Surviving Bootdom in our Nation’s Capital

If you have ever lived in DC (or on the North East coast in general), then you totally know about this area’s aversion to speaking with strangers. If you lived on the east coast in the 90s, things have changed; if you have lived on the east coast in the past 5-7 years then you may recall what I am talking about when I say that on the morning/evening commute to work, people are kind of super jerks. On the metro, they push a little, don’t have much consideration for other human beings in general. Personal space is not a term in anyone’s vocab when it comes to commuting and they are just doing what youre doing… getting from point a to point b.

As someone who has lived in the city for… well forever (on and off forever), I will say, I have gotten frustrated with those in our nation’s capital who move at a snail’s pace, who cant get their metro card out on time, who prevent progress. So believe me, as I type this, I am very aware, that I have been the super jerk that I am about to describe.

With that being said, I also intend to never be that super jerk again. Having been on the other side of this whole slow moving game, I can TOTALLY understand people’s frustrations (on both sides). I have been in a boot for 6 days, and I have ridden the metro 4 of those 6 days… I just want to tell you that I walk slowly in this boot. The boot comes up to my knee, so I have 0 ankle mobility (which apparently you need for all forms of walking and running). I have tried running in this boot  (FAIL), I have tried walking fast in this boot (FAIL), hell… i have even tried standing in this boot (and even that fails from time to time…).

me and my boot
me and my boot

My beef with the commuters in this city is large now… they are always rushing and get mad at me because i can’t rush! what am i gonna do??! its an 8 POUND boot! (ok maybe 6 pounds but its still heavy! — best leg weights workout ever!) Anyway, so here goes:

Becca’s tips to surviving life in a boot in the Nation’s Capital!

1) Do not be afraid to speak your mind!  When commuting, people are going to get right up your ass (yes, i am talking about walking! — not driving but walking) and they are going to stay there despite the possibility of walking past you on your left or right. So what I do, when I am feeling sassy is I stop, turn around and ask them if they would like to be my new proctologist! Ok, not true, but I do stop and step out of the way and tell them that i can’t move any faster. They don’t even pay attention. Sometimes, I mutter under my breath at the assholes that are going up a poor booted person’s ass.

2) Allow yourself to be entertained. Do not let your spirits get down by the people who wont give up their seats on the metro, just chuckle and tell yourself karma will bite them in the ass (TRUST) and than mutter to yourself about how you are in a boot and it hurts and then slyly, with all people surrounding you, kick them in the shin with your boot. Let’s call it an accident. Ok, once again, never kicked anyone, but def thought about it!

3) Throw some bows. (bows = elbows) This is just a general commuting rule for any metropolitan area; don’t be afraid to throw bows on public transportation! this isn’t normally the tactic I take, but I have seen people do it and they got NO SHAME!

Ok, so in all seriousness, things i have learned from having this boot on: don’t walk a lot in the boot, you will get shin splints on your boot leg if you have poor arches like I do… it will also prolong your healing. ACCEPT HELP from people (this is prolly my biggest issue — I suck at this and only started when my husband said we should go stay with my folks so I had to walk less to and from the metro and my mom forced me to let her help me).

What the doc doesn’t tell you that common sense should (that I often have the hardest time with): listen to your body – if it says one of the treatments you are given is not good, LISTEN TO YOUR BODY, but give yourself a chance to adjust to it too, it is a fine line. ELEVATE your damn leg! Ice when you can (still working on this one)! If you have poor circulation, try massaging your foot that is hurt so it gets some blood flow. DONT take ibuprofen, it stifles the blood flow and will force healing times to be longer.

so this is everything I have learned about moving around and taking care of yourself physically when in a boot.  now for the mental part… this is tougher because frankly, i am not sure i am quite there yet…this is hard.

I am trying not to let myself get depressed about a lot of different stuff. I am in a boot, I can’t run, hell I can barely walk, and I can’t play soccer…. I can swim! but I haven’t. I hate the pool (but i AM going this weekend!). Honestly, I have been wallowing. Every time I see someone running outside as I hobble to the metro or am driving in a car or passengering in a car, i think about rolling down the window and yelling “APPRECIATE IT WHILE YOU CAN!!!” No, it won’t serve a purpose but to make me feel better at that exact moment. It IS depressing to talk about running and go to races and sell your bibs or contact races to transfer, ask for a deferral or ask for a refund or any of these other things and it definitely sucks! BUT just remember that this too shall pass and you always have swimming! and you aren’t alone! there are plenty of people out there who know what you are going through and have had to suck it up and make these same stupid decisions. IT SUUUUUUUCKKKKSSSS! I am just happy that I have friends like Michelle who will carry me on her back, or Leah who I can force to run the Nike Women’s Half in DC (you will be doing that!), or just a bunch of other people who will listen (erin, sheena, rach)

I have good friends, awesome family (husband and mother who both force me to do stuff, brother and father who just chuckle and say this will pass — while making fun of me).

it IS hard to keep your chin up, but the longer that you fight a injury and the longer you take to get it looked at and taken care of, the longer you will be out! BELIEVE ME! I learned this lesson the hard way. Broke my toe and chipped a bone in my other foot/ankle, kept playing soccer for a year and a half on that stuff and then had to go and have Madden handle it anyway, under the knife! I ended up having surgery! LORD! anyway, don’t be stupid, play it smart and listen to your doc and your body!


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