Monday, November 7, 2011

Patient Success Story - Jen Dobrowolski

For the second year in a row, I longed for the marathon. It was too late for Chicago in 2010. The race was closed by the time I decided to register, in mid March. They actually announced that they were not taking any more applications on the same day I had mailed mine off. Indy, however, was still open and in November, so my training wouldn't be altered much. I was nervous, though, because I had heard Indy was hillier and this would be my first marathon.
After completing my first half marathon with my sister, Missy in August of 2010 (Rock and Roll Half Marathon August 1, 2010 in Chicago), I had strained my left knee. All the bouncing in and out of the masses, during the race had me hurting. I did not listen to my body and rest after this race. Instead, I had to take a month off running and by the time the marathon came, I was up to 10 miles. I did not feel ready. I really wanted Chicago. One more year to train, I thought.
About 2 months ago, I did a long run of 14 miles on the treadmill, which I learned is a real no no. Then, despite the pain, I continued to run 4 more days that same week. With 6 weeks left to train, I decided to take 2 weeks off to recover. Ice, ibuprofen and all the stretching in the world did nothing. I got to 6 miles and I was in pain.
I went to Fleet Feet for some new shoes as I'm sure I was overdue and too cheap to spend the money. I was referred to Tiffany Bozovich, a chiropractor. When it came to chiropractors, I was more than a little apprehensive. I've always known chiropractors to manipulate the spine as many do and as a neuro nurse, I know that can be awfully dangerous. But I was told that Dr. Bozovich assigned exercises to awaken muscles that weren't working, due to overuse. So I had to give it a try.
The exercises she gave me to do were simple. They took only a couple minutes a day, if that. I wondered how such a simple thing could make such a big difference and I had my doubts.

Running shoes $200.
Entry Fee $190.
Ahh, to run down the streets of Chicago and finish the Chicago Marathon, priceless!
My goal: 4:30.
My time: 4:27!

Tiffany Bozovich, I'm sorry for ever doubting you! And Terri, you are wonderful! No one could do to my Iliotibial Band what you did!
If you are a runner, and you've never had a chance to run a marathon, you are missing out!
You don't need music. The crowd will carry you! You can stay to the way left or right and slap everyone's hands for encouragement. You will be sprayed with water, doused with it, sponged with it and nearly drowned in it. You will see people fall and people stop, but know that you can keep going. You may see men dressed as Lady Gaga and singing her music. Elvis was there. There were teenagers and people over 80. There were people from Europe, Africa, and Asia running this race. There were fun signs to laugh at: toenails are overrated. I concur as I lost one. There was a guy painted orange. It was a gorgeous day and the best parts of Chicago to see. I was by Wrigley and U.S. Cellular. I went through the Mariachi bands and China Town with the dragons. A friend told me to look around at mile 25. He said: Take out your earphones here! You'll want to pay attention! With one mile to go, you want to remember this! And he was right! The crowd was awesome and massive. And as I turned the final corner, to my left I saw the 26 mile marker, to my right I saw my friends and family waving and recording me. And up ahead, 200 meters, was the finish line. My father always taught me to be tough, but I could not help it when the tears welled up in my eyes. This was the best feeling I ever had in my whole life! Now, I feel like I can accomplish anything my heart desires! Can't wait till next year!
If you are not a runner, start now! If I could start at 35 without ever running before, anyone can. It will change your life, forever!