Photo from Mount Royal, Frisco, Colorado.

"That is happiness; to be disolved into something complete and great. When it comes to one, it comes as naturally as sleep." - Willa Cather

Wednesday, 14 August 2013

New Bone, New Races

A little less than a year ago, I noticed a huge knot in my right calf. It hurt really badly, as did my right hip. I wasn't sure how the two things were related. Right hip pain, right calf knot. I was even less sure how I got it, but if you asked smart people, they would probably say it was from running. Like- duh, I know I didn't get it from sitting on the couch, but what was I doing wrong while running?

The answer eludes me.

What I do know is the knot, after many vigorous rounds of massage, bled, calcified and turned into a bone the size of a chick pea. Now I have an intergastrocnemial bone. It doesn't hurt, it's just there, always making my calf muscle a little shorter than it should be. I went to get a massage yesterday and my therapist told me I should get an x-ray "just in case". Luckily, I know enough about cancer to know that it doesn't start out as a huge knot and dwindle into a hard chick pea. SR, the cancer doctor, agreed. But still, I had to ask Olga, the physician AND massage therapist. Nope. Not cancer.

So what to do with my new bone? It may be the sole cause of my right hip pain and my inability to run on pavement since October. What I understand about massage is that, once you develop a bone, you really can't massage it out. Makes sense; you can't massage away your femur either. Then I read about shock-wave therapy. I found two studies saying it was effective for myositis ossificans (yes, that's the fancy name), but when you read the fine print, they never actually got rid of the bone, just the pain. The thing is, I have no pain there, just pain as a result of the stupid os (French for bone; of course they just pronounce that "o")-- in other places. For example, I have now developed a "sympathy knot" on the other side of the gastroc at the same height, which does hurt. Rats.

Any suggestions?

I have a feeling this bone may be with me until I am 93.
Tao Porchon-Lynch, age 93. Photo by Robert Shurman.

or 94

Tao Porchon-Lynch, 94.

She is a yoga instructor and ballroom dancer who has beaten the scourge of old age: stiffness (don't get it!)  Photo by Robert Shurman


This weekend is the Winforce 100k. I will be race physician and SR will be running. I predict a showdown among the men between SR and Per Egon Rasmussen. I think Pia Joan Sørensen will win the women's race, but Maibritt Skovgaard has a shot. It is supposed to rain all day. Should be interesting.

On Sunday is Salomon Trail Tour's Rebild 28k in northern Jutland. I had planned on going, but have now arranged a little Salomon outing closer to home with Dorte Dahl. If I lived closer, I'd definitely love to run in Rold Skov.

September 7th brings the much-anticipated Superior Sawtooth 50 Miler and I am now crossing my fingers SR will run it with me.

September 29th is the UROC 100k in Vail. Someone has to come in last, right? Well, if it's me, then I've gotten to spend the most time enjoying the mountains.

October 19th Wild Duluth. Not sure what distance...

November 9th Krølle Bølle Invitational 120km--- Run the circumference of Bornholm along the coast trail as fast as you can.

February 22nd: Birkie - skate ski 50k.

In hindsight, this new bone has really been good for me. I've rid my calendar of road races! Steve Q, if you want me to help you run the whole Superior Hiking Trail, I guess it had better be in October...??? 

Music Recs

There is not a small chance that I am Nik and Jay's biggest American fan (they're Danish). And now, for the first time, they have written a song in English. They are quasi rappers, so this was not an easy task as you will gather from the lyrics; as one radio host said "out of their comfort zone". The first time he says "blue" it sounds like he says the Danish "blå" oops. Anyway, the video is hilarious and it is good they wrote out the lyrics.. you'll see what I mean. The music is, as always, top notch.

Other greats on my runs: 


Anonymous said...

What! If SR isn't working on the day of the Sawtooth 50 then he had darn better be out pacing me in the 100...:)

That Bornholm race sounds so nice--I wouldn't mind doing that sometime.

Over to someone more qualified to help with the new bone problem...


PiccolaPineCone said...

Wow. I would love to be as strong as those women in their nineties are right now in my thirties!

Does no pavement mean Milwaukee Lakefront Marathon is out? I know you could go sub-3 hours on the road and I would love to see (read about) you doing it but it is not worth compromising your long term running well being over!

Robyn said...

Great inspirational pictures! She's gorgeous!

My understanding of myositis ossificans is that it's only surgically treated if it's causing problems. I wonder whether it would help or not. It sounds like for now you're living with it.

Superior 50, not 100? Plenty rugged. I'm going to try to do Wild Duluth 50K if I'm still feeling good after the TC Marathon two weeks earlier.

Happy racing!

SteveQ said...

My os is bigger than your os - by centimeters!

Anonymous said...

I didn't get it: Did you have an X-ray of both thighs performed to solve the mystery? Or else: Please, have it done to answer the crucial question that eludes us: Is it really bone or not.
Or maybe a bilateral congenital vascular (?) cyst, that shows up a little late due to the stress of running? Just guessing...

J. W. Langer

Olga King said...

And if you do decide to surgically remove it, you'll form a new scar tissue around that area anyway, so the gastroc will not get any longer.

sea legs girl said...

In reverse order:

Olga, ain't no way in hell I'm letting anyone operate on that thing. II KNOW it would make it worse, sista. The only elective operation I would ever consent to is cataract surgery.

sea legs girl said...

Jerk! Who knew you were still reading?! That's great! Loved all your recent writings about skinny not equally healthy, by the way.

I have not gotten an x-ray of my calf. I am not familiar with this congenital vascular cyct thing. Would it start out as a knot the size of my fist and shrink to a chick pea? I have to look this up. It seemed to turn into a hard ball after a massage therapist stuck a needle INTO the knot. It hurt like the dickens, I tell ya. I still don't know why he/she did that. In my readings, myositis ossificans really fits the bill, but I do have an appointment with an osteopath friend tomorrow. Maybe I'll get some more info from him. Thanks for your thoughts! Are you running again yet?

sea legs girl said...

Robyn, I thought about the 100, but I am running the 50 miler as part of training for the UROC 100k. Plus, I was afraid of Alicia Hudelson beating me in the 100 :0). (Go A!)

Hope to meet you Wild Duluth!

sea legs girl said...

PPC. It is actually just one woman in those photos, but I wish there were more like her! Something really unexpected would have to happen for me to run Milwaukee at this point. I was really happy to run the pavement 10k without pain, so I'm not giving up all hope of a road marathon again one day. Congrats on your incredible 5k time!! Oooh. I wish I were as fast as you! Did you know Duluth is farther north than Montreal?

sea legs girl said...

Alicia, for one grand day it looked like he wasn't going to be working that weekend, but now they figured out the malpractice situation and he's back on the schedule. Bummer! I will be volunteering on Friday so I will see you then!

PiccolaPineCone said...

SLG - what about shock wave therapy for you?
really Duluth farther north than Montreal? I guess it makes sense, the border does funky things around the Great Lakes.

Danni said...

Is that like a bone spur? Weird.

PiccolaPineCone said...

disregard my question about SW therapy. you answered it in your post. Me half asleep.

Anonymous said...

Okay, I guess he is off the hook then. But if anything changes with his work schedule...I saw him first;)

If you're going up on Friday, maybe you can give Maria a ride up from Duluth? We'll talk!