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Thursday, January 23, 2014

Chuck Norris Broke Me - Or How I Tore My Quad in the Dumbest Way Possible

Summer of 2008 I had the most epic injury of my life (up to that point).  I was taking a mixed martial arts class taught by none other than Chuck Norris.  I had become enthralled with the idea of fighting and protecting myself simultaneously.  I had taken a few classes and gotten pretty cavalier about my abilities.
This is what I THOUGHT I looked like - Bad ass, right?!

What I probably ACTUALLY looked like - less bad ass... :(
At some point we were given chances to spar with each other and one time with The Man Whose Tears Cure Cancer himself.  Things were going fine until I decided to try his signature round house kick...which I did and executed beautifully.  The thing is, Chuck Norris's body is also made out of steel so in the process of executing my amazing skills, I tore one of my quad muscles almost entirely in half.

Lethal Quad Killing Machine

Okay, so that's complete bullshit.
But the real story is pathetic: I tore my quad kicking a beach ball.

Let's back up a bit
The day before the tearing of the quadriceps
My boyfriend's kickball team needed another player for their team.  Apparently the regular teammates were unable to make it and it is a very lax league - unlike the leagues I play in now - so he asked if I'd be willing to fill in.  I had never played before and had not yet learned that my skill set resides in bunting, but that is neither here nor there.  When it was my turn I kicked the ball as hard as I could.  It sailed over 2nd base and hit the ground getting me a single and a run kicked in.  I was elated and proud.  In my mind this was also the moment that the entire team lifted me up in the air and carried me to the sponsor bar, Schoolyard, and bought me unlimited free drinks for my heroics.
This is how the team reacted to my base kick.
That last part didn't happen, but we did win the game and then went to the bar where an epic game of flip cup ensued with new rules, silly games and lots of fun.  But that's a blog for another day.  The rest of that day was a blur, as one might imagine it would be.

THE NEXT DAY (also know as the day I tore my quad)
I had been "training" to do a 15 mile bike race all year, so I was heavy into my bicycle that summer.  I woke up and threw the bike on my car rack and headed to a forest preserve.  I did a quick 10 mile ride and then came home to find my brother and his kids at the house which meant I got to have play time!

We were playing outside and since it was hot and summery out, we set up the sweet new sprinkler I had bought so we could play in the water.  It was a giant beach ball that you blow up, screw a hose into and then water spouts out of multiple different holes.  It's amazing and awesome and super light weight so you can throw it at people like you would a normal beach ball.
Look at how much fun those kids are having!
They don't even know about the devious
killing machine they are playing with.  They don't even KNOW!
The three of us (my 11 year old nephew, 8 year old niece and myself) are throwing the beach ball at each other when I decide to drop kick it up in the air.  This is when something bad happened.  I heard a snap that I couldn't place.  Almost immediately my leg got really hot.  It felt as though it was figuratively on fire and it was very hot to the touch.  The pain didn't kick in for a minute, but I could tell something was wrong.  As calmly as I could I told the kids "I'm going to go inside for a minute.  Please promise me you will not follow me.  Stay out here and play, okay?"  They agreed and I hobbled into the house through the garage door.  The second I got inside tears began streaming down my face as I screamed "MOM!?!?"

My parents helped me to a chair, got me ice and water while I breathed through the pain.  If you've never torn a muscle there is no way to explain the feeling, but it was incredible.  At some point it stopped being overwhelming (or my adrenaline was making me superhuman) and I was able to form full sentences and explain what happened.  I tried to get up out of the chair and could not, so my parents got the crutches that we had in the house - What?  You don't just have a set of crutches that are the correct height for you in your home?  Weirdo.

I agreed to go to the emergency room where they examined, did an x-ray and an MRI before sending me home with pain medicine and strict instructions to stay off it, ice it regularly and go to physical therapy.
This is the alien robot that was Ace Bandaged to my
leg for about 4 days straight while I watched all
of the Harry Potter movies that had come out at that point
I was on crutches for 2 weeks.  I was in bed for 4 days straight.  I had months of therapy (electrostatic, ultrasound, and laser therapy for the scar tissue) all because I got in a fight with Chuck Norris air...and lost.

I lost in a fight with AIR.

Seriously.  But that Chuck Norris story sounds way better...


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