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The Injury | From Spartan to Sofa

December 3, 2017

From oceans to mountains, I love to be outdoors trying new challenges and getting the adrenaline pumping through my veins, usually with a GoPro in my hand and devilish smile on my face.

I’m no stranger to cuts, bumps and scratches. My body is often a patchwork of different bruise colors but I wear these with pride. It’s not a badass adventure without a few near miss stories, right?!

It was inevitable that my stunts would catch up with me at some point. I know, I know. You all warned me and I didn’t listen – Stubborn fool that I am.

It happened on November 24th. My brother and I were taking part in the Spartan Super Race, a 15km long obstacle course full of jumping from 6 foot walls, running steep mountain descents on loose ground, bucket carries so heavy that feel like your biceps might rip, seemingly endless sand crawls under barbed wire, way too many burpees to count and many more crazy obstacles. The most predictable thing about a Spartan Race is the unpredictability and that is exactly the appeal for many.

I’m a pretty active person of moderate fitness, you’ll see by my Instagram page I’m always trying out new adventures and sports and no stranger to a ridiculous challenge. So last week during the race I pounded out the kilometres in the gruelling heat and approached the final stretch of the race, and only 2 obstacles from completion, you would think that you were home and dry, right? Nope..

I took my position at the Hercules Hoist (A massive metal rig where you use your body weight to pull a rope and raise a large, heavy bag to the pinnacle of the rig and slowly release it without letting it fall) like I have done in two previous Spartan Races, the weight felt incredibly heavy and much worse than usual. I gritted my teeth and hoisted the bag to the top of the rig. To bring it back down, assisted by the gravity pulls it back down to earth, you have to control the speed as the rope burns your hands. Usually I wear gloves for these events but on this day I forgot them – Doh!

As the final two meters of rope slipped through my tired hands I tried to control the bag from thumping to the ground, and a possible burpee penalty, as I jumped to my feet to use my body weight as a counter balance. Just as I planted my feet back on the ground this is when the bad luck struck. My left foot lands in a hole in the ground as I struggle to get my balance my ankle rolls over. The audible crunch was a sure give away that something was wrong! Positive thinking and many deep breaths told me it was just a sprain, “get off your ass and keep powering on” I told myself. The finish line was in sight and so were all my friends cheering me from the end.

The signature finale to any Spartan race is the fire jump right before you cross the finish line. Sounds great when your body is working well but imagine jumping fire with a broken ankle.

Thinking of the pain on landing still makes me want to barf a little.

The medical tent passed it off as little more than a sprain and a rope burn, cleaned up the wound and told me to hop on my way.

Fast forward to today and I’m in a hard cast and hopping through the town on crutches. The ugly image of me sobbing my heart out is probably still ingrained in the doctors head. Honestly, I’m cringing at the thought of the river of tears I cried as he tried to reassure me that it’s a relatively easy healing process, just chill out and rest. Of course, I knew all that but I was convinced I was just being dramatic by going for an X-Ray. I wasn’t mentally prepared for the fact that it might actually be broken!

Anyone that knows me, Resting is just something I can’t do.

So what is an adventure addict to do? This is the tricky part – I can’t swim, wakeboard, climb or run for at least 4 more weeks. I feel like a superhero who has lost their powers.
Trips, plans and work are on hold until I can get my powers back to full strength.

Now the focus is on recalculating, not quitting. The challenge is on to see where a cast and crutches can take me..

Watch this space!

Get comfy & check out my November vlog episode full of the adventures I’ve been up to prior to the injury.

Be safe out there!

Heather x

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