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Not What I Wanted to Hear: MRI Results


There aren’t many ways to really do an intro into this post, other than to say, if there was ever a time to take lemons and make applesauce, it is now. Friday, involved quite a few tears, 3 reapplications of mascara (thank goodness it was waterproof), and a dinner of wine, ice cream, and peanut butter (with a side of Kashi and egg whites, because even when I’m upset, I still need to get in my protein). I got my MRI results back, and let’s just say that it wasn’t what I wanted to hear. 

MRI Results: Sacral Stress Fracture

I’ll have some posts coming up about what is actually wrong, and what it means for the future (so hold tight!), but the MRI displayed an acute Sacral Stress Fracture as well as swelling in the area. 

What Comes Next 

The MRI results are in, and they were not what I wanted to hear. How I'm processing my Sacral Stress Fracture. Find out at @suzlyfe

I am on crutches for the next 4 weeks, minimum, and the next 2 weeks, minimum, will be complete rest. I can do arms, so I’m basically just going to look like Johnny Bravo by the time that this is all over. 

BTW, I have named them Sven and Olav (no, I wasn’t thinking of Frozen at the time, but they do like warm hugs) because they are icy colored, it is wintry out, and I thought something Nordic would be appropriate.

Having had 2 stress related injuries in the past 12 months, I will be getting a DEXA Bone Scan ASAP. The last bone scan I had done (in 2012, 24 years of age) revealed that I was already osteopenic, or had less that optimal bone density and the early markers of osteoporosis. 

I will be seeing an endocrinologist specializing in bone health, as well as a nutritionist specializing in bone health, athletes, and women with hormone issues. There are some medications that they could put me on to help increase my bone density, and the nutritionist/dietitian is going to look for any holes to fill in my diet. Though I’m not sure where she will find them!

Why Did This Happen?

If someone tries to tell me that I brought this upon myself, or that this happened because I run marathons, I will whack them with my crutches. The osteopenia is likely due to my Crohn’s Disease (remember this post on my 5 major health concerns?), which caused malabsorption of important vitamins and minerals during puberty, and my history of steroid use for the treatment of my Crohn’s Disease. Furthermore, I have significant hormonal issues and hormone deficiencies, also affecting my bone health.

I am not going to sit here and act all defense, but I wanted to make sure to dispel any thoughts that I have been taking poor care of myself, or anyone who is slapping their thigh and saying, “Well, that is what you get for running!” Running has actually been a huge influence in keeping me healthy and out of the hospital. Not only has it taught me proper nutrition and helped my mental approach to my body, but the weight bearing activity promotes greater bone health. Would I have gotten a stress fracture if I ran half marathons, or just recreationally? I can’t answer that, but the likelihood would be less. 

But my life is not about living within the realm of what others feel I should be doing, or can be doing. My life is about living beyond expectations. 

How I am Dealing with This

Am I surprised? Yes and no. The fracture makes a great deal of sense, but the fact that I am not all that physically uncomfortable makes it confusing and hard to always convince myself to take the complete load off. The 100% rest for the next 2 weeks (minimum) is going to blow. I wake up every morning at 5:30, deal with blog stuff while I have breakfast, and then I go to workout before work. I’m not really sure what I’ll do with that time (sleeping in doesn’t really happen for me). I can’t swim, I can’t bike.  So this is going to be quite the test.

Boston is the toughest pill to swallow. I am in shock, upset, and frustrated. The weekend it happened, I said that I thought it was a stress fracture and that I wanted to be on crutches because I was in so much pain. I’m not saying that I know better than doctors, but if, instead of walking on it for 5 weeks I had been on crutches, I might be able to make Boston a real possibility. Boston was going to be my swan song before trying to have a family, and I know that they will let me defer/I already qualified for 2017, but I can’t keep putting off having a family. I wanted to run with my friends, with Caitlin, and to step out there and have my victory lap. I’m not going to lie: it sucks.

But I’ve been through worse. Life goals > life moment. 

How I am Making My Peace

Running the Boston Marathon would have been a #lifemoment, but having a family and being a wife and mother? That is my life goal. What if I got pregnant and had a fracture? I need to take care of my bone health first, and who knows if, had this stress fracture not happened, we would have known what state my bones truly were in, or if we would have taken such a proactive approach?

I have to accept what is going on, what I must do, because, as with my Crohn’s Disease, I simply don’t have a choice. So lemons => applesauce. I’m not sure what that applesauce really is yet, but I’ll figure out the recipe. And don’t tell me to watch Netflix, I already do that enough, thank you. 


I cannot finish this post without expressing extreme gratitude to all of my support systems, both friend and professional. Dr. George (because I know you read), thank you. I am going to miss our sessions, but don’t worry, I’ve got some memes coming your way. My readers, friends, and family, I want you all to know that I actually can’t express how much your support, comments, messages, prayers, and penguin and unicorn pictures and gifs have meant to me. 

Alex and Mom, thank you for being just about as upset as myself. Alex, thank you for telling me to use my damn crutches when I am cheating, and for doing all the laundry and carrying. 

Life is a tough game, but I like a challenge. 

Not what she wanted: @suzlyfe got her MRI results back #runchat #stressfracture #runner Click To Tweet

After dealing with the shock of everything on Friday–I’ll be honest, I was a wreck–I am 90% at peace with what I have to do. I am going to let my body rest after a tough, but triumphant, year. I am going to concentrate on what I can control, as I always encourage others to do. 

Do you name inanimate objects? You know that I do!

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