Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Transformation Tuesday: Valerie Weeks Runs to Recovery

Four years ago, Valerie Weeks suffered a nasty fall while volunteering at a community garden, which resulted in a trimalleolar fracture and a dislocated foot. She now has a six-inch plate, ten screws, and tension wire holding her joints and once shredded ligaments together.  Although she wasn’t an active runner before the accident, being bed ridden for a long period of time really changed her perspective.

“It’s amazing the things you want so badly when you literally can’t do them. I felt like a prisoner, and I would dream about running,” Valerie said. “When that cast came off nine weeks later, I swore I would never take the gift of movement for granted.”

Valerie notes the road to recovery has been long, and in the beginning, just getting out of bed was excruciating, but she took it one day at a time and started running in May 2018. Although it was extremely painful at times, she powered through with the okay from her doctor.

  “My favorite part of coming to class is checking out the screen to see how gnarly and awesome the workout is going to be! It’s kind of exciting.”

“Some days are great, some days aren’t. I used to listen to cheesy motivational YouTube videos when I didn’t want to run. This is going to sound really lame, but I go just ten more steps because there are people out there who dream about running and never will.” Valerie said. “My momentary pain is nothing. I’m fortunate.”

Now, Valerie is training for a half marathon in May at Yosemite National Park, and she recently signed up for a Learn to Row class at South Lake Union Crew. She notes that classes at Seattle Kettlebell Club have been a fantastic and effective addition to her marathon training and rowing and notes that even on weeks where she’s unable to log all of her miles, KettleFIT classes have been an excellent supplement for running.

“Dave and Hailey [instructors] often help me modify things like burpees and plank jacks, so I can still challenge myself and not push my bionic ankle too hard,” Valerie said. “Now, I’m logging 7-9-mile training runs and my pain is minimal. I believe SKC has played a major part in my journey. I’m a much stronger runner. I used to think I used kettlebells as cross training for running, but I wonder if it might be the other way around.” 

Valerie also mentioned that coming to SKC has helped improve her life outside the gym.

“If I can make it through a four-panel class [one of the more challenging KettleFIT's], I can make it through anything!” Valerie said. “SKC is a community. Everyone has been really nice, and I love seeing my classmates. It’s a fantastic workout! The instructors are amazing people. I just love it here.” 

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