Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Marathon Dreams

So the marathon dreams began last night. I am usually the person who has nightmares before my marathons. The running dreams where your feet aren't even touching the ground. The ones where you show up to the starting line an hour after the race started. I have a vivid imagination.

Last night I had my first marathon dream for my race next week. When I say it was a dream, it really was a DREAM and not a NIGHTMARE. I completed the Goofy Challenge and was waiting for my sister to cross the finish line...(she is only doing the half, so again another dream)...and when she crossed she asked how I did and I said without any excitement, 3:28.....A few moments later I said "I guess I must have qualified for Boston, huh?"

AHHH! Can you imagine? If I got a 3:28, I would be in shock and celebration. There is no way I would be so indifferent about a 3:28.

But, yes, a dream as there will be no PR's set at Disney. My "training" has been going great since I started running again just over 2 weeks ago, but I am being as conservative as I possibly can. My shorter runs are being run between 8:30-9:15 pace and my "long" runs are being run at 10:00 pace. I am pretty sure I could handle faster, but I don't want to push myself and set myself back. I completed an 11 mile run in the rain on Sunday and felt great. I hadn't ran over 8 miles since October, so this was quite a milestone in my recovery. I really want to get a 13 mile run in before I leave for Florida so tomorrow or Thursday may be the big day. I may also do a 12 mile run this weekend to round out my marathon training for this training cycle. I can't say I ever pictured my Goofy training to include such low mileage. My endurance seems to be fine on my runs....My leg muscles do get a little bit tired during my run, but I feel no soreness the next day so I have no fears of my legs being sore on Sunday of marathon weekend.

But the excitement has set in and I can't wait to leave for Florida. I am on a first-class flight to Orlando next Friday and we will immediately hit the expo and get some shopping done before relaxing without kids at the hotel for the races. So, yayyyy, taper is here minus actually tapering since my legs are not tired but anxious. :)

Here are my girls dancing last night at Jordan's Furniture.....They have a Mardi Gras show all day to entertain the kids when shopping. It was cheap entertainment for us as we were out spending gift cards and figured we would give them something extra to do.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas to everyone!!! I have been pretty absent lately getting ready for Christmas and healing. I am running again but am doing it slowly, so have been twice as busy x-training at the same time. I have also begun a job-search which will obviously take up a lot of time.

Here is a picture of my husband and myself at my birthday race.

I am still on track for the Goofy Challenge in a few weeks. I have been slowly building up my mileage and stretching and strengthening my calves. I am currently up to 8 miles (plus hours of swimming) and hoping to get an 11 miler in this weekend. My marathon won't be fast in a few weeks, but I think it will be a success.

I will post more later but wanted to wish you all Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Great Week at Physical Therapy

First of all, I am NOT running my 5k on Sunday. :o) I am sure you probably guessed this.

I started my physical therapy on Tuesday this week and went again today. I love going to physical therapy. How can you not enjoy someone who massages your legs and helps you exercise?

Tuesday's appointment was basically a consultation of my injury. FINALLY, someone was going to listen to me and evaluate my situation. The physical therapist determined that I was in between the acute tendonitis stage and the chronic tendinosis stage. Tendinosis is bad and takes longer to heal, so I was very thankful for that. Because I am in the inbetween stage, it is harder to treat. First he told me to stop taking NSAIDs. I read the same thing online. Your achilles has a low blood supply, therefore it takes longer to heal. If you are taking an anti-imflammatory (I have no idea how to spell and am too lazy to look up!), you are decreasing your limited blood to the ankle, so I stopped them. (The podiatrist prescribed me a strong NSAID without when she rushed me out of her office.) He also put me on an arc trainer to see if I can handle the easy work out and I was also given some stretches. The first physical therapist I saw said I would be running within 10 or so days, but I hadn't told him my plan for the marathon.

Today was appointment #2 with a new physical therapist who was a marathoner/triathlete and therefore was even more knowledgeable of my goals of getting back on the road. Immediately he asked when I planned on racing again and I finally mentioned the marathon. He was a little hesitant to say I would be OK to run it because of my limited training that I would get once I finally started running. I informed him of my current training in the water and he was really impressed. He said that it is great for my cardiovascular, but that nothing can replace the pounding of road running. This is something I am well aware of and worries me, but he didn't say he was doubtful I could handle the race. After 11 minutes on the arc trainer, which has no strain on my achilles I did some new stretches that really stretched out my calves and achilles. Next, was my favorite part, the ultrasound/massage. He took a ultrasound machine to my achilles, sending ultrasound waves at the tendon. He said because of the vibrating, he could tell I did have some tears in there but that this would increase the blood supply and hopefully aid in the healing process. After that he massaged my calf again directing the blood towards my achilles. I got off the table and my leg felt GREAT! Next I did some more stretches and he told me that he felt that next week we would have one more session and I would start running after that. AHHHH!!! That was the best news I had heard in a long time. I am going to begin treadmill running, then go to the track, and finally return to the road. I will be one happy girl when I get back out on the road.

