Running

My Bloody Injury

First off, thank you for all your sweet comments on my Facebook page and Instagram post. If you follow me there, you know I was hurt this weekend so here’s the full story! [warning: there are a couple nasty pictures.]

For a belated birthday gift, my mom and oldest brother, Jack, flew out to see me!!! Seriously the BEST birthday present ever! Jack has never been here (or 3 others of my brothers, cough TonyJesseRogeryoudon’tloveme, cough) so I was THRILLED to show him around NC and spend time together. 

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John and I were signed up to run the Salem Lake 30K Trail Race on Saturday, and my mom signed up to run the 7 miler too (since she’d just run a marathon the weekend before!). So fun! This was supposed to be my last long run before my marathon at the end of October, where I was hoping to qualify for Boston. (Can’t even type that without getting teary, but I’m trying to stay positive!)

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I ran about a mile and could tell I was going to have a great run. I just felt GOOD. And then…I fell. I don’t even know how — maybe I tripped coming off the edge of the small bridge we ran over, or I just tripped over my own feet, no clue…but I fell. Hard. I was running about a 7:20 pace I think when it happened, so I fell and skidded across my hands and knees, and then rolled on the trail. Epic. I looked at my knee and just saw a bunch of dirt, noticed my hands were a little ripped up but it didn’t look too bad so I quickly got back up and kept running, worried about my time and thinking of my hopes of placing in my division. A few runners asked if I was ok and I just said yes and kept running. (I realized after the fact I probably seemed curt but I was embarrassed and anxious about my time. Gah, so rude of me!)

Then about 60 seconds later I looked down while running and saw blood gushing out of my knee. I looked closer and noticed a hole in my knee and some pretty open wounds. I ran a little bit more and then common sense kicked in and I decided to turn back. I was planning to run to the start where the EMTs were, about 1.25 miles away, and started running against the crowd. People must have thought I was crazy. Then I realized I was being crazy planning to run back when I had my cell phone on me and my brother was at the finish line. I called him (and starting crying when he answered), he alerted the EMTs, and I started walking, waiting for the EMTs to come get me (and crying some more).

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They strapped me in and loaded me up on the EMT four-wheeler thing and then drove me back to the finish area…right as the 7 mile race group was about to start, so I got to drive through the crowd of runners. So embarrassing but I tried to put on a happy face as a number of people starting calling out my name, friends who were there running. Luckily, they put me in the ambulance quickly. And then, the tears started again. And the pain set in. It hurt like crazy but the tears were mostly about the situation with my family being in town and this messing up the weekend, and not being able to do my run and possibly not being able to run my marathon. (eeew I just realized how nasty my palm looks in this picture. My brother teased me and took pictures as I cried, like a good brother. 😉 )

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They rinsed it as best they could with saline and then told me to go to Urgent Care. I declined ambulance transport since our Urgent Care in town is really good. The EMTs said I’d get treated faster there than I would at an ER anyway. 

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So I headed up there, got some medicine going and proceeded to cry some more as they started rinsing it more (it was very dirty–literally–because it was a trail I felt on, but luckily no rocks or large gravel got stuck in there!) and then taking multiple rounds of x-rays since they thought I may have broken my knee cap or fractured my wrist. Luckily, no breaks! 

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They didn’t want to stitch anything to avoid trapping the dirt so I even escaped needles. Wait, I take that back. They did give me a tetanus shot. 
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I had a GREAT doctor who treated me. Seriously, the staff was amazing – huge thanks for the Clemmons Wake Forest Urgent Care group! The doctor even looked up activities at Grandfather Mountain she thought I’d be able to handle since I was planning to take my family there that day. 

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And huge thanks to my brother for keeping me company and cheering me up and calming me down the whole time. And thanks to my friend Lesha who brought my mom and John home from the race who were stranded when Jack and I left with John’s car! BTW, John placed third in his age group! (FYI, I told my brother and the EMTs not to call him so he could run and just let him know at the finish line. He had no idea what I had happened to me until he finished.)

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After I left the doctor with a prescription, lots of bandages, and instructions to return on Monday for a follow-up, I came home and rested a bit. Then, we headed out to introduce Jack to NC BBQ and hushpuppies at Little Richard’s. I was able to disguise my knee under a long maxi dress but I still hobbled. 🙂

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I wasn’t feeling up to hobbling around Grandfather Mountain, even for a short walk, so we took a fall drive up to Levering Orchard. It’s a quaint orchard in Virginia just off the Blue Ridge Parkway with delicious apples! 

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It was a rough start but it still ended up being a lovely day. I got some quality time with my brother – even if it was in a doctor’s office and at Walgreen’s filling prescriptions — and that’s all that matters. There will always be another race, another chance to qualify, and heck, maybe I will still be able to run it. (Doc said absolutely no activity for a week and then we’ll play it by ear depending on how I’m healing up.) 

Yesterday’s doctor appointment involved cleaning it out more but she said everything is starting to heal the way it should, so that’s good. 🙂 So, now I just have to be patient. Not my strongest trait.

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  • Sarahsouth
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    Oh you sweet thing!!!!!!!
    Stay positive! I miss you (and John!) let’s meet up soon xoxox

  • Jack
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    Just take it easy and watch Netflix for a week. Maybe you will learn how to CAREFULLY put one foot in front of the other. ????

  • Crystal
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    Ugh. My heart hurts for you just reading that! Sooo glad your brother and mom were there to take care of you!!! Heal up fast my friend!! Love you!! (Also, your mom is so badass with her marathons)

  • Haley
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    So, so sorry to hear!! Thinking of you and hoping for fast healing 🙂

  • Sara @ LovingOnTheRun
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    Oh no!! I’m so sorry this happened! I know this is a tough blow. So glad you had great people to take care of you!! Get better soon!

