as soon as we got out of the car.


Our team trying to stay warm.


A shot of whiskey warmed us all

We were pumped! The obstacles were fun but early on, we came to this obstacle that proved to be my doom:


This pic is small and low resolution. My husband was following our team along the course and happened to snap this picture, perhaps at the exact moment of my injury. I was bouncing down this inflatable pyramid on my bottom. And, just like when more than one person at a time is bouncing on a trampoline, someone else bounced just a split-second before I landed and it “popped up” at me from below. There was immediate pain in my lower back and I had trouble getting down.  I bent over in pain and my teammates knew something was wrong.  I thought I could shake it off so we kept going.  Between obstacles I walked a lot.  I would start to run and I would feel the soreness in my lower back with every step.  I went around obstacles.  Besides being miserably frozen, now I was dealing with a back injury.

I really thought I could shake it off, or that it would be fine by the time we got home.  I iced it and took ibuprofen and rested the rest of the day, but by 7pm I began to have numbness in my right leg, down to my foot.  My husband decided to take me to the ER.  Now, I’m a nurse – I don’t go to the ER for minor problems – in fact, I don’t remember the last time I went to an emergency room before this.  I hesitated, even standing outside the doors of the hospital, thinking mainly of the costs of this visit.  Ultimately, we went inside and I was treated.


If there can be such a thing as a “positive” ER experience, this was it. The staff was professional and seemed genuinely concerned for me.  I left with diagnoses of lumbar sprain and lumbosacral radiculopathy, prescriptions for Vicodin and Valium, and they had given me a shot of Toradol (an anti-inflammatory).  I was instructed to followup with my PCP in 3-4 days if not better, which brings us to today.

Today I was still in extreme pain – I couldn’t bend forward to bathe my daughter or put on my socks.  I couldn’t get comfortable in any position.  My mom drove me to the doctor for a followup.  I got another shot – a steroid – and was given a prescription for muscle relaxers.  They are scheduling an MRI soon but if I feel better I don’t have to go for that.

I have a 5k scheduled this Saturday which is very unlikely to happen now, and I’m OK with that.  But I just have to wonder how long it will take to recover from this.


Down in the Dumps in San Antonio

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10 thoughts on “Smiling Through The Pain

  1. Oh Boooo…..back pain is the worst! At least you can take some good pills 🙂 Hope you feel better or at least medicated!!

  2. Oh Noo! Hope you feel better asap!!

  3. Running Girl says:

    Hopefully it is all muscular. I have injured my lower back on several occasions and once the initial pain has eased, I go back to running. It’s the only thing that loosens my back up.

    Hope you are feeling better!

    • Thank you for the encouragement!! I do feel like it’s all muscular because the numbness is completely gone. Now it just feels like I was karate-chopped across the lower back. I’m going to try some stretches and I’m really itching to run – my family thinks I’m insane for wanting to do my 5k Saturday and my mom days she won’t watch my kids for me because she feels so strongly that I shouldn’t do it, so I guess I won’t do it lol!!

  4. […] been 9 days since I almost broke my back.  Okay, maybe that’s being a little dramatic.  But the Dirty Girl Mud Run ended up costing […]

  5. WordsFallFromMyEyes says:


    Amazing your husband took a photo. I’d love to try this kind of a challenge, & you hear of such things happening, but YOUCH, you really don’t expect it will.

    Good on you, still.

    • I was the same way – nervous about a possible injury! My friend did a mud run similar to this one last year, and I saw firsthand the HUGE PURPLE BRUISE running down the length of her thigh from crawling over a dumpster or something like that. I thought – NEVER. But then a coworker convinced me and we got more coworkers together, and we were all “girl power!” and the rest is history. Thank you for your comments!

      • WordsFallFromMyEyes says:

        I’m sure you haven’t regretted it though 🙂 I mean, girl power is in THE DOING. You did! Your’e great!

        Now, to recouperate… !

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