I finally signed up to go to summer camp at Mt Hood. It was a bit pricey, but I thought hey, might as well splurge a little and it’s always fun riding in the summer.
The last 2 years I’ve gone with MHSSC, but this year I decided to go with HCSC. MHSSC is great and I loved the coaches, but unless if I wait until the end of summer for the adult session there weren’t that many adults. I was mainly hanging out with kids and the kids are great, but I would like to hang out with someone closer to my age. Also I was thinking of staying in Govy camp and when I ran the numbers and everything, MHSSC would’ve cost as much as HCSC if I stayed in Govy. So I was like…well it’s always fun to try something new.
I’m going to be at Session 5 (7/26-8/2). I am really looking forward to it. I still need to buy plane tickets and also get a physical exam. I didn’t know this, but HCSC requires that you have gotten a physical within 2 years of going to camp. Now I’ve never even gotten a physical so hopefully I can find a place that can squeeze me in and sign my paperwork for me…probably just go to CVS and get a physical there for like $70.
The past weekend was the EL meatup. People from all over the place came and met in Mammoth for a weekend of fun times. We rented a nice condo with a creek running in the backyard for all of us to stay at. There were about 15 of us total. We had guys from Canada and Illinois come in too.
The first day back on snow felt awesome! I was worried at first if I would remember how to ride and that I would fail miserably getting off the lift, but it didn’t feel too awkward. After a couple of runs, it felt really normal just riding. My knee was a bit stiff, but my friend said my riding looked as though I never got hurt. I cruised around the first day, hit a low box a couple of times. It was just so fun riding! It was a gorgeous day! The snow was nice and slushy so I knew I wouldn’t have to worry about ice and the slow signs were few and far between. Bad thing though is a person in our group broke his collar bone. It was completely snapped. I wasn’t there when he hurt himself, but apparently he went down after catching an edge and just unfortunately fell in a way to break his collar bone. Hopefully his recovery will be quick!
Later that night we went to a NOFX concert at main lodge since the Grenade Games were at Mammoth this weekend. Didn’t really see much of the competition, but I did score a Nike neck gaitor from the booth they had. They were handing them out for free and you can never have too many neck gaitors to protect your face and neck from the sun. I wanted to see the downhill comp, but we left the hill before that happened. The NOFX concert was fun. I got to meet new people as well as catch up with some people I hadn’t seen in a while. We then all made our way to dinner. One guy decided to just go back to the condo after the concert. Turned out he didn’t have a key on him so in his drunken state he broke 2 doors to get inside. When all of us saw the damage the next day, well we were kind of in 1. awe 2. shock 3. why didn’t he call one of us to go back and open the door for him?
After dinner, we wanted to go to Underground, but apparently they weren’t letting people inside unless if you bought a ticket ( I don’t think I ever saw on any of their e-mails we needed a ticket to get in) and someone apparently stole all the VIP wristbands so they weren’t letting anyone in. We were sad that we couldn’t take a pic with the game and instagram it since that was the challenge of the week. After that we all kind of just went home since we were tired.
The second day turned out to be an equally nice day on hill. I cruised around and kept hitting the low box. I even hit a downtube which was really fun. And this is where I made a stupid decision. Since my knee was holding up well and I didn’t really think, I hit the 2 jumps at the bottom of forest. The first jump was mellow and you definitely need more speed to clear it so for the second jump I just pointed it. Well I went in too deep into the landing and had to land with a hard impact. I immediately felt pain in my knee and I just sat down after I came to a stop. All the guys I was riding with came running toward me to make sure I was ok and someone flagged down ski patrol for me. I sat there for a good 15min waiting for the pain to go away and to test out my leg. At this point I was really mad at myself. I was told by the doc to take it easy and here I was taking a jump on a knee I just injured not so long ago. Luckily I was able to make it down on my snowboard and refused to be brought down in a sled. I went to first aid and got myself an ice pack. There I proceeded to have a mandatory meltdown which is what happens when I hurt myself. It was painful to put weight on my leg, but the pain was not on the same scale as when I broke my tibia. So for the car ride home, I kept my knee elevated and iced as much as possible.
I went to the doc today to get the knee checked out and to get it xrayed. The ligaments seem fine and the xray came back ok…so right now it’s a huge sign of relief. I was told by the doc to stay on crutches for the next 2 weeks…yay…and to also get the swelling down in my knee since it’s double the size of the other knee right now.
2 weeks is not as bad as 4 months…so I will take that and store this as a lesson for myself to actually take it easy when I come back from an injury. I definitely need to keep strengthening my knee more.
Monday I had my last doc visit. The doc checked to make sure that I had no pain by moving my leg around and also putting pressure on different areas of my knee. He then asked if I was still going to physical therapy and I told him I stopped going about 2 weeks ago. He then asked what I’ve been doing to strengthen my leg and I just gave him a list of the exercises I do. Finally he asked…so have you done anything dynamic? I was like dynamic? Ummmm well no, but I’m thinking of going to Mammoth this weekend and sorta/kinda/well most likely going to ride on the bunny hill…
To my surprise, my super conservative doc actually oked for me to go on the bunny hill. He was like with how you’ve progressed, I see no issues. He emphasized though that I needed to stay on the bunny hill.
So with an ok from my doc and having been told that my injury has healed, I will be going on the bunny hill this weekend for the EL meat up. I cannot wait!
Now I need to make sure I bring everything with me and pack…
I haven’t updated in a while because I’ve been busy with work (new job! yay!), but the leg is getting there. I can now jog and I’ve been on several mile long hikes to get the leg used to working for extended periods of time. It’s been 4 months since I broke my leg and my leg feels almost 100% There’s still a little bit of stiffness, but that should be going away any time now.
