Halo free, but a long way to go

By Herbert Krabel  From Slowtwitch.com

 

A terrible accident a few days before the 2017 IRONMAN World Championships took Brit Tim Don out of the race. The Halo (seen below) finally came off, but he is still a long way from being fully recovered. I chatted with him to see how he is doing and what is next.

Slowtwitch: Tim, how are you my friend?

Tim Don: Very happy and a bit stiff, but mostly happy. Halo free and loving it. Just unbelievable really. It has been a tough 3 months for us all, that’s for sure.

ST: The Halo time must have seemed like an eternity.

Tim: Yep it did seem like an eternity – 12 weeks to the day since the car hit me on the Queen K three days before the race. The nights were the toughest especially early on when I was not really sleeping longer than 60 minutes at a time. But onwards and upwards, it is off and I can move on to the next stage of my rehab and move a bit more as well.

ST: How did you sleep with that contraption?

Tim: Not so good to be honest, the first 3 weeks I slept in a chair, upright. As the brace came half way down my back and front, any pressure from leaning back on it put extra force on my screws, which were rather painful. At about 3 weeks I was off all the strong prescription pain killers and moved back upstairs back into a bed, but again upright with about 4 big pillows. The problem with all of these sleeping positions was my legs, they were just pooling with blood and swelling up big time even with compression socks and tights on, and it was neither good nor comfy. At about five weeks we decided to try a bed that can move up and down both for your head and legs and wow, I could sleep a full night! Still upright but as my legs were elevated they felt so much better. Now the Halo is off and within three days I was flat on my back and so happy. Simple things.

 

ST: So what is next on the road to recovery?

 

Read the complete interview here

Original 303Triathlon post from October 2017 here

Women’s Wednesday: Injured Triathlete- Fat, Drunk, and Out of Shape is No Way to Go Through Life

By Alison Freeman

Fat, Drunk, and Out of Shape is No Way to Go Through Life

That’s the line that’s been going through my head almost daily for the past four weeks, ever since my off-season got extended well beyond what I’d intended. (And yes, it’s an Animal House reference.)

I’ll back up by saying that I am a strong believer in the importance of an off-season, on having some time when your focus isn’t on training: When fitting in your workout isn’t the driving force behind how you organize every day. When you have the option to go for a hike or take a yoga class instead of a swim/bike/run workout. When you ease back on the miles and give your muscles and your joints some time to recover.

And that’s why I extended my off-season from the originally planned four weeks to a solid, plenty-of-time-to-get-antsy, eight weeks. I was really enjoying the hiking and the yoga and totally blowing off masters swim and drinking margaritas at lunch. Part of the reason I enjoyed it so much, I think, is because I knew (or rather believed, incorrectly) that it was pretty finite. And then on September 9th I developed a stress reaction in my foot. (How I managed to do that on reduced mileage is a story of total idiocy that I won’t include here. Just chalk it up to my being a moron.)

Suddenly my off-season was extended to … twelve weeks? sixteen? I thought I handled the news pretty well, but looking back on it I was hilariously, quietly, unknowingly, losing my marbles. I figured I was really taking things in stride because I wasn’t making a big deal of the stress reaction. Sure, I couldn’t run for 4-6 weeks, but I could swim and bike and I wasn’t training for anything so really it wasn’t a big deal. People would ask me what was new, and I wouldn’t even tell them about the stress reaction. I mean, when a triathlete doesn’t talk about an injury you know that shit has gotten weird.

So, I can’t run. I am just working out aimlessly, with no goals and no plan and no purpose. Fall is crazy, crazy quiet when you’re a triathlon coach because most of your athletes are in their off-season, so I don’t have much work to do. And since I don’t have a lot of work, and don’t have to be feeling good to tackle some tough workout the next day, I am consuming a glass (or two or three) of wine every night. But if I average out the whole year including my big training weeks where I didn’t drink at all, it’s really totally fine.

Fat, Drunk, and Out of Shape is No Way to Go Through Life.

Clearly it’s time to pull it together: I find a plan on TrainerRoad and start burying myself in some sweet spot bike workouts. I hatch plans for multiple projects: I’m going to write a blog! (Evidence of this effort is obvious.) I’m going to finally organize all my coaching systems and notes into a Filemaker database! (That’s what happens when you were once a management consultant.) I’m at least keeping myself occupied … but something’s still off.

It took me another week to put my finger on it, but then it hit me: I am filling my weeks with coffees and lunches and have absolutely nothing to say during any of them. I don’t even know who I am when I’m not training for something.

Does that statement make me sound totally unhinged? Or at least massively addicted to training? Sure, I’ll own that. But batshit crazy or not, this is where I am. So my off-season now has an official expiration date of Oct 31st. It’s time to pick an Ironman for 2018 and start setting some goals for next year. And then maybe I’ll start to feel normal again.

