Life after Ironman

The day after Ironman was intense. I awoke at 9:30am to pain. Every molecule of my body screamed in pain, even my hair. I whispered to Luke to wake up and he asked me how I felt and I winced a smile. I hurt. A lot. Even more than I thought I would. I slowly got up and shuffled my way around the room. By the time I got dressed, Luke had already made oatmeal. It was demoralizing how slow I moved… we named it the “Ironman shuffle.” The family that we stayed with made us a wonderful vegan lunch and I ate it gratefully. However, I spent most of the day in bed. Eventually we made our way into town, sat on the beach for a while reading, and then went to the awards banquet. We found the Saskatoon people and all of them were moving much easier than I was. In fact, there weren’t many others at the supper who were doing the Ironman shuffle, but maybe it’s because those people stayed at home in bed!

My feet and back hurt the worst. On both feet, the toe next to the big toe was sore and the nail was black (and still is). My back felt tight and inflexible. The areas where I chaffed didn’t feel great either, but they paled in comparison to my feet. I had a sharp pain under my ankle bone that hurt a lot for a few days, which was my biggest concern because it felt like a bad pain that reminded me of my stress fracture a few years ago.

However, my mind was great! I felt free and easy and happy. I was on cloud 9! I still feel like I’m on cloud 9 when I get home and read a book and hang out with my friends. My time being so limited has really made me appreciate the relative slowness of my life right now. Since Ironman, I’ve done a lot of yoga and sleeping. A lot of sleeping. I bike to work and my back usually hurts by the time I finish the 6.5 km ride. My chiropractor and massage therapist are both helping me out with that. Sleeping is the best right now and with the changing weather, it definitely fits well with my environment.

Today I went for my first run since Ironman. It was a crisp, bright morning and I thought a quick half-hour run would be nice. So off I went on my regular route with my layers of technical shirts, my long pants, and my shoes. I was 6 blocks from home when my aforementioned pain came back in my foot and I was forced to stop running. In fact, I limped the rest of the way home. I’m not sure if I should pursue this injury or just wait a few more weeks before I run again. I’ll probably wait another 2 weeks before I run again and just bike and swim (if I feel like it) and see how it feels after that. It kind of sucks because I absolutely love running the fall… the crisp, clear air, the red cheeks when I get home, and just being outside to watch the leaves change colour and fall to the ground are so great. However, maybe I’ll just go for walks! I can do that now!

Needless to say, I’m enjoying every moment. I spent the last year stressing out about August 26th, but there was part of me that knew that August 27th and everyday after that would be awesome… and it is!

3 thoughts on “Life after Ironman

  • September 18, 2007 at 12:56 am

    the post ironman sleeping, book reading and hanging out with friends truly is fun… i’ve just finished a great book by female canadian cyclist called one gear, no brakes… you should check that out, it’s a great post ironman read!

  • September 21, 2007 at 4:59 pm

    Congratulations Crystal on your amazing achievement completing the ironman. Is there any way to send a question to you privately? i.e. not via the public comments but by email or some other way. Thanks!

  • September 22, 2007 at 7:40 am

    Sorry I realize a blog is supposed to be public so no need to respond to the above! By the way, being vegan and being a triathlete are both such positive life-enhancing activities, you are a genius to combine them in this web site, so I hope both you and this site continue to flourish!


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