It's been three months since my right foot 5th metatarsal fracture.
My fracture is almost, but not completely, healed. The orthopedic surgeon has cleared me to do "light running," which apparently means I can run on dirt, trails, and treadmills, but not on pavement.
So, for the past 3 weeks, I've been running a few days a week. At first my right foot would practically slap down on the ground and I feared flexing the foot, so my running gait was pretty awkward. But gradually it's gotten better. Physical therapy, as well as gaining some confidence as I continued running, helped. In fact, I was just discharged from physical therapy, in that I'm recovering well on my own, with the caveat that I need to try to "duplicate" with my right foot what my left foot is doing.
On Sunday I ran nearly six miles of trails over the course of an hour and I felt fabulous.
Today I decided on the real test -- Barry's Boot Camp. Now, Barry's is one of my favorite workouts. 30 minutes treadmill and 30 minutes fast-paced weights. And, being the competitive person I am, I try to get on a treadmill next to someone who I think will be pretty fast to inspire me to run fast. And I look around and see how fast people around me are running.
Today, I knew I had to put the competitive me aside. After three months of recovery from a fractured foot, just getting to Barry's today is a victory. I warmed up and decided I would just stick with the "beginner" speeds; before my fracture, I would do the intermediate speeds, which would put me faster than most girls in the class and up there and faster than several of the guys. But today, getting back into things, I would be a beginner.
Then our instructor Erik started calling out the speeds: "4.0 beginner, 5.0 intermediate, 6.0 advanced" to start. And something came over me. I wasn't a beginner. Maybe I'm not an intermediate, but let me push this a bit. So I ran at speeds exactly between beginner and intermediate. When beginners ran at 9.0, I ran at 9.5.
I accomplished some cool feats. I ran at 9.5 miles per hour for 90 seconds, and then sprinted at 10.1 miles per hour for 45 seconds. I didn't think I would be able to do that today.
I surprised myself. I could have pushed harder, but since I haven't sprinted on a treadmill in 3 months, I didn't want to go all out. I looked around at the end of class, and again, I was running faster than most of the girls, and the guy to my left, even on my first trip back to Barry's.
I feel pretty awesome. Maybe I haven't lost as much fitness as I thought. And my shape, I'll get that back.