So….I’m a runner. I had a hip replacement in January of 2012. A month prior to my surgery, I started this blog to share my experience with anyone who might be facing the same fate down the road. I wanted to show my weekly recovery progress and hopeful return to running. Hence the name…hiprunner.com. As the months have progressed, I have been contacted by other individuals in the same situation as me. To make this blog more informative and well-rounded, I have asked them to share their stories and their reports as well, so in the side bar under “Hiprunner Reports”, they have a location for their reports. We are the Hip Runner’s Club. The primary purpose of this blog is to tell our stories of how we were or weren’t able to get back to running. If you find yourself getting a hip replacement, and would like to become a member of the Hip Runner’s Club, we would love to have you share your story on this blog.
Earlier this year, my SDP Teammate Mike, told me about his friend Jim who had the Rim-to-Rim Grand Canyon Run on his bucket list. Jim’s wife knew that Mike had run the Grand Canyon the previous year and asked if he could arrange to do it again as a surprise present to Jim. When Mike started describing Jim to me, I realized who he was. Jim played basketball at Gonzaga University back when I was going to school. I watched him play, and his wife Dana ran on the track team. I knew them both. I was in. Mike also corralled 2 other SDP teammates Fitz and Andy. Andy had run rim-to-rim-to-rim last year (that means he ran across the canyon and then back again – He is a crazy, super talented mountain runner). Like me, Fitz was going to be running it for the first time ever. On Friday Morning, October 14th, we flew out of Spokane and into Las Vegas. From there, we rented a van and drove east for 4 hours towards the North Rim of the Grand Canyon. On Friday night, we stayed at a quaint campground/motel called Jacob Lake Inn. There wasn’t much to the place, and for the cabin that Fitz, Andy and I stayed in, it looked like plumbing had been added long after the cabins were built. But the little camp served its purpose and in the morning, we drove the final 40(ish) miles to the North Kaibab trailhead at the north rim. Mike’s wife Mary, and Jim’s wife Dana would then drive the van around the canyon and meet us at Grand Canyon Village at the Bright Angel trailhead. (A 4 hour drive). The picture above is one that we took shortly after we started descending into the canyon from the North Rim.
This pic from strava pretty much describes the run. Steep downhill first, followed by easy downhill for several miles, then steep uphill. Miles 6 to 14 were our fastest. We had a fairly easy descent through the canyon to Phantom Ranch, which was located at the base of the south rim.
There were plenty of moments to enjoy the scenery and since we weren’t in a hurry, we did just that….
At the bottom of the canyon we followed the Bright Angel Creek through the gorge. The area was surprisingly lush with greenery.
At Phantom Ranch, at the base of the South Rim, we took a break to grab a beer and mail out post cards to family. The post cards were packed out by Mule.
The ascent from Phantom Ranch was nothing to write home about. By this time, my calves were aching and my left achilles was tightening up. Andy completed the 24.5 mile run first, followed by Fitz and then me sometime later. Mike and Jim followed about 20 minutes after me.
As far as the hip goes. I had zero issues. There was no pain in the hip. The left achilles (THR side) was super tight and both calves were screaming at me. My calves are now fully recovered. But after a nice tempo run yesterday, my left achilles is barking back at me again. Time to sit on the Zero Runner for a few days until I can hit the trails again.
Just shy of 5 months since my 2nd THR.. ran 13.5 miles this morning @ 10:20 pace through downtown Charleston and over & back on the Cooper River Bridge. I really feel great..picking up the miles then I’ll start working on the speed. Amazing to be running again.
Kitty here to report I am one day post surgery and delighted as all get out. My surgery’ started at 8:45 Wednesday morning and I was home today (Thursday) by 6:00 p.m. I am sore and feel as though my incision area was brutally ravaged, but the pain doesn’t compare to the bone-on-b0ne -hell-grinding. At this writing, I am seriously considering “hanging up my cleats”for good. I was an avid runner for most of my adult life, keeping trim was my main goal, sad but true. After going through the pain of these last two years leading up to this surgery, I never want to compromise and overuse my joints again. I was told I could have my left THR in six weeks, tentatively scheduled for December 4. That date will be confirmed on my 2 week post-op visit.
