Monday, June 10, 2013

I'm back

So 6 weeks ago I sprained my foot falling off a ledge. This was after running the half marathon(13.1 miles) with my husband. I could/can run obviously, but not walk and carry stuff at the same time.
Here we are at the start of the race. It was foggy, darn right cold, teeth chattering and bone chilling 7a.m. at the start of the race. John had injured his knee and was hoping to just finish which was fine with me. I wanted to complete the distance and be supportive of him.

We did it!
I had been running and training for races for the past year and a half. I stopped abruptly due to this.

not pretty :(
 For 2 weeks I could not put on a regular shoe. I had an x-ray and while nothing was broken (only a sprained foot) I could only hobble around and put very little pressure on my foot. Looking back, I had high expectations that I would be running or at least walking real good in a week. Quickly my hopes faded. My foot did not improve. It throbbed, got more swollen, lovely bruising colors and more painful as the days wore on. I did all the things I should- resting my foot on a pillow, ice (heat after a few days), ibuprofen, more rest, little movement...
This is the racing/running season. I had google alerts, blogs, magazines, feeds from many places filling my waking hours~ all related to running. Here I was unable to run. I was in mental and physical distress. I would like to think that I was a reasonable human being but I know that sometimes I was not. I was sad, frustrated and ugly. I was envious, jealous and mean. I did not always show how I was feeling inside. I wanted to run and I knew that my foot had to heal first so I tried to be patient. For the most part, I did okay. I had a few times that I walked too long or far and paid for it later. 
The good news is that this morning I woke up and ran 2 miles. It was not particularly pretty or fast. In fact I was slow and steady and I am just fine with that. I will do it again tomorrow. I am not 100%. My foot tells me that. It did not throb or swell from the run so that is my sign that I am back. Truthfully, I'm not better than before, but I am back to doing something that I love. I will try to be patient and build back slowly. It is a journey that I travel~slow or fast, I start anew :)

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Weakness, it is not always what we think

So normally I am a pretty tough gal. I am much easier on others than I am on myself. It is strange how I see an injury in myself as a weakness of my body and character. While thinking about this, I realize that this is completely ridiculous but nevertheless, it is true. I am a healthy person for the most part. For the most part, I think the human body is an amazing thing. I have not always thought so. I have had numerous surgeries~ all in the pelvic area. I was rather disappointed that my twins were going to have to be delivered cesarean section due to one of the boys being much smaller than the other and that the placenta was not giving him the nutrients that he needed to grow. He had to be born without delay.

Which leads me to today...I am a runner. I have signed up for a half marathon in a month and have been training for it. If I commit to something, I do it. With much ambivalence but thinking that it was wise in the long term, I decided to take a few weeks off of running at my husband's suggestion. He thought that my hip was injured and that resting it would be good. I did not get better, in fact, my pain got more frequent and severe. It did not seem like an injury because I could not think of a workout that had felt bad. And so with some trepidation I broke down and called for an appointment to get my hip/leg looked at. My quality of life was being affected by this shooting pain that went from my hip, down my leg and into my foot making walking, steps, lying down, standing up or sitting painful. I had a thorough exam by the doctor and he ordered some lower back and hip x-rays. I found out that I have mild degeneration of two of the discs. My hip is fine. The doctor thought physical therapy and NSAID's would be the first order of business. I honestly am relieved and am feeling so much better. The pain has almost gone away. I am doing stretches that are really going to make my core stronger. He said I did not have to stop running. Yesterday, I ran 10 miles and it felt great! It is the farthest I have run since the marathon in January.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

I need to listen better

I have a sore hip~ I have diagnosed myself with a hip flexor strain. I am taking some time off of exercising and running and doing RICE. If I let my hip heal and then strengthen it with exercises and come back slowly, I should be as good as before and pain free.
This is a reminder that I am not invincible and that I can be too stubborn and push myself harder than what I should. These are not the first time that these lessons are knocking me down. It is hard to have sympathy for someone who does not listen very well. I am serious when I say that I am going to try harder to not be quite as pigheaded and listen to how my body is feeling so that I can get back to running without pain sooner rather than later. I have a half marathon in 6 weeks and I want to be ready :) I can do it!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013


My new car :D
Hard to believe that it has been a whole month since I updated. Lots of things have happened. I am the proud new owner of this sweet, 2012 certified silver MINI Cooper (previously10k on this car-it was a lease return)! I had the best experience at the Bergstrom MINI dealership in Appleton.

