Although I had never officially decided to pull the trigger on 140.6, I was left with no choice after what I will call a "learning experience"/accident during a trip to see my friend Carla in Oklahoma City last month.
My training had been spotty at best after Kansas 70.3 but I still felt like my fitness was at a good place. I had recently gotten aerobars and a new seat on my bike to help get me faster and more comfortable for longer rides. The very first time I was out with my new additions, I cut my leg enough that it at least grossed me out. I got stitched up enough though that leaving it covered so I didn't see it was tolerable.
Three days later on my weekend trip to OKC, I left pretty early on Sunday morning from the hotel and was about 9 miles into my ride when I was flying through an intersection in the aero position when I completely wiped out. Remembering how I was skidding across the concrete still gives me shivers. The worst part about all of it was that while I was face planted on the street, I would guesstimate that about two dozen people drove by without offering any assistance. Not that I needed it, but I remember thinking "I swear, if I get up and I see a bone sticking out I'm going to pass out." I wouldn't have known what to do. I called Carla immediately and she was there within 20 minutes to pick up my bloodied arms and legs. Conveniently, she is a DPT (Doctor of Physical Therapy) so she was able to assess my injury. The elbow was the worst point of impact and it was definitely swollen but I still had basic, although minimal, range of motion. We stopped by a local gas station and bought some first aid necessities and she had me cleaned up and bandaged by the time I needed to head home. In total, my left elbow had some mean road rash and swelling/bursitis, my left knee was swollen with road rash, I had a huge golf ball-sized lump on my right shin bone, some sore ribs, and a sore left eyebrow from my helmet. I was lucky!
I was broken mentally that my arm mobility was so limited, not to mention throbbing when it wasn't elevated. It was pretty uncomfortable to sleep for about a week and a half. I was able to run a few days later although it was so stiff but couldn't quite make the call at that point. It's been a month since this has happened and I'm still limited and haven't been able to get back in the pool. I refused to expose open wounds to a pool. Other athletes have insisted that it'll stay clean in a pool, but pool chemicals are generally not great for you anyway so common sense tells me to keep open wounds out of the water. I let Katie know that I wouldn't be joining her in Louisville, which still hurts my insides to think about not going anymore.
The good news is that presently, my road rash is in the scarring phase and my elbow range of motion is slow close to being useable in a pool. I hope to regroup in the pool next week and start pushing the long rides again. I'm in a bit of a rut so my next race is up in the air. (I'm going home this weekend to do the Bix7 for the 13th time…but that doesn't count!) I'm sad to say that I will revisit 140.6 again in 2015. I'm thinking Wisconsin or Louisville (if it gets moved to October.)
…And I'm hoping a certain family member is joining me…. (Does she even read these??)