This was a big deal and I feel so grateful, so very thankful that I am able to return to a pain-free life. For me, I’m leaning towards exploring kinder and more gentler ways of achieving cardio care. Running was fun and a socially acceptable way of drinking beer at the finish line, but my instincts are trending me to rethink the obsession of my younger years.
Laying in my hospital bed, I couldn’t stop thinking about the the countless people who wore their hips out 100 years ago. Yikes, that must have really sucked. I am sincerely over the top grateful for this second chance. There are too many lessons to count that took me far longer to learn than should have. Finally at 55 my gut is my most treasured guide.
One word of advice: don’t YOU TUBE any THR surgery videos. Yowza, that happened to me?
Peace out THR survivors.
For all the fear and terror I associated with THR, I’m glad to report thus far it was a paper tiger.
Surgery went great.
I was on my feet, using the walker hours after surgery.
The next day in hospital PT suggested I give the stairs a shot and was able to handle that too.
I was given very strict instruction not to do anything strenuous that might interfere with the bone healing into implant, so for two weeks I focused on taking it easy.
Two week check up was told to forgo all physical therapy and concentrate on walking limp free. Again focusing on listening to my body and not overdoing it. Also told I could reintroduce very light weight lifting on machines for high reps, obviously nothing that might involve the hip.
Tuesday I walked with a cane for a mile and half.
Yesterday was able to do just under 4.
Prior to hip diagnosis my fitness goals included qualifying for Boston and completing a full iron distance tri.
I was terrified I would never be able to run again.
It’s been a little over two weeks and I know I will run again.
I might have to adjust my goals, but my pain is gone.
With no pain, hope blossoms and I can feel my competitive spirit return.
I’m told nothing strenuous for three months, and I will obey.
I’m looking for a 5k in January !
Two THR, last one 9 weeks ago. Feeling perfect, doing PT and lifting. When do I do the first one-mile run? Opinions are cool, don’t expect much science here. Thanks
Kitty here, excited to find this site and read stories of encouragement. My THR (right) is scheduled for one week from today, next Wednesday, Oct. 19. Second one to follow as soon as I am recovered enough from first, estimating March or April. I am going into this surgery very strong physically and incredibly optimistic, positive and READY. I plan to remain on this pink cloud no matter what, refusing to believe anything other than my experience will be text book and my recovery will be swift. I want to share the only piece of advice that I am worthy to offer at this stage in the game: meditation has been the total game changer for me in terms of pain management. I truly don’t know how I would have gotten through to this point without it. As far as running goes, I’ll be back, all in good time.
What a pleasure it is to be running again!
A little background about me. I got a late start in my running career back in 2011. I worked my way up from 5K’s to completing two marathons. Running got me through the aftermath of a disastrous divorce where I was left with literally nothing. My life started anew. I had nothing but running gave me a new sense of self worth and accomplishment that I never had before. I desperately clung tightly to my new passion despite the fact I knew my hip was failing. Finally body said “yee shall run no more” late in 2014. I put off the inevitable for as long as I could until finally accepting my fate and pulled the trigger on a THR on 7/28/2015. The operation was a complete success, I went home and settled into a quiet depression.
At the time I totally bought into the ‘no running’ advice propagated by the medical community. I didn’t realize how much running did for me until I lost it. Yes I did re-engage my biking passion as a substitute and put many miles on my new bike in 2016 but it never really totally replaced the satisfaction of running. So started my research about the possibility – the dream really of running again. And to my surprise I could not find any conclusive evidence correlating the effect of running on liner wear rates. I started to realize the advice I was given was possibly more of an CYA than factual. And then I found this web site. Hallelujah!
I made the rationalization that I was willing to trade some possible liner wear later in life for life experiences in the present while I am still able to run. My hip is meant to serve me not the other way around. And so I did.
My first runs, if you can call them that were more controlled hobbles. Its like my body didn’t quite remember how to do this running thing. I kept at it desperate for some type of progress and then one day after about two weeks it happened. That day everything seemed to click. My stride was runner like and I felt like I was running like before the operation. I was ecstatic. I was back.
