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