Goals

This past year has been a rough one to say the least.  I never even think about my hip anymore, it’s like it was never hurt.  I am so glad I had the surgery to fix it, and do not regret it one bit.

I was talking to my Feldenkrais instructor about my goals and what I wanted to do once my ankle heals.  The only thing that physically hurt me when I started running again were my feet going numb, which is due to my extremely tight calves.  Other than that, running was going great.  Cardiovascular-wise I was holding in there, doing longer bouts of running, doing hills, and sprints.

I never really thought that I would want to do a marathon.  I am happy with doing half marathons.  Heck, I would be happy to do a 5k right now, but I’m thinking about in the future.

My feldenkrais instructor overcame a huge disability, doctors saying she wouldn’t walk and now she runs ultra marathons, and places in them.  If that isn’t motivation enough that you can do anything you set your mind to, I don’t know what is!

In the near future after my ankle heals and I’m cleared to workout besides doing upper body and core, I want to get back to running (obviously).  I have a couple of personal training sessions at the gym I still need to do, and I would like to get back to my yoga, cycling, and weight lifting.

In the distant future, I want to set my body up and be well prepared to start running half marathons again.  I want to eventually do at least ONE marathon after tackling a few half marathons.

People don’t understand me, at least the people who aren’t runners or want to be active.  I somewhat get it, I mean someone actually wants to sweat and run when nobody is chasing them?  I look forward to the day when I can get up at 6:00am on a Saturday or Sunday morning and run with my fellow Landrunners or run at 6:00pm on a Thursday night in the hot & humid weather of Oklahoma with the Red Coyote people.  I had started doing that, along with running Tuesday evenings at the OKC River with some awesome running folk.

For about 3 days after I broke my ankle, I was wallowing in my sadness.  I just couldn’t understand why these things kept happening, why couldn’t it happen to someone who hates working out?  I was bitter (again).  I decided to look at things in a different way.  Things can always, ALWAYS be worse. This is just another hurdle in life that I have to jump over, and hopefully not break anything else while doing so.

Look to the future.  Have a plan.  Work It Out.

I can move beyond this and get stronger.  I will.

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That Ex of Yours

This is how I view running now:

That ex-boyfriend (running) that you just broke up with.  You ended things on somewhat good terms, but you still feel bitter about the break up.

You see that ex-boyfriend in the park, having a great time without you.
You see that ex-boyfriend with other people (other runners), hanging out without a care in the world.
You see your ex-boyfriend’s best friends in a clothing store (running clothes), they’re nice to you but you know you can’t still be friends with them.
You see your ex-boyfriend with a new girlfriend and all you want to do is break her legs.

One day, you hope to get back with that ex-boyfriend.  You’d rather him not forget about you.  You had a lot of good times together, not everything was perfect, but you made each other happy.  The only thing standing in the way was your bum hip and he resented you for it…

Screen Shot 2013-03-18 at 2.21.10 PMAs you can see, I’m still dealing with my bitterness issues.

Things I Miss About Running

This is just what it is.  A list of things I miss about running.  Those of you who hate running probably will not understand, much like I wouldn’t understand someone who actually misses swimming.

1. Being able to de-stress.
Seriously, it was like having my own personal psychiatrist.
dog

2. Being Fit.
I know that sounds vain, but when I ran all the time, I didn’t really have to worry about gaining weight.  Now the weight just creeps on and I have flabby legs.

3. Buying running clothes, shoes, accessories…
Remember my addiction to Academy?  Well, it’s kind of useless when you are just buying running gear to wear around the house.

4. Running to good music.
I can still listen to music, but it’s different when you are running to the beat of that new song you just downloaded.

5. The Community.
In OKC we actually have a fairly large running community and it’s getting bigger each year.  I miss the runs on Saturday mornings and the evening runs on Thursdays with the groups.

6. Not being resentful.
When I was running, I was happy for other runners.  Now that I’m not running, I find myself resenting people who can run.  Like I said before, I don’t want to be that way, especially since Nicholas is a runner and literally runs every day.  I’m just saying it’s hard to not be bitter sometimes, but bitterness never helped the situation so I’m trying to stop that cycle.

7. Feeling of accomplishment.
I felt great when I would PR in a race or hit a distance that I hadn’t previously done before.  It’s amazing when you can say, “Yeah, I’ve ran 13.1 miles and my time didn’t suck.”

