10 Feb 2014

Why your physical therapist is a God...

Other possible titles:

- Yeah, I can run again

- Okay, here goes...a running blog...

- A Pang of Pain

- Defying Schoorl's Dunes

- ... I got a ... towel?

On the 20th of October 2013 life was great. Beautiful. Healthy. Sportive. Why? I was fit and able to run my first halve marathon. In my own city. Amsterdam. Excitement!

Too bad that life turned horrible (okay, not horrible, but as the Dutch would say: "Fun; would be something different". And although that makes no sense in English, I think you catch my drift). Why? I ran and ran, and contrary to what I was afraid of, it went great. I had energy and stamina galore.
Until the last few kilometres...my knee started to hurt with every step.

One week later, the pain was gone. So I started running again, but within half a kilometre, there it was, an aching, tanging, prickling pain just behind my knee.
At this point in the blog, all runners will know, I had a runner's knee. Great...

I found a physical therapist near my home in the east of Amsterdam, and I'll spare you the details of the first two visits, as it not only involved deep tissue massages, but also very, very long and sharp (which is a good thing, I guess) needles sticking into the back of my knee, resulting in internally shaking muscles. The most bizarre thing I ever felt, because actually your leg is not moving at all. Its just lying there, still as a...well, still as a not moving leg. But it feels like you are kicking in circles.

Now, why would that make your physical therapist God? Because, she made me walk again! For a few weeks I was completely immobile, limping with pain within 2 minutes of running. Then after following the physio's directions religiously and praising her to others evangelically, I was able to walk! I was able to run!

And yesterday I competed again, in a 10K run through Schoorl, in the Dutch dunes. Going up and down, without any issues, at a steady 10K per hour speed. It was raining. It was muddy. There were Highland cattle, and it was beautiful. I finally got that runner's high back, enjoying the view, enjoying the wind. The new shoes, green and purple triumphs, together with 'God' and her exercises brought me to triumph (or at least, let me finish within the hour and enough stamina to sprint the last K)!

Putting the towel to good use
Unfortunately, I have to say, the triumphant high quickly deteriorated into a little shrivelled balloon, also known as the token of the run. Namely, a small, blue ... towel ... A towel...
I would have gotten over not getting a medallion. But, really, I wanted a medallion. I got a towel. Not a T-shirt, not a sweatband, not a strange plastic bangle you see everywhere now a days, not a pen... ... a towel...maybe I can use it as a porta filter basket cleaning towel...(you do know that in Dutch this would be just one word: filterdragerbakjeschoonmaakdoek).

Luckily, my experience on the train ride home, brought the fun back. Sitting in the corner, looking out of the window, we stopped at a station half way. This little old lady, well let us call her little, she was quite large, walked in. She hovered around, to let a few people pass. Then hovered a little more, and then, with a thump, sat right down in my lap...After a: "Whooooooo", on my part, and a: "What the..." on her part, she excused herself as she hadn't seen me and sat down somewhere else, with the entire population of the train not being able to stop roaring with laughter until the next stop...One man cried.

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