Life Update: Unexpected Setback

So, February has got off to an unexpected start…

I was at the gym on Thursday night. I’d waited until about 9pm to avoid the post-work crowd, which has become my usual weeknight routine. After cycling for half an hour, I headed to the treadmill for a quick run. After about four minutes, I decided I wanted to move because the guy beside me smelled unpleasant, to say the least. So, I hit stop, grabbed my things and let the belt slowly glide me to the end of the machine…

I don’t quite understand what happened next, but I hopped off the machine and my left ankle just gave way. It buckled and I decked it in the middle of the gym. I thought I had just lost my balance, but when I tried to get up, I couldn’t put any weight on my ankle at all. I looked down and it seemed like I had a golf ball in my sock.

That’s when I started to panic. I tried to take deep breaths and stop myself from crying, but the pain was getting unbearable. The worst part is, nobody seemed to notice – or care! I’ve always maintained that the staff at PureGym are pretty inattentive and this just proved it. But, what shocked me more was how none of the public rushed to help me, either. I’d like to think if I noticed someone writhing in pain on the floor, I’d go over and see if they were alright.

Eventually, a guy asked if I was okay and if I wanted some help. He went to go find a member of staff… then came back two minutes later to say he couldn’t find anyone and got on with his workout! Really?! So, I sat there for what felt like forever trying to calm myself down, before another guy came over to ask if I needed help. He faired better than the last one and found a member of staff… who didn’t know what to do, so went and got a colleague.

Sprained ankle

The pair didn’t want to move me and suggested I head to A&E to get it checked out. They asked if I had anyone who could take me and couldn’t believe that I didn’t. But, I have no family in Edinburgh and none of my friends can drive! I’d driven myself to the gym and there was no way I could drive with my ankle like that. So, one of them called for an ambulance, but they said they couldn’t come get me because it wasn’t life-threatening.

The pair helped me up onto a chair and got an ice pack for my ankle. Whilst I was there, I had to answer some questions for their accident report. I thought I was going to have to get a taxi to the hospital, but one of the personal trainers kindly offered to take me there himself. The next issue was actually getting me to the car…

Unbelievably, the gym didn’t have a wheelchair. So, after trying to hobble with me to the car, they actually used an office chair with wheels to get me there… Just picture that for a moment. When we eventually got on the road, he ended up driving me to a hospital that didn’t have an A&E! I swear, I’m not making this up.

Finally, we made it to Edinburgh Royal Infirmary, where he left me. I’ve never had to go to A&E before in my life, so having to be there on my own for three hours was quite hard. I was taken through to be triaged after about 40 minutes and given two co-codamol. I had to wait a little longer before getting an X-ray, then taken back through to the waiting room. But, they came back to get me again for another X-ray because they didn’t get everything they needed… Not a good sign.

I was then left for well over an hour before being seen by the doctor for no more than three minutes. He said they had spent a while debating my X-rays as to whether I had chipped a bone or not. He said he wasn’t convinced, so he simply gave me crutches and sent me on my way. Three hours for a pair of crutches! If it doesn’t show any signs of improvement, I’ve to go to the GP and get myself a physiotherapy appointment.


I had to get a taxi home from the hospital and got to bed around 2am, so I took Friday off work to rest. My Dad offered to come through to Edinburgh and bring me home for the weekend like the hero he is! He also rescued my car from Ocean Terminal while he was here, so I don’t have to worry about it getting broken into or stolen. When I got home, Mum had left me a bouquet of flowers and a box of Maltesers as a get well soon gift, which was a lovely surprise.

I’ve spent the weekend resting with my foot elevated and an ice pack on it occasionally. I have a newfound respect for those who’ve ever had to use crutches; they’re so much harder than they look! I still can’t put any weight on my foot, but I’m hoping this will improve by Monday so I can hobble my way to work. I wasn’t given any painkillers from the hospital, but Dad had co-codamol in which I’ve been taking. It makes me feel fairly spaced out, but at least that takes away from the pain in my ankle.

I’m so frustrated with myself for doing something so stupid. I should’ve waited until the treadmill had stopped completely, like I usually do, before stepping off. But, hindsight is a wonderful thing. I’m just disappointed that my gym routine will have to wait until I’m healthy again. Even when I can go back, I won’t be hitting the treadmill again any time soon! At least I’ve got Penny to look after me…

Penny ankle


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