After a long seven weeks off, I had been looking forward to yesterday’s doctor’s appointment. My expectation and hope was that we would X-ray the hip, see that it is healing, and move on to the next step towards my recovery.
My hopes were dashed by the results. Unfortunately there were no signs of healing.
Stress fractures are strange and perplexing injuries. They often will not show up on X-rays. Mine didn’t show up initially, and we didn’t know it existed until I had the MRI. When a stress fracture is healing, there are visible and distinctive signs that will show up on the image. Mine showed nothing, which means I’m not there yet.
The fact that there were no signs of healing does not mean I am not healing. I know just from the way I feel that the hip is improving. All we know is that the process is a little bit slower than we had hoped. The fact that I am still experiencing soreness, walking with a limp, and having popping instances, all show that the healing process is still ongoing.
The doctor advised me to take another month off. As he put it, I need to ‘respect’ the hip. He looked at my walking gait, and found it to be unnatural. “Is that how you normally walk?” he asked. Nope. Even though crutches are no longer necessary, he suggested using a cane just to keep weight off of it.
While this was disappointing, it was somewhat expected. I could already tell a couple weeks ago that healing was taking longer than I had hoped, which was the reason I canceled my plans in France this year. That turned out to be the correct move. This is a process that I have to be patient with. I’ll follow the doctor’s orders, and hopefully everything will continue to improve.
This sets back some of my spring plans. My heart is set on completing Mitchell, and I will optimistically register next week. However, if the news is not better in a few weeks, I may have no choice other than to be smart and back out.
I can’t complain too much, as there is always someone out there facing tougher odds. Today I heard about Christian Haettich, who is taking on both Haute Route challenges. And by the way, he’s missing an arm and a leg. By comparison, coming back from a measly hip injury seems pretty insignificant.
Time heals all wounds, and this one will be gone eventually.
January 29th, 2013 at 6:43 pm
Keep up the good fight brother. I shot a prayer your way. Should get there in… Distance…divide by…carry the one… Three, two…
January 29th, 2013 at 8:25 pm
Thanks bro, caught it.
January 29th, 2013 at 8:06 pm
Good perspective, hang in there.
January 29th, 2013 at 8:25 pm
Thanks, Jim, hanging the best that I can.
January 29th, 2013 at 8:15 pm
Aaron, as I mentioned to you before, look at the importance of magnesium in healing bone fractures. It’s importance is often overlooked but the magnesium absorption of whatever you take is critically important to improving the results. If you want to talk and learn more, let me know.
January 29th, 2013 at 8:27 pm
Doug, thanks for the advice. I have worked in magnesium both with food and supplements. I’m always open to learning more.
January 29th, 2013 at 9:54 pm
Your optimism is inspiring mate. Continued best of luck with the recovery!
January 30th, 2013 at 5:48 am
My optimism might be naive, but it’s what it keeping me going right now. 🙂 Thanks for the well wishes.
January 30th, 2013 at 3:49 am
Tough luck, Aaron. Good thing you deferred your HR till next year. Hope you get back on the bike soon. Must be driving you bonkers!
January 30th, 2013 at 5:51 am
Yes, in hindsight, it was the right move to back out of HR just before accommodations. As for going bonkers, it was tough, but has gotten easier now that I’ve accepted my fate. Been doing a lot of relaxing and reading.
January 30th, 2013 at 5:22 am
Love your positive outlook. So, is the new ride full carbon? 😉
January 30th, 2013 at 5:52 am
Thanks! It is seriously light, could be carbon, but probably not since it only cost $20. The carbon model would easily be $500.
January 30th, 2013 at 9:41 am
Looks like you hit a false summit in the hill climb that is your recovery. You know all about those! You had the right attitude, that’s for certain.
I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but as you get older the healing process will only take longer. 🙂
January 30th, 2013 at 4:29 pm
Nice analogy. That also means that at some point I’ll get to the top and be rewarded with an awesome descent.
As for getting old and healing slow, unfortunately it appears I’m already there.
January 30th, 2013 at 3:54 pm
Your passion for cycling will get you through and over this. Give yourself time, your friends will not disappear. It will come back and only get better. I’m stronger now than 24 years ago. I know it has got to be tough. Keep sharing!
January 30th, 2013 at 4:30 pm
Thanks, Tom. As always I appreciate your encouraging words. You are a good friend. My passion for cycling and for life will get me through this.
February 3rd, 2013 at 3:58 pm
Hey Aaron, I want to share a cycling experience and get your and your readers input. I spent 8 days down in Lizella, GA (close to Macon) between Christmas and New Years. I rode 365 miles that week. But what was important was a 98mi ride with my brother and his team. A 94mi ride with him and 2 of his teammates. Then a last 96mi ride again with his teammates. Quite a bunch, including my bro, are CAT 1 or 2 riders. We were using rotating pelatons and some just straight all out pulls. It really burst me to a new level. I know it while riding, but can quantify it in the gym. Because I record my effort and time on a given cardio machine, the jump still amazes me. The difference is in the 15% to 25% range and I’m still holding to all that if increasing more. It is like I broke through a level in that one week and I’m still there. What do you or friends think happened?
February 4th, 2013 at 9:21 pm
Hey Tom, I would guess that your gains are from all those high quality miles. I know that when I would try to hang with stronger riders, I would make significant fitness gains afterward. Plus, in case you haven’t noticed, you’re kind of a beast. 🙂
February 4th, 2013 at 9:39 pm
In one week? I’ve been too easy on myself?
February 4th, 2013 at 9:48 pm
Only if you take the time, you will be back. Take the time, we are with you.
February 7th, 2013 at 6:12 pm
Aaron, what needs to heal, a bone or soft tissue?
February 7th, 2013 at 6:17 pm
Bone for now, then we focus on soft tissue.
February 7th, 2013 at 6:44 pm
Has anyone talked about isometrics? Bone will only heal if it has a load (stress) on it. Isometrics – not trying to move but just contract the muscle. I’m not Doc. It just means squeeze as hard as you can – maybe 6 -10 seconds. That will encourage body resources to go there. Hence quicker healing!
February 7th, 2013 at 7:22 pm
Interesting. It might be tough to do that with the bone in question (femoral neck). In fact, the doctor said I was putting too much weight on it, which is why it has been slow to heal. I will ask the doc when we speak next.
February 7th, 2013 at 7:36 pm
Just going through my past experiences hoping that I can find something that will help you.
February 8th, 2013 at 3:57 am
Your experiences and suggestions are appreciated. I’ll take all the advice I can to get through this injury.