I also had my last physical therapy session last week. I was talking with my physical therapist and we got into the conversation about how much longer I had left. She said everything was good, except just the strength part. After talking it over with her, she said I could pretty much just strengthen at home by myself. Some patients actually need to have to come in and have someone tell them what to do, but since I’ve been doing all the exercises for a while now I know it by heart. Also it’s kind of expensive when you have to pay for medical expenses upfront so I decided to go with the “gym” option aka working out on your own.
I’ve been pretty vigilante about doing my exercise almost daily (I usually have one day of rest a week) and I’m able to run up and down the stairs now. I can’t full on run, but I was never really a runner and I’m such a slow ass runner it doesn’t bother me that I can’t run at my full speed. The ankle has gotten better and there is no more pain after getting some physical therapy on it. I’ve been playing on my balance board at home as well just to get the sense of balance back. The left side is still weak compared to the right.
I plan on snowboarding in a little over a week for the EL meatup I’ll probably just be on the bunny slope for the weekend, but I’m really excited about it. I have one more doc visit which is next Monday and I have a feeling he’ll clear me to go back to doing sports, but probably tell me to take it easy (which I will….I think).
I’m also planning on going to camp this summer. I’ve decided I want to either try Windell’s or HCSC to change it up a bit from MHSSC and also to be around adults. MHSSC is fun, but it’s a hit or miss as to whether there will be adults there unless if I wait until end of August. I need to pick one soon and put a deposit down before all the spaces fill up.
I had a doc last Friday to see how my knee is progressing. The doc was very happy with the progress I was making except when I told him my ankle was giving me issues whenever I walked. He seemed concerned, but after talking about the different possibilities and treatment we decided on just working on the ankle in physical therapy. He wanted to xray the ankle at first, but I refused since I saw no point. The bone probably wasn’t broken since it only swelled up whenever I walked on it and I only felt the pain in the front of the ankle. Also if the bone or anything in my ankle was broken or injured with my initial injury, I would think 2 months on crutches would’ve caused it to be healed by now. So we believe it’s just a mild case of tendonitis which my PT also agreed with.
Physical therapy has been going great for me. Every time I visit they either up the number of reps, the weight, or give me a new exercise to do. Just thinking back to my first physical therapy session, it’s like night and day. The first day my knee was stiff and I couldn’t bend it and the leg was so atrophied that I can only do lifts with a 1 lb weight on it. Now they’ve got me doing squats and on the elliptical. My knee still feels not quite 100% though. I still can’t run or jump on it since I feel like the support isn’t there. Also the knee doesn’t feel quite as fluid as my other knee. I’m hoping that feeling will go away eventually and I’ll be able to at least jump on it in the next month or so.
One thing I’ve greatly appreciated since I started walking though is just appreciating walking in general. It is such an awesome thing to walk. You don’t have to rely on crutches or others to help you out. Yesterday I was at the gym and I started talking with a guy. Turns out he broke his ankle before and was on crutches as well. We were talking about our respective injuries and the recovery and both of us agreed, being able to start walking again and to carry something while walking was the greatest feeling ever. You never realize how walking is awesome because it’s such a mundane task, but after not being able to do it for only 2 months, I missed it greatly. I’m just glad I’ve been able to bounce back from this injury and hope to be on the slopes soon
So a little over a week ago, I decided to see if I can actually get around without my crutches. My goal was getting a hot cup of tea from the kitchen to the couch without spilling. I’m not sure why, but I felt like my leg could support the weight so I tried it. Surprisingly, even though my leg felt super unstable, I managed to shuffle to the couch. After I managed that small shuffle, I was beaming and so proud of myself. It has been about 2.5 months since I was able to hold something with both hands and bring it somewhere without hopping or dragging myself along furniture to act as a support.
I just felt liberated, even though my walking was limited to a zombie shuffle. Just not having to rely on something to get myself around was huge. I could finally see I was making progress with my physical therapy. After that first shuffle, I started to gradually take myself off my crutches. I just shuffled in my apartment for a couple of days so it would be inside and I would be near something for support if my leg felt like it would buckle under me. My next step was just putting as little weight as possible on my crutches while I took my dog for a walk outside. I then wanted to see if my leg could actually support my whole weight. In physical therapy I was doing leaning exercises where I would lean onto my injured leg and put some body weight onto it. I would get to a point where almost my whole body weight was there, but I would pull back because I was afraid. I told myself, you’re shuffling around so you’re putting enough body weight and the leg is stable. So I just went for it…needless to say, I went for it in the shower which in retrospect is probably not the best place to see if my injured leg could support my whole weight. The knee felt wobbly, but stable enough.
During the weekend, I then decided to try walking down and up the stairs without my crutches. Going down is definitely a lot harder to do than going up. Just the thought of extending my leg down and placing all my weight on it, the falling part of walking down the stairs scare me. I’m still a bit uncoordinated so the jolt of feeling the stair as I go down is still unnerving to say the least. Going up the stairs though has been a breeze. I then went on a mile walk with my dog on a route with uphill and downhill sections. It was tough and tiring, but I somehow managed. My knee has held up well, but my ankle is what is killing me. I just need to keep working on my ankle it seems and just stretch it out so it doesn’t become too tight.
I feel normal again. Even though I’m walking I still have work to do. I’ll need to get rid of the limp I have right now as well as still strengthening my calves to have it more even with my right leg. Hopefully I’ll be able to ride in mid April at this rate!
Top to bottom park run of Forest trail. Nothing spectacular, but it was a fun day and I’ve never been filmed doing a top to bottom run before. Talk about the pressure of doing something neat and not falling every feature.