We went to Minneapolis and watched Katy in the ballroom dance competition. I want to learn how to ballroom dance! It takes a lot of coordination and fancy footwork (not to mention being able to feel the beat) to dance like the couples we saw. I had the chance to use my new dslr camera which was the first time for me. I hope to continue to improve in my photo taking skills. I used the sport/motion setting so that the dancers would not be blurry.

I have continued training for the half marathon coming up on May 4th in La Crosse. I have not signed up for the Medtronics marathon in September or any other races yet. I am thinking that the Madison half (mini marathon) might be a good race to do in August. I like having a race to look forward to. It keeps the motivation to keep running in the forefront. It would be easy to slack on the days that I have not felt like doing much of anything. Speaking of which, I have just started feeling better. Last week, I had a stomach thing going on and my sleep and eating was all upset. I am back on track!

So ready for spring!!
We are on day 119 of school. We have had 4 days off of school due to snow and icy roads. We do not have built in snow days in the calendar and we won't find out until the middle of May when our last day of school will be. I am tired of winter! Daylight savings time was this past Saturday night and we have set our clocks ahead by an hour. I like the later daylight. Hopefully in the next month I will be cleaning up the gardens and seeing the daffodils pop up.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Amazing~ I think not

I have had many people tell me how amazing (or crazy) I am for running a marathon. The truth of the matter is that I am a determined person, but really the training for me was the hardest part of it all. It is a challenge to figure out fuel, hydration, soreness vs. injury, clothing, weather, shoes, blisters and more. The actual marathon race~ that for me is/was fun and what the training payoff is! I am just like you- ordinary yet unique, but not extraordinary. I don't want to minimize the effort or determination necessary to do it. It is not easy. It is an accomplishment that I am proud of. is what I have used for my training programs. It is a great site and I transferred the mileage training/distance to my calendar for free or you can download the apps for a charge.
Medtronics Twin Cities Marathon October 2012
Each of us have a "bucket list". I have not had many serious thoughts about what I want to do or even accomplish before I die. I am not sure that I want to think about my death. Death comes to all that live, so I am not in denial, but it is not something that I dwell on or am planning for. I am someone that generally tries to live in the here and now but also plans for the near future.

Ever since I was a young child I have loved watching the Olympics. Extremely talented, trained athletes come together from all over the world to compete. I would sit in front of the tv and watch for hours. I did not have the natural talent or the drive within to be able to compete at that level. I was given opportunities to discover my talents as a child. I was a natural at swimming and tested for my life guard certification. I was a gymnast, dancer, basketball player and a golfer. As a younger person, I was the first girl on our golf team. I had natural talent and a "feel" for golf. I gave up the game in an act of defiance. I felt pushed by the adults around me to compete on a higher level and the game became high pressured which I was not interested in. I dabbled in creativity too. I took art, music, acting and writing classes. I had talent in lots of areas but nothing that filled me with passion.  
High school ended. College and the decision about what to do with my adult life became a necessity. I liked working with kids. I won't lie. I wanted to make a difference in the lives of others and what better way than to become a  teacher? I taught kindergarten. And then, I got married. The "me" in my life became "we". The happiness of our lives became even richer with the birth of our children. I know that I could never have imagined how much my life would change.

Early professional days
"I do." and I would again!
The train station near Peshtigo, WI.
I became a full time mom and if I am honest, a part time wife. We will be celebrating our 26th wedding anniversary this week and it is a tribute to my husband that we are loving each other today. He supported me in all of my insanity and troubling times. I know that there were times that I felt that I had lost "my self". That might not make any sense to you. I took time off to raise our kids. I left my profession and had friends that were moms. My identity revolved around my kids. This is not a bad or good thing. It is a choice that I made.  I am very proud of my kids. They have personal integrity, compassion for others, intelligence, common sense, great work ethics, sarcastic senses of humor, and a balance in their lives that is mature and healthy. They were raised by us but they are their own selves as any loving parent would want them to be. I take only partial credit for this. In my years of teaching, I have learned that much of who we are is just plain luck. We are lucky!
A few years back...
Fast forward to Katy leaving home for college. The 22 years that children were living within our midst, changed in a flash. I have been teaching full time since 2001 and I had gone back to college and earned my masters degree. I had started to get other interests again as time and money allowed. There was a small part of me (nagging me perhaps)  that needed to do something more. Perhaps I could run and finish a marathon? I had not been a runner and a 5K seemed like a far distance when I first started. I don't know if it was really a bucket list item or not. I do know though that I have discovered the joy of running. Training for and completing marathons is not crazy or amazing. It is something I can say I have done. It is a mental and physical challenge. I am glad that I can do it for me.