I’m really hoping to get back to running after my hip surgery, that is the ultimate goal.  I don’t have to run a marathon, but getting at least 25 mile weeks in would be great in my eyes.

Here is something funny I found for the runners out there.  Even though I’m bitter that you can run, you deserve to laugh.  I think… 😉 murphy's law

Aspaeris Pivot Shorts

Well I forgot to do a review of the Aspaeris Pivot Shorts like I said I would.  I read about them from various blogs, one being Striding Mom and she highly recommended them.  I guess I’m giving them free publicity and reviews, but I would like to share my thoughts on them.  You can visit the website here.

Let’s first talk about cost.  They are $60 for one pair, so naturally I only bought one to try before I bought anymore.  I was one day shy of being able to use their buy one get one free offer, so that was a huge bummer.

What makes them special? I have other compression shorts, but those aren’t  the same as these.  They use “Duel Sensory Compression”, meaning an under layer that helps align muscles and form muscle memory and a top layer that has an overall compression.

When I got them in the mail, the letter said they would look tiny… and yes they did.  I bought the large size, but I was thinking I should’ve bought XXXXXL.  I thought there was no way I would fit into these babies.  I tried to take a picture next to my foot for comparison.

I also took a picture of them next to my thigh.  Pretend I’m not in my underwear.  Let’s pretend that it’s a bathing suit bottom instead.  I tried to cut out as much as possible for your poor eyes, but not so much that you wouldn’t get the full effect.  The whole pair is the size of my one thigh.  

It actually wasn’t that hard to put them on, you kind of put them on like panty hose and it’s rather easy.

What did I use them for?
Recovery- After a longer run, I took my Epsom Salt bath and threw on the shorts for about 5-6 hours.  I could feel the difference in my hips and hamstrings afterward, they felt less sore and tight.  (As much as they could with my hip injury thing going on.)

During a Run –  I wore them under some Tempo shorts and I was worried about them hindering my range of motion.  That wasn’t the case though, they felt really good.  I could feel the tightness and compression working during my run, keeping things in places where they should be.   My muscles were not as tight afterward and stretching more doable.

The verdict: I definitely recommend these shorts to women, especially if you are having ITB, hamstring, knee, or hip issues.

*Disclaimer*  I am not a doctor, so don’t get the shorts, get injured and then blame me.  Wear them at your own risk and so on and so forth. Blah Blah.

Any other Aspaeris Shorts lovers up in here?

When Sucky Runs Attack…

Yesterday I was supposed to run my “long run” for the training week, which was 5 miles.  I started late (about 9am) and ran at the Lake that I frequently visit.

I ran in my new Apaeris Compression Shorts and my new CEP compression calf sleeves (which I will review both at a later date.)  I also brought my Garmin 305, my Hydrafoam amiphod water bottle, and my ipod armband holder.  I was a total running tech nerd girl, I should’ve taken a picture.

The temperature was 84* but the heat index was 96* and the humidity was 57% with no breeze, even by the lake.
Lately, I’ve had more runs that are bad than good and I blame it mainly on my stupid hip and working night shift.

Anyway, I managed 4.6 miles even though 5 miles were planned and this is why my run sucked so so much:
– It was hot and humid.
– I couldn’t catch my breath.
– My hip felt tight (but my adductors felt great!)
– The compression sleeves were wonderful for my calves, however it was hotter than hell so midway through my run I had to stop and take them off.
– I kept sweating into my eyes.
– I got dizzy toward the last mile and walked the rest of the way.
– I was tired.
– I had some serious GI issues going on.

It’s so defeating to me to have runs like this.  I know a lot of people have sucky runs, but when it’s one after the other, especially when it’s a struggle with a bum hip, it makes me question.  I forget why I enjoy running in the first place.  I always get over my depressed mood about it eventually, but I just wish things could go back to normal.  I’m still convinced I have a hip labral tear, something just isn’t right and I can sense it.

Even though I complain a lot (I know I do, it’s something I’m trying to stop doing so much), I like to look at the positives in everything.
Positive points to this run:
– My adductors felt good.
– I had some good music lined up.
– There were a lot of friendly active people out and about.
– I saw a man feed some starving kittens a big bowl of cat food.
– The lake was beautiful.
– I am otherwise healthy and able to get out and do something, it’s better than just sitting on the couch.

