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One Month

A month ago I ran the NYC Marathon. Ok, a month ago I power walked the NYC Marathon. Since then….. Not so much. And when I say not so much, I really mean nothing. No cross training. No biking. No nothing.

At first, I said that it was because I needed to rehab my feet which is truthful. They need to get it together. Although a month of rest probably was just what they needed to deal with the Plantar Fasciitis. Then I believe I’m also dealing with Morton’s Neuroma probably aggravated from the power walking which has a completely different landing than running. So rest has been good.

Right up until it becomes more than rest.

So much in life is out of our control. Sometimes it feels like nothing is in our control and no matter how hard we try, we are running in the wind. After a while it is easy to give up trying because what’s the point. It’s easy to use a crutch even a valid crutch to blame everything on until you just stop trying.

I’ve been thinking about the Decade Challenge. I’m sure you’ve seen it on Facebook. The compare where were you then compared to now. I find it somewhat depressing. I jumped in 2013 training for my first ever event… A Sprint Triathlon. You know because why start small and it would be a great way to get back to being healthier. That was just the beginning as you know.

I did get healthier. Probably the fittest that I had ever been. Up until being healthy wasn’t in my control. With the surgery leaving me with Hypothyroidism (expected) and Hypoparathyroidism (very unexpected), I gained 20 pounds. I lost a lot of my steam. I deal with aches, pains, memory issues, and just generally feeling sucky on a daily basis. I persevered and pushed on moving while at a slower pace still moving.

Then there was the beautiful Natapara (my Hypopara peeps understand) which brought me back to normalcy. I was living the life again until the rug was pulled out. Yeah, I know you’ve heard this before. Without the Natpara I had decisions to make. Is it smart to push my body to the limits? If I want to continue to run, I have to get the feet issues under control which also requires addressing the weight issue. For me, with the issues I’ve had with my feet the extra weight is a problem. For me, I’m also not happy with where I am. No, I will never be a size 6 but I need to get back to where I my jeans fit.

Part of having so much in your life out of your control is that it is easier to not face the truth. The truth that while there is so much out of control that there is much in your control. Not to say that the things in your control are easy to face, deal with, or tackle but they are still there. Sometimes the hardest thing is deciding what to do and after that things fall into place. This is true for so many things in our lives. The holding pattern is what keeps us from moving forward. The fear of what if I can’t do it? What if it’s the wrong decision? What if….?????? What if……..??????? What if…..???????? It’s the what if’s in life that hold you down and the fear of failure that keep you from trying.

It is my fear of failure that has kept me from getting back on the horse with my weight. Hubby and I tried in January. He lost 50 pounds. I lost 4 and I’m not sure but I think I may have found them. While he does have it easier by virtue of just being a man. No I’m not being sexist…… My doctor has even used the phrase, “A woman your age with hormone blah, blah, blah….” So there’s that. Than the lack of thyroid. Then the aches, pains, and exhaustion that comes with Hypopara. Yup. Out of my control. What is in my control is what I put in my mouth. How I decide to use my energy and give myself on the days where there is none.

This probably is a good time to start too because it will keep me in check during the holiday season. And while I do have a limited amount of energy during the day, I can find time to do something for myself with it while doing what needs to be done. Simple things that I actually enjoy. Like this morning dusting off my juicer and having a yummy clean eating juice for breakfast instead of processed food. My body needs less processed foods and when I’m eating right, I feel better. I think that’s true for most of us.

I don’t expect this to be easy. I hope that I don’t give up. Even if it takes longer than I want….. Even if it seems impossible…… I know that what I put into my body is equally as important if not more than what the scale says. Most of all I hope to once again realize that I can do hard stuff even if it seems much harder now than it used to be.

So with all of that I’m already thinking of goals for 2020 and ways to actually reach them. Because as the saying goes, hindsight is 2020 (yeah mom joke there… my apologies, but that’s just me).

Rest, Recover, Repeat?

When running a marathon, so many random thoughts will pop into your mind. Some are fleeting. Some stick with you for a few miles. One that usually pops into my head is “I’m NEVER doing this again.”

Exhibits A, B, C

2014 – First marathon, Philly – This was supposed to be a one and done. I swore I just wanted to cross one marathon finish line and then I could call it a day.

