Looking up

What does rock bottom look like to you?

For me, it was a sudden realization that I was in a dark place and I wasn’t sure how to get out.

Three months after being told I wasn’t good enough to maintain my manager’s training and then stumbling my way through a half marathon (Barely finishing in the time allotted. omg. One day I’ll write about it), I had a moment of clarity penetrate the deep, hateful and angry fog I didn’t remember falling in to.

I was sullen, easily agitated, and I had a voice in my head telling me that my husband was cheating on me.  That voice was so insistent, that a simple discussion about moving to a less expensive apartment, had me believing that he was saying that so that when he left me, I’d be able to afford rent on my own.

I didn’t want to believe it, I had to tell myself that he couldn’t possibly be trying to leave me because we were planning a trip to Disney. Just the two of us.

The voice persisted. I knew it was irrational and I attempted to fight back with rationale. It was exhausting.

I couldn’t run and I ate anything not nailed down.

I’d like to say that I suddenly started eating well, exercising, and now I’m a bright ray of sunshine…

So far, staying away from caffeine is the only thing I’ve stuck with.

And that was the one I thought would be the hardest. I do still eat chocolate but I went from several cups of coffee and other caffeinated drinks a day to virtually nothing.

I had changed my diet to a mostly plant based/vegetarian diet with nothing processed. As it happens with anyone struggling with illness, I started feeling better and then I started slipping.

At the moment, I’m mostly vegetarian with a meal containing meat every now and I began going to the gym again.

The voice isn’t quite so loud but I’m not keeping it to myself either.  Hubby can’t read my mind (goodness know how much easier that would be!) and I’d hate for him to think less of me (He hasn’t so far. Fingers crossed!) but I let him know when I’m sliding backwards and he steps up his reassurance game.

It’s a day to day effort.

Today is a good day.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The dangers of running

I’m running a half marathon in 4.5 months. WHAT????? While running a half in November is going to be AMAZING because of the beautiful NC fall weather, training for it in the throes of an NC summer is not so amazing. Waking up to run at dawn o’ clock is not an option when I work until at least 10 lately.

I took to the treadmill today because no one wants heat stroke and I’m still nursing my knees. I was hauling buns through a great run, aiming for 3 miles, when I look down and see that the gym is quickly filling with water. It was at least an inch deep and rapidly making it’s way under my ELECTRIC, PLUGGED IN WITH ELECTRICITY treadmill…

I stopped the treadmill and immediately hopped off, sloshed my way out the door chanting “No, no, no, no…” 

The maintenance man working on the apartment’s pool was in the filter room right across from me (thanks for the head’s up, buddy! :/) and I jokingly (with maybe a hint of anger) asked him if he was trying to electrocute me.

Day 1 of (for real this time) half training finished. 136 to go.

Self diagnosis Saturday

This is not going to become a thing. I just thought it sounded catchy and it fits because that’s exactly what I’ve been doing after today’s run.

I’ve said it before, but being a new-ish runner in my mid(gag, cough, wheeze)30’s, it’s sometimes hard to determine whether I am indeed hurt or if I’m just not as spry as I used to be.

When I’m dealing with any kind of running pain, I rely on ice, ace bandages, and advil to help me through the healing process but only after a large, healthy dose of google.

Today’s self diagnosis? ITBS. It means some long word which translates into “the outside of your knee is sore because of a complex network of bands that you’re not warming up enough, not stretching enough, and you’re using too much.”

In other words, stop running and heal or face the wrath of a long term sideline.

AIN’T NOBODY GOT TIME FOR THAT.

I have a 10k in 3 weeks, a 5k in 4 months and I have a half in 5 months.

I’ve hit a time in my training where injury is not an option. If you ask me, I haven’t been running enough and now I’m plagued with an “overuse” injury?

Awesome.

I’m going to try some yoga, ice and Advil. I’ll also add in a pinch of rest and cross my fingers. That should fix me right up!

 

The problem with injuries

First off, let me say that I’m not entirely sure when an injury is an actual injury or if I’m just getting old/damned by genetics.

“Nink knee” is an unofficial name, but an actual medical problem that has led a few family members on my mother’s side to need knee replacements in their late 50’s. No thanks.

Before I began really running, I had the achy when it rains, crackling knees that begins this family curse. I also believed the ol’ “Running is bad for your knees” myth and feared that running would just speed up the process.

I’m happy to report, since running regularly, my ‘symptoms’ have disappeared. Imagine how much better it would be if I could just drop 40 pounds! (says the person who had SO much brie for lunch. omg.)

What I wasn’t expecting was plantar fasciitis. I once had it so bad, that I could only bear weight on the outer edge of my affected foot.

That instance was due to running. 

This time? I’m pretty sure it’s work/shoe related. Or it never truly went away and recent shoe changes plus, at my job, I’m literally on my feet 8+ hours a day have only exacerbated the issue.

The problem? Ain’t nobody got time for this.

At the moment, my foot is wrapped in an ace bandage to help support my arch. I’ll be icing it again soon. There is a small section right behind my arch and before my heel that is very tender and swollen. Also, my heel burns sometimes when I put weight on it.

I’m off today, so I’ve been able to “take it easy” (after the trip with the kids to the museum, the grocery store, baking a cake for a friend, and working on dinner…) and stay off my feet. 

But I was supposed the run today.

I guess I’ll be looking up sports med doctors instead. 

Being among giants

So, last night?

Awesome.

Next time, I’ll be dragging some friends along. While everyone was friendly, I was a bit of a wall flower. I’d already hit the merch table snagging the “I run things” shirt, a new sweaty band, and a hard copy of “Train like a mother.” Yes, I already had it on my kindle but a) you can’t sign a kindle and b) my kindle is kind of no longer mine. Youngest uses it more than me… and not for reading *sigh*

I was quietly enjoying all the people watching and trying to drown out all the noise. There was so much excited chatter in one place, it was almost overwhelming.