How do you get through your tough/crappy runs?  What motivates you to keep going?

 

Add A Little Epsom Salt and VOILA!

I ran yesterday for the first time in a week since my doctor recommended I take a week off due to my quad/hip/adductor issues.  I am supposed to take it easy for awhile so my goal pace was between 11:30 and 12:00.  Well wouldn’t you know that I was feeling really good and I had loads of energy.  It’s a shame to waste running days like that doing things easier, but I have to be smart this time around.

I ran at 7:00pm and it was only 90* with a little breeze. It was actually quite pleasant.  I had to keep checking my garmin to make sure I was staying at my target pace because I wanted to go faster, but knew I needed to take it easy.  The last mile I noticed some tightness creeping up on my right adductor.  I glanced at my watch and I was running at 9:30 pace!  First of all, where did that come from?  Second of all, I’m an idiot.  So much for taking it easy.  I slowed down, but I was sad that I could run that cardiovascular-wise, but not physically due to my damn leg.

I know I whine all of the time, but I really wish my right leg/hip would feel normal like my left leg/hip.  Just be normal for poop’s sake!  //whining over//

My splits ended up being 11:56, 11:52, and 10:53.  (I could not go any slower on that last mile.)    I did end my run watching a BEAUTIFUL sunset on the lake.  I tried to capture it the best that I could.

When I got home I stretched, foam rolled and took an Epsom Salt bath.
I used to take these a lot when I first had my hip injury in December and they worked wonders.  You get a pretty warm/hot bath and put 2-3 cups of Epsom Salt (you can get this at pretty much any store.)  You soak in the bath tub for 20 minutes at the maximum.  Be careful if this is your first time because the Epsom Salt baths are pretty potent, so you may want to start out soaking for only 10 minutes.

The benefits for Epsom Salt baths if you are curious:
– Epsom salt is high in magnesium and sulfate and it is easily absorbed through the skin.  Magnesium is very important to our body it helps with muscle control, brain function, and eliminating toxins.  Sulfate aids in production of joint proteins and the formation of brain tissue.
– Improves your heart health.
 Reduces inflammation and joint & muscle pain.
– Stress reliever.
– Helps relieve headaches and migraines.

Have you ever tried an Epsom Salt Bath?  What other homeopathic things do you use for recovery?

 

The Woes of Injuries

I have been doing really well with consistently running at least 4 days a week.

Last Thursday I ran 3 miles at the Red Coyote Pack Pint Run with my friend April and a new running buddy Danielle.  It was a sweaty good time.

I was able to run 3 miles on Friday and then Saturday I went down to my hometown and ran with my friend Sherrie, who is training for a marathon.  I ran 5 miles while she ran 13.1 miles.  We did a somewhat hilly route, and I felt pretty good with my right hip, only stopping to stretch it twice.  I had felt something pop in my quad, but it wasn’t anything painful or significant, just a random pop.

I go home, and as the day goes on my hip hurts worse and worse.  Not only does my hip hurt, there’s a pain in my quad and my right shin is hurting every now and then.  I rolled, massaged, stretched, and iced but nothing really helped.  I was fed up.  I decided to officially go see a Sports doctor.

Monday, my hip was feeling a little bit better, but I made this appointment and I was going to stick with it and get some answers.  Before any X-Rays were taken (which I appreciated since I don’t have insurance), he did all sorts of muscular tests and asks me a ton of questions.  This doctor is a runner and he deals with runners and their injuries all of the time.   I spent about 45 minutes with him, trying to figure out what my issue is.

It turns out that I have a minor adductor strain, a minor quad strain, and a quad contracture that is causing the pulling on my hip.  My psoas is fine.  My hamstrings are pretty flexible (I’ve been working on those babies.)  My quads are too strong and he said I need to stop doing the exercise that strengthens them.  He told me that I need to take it easy, but that I can keep training next week as long as I do take it easy.  Don’t push it.  Ice. Stretch. Walk when I need to.  As far as hills go, don’t avoid them, just take them easy. He also said it would be a good idea to go see my A.R.T. (Active Release Technique) doctor and have him work me over every now and then.

So there’s that.  I was almost positive that I was going to have to sit this training session out and not do the half.  There is hope for the future.  I just wish my right side felt as normal as my left side.  Maybe that will never happen as long as I’m running?

As Enoch says..