Courtenay McFadden (Pivot Cycles p/b DNA Cyling) is, in a way, a new woman this season. After suffering from hip pain for years, she had surgery on her right hip to repair a labral tear shortly after the World Championships in Bieles. After seeing her race last weekend in Louisville, we can safely conclude she has come a long way since we chatted with her just a few weeks post-op.
McFadden has been documenting her recovery on Instagram and on her blog at courtenaymcfadden.com. She has dubbed her repaired right hip “Hip 2.0” and has been open and honest about the recovery process with a willingness to share the ups and downs she has experienced.
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To go from the most fit and strong I've ever been while on the bike, to spending most my days recovering on the couch hasn't been easy. Feeling my fitness dwindle and my leg shrink can be defeating. 4 weeks + 4 days post op I'm happy my CPM machine days are long gone, I can walk without crutches (at home to start), and I'm starting to move…a little more. My independence is increasing, and I've made friends along the way. Some days hurt like hell and I want to cry and scream in frustration, while other days feel easy breezy. Not only am I learning incredible patience, but love. Love for the body I have and how far it got me, love for my husband and his will to keep giving (even if there are days we're on ends with each other), and love for my community, my tribe, that has helped get me through these last 4 weeks. #healing #patience #kindness #love #labraltear #hiplabraltear #hiparthroscopy #femoralacetabularimpingement #courtenaysroadtorecovery
When I finished the first day of Jingle Cross, I burst into tears. Not from pain or discomfort, but from sheer joy.
8 months ago when I had surgery, I believed I was super human. I believed I could heal faster than anyone out there. I believed I would get back out on my bike and start racing by late Spring, early Summer.
I believed rules didn’t apply to me.
I believed if I did nothing for 2 months, I would heal and be good to go. I believed I could race in June. I believed I was special. Word to the wise.
You’re not special.
I’ve blogged about my recovery, I’ve instagram’ed it galore, I’ve tweeted, I’ve posted on Facebook. I tried to keep my posts as positive as possible. What wasn’t seen, was the ocean of tears that I shed in the first 3 weeks of recovery, and again at 3 months. I struggled with wondering if I made the right choice. I struggled wondering if I would ever get back to racing. Every feel I felt in my hip, it made me cry. I struggled, and I struggled big time.
Since that post at the end of September, McFadden has gotten some impressive results for someone who could not start training for the cyclocross season until July. She won Day 2 of the US Open of Cyclocross in Boulder and finished fourth last Sunday at the Pan-American Championships.
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8 weeks post op (as of yesterday) and was given the green🚦to ride outside, for 30 minutes to start, and you better believe I rode for all 30 of those minutes. I can only ride for 1 hour for the next 4 weeks, no standing, no steep hills, no intervals, no sprints, no low cadence, no harder than a 5 out of 10, but, I CAN RIDE OUTSIDE!!! I would say my hip feels about the way it did last year at this time. Not really painful on the bike, just discomfort. Don't get me wrong, some movements still hurt, I'm still limited in some range of motion, and I have a ways to go, but I'll keep taking it one day at time. 💖
We spoke with McFadden after her fourth-place finish at the Pan-American Championships to hear about the race and get an update on Hip 2.0.
Stay tuned for our continuing coverage of the 2017 Derby City Cup and Pan-American Championships.