Rehab Progress, Turning 30 and Enjoying Seattle

It’s been almost two months since I had surgery, and so far, the recovery is going pretty well. I still have a little ways to go, but I hope that this next six weeks will be that jump up to that next level, closer to getting me back on the track.

It took a while for me just to be able to walk. I couldn’t walk for the first two weeks and was on crutches for the next three weeks, then moved to a cane, and gradually, worked my way back to walking on my own. I’ve been doing it on my own for the last couple of weeks, but I’m still trying to get the strength back in my legs and still building that up day by day. I also still have some scar tissue in the area where they did most of the work that needs to break up.

Once I was first allowed to start doing rehab work, I had to do a lot of straight leg work because I couldn’t do anything with a bent knee that shortly after the surgery. It was a lot of work with ankle weights, calf raises, ankle curls, glute exercises, all designed to strengthen the muscles around the knee to help take pressure off the knee.

I can feel the difference on a week-to-week basis. Since they’ve cleared me to do a little more, I’ve also been riding a stationary bike and running in the pool, which has helped a lot. The next step is to do more with a bent knee because that’s going to simulate more how I run, and the position that my body will be in.

At this point, I have to just go based on what my body feels like. With certain exercises you can feel when you’re ready to move up or do something different. The last couple of weeks, I started feeling like that and the trainers I’m working with felt that way too without me even having to say it. The doctors have said, “You know your body. You can feel when you’re ready to move up.”

The important thing is to listen to my body because my mind is definitely ready ahead of when my body will be. Until my body is ready, I have to listen to the pain, and really think about what I can and can’t do. If I feel any type of discomfort, I just have to back it off and maybe try again in a couple days.

You can progress pretty fast, but you don’t want to push it to where you hurt something else because you’re not ready.

This rehab is similar to what I went through the last time I had knee surgery. It seems like it went a little quicker last time, but I had different work done this time so I had to be a little more careful with the exercises in the beginning — that’s why they implemented some of the straight leg exercises — to make sure I was progressing slowly instead of jumping right in.

Outside of my rehab, I have to remind myself to limit my activities. I’m used to doing a lot of things in one day and really getting after it, but sometimes I really need to remember to slow down.

Having the surgery toward the end of the season has helped me take it slow a bit. But at the same time, I haven’t run in a couple of months, so I can’t fight the feeling that I am a little behind. Because of that, I would like to get started earlier than I normally would if I had completed a season. It makes me want to speed this thing up so I can do some running and jogging.

I’ll be checking back in with the surgeon in St. Louis in a few weeks, and I’m hoping to be cleared to ramp it up a bit so I can get back on the track soon.

TURNING 30

I just celebrated my 30th birthday earlier this month, so I was in Seattle for a while to enjoy it with my friends and family.

I feel like when you go through things like what I’m going through with rehab, the important thing is to remember that there’s still life outside of track, and to enjoy the important moments that are still there. That helps me keep my mind off of sitting there and beating myself up because I’m watching everyone else compete while I’m just sitting out.

Everybody that I have around me has been really supportive during this time. My parents and my friends have been great. My husband has done so much for me in the last month, there are times I don’t want to even ask for anything else, but I’m sure he enjoyed it, even if I got on his nerves at times.

While I was in Seattle, I got to participate in several great events for the city.

After speaking at the Love and 4Giveness event in St. Louis, I helped Jackie Joyner-Kersee organize to bring the Love and 4Giveness program up to Seattle last Saturday. It really meant a lot to me for her to come and shed some light on the athletes in Seattle, and the running programs they’re trying to set in motion.

That night, Jackie and I attended the Tabor 100 banquet, where they honored Paul Allen and Chris Hansen. Obviously, Paul Allen is a big deal here in Seattle, so they wanted Jackie to attend and they invited me to attend as well. It was a fun-filled day.

PART OF THE 12TH MAN

To complete a great weekend, I went to the Seahawks game against the San Francisco 49ers last Sunday night with a bunch of my friends, my brother and my dad.

It was so much fun — that was probably the best time I’ve ever had at a game. It was so loud — we used the word crackin’ — it was crazy. Everybody was totally into it. It’s great for Seattle to have an environment like that. It just shows you how successful the city is and can be. I think the city is thriving now with jobs and sports. Without a NBA team here since the Sonics left, everybody channels their energy into football.

I also feel a little more of a connection to the Seahawks because of Pete Carroll, who is doing an amazing job. Pete was the coach at USC during my time being a Trojan, and he took our team to a whole new level.

They made history and it was great being at USC during that era to be a part of that. There are several other members of that USC staff now in Seattle, and to be able to enjoy that connection in my home city now, it’s a good feeling. I feel like they’re my people and now they’re here in my city, so I get the best of both worlds.

DRIVEN BY YOUR SUPPORT

I just want to say thank you to all of my fans for supporting in me and believing in me.

I’m always thankful to the people who support me even if it’s just a little message. After I tweet something about therapy, people will tweet something like “hope you’re having a speedy recovery” or “get better soon,” just those little things. I’m very appreciative of those things. I may not get to respond to all of them, but I do read them, and it helps me get through that time.

You guys push me to do nothing but great things, and I want you to expect nothing but great things these next four years. I expect to have the best four years of my track career.

