Today I saw my physician after having an MRI scan and the news was not good. It would appear I have moderately severe arthritis and if I continue to pound it with more running the outlook would not be good for me long term. I must admit when he told me I had to hold back the tears. I had suspected something was wrong for some time, well in fact a couple of years, since my running distances had begun to decline and eventually it has shrunk to no more than 3-5 miles. I have seen one specialist after another and no one could give me a definitive answer as to what was causing the pain. I had an MRI scan on my back previously in March which showed that my spinal nerve in my lumbar spine was being compressed by a degenerative disc and so we thought this was causing my foot pain and so began physio and exercises but nothing relieved it. I cut back on my running thinking rest would help but that made it worse. I am happy finally to know the cause but am hugely disappointed that I can no longer just put my trainers on and go out with the dogs or Mark or friends. It also means I cannot compete in any further triathlons by myself and that hurts more than anything. I am grateful though to have competed in triathlon since 1997 starting off my first super sprint and finally doing my first and last Ironman in Austria in 2013. I had hoped I could go back next year and try for a better time and who knows what the future may bring. The positives I can take from this is that I can help others to realise their dreams.
Looking on the bright side it’s not all doom and gloom as I able to ride my beloved bikes and to swim. I can take part in a relay team and I can devote a lot more time to the coaching side of things and developing our new triathlon club here in Norfolk. I can continue to teach Pilates and my spinning classes along with Kettlecise classes in February when I complete my course. I know it’s going to be extremely difficult watching others out on their runs but hey I’m going to save a shed load on trainers.
Triathlon has been a very wonderful experience for me but now a new chapter begins. Watch this space.