At the end of last week, I was in a state of limbo about whether or not I could continue training for the Ironman. I had an MRI on Friday for lingering right shoulder pain. The doctor was questioning if I had a labral tear, which would put an end to it for this year.
I want to point out here that I am incredibly grateful that he took time out of his vacation to call us and then, go in on a weekend to review my MRI. I am also extremely thankful for several friends in the medical community that have squeezed me in to their schedules and helped connect me to the appropriate people to expedite my care. I will chalk this up to lessons learned! There are many wonderful people in the world ready to help, sometimes you just need to ask!
Over the next 24 hours, I thought about the plan and decided that whatever I was told on Sunday was it. I was sick of the roller coaster ride and starting to get annoyed with myself about the indecision. If there was any remote chance of further damage, then I would wait until next year…period. However, if I could continue to train in a modified way, then I would go for it.
He called Sunday morning after reviewing the MRI. Yes, I do have an impact fracture of the head of the humerus, lots of swelling, and perhaps a small tear. However, there is no treatment and basically it is “activity as tolerated” while everything heals. Of course, the activity I’m doing is not average and we discussed that a bit. His opinion was that if I held off on swimming for the next 2 to 3 weeks that I most likely will have healed enough to swim comfortably. I will not create any further damage. “The biking and running should be fine to continue now.” So, I asked him 3 more times if he really thought it was ok, and the answer was yes…if I felt good!
So that was it, I have decided to go for it! I texted my coach to let her know and she started to create my training plan for the 4 weeks. Of course, no swimming until the week before the event. I think I can pull off the swim with minimal training at this point. I did order a sleeveless wetsuit so that I could modify my stroke a bit to keep the pressure on my shoulder to a minimum. At the end of the day, this will still be an 11th hour decision about the event. I am going to bike on my trainer (again to keep shoulder impact low) and run as planned and tolerated. I am hoping that 3 weeks from now, I can hop in the water and my shoulder will feel good swimming! Time will tell, but for now, I will “Proceed as if Success is Inevitable.”