2015 Marine Corps – I put in for lottery and as a fluke got in. I literally was dropping some F bombs to my sister who ran on the course with me at the end. I told her how stupid marathons were. How ridiculous it was that people wasted their time coming to watch runners (mind you she flew in from California). Lastly, I swore NEVER again (after NY because I’d already done the 9+1 for it)

2016 -NYCM – This was it. My first NYCM and was going to be my only. I mean how can you not run NY if your as close to the city as me. I even put off my surgery for my thyroid, so that I could run it. This was only marathon that I hit the wall because I ran the first half like there was not a second half. I was done and had my NYCM medal so what more did I need. NO more!

2017 – I put in for the Chicago marathon while still recovering from getting my thyroid out and dealing with learning to live Hypopara. This was flipping my finger to all that I was dealing with and I just needed to run one as a hypopara to show I could do it. It was not a pretty race as it was hot, but it is my fastest post surgery marathon. I was done. I proved my point. NO more.

2018 – I felt like there were signs that I should sign up to run NYCM as charity runner for Sandy Hook Promise. The signs were everywhere, but if I didn’t get picked at least I tried. Well, damn, they released that I really believe in their cause and picked me. So, yes, I was running with a purpose and I would do what I could to support Sandy Hook Promise; but I was only doing it one time. Until I did it again.

2019 NYCM Sandy Hook Promise Runner

During my run, I thought about that maybe my body just isn’t cut out to be a marathon runner. Maybe I should just stick to running shorter distances. That running 26.2 is just not for me. I could still support my team from the sidelines. I could still spread the message of Sandy Hook Promise. I just needed to give my body a rest because running marathons weren’t for me and I should focus my energy elsewhere.

Then I crossed the finish line.

I still felt that way. I still wondered if maybe this is too much for my body. Wondering if I needed to spend time on recovery. Getting my feet under control. Dealing with the aches and pains. Knowing that maybe worrying about my calcium crashing while running is just not worth it.

Then I went home. I read all the messages from my Facebook live videos, my running group, my friends and the chats with team members. And while I do need to spend time on healing my body – dealing with the tight calves, dealing with the feet, dealing with the pain that still lingers on the side of my calf and knowing that if I really want to run stronger/better/easier on feet that I also need to loose 20 pounds. Like seriously 20 pounds.

Then I thought….. It’s getting to the holiday season. There is no way that is going to happen. Then I realized that training would not start until Spring. Then I thought about how much I love being part of the Sandy Hook Promise Team, how some friends will be running NY next year, and that it might motivate me to keep going.

Then I thought…… Your crazy……

Not wrong.

Not right.

Then I thought about all the work in raising the minimum of $3,0000 to be part of their team. Then I thought of what I could do differently next year. The beauty is that I don’t need to make any decisions now or in the near future. For now my focus is recovery.

So I will continue to roll. I need to get to acupuncture. I need to do the things that I know I should do because chances are pretty good…….. that if you give the girl a medal, she’s going to want another one. Besides I’m pretty much on a roll now.

I’m Still Standing

Yesterday, I had a choice. I could run through the pain or I could run a smart race. I could only do one. As a runner, we often think that we need to dig deep, run through injury, or somehow we aren’t tough enough. I beg to differ with that. Sometimes it is harder to make what you know is the right choice for your life even if it might not be what you necessarily want to do or as a runner think that you should do.

Aerbically I was feeling good yesterday. I started off with a strong run. I kept my paces conservative in the 11’s and 12’s. My splits were on target by the 15K. The problem was that by mile 6 my feet were starting to hurt. So I pushed through. I kept on running. Up until I didn’t.

Aebocially I had it in to push through. I was feeling strong. I was feeling confident in being able to get that 5:45 that I was aiming for. The flip side though was at what cost would I get that time. I wasn’t winning. I wasn’t PRing. I was only finishing. I knew that if I continued to push to run, I might not be able to walk like had happened only a month prior. I didn’t want to end up in a boot which since it would be both feet, might be complicated. It would also effect my job as teaching preschool gymnastics does require your feet. The cost was too high.

So I made a decision to power walk the marathon. There were times that I did run but they were fleeting moments and the pain reminded me that it wasn’t a good idea. Not to say there was no pain with the power walking, but as my Mantra became….. I was stronger than the pain.

By the Half way point, I knew that if I planned to get to the finish line and be able to go about my life the next day that I would need to stick with the walking. And for anyone who thinks that power walking a marathon is easy, I advise you to go for it and experience it yourself. My legs still became heavy, my quads and calves still screamed; but I kept on moving. I knew if I stopped that starting would be too hard.

