Since the last post this back has caused me to ride somewhat of an emotional roller-coaster. It has now been over 4 weeks since my back felt normal. I have been receiving treatment at Kaminski Pain and Performance Care and that has been helping. Following treatment last Tuesday I did an interval running workout and the pain was about a 2 on the scale during but immediately afterwards I experienced more swelling between my lower vertebrae. I was treated again on Thursday and things were feeling better Friday so I did my tempo run. It was a great run. Despite not having run much at all lately I completed 3 miles at under 6:00 pace and the pace did not feel difficult. I was more excited about my back. It was about a 1 on the pain scale and I experienced no swelling afterwards. I thought I was turning a corner with this injury...
Last Saturday I made the drive to Racine, Wisconsin to watch the Racine 70.3 because I had a lot of friends and locals I knew competing in it including Robert White, who I have been coaching for about 8 weeks. The drive to Racine was really hard on my back. Due to where the swelling is at simply sitting is not comfortable. My plan was to get an open water swim Sunday morning before the race and then run 1 hour while watching the competition. Sunday morning my back was really sore which is typical when I wake up. I stayed with Cassidy Moulton at his grandparents house and after driving from Milwaukee to Racine I got out of the car and grabbed my wetsuit. What I saw on the lake did not look good. The winds out of the east were causing very big waves and as I walked down closer to start my swim I had a bad feeling about swimming alone out there so I decided not to swim. I headed out on my run after the start of the men's pro race. My good buddy Adam Bohach was racing and I jogged from the swim start to the swim exit and every step hurt my back. I was hoping it would loosen up but it got worse with each step. I ended up calling the run after only 1.5 miles and a lot of frustration. My back just throbbed while standing still. I began to wonder how I was going to race this last Scheels Duathlon in just 2 weeks and how I was going to survive Pigman Longcourse without any running for the past month. I can't run 2 miles let alone 13.1 after biking 56. The race was awesome to watch. Adam finished 11th in an extremely tough pro field. I think he was the 3rd or 4th American finisher. Robert White raced to a new 70.3 PR despite the tough swim conditions. I knew the swim would cause an average swimmer to add 4-5 minutes to his or her time. That was the case. Robert hit out exact plan on the bike average and then gutted his way through a tough run finishing with a time of 5 hours 27 minutes. I couldn't have been more proud of him. My good buddy Cassidy Moulton has been dealing with a lot of injuries and hadn't ridden his bike in a month. Adding to that he had been dealing with a calf injury that had been hurting while he ran. He said he was going to swim and ride and if he had to walk the run he would do so. He did way better than expected finishing around 5 hours 30 minutes. I had a lot of people ask me if it was hard to watch. Definitely not given the condition of my back.
As I sit here on Thursday things are looking brighter. I have not run this week and have continued to get treatment from Dr. Kaminski. The swelling in my back has gone down each day. Most of the day I don't even notice there is a problem. Even the mornings which were terrible a week ago have become much better. I am not optimistic about things. I have used the lack of running to increase my bike mileage. Last week was 255 miles on the bike and this week is headed for much higher. I have really enjoyed attending Barre Fitness classes at the new Barre Fitness Studio on Utica Ridge. I can tell I am getting stronger. My glutes, core, hips, quads, and shoulders get a great workout every time. It is getting easier for me to complete and I am less sore after every session as my body adapts. Until the end of the month you can sign up for a 15 day unlimited trial for just $20.00 using code "iHope" at checkout. They are donating half of the $20.00 back to iHope. You can give it a try or get more information at www.barre563.com I have been eating very clean and combining that with Barre Fitness workouts my body is changing quickly. I took a picture of myself the first day of my class and I will post the after picture down the road. Last Tuesday I tipped the scales at 170 and this AM I was 160.4.
Speaking of iHope it has been a great week for the foundation. Huge thanks to Joe Bondy, Bill and Deirdre Moylan, and Dr. Tuvi Mendel for making generous contributions this week. Also, I was informed by local triathlete Brad Love that he nominated iHope for a $1000.00 grant given to a local non-profit by Crawford Company and Bryant Heating and Cooling Systems. From all the non-profits that get nominated the general public gets to vote for their favorite. The top 3 vote receivers are then considered by a board upon which 1 will be selected. If you could do me a HUGE favor and vote for iHope I would greatly appreciate it. The money would make a TREMENDOUS impact for the foundation. It takes less than 20 seconds to vote and the link is here. If you would like to make a tax-deductible contribution to iHope you can click here. Thanks so much for your support!