Thursday, October 11, 2007

My First Full Ice Bath

I don't like being cold, and I really don't like being cold and wet. In fact, I'll go to great lengths just to avoid that combination (one reason why triathlons don't appeal to me). I'll wait until a hot summer day in late July before I'll even dip a toe in the lake where I live to be assured the water temperature is at least in the high 80s. So, to step into a large tub filled with cold tap water and a couple of large bags of ice... well... that should speak volumes of how badly I want my leg to heal.

It's been roughly six weeks since my right thigh started bothering me, an injury I got during taper before the marathon. Yesterday, it passed the annoying stage right into downright depressing. I feel like it's never going to heal. So, my running coach cut my runs dramatically and insisted I sit in a waist-deep tub of cold water filled with store bought bags of ice. For 20 minutes. And a few cups of epsom salt thrown in.

Oh, the pain and the agony of that first step. Indescribable, when I knew all I had to do to end it was just step out. Slowly I submerged. And sat. One minute ticked by, two, and I couldn't stop shivering. I had brought a magazine to distract me, but was shivering too badly and tensed too much to read it. But, magically, by the fourth minute, the shivering abated, and the pain of the ice started to go away. And, as promised, I became numb and no longer suffered. I actually completed this mission. And get to repeat each night for the rest of the week.

1 comment:

Rick said...

Try getting in the bathtub empty, then running the cold water. Then add the ice and salt. It's much easier to accustom to than climbing into icy water. Works wonders for the recovery after a long run!