Well, over the weekend I was unfortunate to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.
I was biking down Casino street in Freehold Township with two friends Bob Reilly and Tom Manzi who I had just hooked up with, when we saw a garbage truck in the distance.I always pay close attention to my surroundings when I ride so I watched the garbage man walk across the road back to his truck which was facing in our direction on the opposite side of the road. I saw the cans were on our side of the road all standing up, 3 of them. So I assumed he was moving on. We were riding around 22-23 mph and we were meeting a few friends further up the road. As we went by out of the blue a can was rolled very fast right in front of me. I am not quite sure as I had no time to react but I believe the can went either in front or hit my wheel and I somehow did a flip landing on my head,neck, shoulder then hip. I do not remember hitting the ground but I do remember my head pounding and my shoulder throbbing. I was lucky to not get any road rash as all the impact went down into the ground and into my body.
Tom who was behind me said he will have nightmares for a while as he said it looked like I was going to either crack my head open or break my neck. Thankfully neither is the case! I am thankful for helmets as their were 5 cracks in mine that could have very easily been my head. My head however did receive a few staples.
I was taken to Jersey Shore Trauma hospital where they did cat scans on my head and neck, and xrays of my shoulder and hip. My cat scans showed inflammation from the middle of the back of my head down into my neck with no severe damage..thank goodness. My xrays showed no broken bones. For that I am relieved!
As I had cut my head and I was in the trauma ward the attending nurse was so kind not to cut my biking jackets or my hair instead she sweetly jammed three staples into my scalp without any medication saying it wasn't really worth it!!! Thanks!
Another very sweet nurse then kindly informed me that I would have to get a tetanus shot in my arm...and we decided to put it in the same arm that was already in pain. (Looking back now probably not such a good idea!)
With a steady flow of morphine going( which in itself felt awful), my pain seem to steady. Bob, who I had been riding with came by to check on me which was very nice. We both could not believe how absurd the accident was. Hank and the kids had arrived very concerned but happy to see me in one piece and took me home. I was warned that the next few days were going to be the worst and they were right. I called Coach Paulo right away who always puts things into perspective for me. He right away told me not to think of doing anything for 5 days and then we would reevaluate.
I am very lucky to have some great people in my life. Gerry Goldberger, friend and orthopedic surgeon from Advanced Orthopedics and Sports Medicine in Freehold, set up an appointment for me on Monday. What an amazing facility they have there and everyone was so nice. He confirmed with an Xray that my neck muscles were in total shock/spasm. I could not move my neck and my left shoulder was very swollen. It was great to see someone who understood how I was feeling as he too is a triathlete and understands the importance of recovery/training/racing. Gerry set me up with Karen from his Physical Therapy section which is right in the facility. She did some gentle massage,heat, a few basic exercises and some good kinetic taping to push out some of the swelling. I don't like to sit in bed and being around pleasant happy people I feel was better therapy for me than resting at home! I am thankful to my friend Judy who dropped everything she had to do to drive me there. Things like that mean so much!
My next visit was too see Dr Liz Perez. She not only saw me on her day off but let me come to her home as I was in the area. She is the best ART(Active Release Therapy) therapist in America...and I mean that! She has got me through many a sore /strained muscle and she is always the last person I see before I leave for a race as she fine tunes my body. I trusted my aching body over to her. I asked her if she thought I would be back to training by the weekend and she laughed :-( and said no way! Thanks for keeping it real Liz!
What she did was got the range of motion going on a neck that would not move and gave me some exercises to do to help loosen them up. She strongly advised me to rest and ice ALL day! Liz is truly one of the most giving and caring people I know!
Today I made a trip to see another great guy. Jimmy Smith from Crest Physical Therapy in Wall. I have been going to see him since I moved down to the NJ Shore 13 years ago. His PT facility is where I like to spend my winters getting strong and ready for the following season. His office is filled with good energy and happy people and I always leave there feeling great. His hands are like magic and I trust his opinions greatly. Without hesitation he got me in today and got to work in his lunch break. He is one of those people that go above and beyond! He has no mercy and his hands go to work digging deep and finding the source of pain. Well today he too did not want to touch the shoulder but worked on the neck muscles moving them around and trying to get them to relax. Soon I will be back to training I know it!!!
Thank goodness for having a strong body! He was a little concerned over a possible hamstring tear but will let some of the swelling go down before he digs in to see.
Thanks Jimmy for your time today!
I appreciate ALL the calls/texts/FB messages I got over the last few days. It is nice that friends are so caring and thoughtful and it really helps when you are down and hurt to have that support. Thanks to the Cole Family for their lovely fruit basket and to Liz for dinner.
Hank and the kids have been great too, bringing me and making sure I am icing on a regular basis and doing alot of the stuff a mom does!
I will write an update soon!