So what now? My strategy is to keep the mileage low and concentrate on 5K’s for the time being and possibly a 10K later. I run three times a week at lunch which is awesome. This is enough to satisfy my runner instinct, for now anyway. And for more inspiration I was amazed to find I am now running faster than I did back in 2014 before my THR!
In conclusion I am so grateful to those that shared their stories on this site as they truly have inspired me.
Thank you Hiprunner community!
Labor Day weekend in Florida is hot, so why would anyone want to run 46 miles in this heat, and if they did it the year before they’d have to be crazy to register again. Okay so I’m crazy but if you’ve read my posts you already know that. This is the third and final race in the Summer Slam Series, 3 races put on by 3 great race directors, all ultras in the middle of Florida’s summer and all FREE! I’ve trained really hard this year for this series with a goal to at least win one of them which I did in the first race and finished second in the 6 hour race. Now for the longest race I wanted to go all out again to attempt to be the first Pinellas resident winner in the fourth running of this event. The week prior to this event Hurricane Hermine came on shore in Florida producing heavy down pours leaving some of the course under water, the good news was that it was going to be cloudy but more rain was in the forecast race day.
I lined up at the start of the race and saw many friends I have got to know over the last year running this series and got a brief chance to wish them good luck. I felt confident, strong and was optimistic I could win this race even though there was a lot of tough competition half my age and not with a hip replacement. It’s odd, the week prior I almost felt like I hadn’t trained hard but I still ran 46 miles, much of it at speed. This week I had only ran a couple of days due to the storm so I felt rested. The night before I tossed and turned, I’m sure like most of the other runners, unsure of what the following day will bring and anxious to get started. Michael Stork counted the race clock down and we’re off, my goal was to run around an 8:15 pace for the first 18 miles, 8:45 to 9 minutes for the next 18 and then 9:30 for the last 10. If everything went well I would finish first with a new course record around 6 hours 55 minutes. My main concerns going into this would be cramping which I’ve suffered in all the other ultra’s and losing too much time at the aid stations, the latter would be easier to control. In support of that I had recruited 2 people to assist me, Luis would be joining me at mile 18 on his bike and handing off to Erin at mile 32 to ride in the last 14 miles with me.
As we left downtown St Pete one person pushed ahead at a fast pace and then it was me and Patrick Hrabos, last years winner and I was second. Running sometimes just in front of us or behind was a fellow Englishman Daniel Bellingham who had finished fourth last year. There was a lot of hype going into this years race with the previous 3 winners and 8 out of last years top 10 finishers expected to start and a race field of over 100 participants. Patrick and I chatted along the way, something I don’t think I’ve ever done in a race, but the pace was on target and felt comfortable as we caught up with each other from last year. Probably around mile 10 Patrick was telling me about the top 2 finishers at the Hard Rock 100 that had ran pretty much side by side and as they approached the finish they decided to hold hands and finish together. I think we were both hoping to win and agreed that if we were together at the end we would do the same. It’s a long race so we knew there would be a lot of twists before the end.
We knew from Michael, whom had biked the entire course the day before to provide a course condition update, that there could be a couple of water obstacles just before mile 18 where the Clever Training aid station was set up. Even though this is a free event it’s amazingly well supported by volunteers just as if it was a paid event with aid stations providing, ice, water, drinks, fruit and many other offering pretty much every 4 miles or so. My wife was going to meet me here and I was going to meet Luis to ride alongside me, up to now I had a hydration vest filled with Tailwind Nutrition to support me and had taken a couple of salt caps that had melted in my compression short pocket. I planned on changing my shoes and socks here, drinking some pickle juice to help prevent cramping, dump my vest and change my shirt. The first of the 4 reported water obstacles had dried but about half a mile before the station we ran into the second obstacle, it was about 300 yards long and as much as 6 inches deep in water. Me, Patrick and Daniel ran through it as there was no way around it. Last year I spent more than 5 minutes here with a full change of clothes and saying hi to my running group friends volunteering, this year I wanted to keep it as short as possible. The other 2 pretty much ran straight through it as we had the previous 2 stations but I stopped to change shirts, drink some pickle juice and had a quick pee. I decided not to change my shoes and socks even though they were now completely soaked as I didn’t want to lose too much time to the others.