  • Michelle @ A Healthy Mrs
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    Oh no! I was wondering why you were so quiet this weekend!

    Take care of yourself & rest up!

  • Rebecca @ Strength and Sunshine
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    I hope you heal up quick! That is no fun and looks like it really hurts. Feel better and keep your head up!

  • April
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    Oh Teri, I am so sorry this happened. As much as I know you hated to have this interfere with the plans you had with your family, I feel sure your brother and mom (in particular) were so glad they were here and able to help. Sometimes you just need your mama and maybe this was one of those time. Miss you, heal well and quickly!

  • Tony Hutcheon
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    This is why I don’t exercise. It’s dangerous. Glad you’re ok.

  • Melissa C
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    Oh Teri, I am so sorry to hear of your injury! I can’t imagine the pain and disappointment you felt 🙁 🙁 At least you didn’t break anything, that would have really prolonged your return to activity. I know it sucks to be hurt when you family is in town visiting, but I am sure they were happy to be there to take care of you! Wishing you a fast recovery!

  • Maria
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    Oh no! Sorry to hear about the fall, but glad things turned out okay. It does stink that it happened with your brother in town, but good that he was there to help! Rest up and best wishes for the marathon 🙂

  • Christine Whittington
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    Ouch ouch ouch! I hope it feels much better now. I did that to my knee when I crashed on my bike at Salem Lake a couple of years ago. There is unexpected treachery there–slippery leaves, loose rocks, etc.

  • Bonnie
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    Teri so sorry to hear but you are such a great story teller, always a positive spin..true yogi in addition to a great runner. Healing energy to you!

  • RLR at Mom's Magic
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    Sorry to hear about your injury – but so glad for you that you had plenty of folks in town to give you a hand! And I think visiting an apple orchard and eating BBQ makes a great fall-back plan! We love Little Richard’s!
    Also – I love that your brother took pictures. My kids are still mainly at the teasing stage 🙂
    Hoping for a speedy recovery, and that this setback doesn’t put a huge dent in your training plans. (Yep, thinking positive!)

  • Jennifer
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    Just wanted you to know I’m praying for you. I’ve been there and I totally get how frustrated you must be. When I read your blog post I actually started crying – I don’t even know you but I totally know how you feel right now. I’ll be praying that you’ll be able to run the marathon later this month.

  • Jessie
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    Ouch!!! I’m glad you’re doing ok now, but that looks so painful!

  • Bonnie
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    Oh what a disappointment! I’m just glad nothing worse happened…that sounds so hard! And being patient is tough for me too… I’m just glad you all made the most of the weekend and how neat (in a way!) that your brother was there with you. Hopefully you’re able to keep moving forward with your training. Congrats to Jon on his race! You two are a speedy pair. Heal up!

  • Ashley
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    Awww, lady!! Glad you’re okay, and that your brother was by your side. 🙂 So sorry that happened, though. Rest that knee! — Way to go John!!

  • Anne @ CandyCrazedrun.wordpress.com
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    Oh Teri, my heart is breaking for you! I am so sorry you are hurt, but thank heavens for no breaks!
    I hope you feel better and still get the opportunity to run to qualify!!!

    At least you got to see your brother, I am jealous of that 🙂

  • Mary
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    I’m sorry about your fall! I have had many that left me with bloody knees and palms. I know you’ll heal quickly! Don’t write Salem Lake off completely – you could show it who’s boss at the Frosty 25k race in January 🙂

  • Livi
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    you are such a champ! one day at a time, you are going to heal!

  • Andrea @ Vegvacious
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    Aw man! What a bummer about the race and what a doozy on your knee. Hopefully everything will be fixed up and you’ll be ready to go for your marathon!

  • Laura
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    You’re such a trooper to bounce back and enjoy the rest of your day! I hope you feel better soon!

  • Jessi
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    So sorry to hear this! At least you are okay and no serious injuries.

    I know your pain– I was training for a half marathon when I got terrible IT band issues a month before the race. I ended up not being able to run the race and I certainly cried a few times over it. But you’re right, there are future races!!

  • Betsy
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    I’m so sorry, that’s terrible timing and it sounds painful. I hope you heal up quickly!

  • Clare
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    Hope you’re feeling better soon!! I definitely feel your pain on this one…I had a similar wipe-out 6 weeks ago, but wasn’t as lucky as you were. I ended up planting one leg funny as I fell and during the fall, I managed to dislocate my kneecap, tear my MCL and get some pretty sever bone bruising. Ugh! I’m just getting back to being able to walk and start PT, so I’m trying to stay positive, but my plan to run CIM are def. being deferred for year.

  • Katie
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    Awww suck. I’m so sorry that happened! So disappointing! I injured myself a week before my first every marathon, and cried for like a week after that. I totally get it. Hang in there, praying for a quick recovery for you!

  • Jeana
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    I’m so sorry Teri. That sucks so bad. I’ll be praying that you continue to heal and if it works out that you will be able to do the race you have trained so hard for. Love you and am so glad Jack was there to help you!

  • Bethany
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    Oh I am so sorry to hear this! My dad fell on a trail run in Portland about 6 weeks before a marathon where he was planning to run for a qualifying time as well, but his injuries were just on his arm/face. I called and told him about your sad news because I know how much you’ve been hoping to make it to Boston next year. We’re praying for a quick recovery for you! And just think, my dad didn’t even start doing marathons until he was 38 and now he’s run Boston 5 times and qualified for the next two years–you’ve got a LOT of time left to make it to Boston. Now stay away from those trails. . . 😉

  • KaraHadley
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    Your knee looks gnarly. Gahh, I hope it’s feeling better now.
    At least you got to head up to Hillsville. My friend lives up there and it’s gorgeous this time of year.