Thursday, December 15, 2011

Put A Band-Aid On It

Well, it had to happen. I have sustained the first injury of my elite athletic life. I believe I have strained a lymph node. Well, I don't know what it is really, but it's a muscular thing or maybe a tendon thing. At the very least it's the squishy bit under my arm - where I keep my lymph nodes.

I turned up at the gym tonight, thinking I was headed into a ballet Pilates class. I haven't been to one of those in MONTHS so I was really excited to be able to make it to one. My hips have been quite sore since Tuesday night's run, so I liked the idea of doing a low-impact Pilates class to get a good workout - but also a really good stretch - for my legs. Naturally of course, I was running late before I ever started.

I rushed into the movement studio and in my haste to remove hoodie and iPod, I almost strangled myself with my earphones. Great look, Gabs. Then I looked at the front of the room and saw an unfamiliar instructor. Oh darn, I'd wandered into a Mat Pilates class - a.k.a floor torture! NUTS.

Too late to back out now, I laid out my mats and Pilates ring, and removed shoes and socks - ready to begin. First exercise of the class was my favourite - the plank. I got into push-up position, lowered my pelvis and concentrated. 30 seconds here, 30 seconds there, it was all fine. Then we had to do side planks. One side was fine and then we came back to centre, turned onto the other side and, in the words of Adam West's Batman, BLAM! KAPOW! OWWWW; (okay that last one was all me). My lymph node stretched, popped and shuddered. I seriously felt pain. It was not a pleasant experience.

The instructor noticed what happened and saw me cupping my own breast in the back row. Rather than leave me alone (which is what any normal person ought to do in this situation), she asked me if I was okay. "Yes," I said, "but I think I popped something". She told me to get into child's pose and wait things out a bit. So I obliged, all the while imagining my lymph node like a sore, deflated balloon in my armpit.

The rest of the exercises after that were okay, except the ones where I had to put any pressure on my right arm. My hips didn't like the leg exercises much either. My right hip has started clicking a bit every time I raise and lower my leg. This movement does not occur all that naturally in my daily life (how sad for me), but I can't imagine that a clicky hip is a very good sign really. Dodgy hip and saggy lymph node enjoyed the stretching we did - in fact my whole body really liked those parts - I totally zoned out and would have fallen asleep had the studio's dimmer switch been set any lower.

So yes I think my week of athleticism peaked on Tuesday and has slid into decrepitude ever since. If anyone needs me, I'll be icing my lymph node and nursing a glass of red.

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