Sunday, October 30, 2011

Grete Waitz

Grete Waitz was recently featured in Runner's World magazine. I've considered actually getting a subscription since I buy every issue now (especially on days where the commute home is not the easiest), but I really liked this article. Waitz was a Norwegian runner who won the women's NYC Marathon back in the 70s. No one had heard of her and she didn't train for the marathon... she just went out there and ran it. What struck a chord with me was an interview from one of her training partners, who said that she went out there and gave it 110% in every training session. I decided tonight to be like Grete Waitz. I know that I'm not going to run at a goal pace every time I practice (or else it wouldn't be a goal), but I CAN give it something more than "Oh, the schedule says 3 miles tonight... I'm just going to maybe do a run/walk. Something chill. Whatever."

Tonight's run was a 3 miler. I did 3.2 miles in 30something minutes, but that was including a warm-up and a cooldown in there. It was a run/walk and probably my first challenging running workout since surgery. One of my surgery scars felt a bit itchy and, as I approached 6.5 mph, I got a few cramps on my upper right side, but for the most part, it felt good. The 10 lbs I lost (mainly in muscle, I've determined) made a positive difference in my gait and I found that, despite the lack of training for a month, running was fairly easy. The cardiovascular endurance was not entirely there yet, but I will build up. I'm going to start timing my Monday 3 milers starting next week so that I have a good idea of what I can expect from my race.

I've been really anxious lately and tonight's run made a big difference.. if only for the 30something minutes I was on the treadmill. Keeping an eye on my knees in the mirror (it's how I judge my gait) and running with "and it feeeeeels like jealousy... and it feeeeels like I can't breathe" playing in the background, I felt like everything had just come together, if only for that short while. I came off the treadmill completely content with life. Some things are not quite right just yet, but I had a feeling of "everything will be okay" come over me.

In other news, I'm hoping to sign my house lease tomorrow, making BF and I's move-in date December 1st. I'm very excited about the home. I'm not a fan of the streets in that neighbourhood as many people park outside their homes on the road and it makes the street pretty narrow, but we're in a good spot to slip in and out onto the main road. I'm looking forward to spending time in the kitchen experimenting with some neat recipes I've been finding all over the place from Men's Health to RW. Even though I've lived on my own before, I feel like this time I'm doing it as a grown up. I'm a grown up girl with a grown up life in a grown up relationship. Everything just feels like it's clicking together. I sent a text to my BF pretty much declaring my undying love for him which was, admittedly, a bit cheesy and even slightly unwarranted, but inside I feel like I'm jumping up and down going "We made it! We made it!"... I don't find that at specific moments where people should get excited that I become very happy (getting a new job, finishing a race, etc), it's the moments like when I'm driving down the road in a car that I own from a gym where I was training for a 5K, past the house that I'm about to move into with a guy that I am absolutely madly in love with and with whom I have overcome incredible obstacles, to a grocery store where I'm buying lunch for my workday in a job where I get to be surrounded by wonderful people and aviation. There are things in my life that need major improvement, no doubt, but tonight, I was blissfully happy.


Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Moving Out

It looks like Friday will be the day the lease is officially signed to the BF and I's first place together. I'm excited, yet nervous all at once. In much less substantial moving news, I'm investigating another site on which to host my blog. Apparently some folks are having trouble with the commenting thing and Google not recognizing usernames (plus, I think it's silly that anyone who wants to comment MUST have a Google or related account). I will let you all know if or when I find a suitable place and the new blog address. A bit sad though as I do like blogspot the best, but over the past few years, it's seemed to have taken the corporate monopoly thing a bit too far.

I officially paid my $25 to run in the Green Brook Thanksgiving Trot this year. I'm having a slight case of buyer's remorse as I noticed it was the first annual race meaning two things: organizational issues and chip-less timing are likely. Luckily the race is put together by a group that does other races in the area, so I'm hoping that it'll encourage people to come out, but non-precise times bug me when I'm trying to PR! The chances of a PR are slim to none at the moment anyway because of my surgery recovery, but if I beat my PR by a second, that is something I would like to brag about thank you very much! Even if I time myself from start to finish and it's a PR on my watch, unless it's an official result, I don't really feel so great about it. Even chipped races can be dodgy sometimes. In my last race, the time as I crossed the finish line said 28:46, but the official time was 28:52. Hmph.