Patrick was now in the lead and Daniel about 500 yards ahead of me as I set off with Luis. Not more than a minute later the heavens opened up and it started raining hard, I’m glad I didn’t change my shoes as it would have been completely wasted. Up to this point we were on track, at 2 hours 58 minutes with an 8:13 minute/mile pace. I maintained the pace for the next mile and could still see them both ahead of me and then suddenly I felt all my energy leave me and my legs were heavy. I saw my pace slow to around 9 minutes and as I tried to push I had nothing left in my tank. It was a strange sensation for me, I had gone from being very comfortable thinking I could win this race to what the hell just happened and with a full marathon still to run. By now the bike trail had many puddles ranging from a couple of inches deep to ankle deep and with the rain still coming down completely soaked from head to toe. Now I couldn’t see the 2 runners ahead of me and was passed by Tyler whom I had beaten in the previous 2 races. I wasn’t panicking too much at this time as it’s a long race and just as I had last year finished strong was hoping I could do the same again after I get over this feeling. Unfortunately the next few miles my pace deteriorated and by mile 26 I was struggling to break a 10 minute mile.
I was physically drained and now thoughts of stopping entered my mind, could I continue for another 20 miles like this? I thought about the slam and knew if I didn’t finish I wouldn’t get the Slam shirt, I knew at this time I wasn’t going to win and the only question now was how many other people would pass me. I wanted to finish for my running friends, for my fellow HipRunner’s and for myself but with every step I just wanted to stop and walk. Luis kept up his job and kept providing me with drinks and a salt cap every 4 miles or so and I also took a couple of Accel Gel’s, but didn’t feel the energy jolt I was hoping for, this was going to be a long day. I remembered back to last year, despite the severe cramping and the extreme heat I felt better and more confident than I did now, I was wondering if we had the same heat would I have called it quit. After a few miles like this I eventually signaled to Luis I had to walk for a minute to compose myself and then started to jog again. I hate walking but now I was becoming mentally drained and I felt like I had to convince myself to keep moving every step I made.
At the next couple of aid stations I pretty much ran through them, just stopping long enough to drink a cup of water and grab half a banana and then back out. Around mile 34 Erin met up with us to take over from Luis and at the next aid station he turned back to head home. Judy also met us there to give Erin the supplies I needed for the final 12 miles and also give me another drink of pickle juice. I didn’t tell her that I was drained and I would be later at our next planned stop as I knew she would be worried about me. I quickly moved on and Erin rode alongside me. Shortly after the aid station Dave Toms met us on his Bionic Runner bike as he did last year, it was great to see him and listen to his positive support. I consumed a couple more salt caps and 2 more Accel Gel’s on the way in. So many more times I wanted to walk for a minute at the end of each mile but refused to give in and kept pushing, only walking across some of the major roads we had to cross along the course. Now there was just 6 miles left, I was tired, exhausted, feeling a little low but didn’t want anyone else to pass me, at this point I was happy to take 6th pace. I kept asking Dave to check if anyone was behind me as we ran along Keystone Road to the park, last year I was closing in on 2 runners and picking up my pace, this year it was just about keeping moving, if I stopped I may have not been able to start running again. I told Dave a couple of times I was pretty beat and as we got closer to the finish it was harder beat but I kept moving.
Just before we got to the park entrance with less than a mile to go I could see someone ahead of me and a girl walking alongside, I said ‘is that Patrick’ but we quickly dismissed that as we expected him to have won the race again. As we got closer he turned and it was him, as I got alongside him I asked if he had already finished and was just cooling down. He told me he had had stomach issues and then pushed hard to try to catch Tyler and Daniel and that it led to more issues and he had to stop and slow down. He asked if he could run in with me if it wasn’t to slow me down too much. For me it was an honor, maybe that something that kept me going with stopping for a brief walk was to allow me this opportunity. We ran together as we entered the park for the final half mile stretch, as we got to the last 50 yards we once again ran into the water, joined hands and crossed the finish line together. It meant a lot to me to finish the race the way we had talked about some 30 odd miles earlier, albeit it with a different outcome in mind but now finishing joint 5th the disappointment was lifted. I crossed the line with a friend, something I had never done before and I felt a sense of accomplishment. I later learnt that Patrick had tears in his eyes as he crossed. We hugged and then embraced our support crews.