Why Your Next Run Should be in the Pool

Turn your miles to meters and just wait for the benefits that go beyond killer run-specific fitness.

From IRONMAN

By Holly Bennett
I’m not a coach. I’m not a personal trainer or a professional athlete. What I am is a relatively average age group athlete, here to tell you why your next run should be in the pool.

Without a doubt, water running is no substitute for the satisfaction of pounding out the miles on the road or trail. But for an injured runner who can’t withstand impact, logging laps in the pool is a lifeline to maintaining run-specific fitness. And for any runner—injured or not—water running has a number of lesser-known benefits that ramp up its appeal. I’ll tell you about these, but first, let me tell you a story.

Years ago, six weeks out from racing IRONMAN Canada, I injured my foot. It was a “high-heel injury”—totally unrelated to training, a direct result of walking on a cobbled street in too-tall shoes after tipping back a few margaritas. These things happen.

The penance for my playful night out was relegation of all my run workouts to the pool; I wasn’t allowed to foot strike on land until a few days before the race. So I sucked it up, strapped on an aqua-jogging belt, and ran. And ran. And ran. I completed every single session on my training schedule—even double runs and a three-hour long run—in the pool.

After six weeks of marathon training in the pool, my IRONMAN run flew by.

The night before the race, I talked to my coach Michellie Jones, who just so happens to be an IRONMAN world champion and Olympic medalist. (Jones is also now an IRONMAN Certified Coach.) My coach is an athlete whose lengthy career has weathered numerous injuries and countless hours of pool running. “I feel ready, I just wish I had been able to run,” I said. “But you have,” she replied. “Trust me.”

The next day, I clocked what was, at the time, my fastest of five IRONMAN marathons and an overall PR…

Read the full story including how water running is zero impact – yet mimics the real thing, how it helps your run form, how it helps your upper body strength, and many other benefits.

Champion Trail Runner Dave Mackey Decides to Amputate Injured Left Leg

Update to the Dave Mackey Story from the Boulder Daily Camera.

By Anthony Hahn
Boulder Daily Camera Staff Writer

Following news that Boulder trail runner Dave Mackey had chosen to have his left leg amputated below the knee — a decision that follows more than a year of struggle and recovery since it was crushed by a 300-pound boulder during a run — friends and family from the local running community filled the Flatirons Running store Monday night to celebrate the unique occasion.

The mood Monday matched the night’s unconventional purpose — the specialty running store was converted into a makeshift dance hall, with friends and family dressed in various costumes honoring Halloween and bidding Mackey well before surgery.

With a mix of dancing, drinking and an obligatory signing of the leg that was slated to be amputated Tuesday, the night resembled what some of Mackey’s friends referred to as a “Viking funeral of sorts.”

“I think I’m in a good space,” Mackey said Monday night. “I’ve been talking about possibilities. I thought I was out of the woods, but I never really blocked out the possibility.

“Emotionally, it’s tough. It’s going to be tough tomorrow when I wake up without my leg and probably the days after, but that’s only short term.”

Mackey injured his leg May 23, 2015, while running on a trail toward Bear Peak. He stepped on a loose rock and fell, and the boulder rolled onto his lower leg, pinning him.

Doctors were able to save his leg, but in the 16 months since the injury, Mackey said he’s dealt with constant pain.

Read the rest of the story here.

 

Champion Trail Runner Dave Mackey Decides to Amputate Injured Left Leg

By Brian Metzler, Published Oct. 25, 2016 on running.competitor.com

dave-mackey-400x600
Dave Mackey, en route to a 15th-place finish at The North Face 50 in 2012. Photo: Courtesy of Dave Mackey

Champion trail runner Dave Mackey posted some dramatic news today on his Facebook page about his long recovery from his well-documented trail running accident in May 2015. After more than 16 months of surgeries, physical therapy and continued complications, the 46-year-old trail runner announced that he’s decided to have his lower left leg amputated below the knee.

During what was expected to be a routine trail run in the mountains that frame the western edge of Boulder, Colo., Mackey fell off a rock and tumbled more than 20 feet, badly breaking his left leg in the process. After seven surgeries during a three-week hospital stay, Mackey returned home with his injured leg intact, albeit with an external bracing system and crutches to help him get around. Although he recovered enough to walk with a significant limp over the next year, he still had mobility issues, internal infections and constant pain.

Several more surgeries—including his most recent procedure about three months ago—helped him walk without a cane. But continued complications with the repaired leg put him in the tough place of opting for more surgeries or permanently amputating his lower left leg. He talked through the scenarios with numerous doctors, as well as family and friends, and decided that he will have the amputation surgery on Nov. 1.

Read the full story.