It was so amazing to see runners of all shapes and sizes. We are all real people sharing all the same struggles. 

Dimity and Sarah were absolutely hilarious. They read bits from their book and raffled off some great prizes. I won a super comfy visor!

I’m so glad I went and saw ,first hand, the community that I’m a part of. 

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I am SO short!

My ‘day off’

Because I work full time, with varying hours and days, my days off tend to fill quickly. Sometimes it feels as though I’ll never catch a break and truly rest. Other days, like today (YAY!) everything falls into place and there are no surprise errands tossed in for added ‘fun’.

The younger 2 are tracked out, so I got to sleep in. (always nice)

I got a run in wearing my sweaty band that was a birthday present from a wonderful work and running buddy. She also gave me a goody box FULL of yummy running essentials. Thanks again, Abby!!!

 

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Yay for all the pink! And it really did stay in place! 

I’m having a great hair day.

Dinner is cooked and ready including a salad and fruit salad. 

Middle one has baseball practice until 6:30 and then…

I’m off to attend Raleigh’s Another Mother Runner party! 

I reserved my spot all the way back in January and I’m so excited that it’s finally here!! 

Swag bags are always nice but I can’t wait to soak up all that running wisdom… and maybe buy a shirt. 

I love days off like this!

 

 

Changes

When I was younger we moved a few times. Looking back, it wasn’t quite as often as it felt like, but for a shy introvert it was crippling. I hated change. It still bugs me, but I no longer spend my lunch hour alone at an empty table reading a book.

Now that I’m older and wiser (ha!), I realize that despite our most precious wishes and plans for how we think our lives should turn out, life goes on and continues to move us in the direction we should go. Whether we like it or not. The only thing we control is how fast we adapt.

And if this past year has done anything for me it’s driven that particular point home. Repeatedly.

So on that note, here are a few things that will be changing around here.

Not the name.

Regal, fierce, warrior… I will always be those things. I wear my imaginary tiara with pride.

Runner. Yes. I run… around like a chicken with it’s head cut off. I run a very busy store, I run a household, and I run, run when I can.

This blog will be more and more about my life with some whining about running tossed in here and there. It will, in no way, be a type A- Look at all I can juggle personality thing. We all know that’s not me. (It will be a me, bent over, scrambling to pick up all the pieces thing)

I’m training for a few races this year including a half marathon in November! The Battleship Half in Willmington, NC will be my first half.

I may eventually make it to run Disney some year.  It’s ok if I don’t.

On Saturday, my good friends and I will be rocking our tutus at my birthday run! Ok, it’s a color run… but it’s the day before my birthday. Is there a better way to celebrate?

Next month, there is a 5k in Willmington and in June there is a 10k followed by free wine, tapas, and manicures.

It looks like I have a good start! I just need to fill  in July – October 🙂

 

 

It’s been a rough month

Is that a big enough understatement? 

Prince Charming begins another round of chemo this week. The first round got a good bit but there is some “residual cancer”.

I won’t go into gory details, but, chemo sucks, cancer sucks, and we’re so very lucky to have so many wonderful people in our life. 

I took a few moments, and ran today. Nothing fancy, but it needed to get done. 

I’ve spent the past month walking around in an anxiety ridden fog. I never thought the pain in my chest would end. Or the tears.

It’s not over. 

I don’t know when I’ll run again, but I’m hoping this high will get me through one more month of this.

12:30 mile.

Deep thoughts.

“The path to heaven runs through miles clouded hell, right to the top. Don’t look back.”

Can you see it? Just ahead… past that slight curve in the trail, and right after the large tree dripping with the honeysuckle vine… and when you pass that, it’s just… there. Just ahead. Just past the next curve after that.

Don’t look back, all you’ll see, between the shadows closing in, is the fear or failure. It lures you in, pulling you backwards and tricking you into thinking that’s all you are. A failure. The fear blurs your thoughts until you can’t see that it’s only an obstacle you’ve been running to overcome to get to this brightest part of the trail. 

The quote above is a line from a song by Imagine Dragons. I’ve always liked it, but for some reason, during my run today, the jarring truth of that line came at me, sending chills down my spine. 

I’ve been letting the shadows catch up to me and it’s blurred the light ahead. 

And it’s not just running, it’s in all things. 

I try to be everything to everyone and in doing that, I’ve gotten lost. 

From now on, I’m going to focus on only looking forward. 

‘Heaven’ to me is achievement in all things (maybe perfection… I may have to lower the bar on that one 😉 ) A healthy marriage, healthy children and a healthy husband.

Heaven is finishing the race and in doing so, becoming a healthier version of the awesome I already am. 

I can do this. I’m not looking back. 

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Damn, I’m tired

Remember when I was a stay at home mom and I never had time to work out?

Well, I do.

And it’s funny, because then, when I had no time to work out, it was because I was too busy sitting on my ass and reading books, or lounging by the pool, and ‘cleaning’ the house.

Now that I’m really, really busy, I do get more runs in, but not nearly as many as I should, and I’m exhausted.

I follow a facebook group for the Princess Half 2014, and while I keep to myself, many people post their daily workouts. As they should. I mean, I guess they feel it’s encouraging?

But, seriously? You, perfect stranger, did a 3 mile run AND you’re going to ride your bike 4 miles to your Zumba class later tonight?

In my dreams!

I may be a bit jealous. It’s normal, right? Keeping up with the Jones and all…

But when the simple act of getting into my running clothes seems like too much work, I can’t help but think that I’m in over my head.

Maybe I just need to get more than 7 hours of sleep at night. I wish it was as easy as it sounds.