I’ve been paranoid lately when it comes to the marathon.  I’m injury prone, and VERY clumsy (yes, I trip on non-existent things), so now that we’re 2.5 weeks away from the Chicago Marathon, I keep thinking of ways I could be spraining my ankle, hurting my knees, and the what-not.  “Oh, I should start biking to work again before the season is over! — But what if I fall?  I’ll do it after the marathon…”

Even yesterday running in the dark at the end of my run, I asked to walk a few times when the car headlights coming up GW Parkway would blind me and I couldn’t see a thing on the Mt Vernon Trail.  Plus, I had felt sick all day, so I took it easy, and walked a lot (sorry Kathy, for taking you down with me!).

So our run ended and Karl was still nowhere to be seen — he’s pretty good at keeping in check of his time, and usually zooms past me towards the last quarter mile of the run.

This time, 15 minutes went by and no signs of him.  I started to get worried, since neither of us runs with our cellphones, so I got up to walk back to the trail to try to find him.  Just then, I see someone limping up from the last tunnel.

It was Karl.

He felt a sharp pain on top of his foot at mile 5, right when he was ready to turn around and had to limp back to the start for 5 miles.  He was groaning all night, and we iced his foot, put on my hot pink compression socks on him (since he only has leg sleeves), and hoped for the best.  He emailed work that he was going to take the day off to try to go to the doctor.  He said it felt like a sprain.  A sprain might not too bad — I have definitely healed from sprains in a couple of weeks.

This morning he was still in a lot of pain — I have never seen him react like this to an injury before (he usually one of those that works through it), so I reminded him to go to the doctor then stay home and REST.  No cleaning around the house or keeping himself busy.

This morning, he drove to the doctor (per my advice:  don’t try to make an appointment, they’ll tell you they’re full.  Show up and say you’ll wait until they have time to see you, it may take all day, but they will fit you in).  Anyway, they saw him quite quickly, actually, within an hour of his arrival.

The fracture on his metatarsal was bad enough that even he could tell by looking at the x-ray.  He might make it to Chicago, he might not.  Right now, it’s looking like he’ll be a spectator instead.

After training through this grueling summer for months and being READY to run his first marathon, he’ll be watching it from the sidelines.

I have no idea if I can run this thing without him.  Our plan was to cross the finish line hand in hand.  I know I can do it with him, but I haven’t run a long-distance race by myself in a long time.  5 hours is too long to try to make it on my own, without giving up and walking.  I don’t even know if I can get through the solo 20 miler this weekend (which I’ll have company for the first half, but it’s always hardest on the second half, no?).

I miss my favorite running buddy already, and I have yet to run without him.  Wish him luck.  He trained too hard to have this marathon pulled off from him just 2 weeks before he gets a chance to run it.


Filed under Chicago Marathon Training, Injury, Marathon Training

21 responses to “:(

  1. I’m so sorry to hear about Karl! 😦

    Try to think of it as you’re running with 40,000 friends on marathon day. Trust me, there are so many people running that will be thankful for a quick chat, or to exchange words of encouragement and support that the miles will fly by. I promise you that you won’t feel alone for a minute! I ran Chicago solo and there is too much to see and so many people around you that you’re too distracted to think about anything else! Good luck to you and speedy recovery to Karl.

  2. megabrooke

    aww carla, im so sorry. the timing really sucks. sending carl some healing vibes.

  3. Poor Karl! I am really really hoping for a miracle for him!

    Maybe we can hang out the first few miles of the course, if you want!

    • Yes, let’s definitely do that! We have the same goal time anyway. (Except you run faster than I do, but take walk breaks, I run slower, but fewer breaks…).

      Said that, our “corral” numbers are totally different. I wonder how much they enforce it?

      • I am open corral… are you? I think they really enforce it, but I think we can start together! Shall we develop a plan to meet up?

        And I hope I wasn’t being insensitive and implying you can’t run by yourself, I know you can – I just wanted to offer it up.

        Have fun on the 20 tomorrow! 🙂

  4. Oh my goodness Carla! I am so sad to read about Karl’s foot. I would be carrying the same thoughts and worries myself. Best of luck to you on your 20 miler. Looks like you’ll have some people to join you along the way.

  5. I’m so sorry!!!
    If you need company, I’d be happy to tag along with you for as long as I can hold on. I’m a native Chicagoan and I’ve done the race twice before. I think we’re typically about the same pace – what’s your goal?

    • Yes, I need company! Karl is convince he’s still going to run it, which is just stupid.

      My goal is 4:59 (it was originally 5:00, but then I figured, why not break 5?) I think you’re a tad faster, no? (This is also my first marathon, so I’ll be pacing myself…)

      • Re: pace – you are much too kind to me – I love it! I love that I give off the impression that I’m faster than I am 🙂

        Chicago is technically a training run for NYCM for me, and my goal for NYCM is 4:59:59. My plan for Chicago is to hang with/just in front of the 5-hour pace group until at least 20 and then see how I feel: if things are going well, I’m going to try to break 5 hours so that I can then chill and not worry about goals during New York (way hillier course).

        My last long run was 18 last weekend, and I did it in 3:30 on a hilly course and felt quite good at the end. (That works out to 11:42s, and 11:25s would equal a 4:59 marathon as I’m sure you’ve calculated already.)

  6. I’m so sorry, Carla!!

    MANY positive vibes going your way, and at least it seems like you have found some great Chicago companions!! I’m so sorry this happened!!

  7. So sorry to hear about Karl…But look at it this way…at least you will have someone to watch you cross the finish line and cheer for you along the way 🙂 You can do it! You’ve put in the hard miles together so that you can finish strong.

  8. This actually made me a little emotional. I know what it feels like to lose a running partner and the let down… and in my case, it wasn’t tied quite as tightly as you and Karl. I know this is something you really wanted to do together… but you can still run this for the both of you, and it looks like you have some volunteer pacers in the comments to keep you company. I’m sure Karl will be just as proud to watch you cross that line. I’m so sorry. Heal quickly, Karl!

  9. Beki

    OH, NOOO! I’m PAINFULLY accident-prone, so I def understand! I broke my 3rd and 4th metatarsals a couple years ago, and they healed WELL before the sprained ankle did if that helps cheer you guys up any! And the good thing about metatarsals is that they don’t usually require rehabilitation the way an ankle does!

    :::sending all my get-better-vibes:::

    • I heard the same thing, that bones are easier to heal than ligaments (my ankle never got back to 100% after my sprain). The difference is you can always toss an active ankle and run with it, but you can’t do as much with the metatarsals 😦

  10. Pingback: I lied « I Run, You Run

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