Part of my job is to sit in meetings in Brussels drinking “coffee” and saying things in a hybrid English that is part-acronymese-part-technicalese. Imagine the English language bereft of metaphor and imagination.
I’m in one of those meetings right now (on a break in case you think I’m on the lang) and am nursing the latest of my running injuries.
Is it a sore leg? A numb hip? a black toe nail? a truculent knee?
No, it’s none of these and what’s more, it looks like it could be one of the most serious injuries I’ve ever had (and from my state of near permanent injury that is a weighty claim).
My fitness and bio-mechanics are in good shape with just the slightest element of motivation drop hitting the running where I’ve let one or two runs peter out at mile 7 or 8.
To re-ignite the flame of passion in my running I shaved my legs, had my roots done, sent the kids to my mothers, lit some scented candles and bought a new thong (OK – I went on an 18 mile run just over a week ago).
The run was largely uneventful – always a good sign – but I had an unfortunate mishap at mile 17.
I’ve tried explaining the mechanics of the injury to the triage nurse, the doctor and the radiologist but they’ve all tilted their head sideways at me and given me the look you give a child who’s eaten your lipstick (the what were you thinking look).
Basically, at mile 17 I found myself doing a shoulder first dive tackle at knee height on a metal post.
To say I was un-prepared for this would be an understatement. The sun glasses shot straight off my face, the phone ended up on the road and I ended up lying on my back on the road, unable to breath and stars spinning around my field of vision.
I lay there with passers by giving me the wide berth you give to an old person who collapses on the street – the sort of Ebola walk around.
I scrambled to my knees with a shoulder hanging like an action hero who’d been downed by the baddies but who wasn’t out of the game yet.
Like most stupid people who run I did the sensible thing and jogged slowly home.
By the time I got to the shower and the endorphins had worn off I realised I was not in a good way. The range of motion in my shoulder was limited to arse and ball scratching but anything like nose picking and head scratching (I sound like a monkey) were out of the question.
I sucked down a few neurofen and got on with the rest of the evening.
By the next morning I found myself carrying my right arm around in my left arm and by lunchtime I was handing over €250 to skip the triage queue at the local swiftcare clinic.
The only good news was that no bones seemed broken.
Now, a week later with un-kept hair and an unpicked nose the shoulder is still not right – mainly because I have left the arm sling lying in a heap on the floor and gotten on with life.
On a more fundamental level it’s mainly because it was an impact injury that has done some moderate to serious damage to the rotor cuff (God bless google) and this will take some weeks to sort itself out. I seem to have knocked some ribs out of shape as well (like being knifed if I sneeze or cough). My main mode of injury is over use and inflammation of the joints which goes away if you just stop running.
I’ll keep you informed on my progress as I try to regain the ability to pick my own nose.