I adapted a Hal Higdon 5K program for this race. It's very spotty training as I have 4 weeks vs. 8 weeks. I'm only doing the first 4 weeks of the training cycle and on the day the 5K time trial is scheduled, I will be running my actual race. I doubt this will result in much improvement, but who knows. Because the race is a Thursday versus the normal Sat/Sun race days, the schedule is a bit wonky with my long runs taking place on Thursdays and rest days on weekends. This does sort of work out for my travel-heavy schedule though.

In a build up to my first week of training, I've been hitting the court. I have a membership to a badminton club in Kanata and haven't had the chance to go as the first week of training was the week of my surgery. I made my first court appearance since Grade 11 girls doubles with Rosalie. The court dynamics of a doubles game still throw me off as, for the most part, I was a singles player, but I'm getting the hang of things. My techniques are still pretty decent and it didn't take me long to do backhand and forehand drives with ease. Luckily a lot of the people there are very patient with idiots like me who never play doubles and they were awesome at helping me out. Despite its questionable lighting for badminton purposes, I'll probably stick to Mondays and Thursdays at Earl of March HS in Kanata as it's a 6 court facility. Wednesdays potentially as well.

With all that being said, I am SO sore! I was using muscles I haven't used for a while and my delts know that they're around. Same with my glutes. The height advantage in badminton isn't as great as in tennis so I go into a deep lunge every time I go for a lift. It makes for great x-training though!

Well, another failure of getting to bed early, but I've created a good schedule for keeping on track until schoolwork and such settles down, so hopefully in the coming weeks I can be a bit more disciplined. An 11:30 pm bedtime tonight is still better than a 12:30 am one after all.

Tomorrow is another x-training day for badminton and then I believe its' a 3-miler on Friday. E and D will not be pleased that I'm bailing on yet another run tomorrow at work... though even if I was going to go running, it certainly wouldn't be outside! It's less than 10C out now... no way am I venturing into the tundra to run.


Sunday, October 23, 2011

The Bitch Came Back

That title was to lure my boyfriend in since he rarely reads my blog (but does like that song).

That was probably a more apt blog title for a post I foresee in a few months referring to an ankle injury, but it was somewhat appropriate. After a few sporadic light cardio sessions between my surgery and now, I was able to hit the treadmill again. I had gone for a rainy and cold walk/run with my Labrador a few nights ago, but only completed about 1.35 mi (according to my Google Maps Pedometer) before packing it in. Aside from the miserably cold weather, my surgery spot still didn't feel quite "right".

I was hesitant on returning tonight as well. I have a lot of now-foreign foods sitting in my body from the past weekend at the in-laws (Egg McMuffin, cheesecake, sausage and meatballs) and was worried about GI issues during the run. I did have some mild cramping in various spots of my abdomen (not near surgery spot) so the running portion of my evening was a tad painful, but it worked out.

In total, I did 3 miles in 38:00. Yes, it's awful, I know, but I'm trying to bear in mind that I'm still in recovery mode from surgery. It's tough running not even 5K 10:00 slower than the 5K I ran last month! In fairness, it was a run/walk and it wasn't awful. It looked like:

2:00 @ 4.2 mph
1:00 @ 6.2 mph

Because of the GI issues, the 6.2 was painful, but surgery stuff felt good and my ankle did as well. I did some light weight training after for all of about 5 min, but have resolved to going back to my actual weight training this week. I plan to re-print my workout plan at work tomorrow, and I'm also in search of a good 5K program that will get me ready for another one next month. I'm planning to run the Green Brook Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving Day in Green Brook, NJ. I'm not expecting a PR, but I am expecting a good time.

I also plan to go back to lululemon. I'm loving everything I bought there (all $230 of it) and considering my BF is officially moving in within the next 2-3 months and I'm looking at moving into our home in December, I doubt I'll have much money left to splurge on luxury workout clothes. I also need to drop down a size in the stretchy tights. They are perfect for elliptical, walking, or weight training, but even with the hidden drawstring, I found them slipping during my run tonight. Woo for being a size 6 at a yoga store?

After talking to DO at work (initials, not a title), I've also decided that I want to try a marathon. I don't foresee one happening in 2012 with my history of injuries (though a fall one may not be out of the question), but I at least plan to do a few halfs. I've put a Garmin Forerunner 305 on my wishlist for Christmas/birthday which I think will help get me out the door for more outdoor runs and cross training on the bike. I need to take my bike out next year... this year was just flat out sad.

