Well, probably not exactly a rib but the cartilage from the highest floating rib on my right side to my actual rib cage. How did this happen? I went for a 20 mile run Sunday and proceeded to slip and fall on an iced over section of pavement going downhill turning a corner. I landed on my right side. Now watching runners fall is always kind of amusing. We are so focused on running that we just fall. There is no putting our arms out to slow ourselves down. There is no slow motion, down to our knees, fall down slowly action. It's: trip, boom. After I got back up I took two steps and forgot about the pain. After I finished the run it started to hurt but I thought it was a side stitch because we didn't really cool down or stretch. It continued to hurt and 31 hours after it started to hurt I remembered that I fell on the ice.
(The bruise is just beginning!)
I thought I was just being a wimp. I thought maybe I was dehydrated or slept strange. Then I remembered the fall and told the trainer at WPI and she poked and pushed and said that it would be two months before it was healed. She also said that I could do whatever was at my threshold of pain. This means no stopping. I mean on Monday I ran over 15 miles including an eight mile tempo at 6:08 pace. That's a good day for me healthy, but I did it with a broken rib, the day after a 20 mile run at 6:40 pace. I must be some kind of different.
It hurts to sit up from laying back, it hurts to take a deep breath (but really who needs a deep breath to run six minute miles?), and it hurts to touch it, it hurts to cough, and it hurts to laugh. If I just smile instead of laughing please excuse me, but it hurts.
Now why would I be so enthusiastic and optimistic about having a broken rib? Well, I thought I had a side stitch for over a day. I've never known how my pain tolerance compares to other people because I can not be other people. This shows me that I can handle a lot of pain. Granted I have a somewhat minor break compared to others.
I look at other people in the world in awe. They do so much more than me. I measure myself to the impossibility of being the best in the world, at everything I do. So I hammer on myself. I want to be the best. More specifically: I want to be the best (that I can be without sacrificing too much). Which is to say I do not measure myself to the world's standards but to my own. I hope to do things that have never been done. I also hope I am able to do things other people have done. So if Brian Sell ran through a broken rib, well then, I will too.