So, got my annual physical today, from my doctor. She is a) very practical and blunt (which is why I like her); and b) a non-athlete. One of the questions I had on my list to ask her was whether I should get a bone density test done of my feet.
To put this request in context: I have a history of bone density issues stemming back many, many years, and have gotten a scan every 18-24 months to track my progress -- the scan focuses on pelvis, femur, and spine. Over those years, via running and proper nutrition, I've managed to get the bone density of my pelvis and femur OUT of the osteopenic range, and into the normal range (the spine's bone density is trending the other direction, which is why I had added in heavy barbell squats and good mornings to my weekly workouts -- until I broke my foot, anyway).
My last scan was in March of this year, so my doctor asked me what exactly I would gain from having a second one done so soon, especially of a different area. Her point was that even if it read horribly for my feet, she wouldn't recommend medications like Fosamax, given the risks of those drugs and the readings of the previous scan with respect to important stuff like spine, hip, femur.
So, I told her that I was exclusively pool running right now, but at some point was going to return to normal running. I've been operating under the assumption that a large part of my running will be replaced by pool running even after I'm fully healed and back to speed, but knowing what the bone density of my feet is (and whether there's a specific concern there) will help my coach and I decide the proper proportions of pool running versus land, when that time comes.
a) well, you broke your foot, so you already know there's an issue.
Can't argue there.
b) why do you have to split pool running and land? Is there really that much difference? Why not just stick to the pool from now on?
I was...flummoxed. I've always struggled with situations where it's clear that someone doesn't get what is just so blindingly obvious, and this was no exception.
How do you explain the difference?
Finally I stammered out something about:
a) I really enjoy competing, and there are no pool-running races. You need to race on land, and thus some proportion of your training DOES need to be running.
b) Pool running can be horrifically boring -- you're not going anywhere or getting outside, just doing little cool blue circles for hours.
c) I hate hate hate chlorine, and the stiff hair, dry skin, and dissolving nail polish that accompanies it.
d) Pool running belts really aggravate my acid reflux.
e) I look decent in a pair of running split shorts, but I have yet to find a flattering bathing suit.
f) I just bought a new pair of Kinvaras in the most awesome colors ever (black and electric blue), and I'm going to cry if I never get to wear them.
[answers C, D, E and F were in my head].
We settled on my getting my next bone scan some time next spring, and getting the feet done at that time.
But still -- how do you answer a question like that? I was stumped.