The physical therapist also talked to me a lot about orthotics. He doesn't believe in orthotics at all and thinks that all foot problems are a result of trying to correct things. I obviously have done recent research and have similar feelings. (When I was wearing my Newton's without orthotics, the pain was not as bad, but I thought that was a coincidence.) I have a few pairs of shoes I will test out the next few weeks to see if I can handle running without those expensive inserts. He did say to bring them along on runs just in case, so we will soon see.

So, yes, it was a good week with my injury situation. I have continued my pool training. Last week I spent 9 1/2 hours at the pool, and this week will be just a little less because I took a day off during our snowstorm and I may take my birthday off. :o) I wouldn't not run on my birthday, but can't say I will rush to the pool on my birthday. I will be going to the Jingle Bell 5k on Sunday, but am NOT running the race. I have emailed the race director and may volunteer if I can find the place they told me to go, or I may just take pictures OR I may walk the race. After the race, they are having a post-race celebration in MANY bars in the area so hopefully I can have a few 30th birthday drinks. (Jen, I don't know if I could ever manage 30 drinks, I was dizzy after only 2 glasses of wine at my husband's holiday party last night.)

Finally, I will leave you with pictures of more food. I made some holiday cookies for the kids at my husband's holiday party and my final cake for my class. My class if over until January so no cakes for a few weeks to post pictures of, but I am excited to try some more cookies.

My first shot at royal icing and sugar cookies. This was a great recipe!

My birthday cake....Look at my roses! Those things were not easy and I am tempted to not let anyone eat them.

And finally, my little munchkins getting ready to play in the snow on Wednesday. They loved it! I didn't enjoy snow blowing as much....Husband chose the perfect day to be out of town!

Friday, December 4, 2009

Not Exactly the Information I Was Looking For

First of all, thanks to everyone's concern and encouragement this week. It is so nice to have a community of people that are pulling for you when going to the doctor.

So yesterday's podiatry appointment was quick and to the point. Having an appointment at the end of the day is not the smartest thing to do, but I was just trying to get an appointment.

First, I found out why I am injured. Apparently the custom orthotics I have been wearing collapsed and were no longer correctly supporting my feet. This is a BAD thing. It makes sense though, because I wasn't wearing the orthotics in my Newton shoes, and never had pain unless I was wearing my other shoes in which I wore the orthotics. Unfortunately, I ran all my longer runs, including the marathon with the orthotics and pretty much screwed up my achilles. My doctor was cringing in pain when she looked at them. She pinched my achilles and diagnosed achilles tendonitis and prescribed physical therapy. She also put a rush on getting my orthotics refurbished. $200 to fix them!

The problem with the appointment is, she was in such a hurry, I didn't really get to ask any questions about when I will be able to run again, though I know the physical therapist will address it when I go there. So 12 sessions of physical therapy are on the schedule, and I am going to continue doing what I have been doing as the doctor seemed to think I was doing something correct.

I have pretty much made up my mind that I am going to be running Goofy unless I am in pain in the few runs that I will run the week before, even if it is not recommended. My legs feel great after 4 weeks of rest, so 5 more weeks can only help me even more. I realize I should follow doctor's orders, but I am stubborn, determined, and know my body. As you can tell, I keep going back and forth on what the physical therapist will say to me, but he hasn't met me yet...he doesn't know who he is dealing with, crazy marathoners. :)

Workouts this week were pretty much boring, boring, boring. I did about an hour in the pool every day since Monday and then weight training 4 of the 5 days. This weekend I plan on 90 minutes and 2-1/2 hours at the pool with some more weight training. Even if I don't get to run, I have to say that my cross-training is going way better than it ever has.

Finally, today was week 3 of my cake decorating class. I know you are all going to be disappointed when my class is over and I can't share my cakes with you. Today I made a clown cake, which the kids loved. (I am afraid of clowns and kind of find the heads on this cake disturbing.) It was very yummy. It is funny that the more I work on these cakes, the less I want to eat of the cake. I only needed a few bites of the cake and I was satisfied. Everyone else loves to eat it though and are enjoying my class. Here is a picture:

Tomorrow, I am hoping we get to see Santa, so I may have some more pictures after the weekend. Have a great weekend!