ElliptiGO, Dry Needling, and the Ape Index

I feel like Britney Spears when she sang, “Oops, I did it again.” Fortunately I didn’t shave my head or accidentally marry a friend but I did get injured…again.

And I feel like a broken record. The point was really brought home to me last week when my chiropractor, the amazing Dr. H at United Wellness Center, pulled up a stool next to me and said, “aren’t you supposed to be here for a hip injury?” as I was telling him that my calf hurt so bad I couldn’t run. I had to laugh or else I’d cry.

I don’t think I did anything really stupid. Unless you consider running 15 miles on the Appalachian Trail stupid, which I guess some people would. But I LOVE this type of running. It is a natural high for me and I’m never happier than when I’m skipping across rocks, heaving myself up ridiculous hills (and flying back down the other side) and embracing nature in the only way I know how.

For me, running on a man-made surface is antithetical to how we’re supposed to run. The Appalachian Trail gave me the opportunity to run on a surface older than humans, home to one of the world’s greatest hardwood forests, and, most importantly, the first 15 miles of the JFK 50 mile race…which, of course, is now in question.

But I refuse to wallow. For a start, I can still bike, swim, and do yoga, and of course last week I plunged headfirst into all three with my usual reckless abandon. I swam twice, went to two yoga classes, and biked 127 miles. None of these activities bothered my calf and so were fine to do. My arms and neck screamed from the extra work, but I (mostly) ignored them. I also planted a garden, which I’m really proud of as it trumps my previous feeble attempts. 🙂


Secondly, I sought some solace in this report from Runner’s World about Ryan Hall’s catalog of recent injuries. Even the best runners in the world get injured, so I shouldn’t feel like a complete loser when I do.

Finally, during the week a report came out from SOAS Racing about top Age Group triathlete and multiple Kona finisher Amy Gluck, who is in a medically-induced coma after being hit by a semi while on a training ride. How could I possibly feel sorry for my situation when this girl is fighting for her life? Thoughts and prayers for Amy, please. Here’s a forum on her status.

And then a report came out about the ElliptoGO World Championships, and in between bouts of hysterical laughter I started thinking that maybe I should take up this sport. If it’s good enough for Adam Goucher and Mary Decker Slaney, it’s good enough for me.

Male winner Rusty Snow, image from Competitor.com

Yeah, being injured isn’t so bad.

Besides, I finally got to try a PT technique that I’ve been wanting to have done for ages: dry needling. You can look it up if you want more info, but basically a needle that feels like an acupuncture needle (you don’t expect me to look, do you?) is inserted under the skin and jiggled around until all your nerves start firing and it feels like a thousand tiny aliens are trying to bust out from under your skin. It doesn’t hurt that much, it’s more weird than painful. After I’d been dry needled my calf cramped up really bad, making driving home a  challenge and walking impossible. I rode my bike to school to pick up my kids…I refuse to drive 0.5 of a mile.

But I knew I needed to move my calf in order for it to heal so I biked that evening and the next day it felt 100% better. I was tempted to try to run but Dr. H had told me I needed to take a minimum of 2 weeks off running, so I was well-behaved and went to yoga instead.

I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t itching to run now, but I just had another dry needling treatment and, while I skipped into Dr. H’s office saying “it feels much better!”  I limped back out with the realization that, no, it’s not.

So I’ll wait another week. In the meantime I’ll read up on the elliptiGO, swim, bike, do yoga, and all the other things I’m GRATEFUL I can do.

What about the Ape Index? Oh yeah, this is another thing I read about last week. Much down time, huh?! 😉 Anyway, my Ape Index is 0. Check yours out here.

What do you do when injured?

Want to do the ElliptiGO World Champs next year? I’m all about taking down Mary Decker Slaney for what she did to Zola Budd at the LA Olympics in 1984. 😉

More importantly, what’s your Ape Index?




  1. I am so sorry your injured again. You’ve had horrible luck… it just stinks! I saw someone on the Elipti-Go the other day! I want one!!! Let’s be old ladies together Elipti-Go’ing around the neighborhood. Hope your well! xoxo
    Lisa McClellan recently posted..Race Recap- Navy Base Ventura County Wounded Warrior Half MarathonMy Profile

  2. Go after Mary Decker! ; )

    So sorry you are injured. It is such a tough, tough pill to swallow, especially when you have a line up of races ahead of you. Follow the doc’s orders and give it the rest it needs. Let’s get you back out there asap!
    misszippy1 recently posted..I’ve got my fall half picked out!My Profile


  1. […] boo-hoo. I’m not running JFK this year because I tore a calf muscle training on the Appalachian Trail for this race. This was my 40th birthday present to myself. […]

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