The beauty of power walking is that I did several live stream videos for my facebook friends. It was more for me than them, but I do think they enjoyed “experiencing” the marathon in a way only those on the course can. The excitement. The bands, choirs, and views of the city that you can only get when it’s all shut down for 50,000 plus runners. Plus so many of these friends have support me in so many ways and supported the whole reason I was there….. Sandy Hook Promise.

This year since I was power walking, I did not miss the Sandy Hook Promise cheer section. It was the highlight of my run. To go and get hugs and support from my Team reminding me of why I was there and what was really important carried me. It also helped that they were at mile 17!

There is more to unpack with this event, but for now I need to go roll, stretch and soak.

Oh and for those wondering………. 6:20:41

A reverse PR, but done is done!

Denial is a Wonderful Thing

Runner’s are a funny breed when it comes to getting injured.   I know many runners who the first thing they do when they wipe out  on a run is to stop their Garmin.  I, personally, don’t see anything wrong with that either.   Seriously!   If you don’t stop your watch, you are going to mess up your paces.    Admit it, you do the same thing.   Don’t you?

Then there are the times that maybe the injury is a little more than just falling during a run.   Denial is a powerful thing and most runners I know embrace it 100%   Even if we aren’t in denial about getting injured, maybe we are denial about how injured we are.   Maybe something like rolling your ankle.  Yes, you can admit that it is hurt.   No, you can’t admit how hurt because that’s just crazy talk.

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That being said, I’ve been a very good girl and rested for two weeks.   Is the ankle all better.   Nope.    Does that mean I am going to keep resting it?   Nope.

This past weekend I took it out on a test run.   A local Parish in town has an annual 5K.   It’s for a good cause.   It’s a great fast course and it’s local.    I knew I was going to be running on Monday, so I thought this was a perfect place to test out my foot.   Seems reasonable to me, don’t you think?

I went to the 5K with no expectations except to test ankle.   That might be a slight lie, but that is what I told myself.   I did know that I wasn’t going to push it too hard.    The race started and it felt so good to be running that I just went with it.   I felt my foot/ankle the whole time, but  just under the surface.   I ended up with a really nice run, but was sad that I was 3 seconds off of a personal record.   Official time 27:20:40.   Now I had wished that I pushed a little harder, but it is what it is.   Besides I was running again, so Yeah!

After the race, I did feel sore and my foot was still tender.   But it is what it is.   It just needs some more time and I’m being smart about it.  Really, I think that I am.

Monday I went for 8 miles and a nice and easy pace.    My foot was more of a dull ache and manageable.   I actually felt better after the 8 than I did after the 5K since I wasn’t pushing the pace.    I am rolling into the end of my 50K training and really need to be smart but also prepared for the race.  Scary thought is that it is literally only a month away!!    One thing that I have going for me besides having a great coach is that I am not putting any pressure on for my pace.   My goal is to finish.    That is all.   Seems like both a reasonable and doable goal to me.

What type of injured runner are you?

Not that I am saying I’m injured.   I’m just need some TLC:)

 

I Didn’t Ask for any Lemons!

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Yeah, we have all heard the “If Life Gives You Lemons” analogy.   You know what?   I find that a pretty sucky analogy because sometimes you don’t want lemonade.   Sometimes you want a Margarita!    That being said though I tend to be a pretty positive person because I learned early on you’ve just got to suck it up no matter what.   So if you’ve got to suck on a lemon because that is all you got, you better learn to like lemons.

Now just because I tend to be a positive person does not mean that things don’t get to me.   I am not a cartoon character after all.   So 7 days ago when i rolled my ankle, I was mad at myself.    Then when I realized that this was more than just a give it a few days rest kind of roll, I had a what the Hell moment.   I went through the stages (quickly) because as I’ve said I’ve learned long ago that you just have to roll with it.

Denial

Maybe it’s not that bad

Anger

Why did I go out for a run at night?   Idiot.

Bargaining

I’ll rest it a couple more days and I’ll be good as new

Depression

I’m loosing everything I’ve worked so hard to build up.   Why bother?

Acceptance

Well I better do something to give my ankle/foot time to be 100%

foot2

Still not 100%.   Bruising is getting better.  No pain to walk, but do feel it at the end of the day.   Also not good to run as when I stretch it to mimic a run it hurts.  Boo Hoo.

