A year ago I ran out my door, slipped on some snow-covered ice on the street, and broke my right ankle in two places. For good measure, I dislocated it as well. Much of what I had planned for the first half of 2018 went out the window, replaced by surgery to put my ankle back together, weeks in a cast, and months of physical therapy.
A year later, the #BrokenAnkleSaga is winding down. Physical therapy is complete. I replaced my disintegrating running sneakers with new ones purchased at Aardvark Sports Shop in Bethlehem, Pa. After a few training setbacks caused by unavoidable life obstacles, I’m up to jogging/walking for 30 minutes (5-minute jog, 5-minute walk, repeat) on the indoor track. I’m also finally running on the road (1-minute jog, 5-minute walk, repeat).
I keep waiting for the moment when I can say the #BrokenAnkleSaga is over … and it keeps not coming. It is, without a doubt, getting better. Every day, I’m able to do more than the day before.
But it’s not over.
It’s sore. The tendons and muscles are tight. If I don’t keep moving — if I don’t walk at least a few miles every day — it’s sore. If I push it too hard — say walk five miles on uneven rock — it’s sore. If I jog for too long, it’s sore. After working out at the gym with the physical trainer again, I realized there are a ton of other ways to stress my ankle … and as many ways to make myself paranoid that I’ve hurt it.
So … it’s getting better … but it’s sore. And it might always be so.
The physical therapist and the doctors said it takes up to two years to recover from a broken ankle. That means it’ll be January 2020 before I can really say the #BrokenAnkleSaga is over, or as over as it’s likely to be. It may never get to 100% and I may never run that eight-minute mile, but as long as it’s strong and I can exercise, I’ll count that as a win.