Monday, November 30, 2009

Thanksgiving 2009-The Agony, The Pain Pills and The Follow Up

My plan for the holiday weekend was as follows:
• Avoid work Wed-Sun
• Make a couple pies for Thanksgiving Dinner with my parents
• Volunteer at the 5K
• See a movie as a family, see a movie with my wife
• Paint the basement
• Relax and enjoy the weekend

Here's the recap. Wednesday my son and I got the pie dough made and in the refrigerator. My wife had some books to get from the library and we picked up a few dvds also. Things were looking pretty good. While we were out we picked up the race packets for the 5K. The shirt is a sweatshirt and since we ran last year we opted out of the shirt. When I went to pick up the packets, they had upgraded the sweatshirts this year to a hoodie...bummer.

Thursday morning I woke a little sore and achey. It felt like the muscles all around my thigh/grown/back area were all just stiff and sore. I stretched out a little, took some ibuprofen and took my kids to the 5K. Since I was volunteering, I directed the runners where mile 1 1/2 and 3.0 cross. It was fun to see my son running and having a good time. We hung out at the race until they had given out most of the prizes and done the raffles. There were about 400 runners this year and the winner of the race ran with a sport stroller (he passed it on to his wife at about mile 2.5) in a 16 minute finish....WITH A STROLLER!

My achey side didn't improve and instead decided to get worse. I stretched and tugged and grimaced and nothing worked. I headed back to the van thinking maybe if I reclined the seat it would relax...nothing. The kids arrived back at the van to see their dad debating whether he should just drive home or just drive to the ER. I opted for the first, the wife jumped in, I moved over and she drove with fury to the ER. I've been to the ER a few times in my life and I have to say that I found the perfect window of opportunity for the ER. We arrived, I was writhing in pain, there was one person already being evaluated and the nurse quickly went and got someone to attend to the man who looked like he was in labor (that would be me). They took me to the back of the ER got me on the bed, took some information, blood pressure, etc. and then pulled out the pain meds. It was nice to hear the nurse tell me that if the pain didn't subside in the next 3 or 4 minutes to hit the button... 2 buttons later and things were much, much better.

The diagnosis...kidney stones. WHAT?! I'm too young for this stuff. Kidney stones are supposed to happen to overweight men in their mid-50s who drink way too much soda and have no sense of exercise. I'm the water poster child, my soda consumption is minimal and up until a month ago I was a pretty active in the exercise arena. They verified with a CT scan, doped me up, gave me some more meds and wished me well. They also mentioned that a lot of people passing Kidney stones end up back not too long after the first visit. I went home and slept until 8 pm, woke up, ate a little turkey dinner that my parents sent, sat down and started watching a movie with my wife...10:30 pm and I was paying the ER a visit. I have broken a bone, had a herniated disc, suffered from seizures, but this topped the charts.

After being re-drugged and pumped full of fluids I returned home and slept until Friday afternoon. We finished the movie Friday night that we started on Thursday.

Saturday we bought paint for the basement and went to a sis-in-laws birthday party. The holiday weekend was a blur.

Today was my weekly doctor appointment for my leg. I told him that I was finished with this whole "no running plan" and asked how soon I could begin to get back on the road. After he poked and prodded, he told me I could start on some slow smooth surface running for a few weeks. He put me on the treadmill and worked with me on some of my gait and stride positions to show me what I get to change. It looks like part of the problem has been that my stride has been too long and combined with heel striking it is actually putting a lot of strain on my hips and thighs. The good news is that I can actually run again. I'll hit the gym tomorrow. I get to take it really easy and do 1 day run, 1 day complete rest, 1 day bike or cross train and then repeat. After 2 weeks if things are still well then I can increase the tempo. I am so excited to go run tomorrow.


  1. Wow, when it rains, it pours. Let's hope you are new and improved by Spring.

  2. GAH! Don't tell me about kidney stones. I'm taking calcium 2x a day for my stress fracture.

    Speaking of, your recovery plan sounds VERY similar to mine. run, rest, xc, repeat. Week 3 I moved to every other (with two days of rest after a long run. And now at week 5 I'm going to go to T,W,Th / Sa. Today is my first time of two days of running for 4 months!