Summer Through Ginnie’s Lens

It’s been a whirlwind summer for Ginnie Crawford, from competing through pain at the U.S. Championships to coaching in Cali, spending time with friends in family in LA and Seattle, then heading over to St. Louis, GC has seen plenty. Through her Instagram, she takes us along for the journey.

Instagraming The Offseason

After a long track season — one of the best of her career — Ginnie Crawford is using the offseason to unwind and catch her breath. Since arriving back in Los Angeles in early September, Ginnie has spent time in LA, Miami, Cancun and Seattle, enjoying life to the fullest. She took fans along for the ride with her camera and Instagram.

The offseason started just one day after Ginnie returned from abroad after her final race of the year in Croatia when a friend surprised her with a trip to the Video Music Award at Staples Center.

LA life...MTV VMA's with @elementofjess

From there it was on to the weekend, as Ginnie celebrated her September 7th birthday with friends and family in LA.

A little bday fun with great friends

9.10 - With my favs! @brittni_mitchell @vincettamendola @domesticdiva1982@lataunya2002 @valleyshaq
We are at it again! Shutting the city down

A week after her birthday, Ginnie got the special treat of participating in a gold tournament with R&B singer Brian McKnight.

Me and Brian McKnight golfing yesterday

Just days later, it was off to Miami, where Ginnie and her friends spent their days on the beach and their nights in the club.

Miami Beach Fun! Love these ladies!

Miami nights it was all a dream!
Club LIV with the ladies @lataunya2002 @dominquedarden @choice315

The group returned from Miami and Ginnie had another week in Los Angeles before heading back out on another min-vacation with some friends and fellow athletes/training partners to Cancun, Mexico.

#Mexico Living

The trip featured sandy beaches, plenty of realxing and a taste of the nightlife, but it also took Ginnie and her friends on a few adventures include snorkeling and cave jumping!

#yolo jump in the Mayan cave today and swam around
@af85 @lataunya2002 @dharp100mh the ladies
My ace! BFF! @lataunya2002
Me and my girl Allyson all smiles after snorkeling #mexico
Enjoy every moment of life
This collage is kind of vein lol

Following her trip to Mexico, Ginnie went back to her hometown of Seattle, where she watched her USC Trojans beat the Washington Huskies  and her Seattle Seahawks beat the New England Patriots on back-to-back days at Century Link Field. Since then, Ginnie has been taking some time to enjoy Seattle before she has to head back to LA.

USC vs UW game in my home city with my ace/ninja/BFF @elementofjess #fighton
Had fun watching my Seahawks play today!

 

Happy Monday!
It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood! *mr. Rogers voice* #206

To keep up with Ginnie throughout the offseason, follow her on Twitter, Like her page on Facebook and find her on Instagram @vgpowell.

Honored in Rainier

Just days after giving her all to chase her Olympic dreams, Ginnie Crawford was back where it all began this week, being honored for her accomplishments in Seattle.

Ginnie won’t be representing the United States in London after falling just short in the 100-meter hurdles final at the 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials. But she’s still a hometown hero and the Rainier Beach Boys and Girls Club showed how proud Seattle is of GC when they put together a ceremony to honor her and placed her jersey on the wall beside those of NBA veterans Brandon Roy and Martell Webster.

Ginnie told the Seattle Times that the honor and all the kind words spoken about her by peers and friends helped to lift her spirits after the disappointing end to her run at the 2012 Olympics.

“I’ve smiled so many smiles. So many people say inspiring things. Really, from the bottom of my heart, I want to thank all of them,” she said. “Usually, you’re thinking that no one wants this as bad as you. Well, they don’t, but they want it badly for you. That matters, too. That gives me strength.”

In addition to the announcement by the club that they would be honoring her, Ginnie had a few announcements of her own. She and her husband Shawn Crawford donated $5,000 to the Rainier Vista Boys & Girls Club to start a Healthy Lifestyles program to help keep children physically fit and practicing a healthy diet.

She also made a definitive statement about her future in track and field, that her career would continue, because she doesn’t know any other way to live.

“This is my life,” she said. “This is what I do. I’ve learned a lot about strength and perseverance the past few days. What if I was fighting life and death? Am I going to give up and break, or am I going to fight for my life? There’s no doubt I’ll try again [for the Olympics] in four years. And I’ll try another four years after that if I don’t make it. Failure is not an option. Being defeated is not an option.”

RELATED STORIES

Ginnie Sits Down with Q It Up

A trip to her native Seattle for Ginnie Crawford means seeing family and catching up with friends.

But Ginnie also made sure to take time for others during her trip home. On Saturday afternoon she spoke to kids at the Kirkland Boys and Girls Club about nutrition, eating right and staying in shape. Later, she caught up with Aaron Levine of Seattle’s FOX affiliate Q13 for the station’s Q It Up Sports Show.

Ginnie talked during the show about her road back from a 2007 knee injury, here work with youngsters in an effort to prevent juvenile diabetes, preparing for the Olympic Trials in nearby Eugene, Oregon and her dream of competing in the 100-meter hurdles in this year’s Olympics:

“I’ve always had this dream since I was little and I really and truly believe that I will be in the Olympics and I can bring home the gold medal,” she said. “I definitely feel that I have the potential and I’m putting in the work.”

Watch the entire interview from Q It Up Sports below:

ORIGINAL STORY
Olympic Hopeful Ginnie Crawford On Q It Up Sports (Q13 FOX, May 20, 2012)