I know that I rolled my ankle pretty bad.   I know I totally jacked up my foot.   Not enough to go to the doctors because he is just going to tell me what I already know.   I need to rest it.   I need to give it time.   I need to do this now, so that I can go about my life.

I will say that nothing compares to running, but I am going to embrace this SHORT recovery time while not letting my endurance slip.    It won’t be the same.   It won’t be as good, but maybe just maybe when I do start running again I will find that what I’m doing will benefit my running.

Sounds like good enough BS that I can buy it.   Although there is some truth to it and cross training really is good for runners.

So today I went to my local gym.    I rode the stationary bike for 15 minutes for a total of 3. 37 miles burning a whole 120 calories.   Whoop.  Whoop.  (inserting sarcasm here).  Then I did some strength training for my abs, back, and arms.   I do need to do this as they say “a woman my age” should be strength training.   I’m sure I will feel it tomorrow which will make me not so secretly happy.

I’m going to plan some things out this week.   Swimming, more strength training, longer stationary bike rides and a combo of all of them.

I may not get any lemonade or Margarita’s but maybe I can learn to like the lemons on their own.

PS   – I miss running

 

Just as I suspected…..

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Lots to talk about this week with running of the Moore/Fitness Half Marathon yesterday.   I’m going to shelve that till tomorrow though, because I need to blog (process) my first visit to the Podiatrist today.   You can only ignore things for so long and I was finally at that point.

If you recall, way back in the way back of August 2014, I self diagnoses myself in I wish I had Happy Feet.   Now I am not abdicating self diagnosis via the web because more often than not your symptoms will have you thinking the worse.   This one though was a pretty cut and dry case making for easy diagnosis.

Obviously since this has been an ongoing issue, it really was time to seek someone who actually has a degree hanging on their wall.   I had made an appointment with a doctor that was not near me, but came highly recommended.    I wans’t sure if I wanted to go that far, but when they called to reschedule because they realized the doctor wouldn’t be in the day of my appointment I took that as my cue that I wasn’t meant to go there.   That same day, I came across a card for a local and I mean 5 minutes from my house local podiatrist.   I took that as my cue that I should go there.   No, I’m not really that flakey (ok, maybe I am), but it seemed like the thing to do.

I made this appointment for the day after yesterdays half.   I figured that way if any issues came up, I could deal with them while they were fresh.    That’s exactly what we did.   Luckily, I had also prepared for this appointment by getting a pedicure last week.   Highly recommend that option always.   Anyway, back to today.

I go into fill out all the insurance forms only to realize that I have every kids card, the prescription card, the dental card, but not mine.  Luckily, the woman was nice and just took the information off of one of my kids cards.   I promised, promised, promised that I would bring it in with my next visit.   Then back to the room I go to wait.

Nurse comes in to take all the pertinent information.   The only question that I stumbled on is on a scale of 1 to 10, how much pain.   The reason I stumbled is because pain is subjective and to me I just pushed through it.  Sometimes, not well but still I usually push.   We gave pain a 4.   Although there were days I would have given it much higher.   All set for doctor now.

At the beginning of the conversation, I made it clear that I’ve got a lot going on running wise.   I through out there that I am doing the 9 plus 1 and then have the Marine Corps Marathon in the fall.   I just wanted him to be clear that sitting on the sidelines really wasn’t an option.   He got the message and I got the diagnosis that I expected and one that I suspected but would not dare say out loud.    Morton’s Toe which I already knew and Plantar Fasciitis which I dared not think of.     When he said the words, he knew that I wasn’t happy, but he had some recommendations on how to deal with it.

1.   Stretches.   Not once a day, but throughout the day.   This will help stretch (obviously) the muscle to lesson the pain.

2.  Orthotics – He did not push the custom one, but being I have 2 different issues and will be running and running and running, I went with this option.   I am getting the ones especially for sneakers.   I hope this is the magic pill.

3.   Cortisone Shot –   Hopefully this will bring me temporary relief until the orthitics come in 3 weeks.

4.   New running shoes – Wouldn’t want to ignore the doctors orders!   So shopping I must go.

So I wonder if this now makes me a 100% of a runner now that I have “feet problem.”    I always said that my body was not designed for running and I guess this is one more thing to prove that point.   Too bad that i never follow the beaten or easy path;)

Have you ever and an injury from running?