By: Dr Dawn DPT
Plot twist seems to be a theme for me these days. Here’s my latest.
I was seeing the light at the end of a long knee injury tunnel. I built up strength through crossfit-inspired training and rowing, addressed my biomechanics, and lubricated some dehydrated tissues. I slowly resumed my running and had worked back up to a solid 8 miles. I felt confident enough to sign up for a half marathon at the end of May. Passion, persistence, and positivity got me back on the trails!
And then…I dropped a #45 barbell on my right foot during a warm up routine on Tuesday, March 18th at 7:30am.
I self-treated with LiteCure laser, Rock Tape, compression sock, and gentle range of motion for 2 days but when I still couldn’t put weight on it by Thursday, I went to urgent care for an x-ray. Verdict – no fracture but a type 1 crush injury that would most likely take at least 2-3 months to heal. Definite plot twist!
Dorsal view of right foot injury
Medial view of right foot injury
Litecure Lightforce Pro Laser
Rock Tape for edema and bruising
Me on crutches…putting on a happy face!
I became depressed and relived the moment of losing the barbell from my fingers over and over again in my mind. It was a stupid accident! But why?!? Why now?!? I was just getting my run mojo back and feeling good about it. I was starting to dream about triathlon again!! And then…a barbell dropped on my foot!!!
After several days of this moping, I stopped and yelled PLOT TWIST! I reminded myself this is not the end…just a bump in the road! So get over it!! I set up a treatment schedule for myself…and stuck to it. Laser, linament application, gentle range of motion, and taping everyday for the first week.
By week 2, I was down to 1 crutch and added in Yoga Tune Up® therapy balls to reintroduce proprioceptive awareness and normalize my hypersensitive touch sensation as well as initiate some space-making in the congested foot tissues.
Ball of foot on the ball
Arch on the ball
Skin rolling dorsal tissues
Toes on the ball
At the end of week 2, I was walking with a cane and started my Tuesday and Thursday morning workouts again, albeit modified. I did alot of floor work for my core with heavy focus on the obliques, kettlebell swings (yes, I grip the hell out of the bell even though I know I shouldn’t!), 1/2 Turkish get ups, and rowing on my Indo Row water rower.
Oh, and I spent more time on my left knee releasing and strengthening my tissue imbalances. My left knee is feeling better than ever!
Indo-Row Water Rower
Half Turkish Get Up (TGU)
By the end of week 3 I was fully off all assistive devices for walking and had very little limp. I added single leg work with Romanian deadlifts (RDLs) and step ups on a 20″ box. And I started really pushing my rowing with sprints ranging from 400 meters to 1600 meters (1 mile).
It has now been 4 weeks almost to the day that I was handed my little plot twist. After a few days of wallowing, I think I twisted my lemons into some great tasting lemonade!
I can row a 10k (6 miles) in under 50 minutes. My core is stronger. My left knee is stronger and more stable. My right foot tolerated a light, slow, short jog for the first time today! The light at the end of the tunnel is shining brighter! I guess plot twists aren’t so bad after all…until the next one comes along LOL!!