This is not how I foresaw my return to training; with a broken left clavicle, a broken right thumb and numerous bruises that have me barely able to hobble around. After a very successful summer, being capped off by a completion of Nolans14 and a 3rd place finish at the IMTUF100, I’d taken 3 weeks of down time to rest and recover. On Oct 27th, 2012 I joined many of my fellow Boulder Trail Runners in participating in the Boulder Basic Mountain Marathon (BBMM). After a nice morning run in my new Spiderman suit, a beer and food with friends, I hopped on my bike to head home from Chautauqua to my apartment in South Boulder, complete unaware what fate was awaiting me down the road.
As I cruised down Baseline with traffic I continued right on through the green light across Broadway when WHAM! Before I knew it a white pickup truck was turning directly into me, with only seconds from collision, I tried to swerved the bike, but to no avail. The front of the truck’s grill smashed the front of my bike throwing me backwards 10ft, landing hard on my left shoulder and the backpack I was wearing. As I lay in the middle of the road, half in shock, half trying to gasp for air, everything around me was a blur. All I knew was that my left shoulder hurt like hell, my intercostals were sore and tight, I couldn’t close my right hand, and my legs were bruised all over. A quick check found I was able to half sit up, so no back issues, and that my head was alright, as it had never contacted anything.
Soon the paramedics arrived; cut away my shiny new spidey suit (yes I was wearing it when I got hit, no photos), strapped me to a spine board and whisked me away in the ambulance to Boulder Community Hospital. In the end, it was a broken left clavicle, a broken right trapezium in the thumb (along with some torn ligaments), a large hematoma on my right calf and various cuts and scrapes. Ben and Amanda were so kind as to retrieve my battered body from the ER, but only after a shot of morphine and me nearly blacking out the first time I sat up. The ride home was painful, with every joint in the road and every rattle of the car I could feel the two ends of my broken clavicle grinding against one another. They finally got me home, got me upstairs and into my bed. I was out in seconds, but unfortunately that would not last, as sleep has been fitful at best, awaking to the throbbing in my shoulder, unable to find a comfortable position.
With the accident behind me, the road ahead is filled with several months of healing, rehab and recovery. Not only will I have to wait for the bone to heal, but then comes all the hard work, building back up the atrophied shoulder muscles and working on getting my range of motion back. Needless to say, this wasn’t how I’d planned to spend my winter, but as with many things in life, we have to take what the day brings, then do the best we can with it. The initial timeline is 6-8weeks for the clavicle to heal, 6weeks before the right arm is out of the cast, two months before I can run somewhat normally, 12weeks before I get back to strength training and maybe 16weeks before being back to somewhat normal activity. So needless to say, I’ve got a lot of work to do, but all I can do now is to push forward, rehab as best possible, and get healthy for the year to come.