I finished the 46 miles with a time of 7 hours, 12 minutes, 29 seconds for an average pace of 9:29. It was an 18 minute PR from last year even though this race felt much harder but about 17 minutes off my target time. Even if I had been on my game I don’t think I could have won. Tyler set a course record of 6:35 and Daniel was about 2 minutes behind. I’m hoping for warm weather next year to level the playing field with these young guys. The good news was that my time was good enough for me to secure the Overall Grand Slam Master Winner’s medal for the 3 race series.
Looking back I don’t think I consumed enough carbohydrates in the early part of the race and depleted my Glucose store or it was down to giving everything in the previous 2 ultra-races 7 weeks and 3 weeks prior and my old body just hadn’t had time enough to recover.
The good news is that it wasn’t my hip that held me back, I could feel it a little but really it held up great during the race. The salt caps and pickle juice prevented the cramping so that’s good knowledge to take into the next races, now I just have to practice race day pacing and nutrition a little better. I probably go out a little too fast and that catches up with me, my nutrition is getting better but I still have a lot to learn. More reading, more training, more practice if I decide to continue with my ultra-racing. This was my best race out of the three but my post race recovery still takes about 36 hours, I’m so uncomfortable in my general hip area I don’t know what to do, sometimes I wish I could just unscrew my leg and lie down. I’m too competitive to just go out to complete it, I set myself high goals and go out and see what I can do and who I can beat. I’m a little disappointed I didn’t do better, but 5th place isn’t too bad and the top Pinellas finisher for the last 2 years with 2 of the best 10 races times helps. I’m going to have to see how my body holds up before I commit to next year, at this time I’m reconsidering the Daytona 100 in December. I’m sure I could finish it but not sure it would be in the time I want and more importantly I’m not sure how much pain I would be in after the race.
This post is about 4 weeks late and now I’ve pulled out of the Daytona 100. I took a week off after the race and my first run back my left heel had a little pain. I finished the 6 mile progression run and didn’t think about it until I got home and took my shoe off and the bottom of my ankle was very sore and tender. The next morning when I got up I could hardly walk. Since then I’ve not been able to run much, the heel pain is still there causing me not to push off correctly and that throws my form off. Sure enough it radiates up my leg and my hip starts complaining pretty bad. My massage person thinks it’s my Soleus muscle and I went to the doctors today and he pretty much agreed with here recommendation to keep foam rolling. I hate not running but it’s good to get back to ElliptiGo riding and doing more swimming. Not sure what the future has, I need to get over this before I decide what I will do next.
healing from stress fracture on top of foot 6 wks post. have not tried to run last 2 wks. was looking to set new pr on this race but now not sure if i can even run it. Its been hard not running and thoughts of further injure would be bad for my state of mind, not attending this race with friends not good ether. any thoughts on when you just do it and hope for the best, and run stronger on next one.the distance i don’t have a problem with it not beating last years time. opinion’s please. thanks eric
Hi all! This is my first post after joining this group in August 2016, when I finally got an anterior THR after 4 years of progressive pain. Healing is going well and I am walking streets and easier trails up to 20 miles a week. Still doing 1x/week PT to re-learn how to balance and walk properly. I’ve gingerly re-started my Iyengar yoga practice (quite modified and conservative for now). I plan to get back to running in 6-8 months; for now the joint capsule really needs to fully heal from its incision and there is plenty I can do in the meantime. Glad to have found this group! I think the hardest part — having patience — is ahead, as I start to feel like I can do things … but shouldn’t … until fully healed. My biggest nightmare is re-starting everything too soon, having the pain come back, and winding up needing revision surgery. Cheers all!