Expect regular updates again! I'm shooting for a 10 mpw base to start right now and build from there.

3 miles down.


Saturday, October 15, 2011

Easing Back In...

I've been meaning to update my blog but was running through airports all weekend and never really had a chance to before then. I never thought that the weather 1000 miles away could affect my weekend so much until I started dating a pilot...

I was hanging out on my Runner's World forum and had been reading one of my old issues while recovering and just NEEDED a workout. I considered running but given that my stomach feels like it's being jostled when I walk, I decided to stick to cross-training. My tendons were also a bit tender last week for some reason so I thought the XC plus some weights to strengthen my legs might help (it did).

On Wednesday I hit the gym for a 40 min elliptical session on medium resistance and a slow stride. The little calorie counter with my weight entered said 350 calories burned, so it wasn't that bad. The doctor strictly told me no weights over 20lbs, so I did as many calisthenics and low weight/high rep things as possible. I'm kind of glad I have these restrictions; I've realized that the low weight/high rep may be good to throw in once in a while. I thought it was going to be a joke lifting 7lb dumbbells for bicep curls, but do 30 reps x 3 of those and it's not so much of a joke anymore! Squats and lunges were lovely as well. It was good to be back.

Thursday also worked out quite nicely too. Both days my left knee was a bit sore, so I did some hip strengthening and IT work to make sure things don't get worse. I'm always broken. I was a bit concerned after the workout as my stomach felt like it had a huge bruise on it and was really tender to touch. I decided to take the weekend off from workouts as that was a bit freaky. You sort of forget that when you have surgery, there are internal scars that need to heal. Not knowing what was going on with that pain, I figured I'd rather be safe than sorry.

I'm still not feeling up for a workout. I was on a Harrisburg, PA overnight with the BF last night and just walking from the hotel to the sketchy 24 hr diner (maybe half a mile at most) was painful. Sigh... I was hoping to do another 5K Turkey Trot or something in NJ over the Thanksgiving weekend but I guess that likely won't happen.

On the bright side, we found out that BF's roomies have put an offer on a house, which means he could FINALLY be moving to Canada in the next 2-3 months! Very stoked about that. I'm stressed, happy, and nervous all at once. There's a lot to consider logistically and it's a big step! I'm a bit worried that work will frown upon the amount of time I need off in the next few months though (Thanksgiving since it's not a holiday here, moving day from TX, and then cousin's wedding in Scotland in February). All legit events but not so great when you don't get that nice ATC day-for-day schedule anymore. Fingers crossed for a YYZ course coming up next year for me.

Hope this keeps everyone's interest satiated for the time being! Will maybe do some weights tomorrow or try the bike. Not sure what caused the pain last time so a bit hesitant to do stuff, but we'll see.

- Anne

Monday, October 10, 2011


I had surgery, therefore I didn't go running. Still not running. Update when I do go running.

(That post is for my boyfriend who is mad I stopped updating)

Saturday, October 1, 2011


Okay, so... I'll admit it... I haven't really been the best at keeping up to date with the blog. Mainly because after my 5K, I played some ball hockey with people from work and the random sprinting without a warm-up did.. something... to my tendons and I never really did get a decent run in after that. I saw my physical therapist on Wednesday who helped me out and said that it was mainly a lower calf strain. All of this is pretty much a moot point as I had some of my innards removed yesterday during surgery and I'm on bedrest for a week. It looks like it'll be at least 2 weeks before I can even consider going to the gym, and around a month before running becomes a part of my life again. It's much-needed rest, I would say. My boyfriend has been amazingly supportive of me and has pointed out that this seems to be the perfect time to "start fresh". A part of me heaves an exasperated sigh at the thought of "starting fresh"... yet again. I feel like every few months or so, I'm stuck "starting fresh". This time though, I think he's right. I need to start not too heavy... I'm actually forced into taking it easy, so maybe it'll work.

My plan for the next little while (when I can work out again) is all cross training and 2-3 days/week of weights. I will then integrate running days back into the schedule over the next few months until I'm well, me again. Healthy, strong, uninjured me. Let's see how that actually plays out.

Until then, I'm on painkillers and fat-free foods. At least the diet will be a success.

PS: PRed in Jersey... 28:52.