Thursday, October 29, 2015

Fibula Stress Fracture

I felt ok after running the 10 for Texas. A couple days later I went out for a run on the trails and I was feeling pain in my calf. I kept thinking/hoping it was just muscle tightness. I finished my run and after it was really hurting. I am getting ready to begin Ironman 70.3 training so I want to play it smart. Right away I began with R.I.C.E (Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation). I wore my compression sleeves everywhere. I continued to bike and swim because I felt ok doing those. I took a week off from running. Then I went out for a run. And the pain was back in full force. So this time I stopped swimming, biking, and running. I went out one night and had to jog to my car to get thru the rain and that's when I knew I had to get in to see the orthopedist. I was limping. I kept hoping it was a strain in my calf muscle. There was a worry in the back of my mind about a possible stress fracture because I have had them in the past and also because the pain I was feeling was deep. But I was holding onto hope that it was nothing to worry about. I was praying that it was something short lived and would not interfere with my training.

I even took my first ice bath
 Monday morning I called and my appointment was set for Thursday. I continued to rest and just focused on some stretching and weights in the meantime. And Thursday finally came. If you are an athlete you know the fear and dread of finally getting a diagnosis. You want to know so you can begin the healing process, you want the best case scenario, and you want the shortest recovery period.
The dreaded wait....
The diagnosis is a stress fracture in my fibula which means no running for 4 weeks and then I go back to see where we are at that point. The good news is I can still bike and swim. I'm going to just have to delay the run portion of my training for my 70.3. And I fear I'll have to rethink my running. I love to run fast and hard and really push myself to the limit when I run. This is my 3rd stress fracture in my lower legs. I had stress fractures in both tibias at this same time of year in 2013 during Marathon training. I would hate to have to cut back my intensity, but I want to be sure I have a lifetime of running and triathlons ahead of me! I'm going forward with a positive frame of mind. Injury is all too often a part of the process. I will work thru it. I will spend this time focusing on biking and swimming and on strength training. This will not interfere with my goals!

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Weights and Pull ups

I can say my upper body is weak because it's been neglected during my clavicle/shoulder recovery. While that is true, the real truth is it's always been that way. Even when I've incorporated weights regularly in my fitness regiment, I've never felt strong. I want that to change!
I had my husband spot me with the bar that weighs 45 pounds. In my defense that is 43% my body weight. Lol it was so hard!!!! I was able to do 3! Three!! Haha! Well it's a start! I traded the bar out for my 12lb weights and finished my sets.
Yet another blow to my ego was my attempt at doing pullups. This was as good as it got! I could not stop giggling because it was so hard! But I am holding onto this picture because I am going to look back on it and laugh when I am doing them like a champ!

After all 3 of my bench presses and my 1/2 a pull up I am so sore! Lol!! I've got some serious work to do!

Thursday, October 22, 2015

It's a Stretch!

I tend to sacrifice the stretch in order to get back to my responsibilities sooner. When I stretch regularly I feel so much better, and I know this. I am determined to keep stretching as a part of my daily routine.

I use the Stretch Out Strap and I find it helpful as I have a very limited knowledge on stretching. While it's my goal to stretch daily it is also my goal to learn more about proper and varied stretches.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Climbing to the Top

I love taking a unique and challenging approach each time never giving up until I reach the top!
 I had no idea how intense a 2 hour rock climbing workout could be! Granted we went after I did a 5 mile run. I don't think I'll do that again. I believe I used just about every muscle in my entire body! My muscles were burning and by the end I was shaking as I made my way to the top!
 My youngest, Emerson, wanted to go rock climbing for his 4th birthday. He was a beast. He had no fear. He spent more time climbing in the adult section than he did the kid's section. He came across a little trouble because his reach was just a little too short on some points on the course. But he never gave up! He climbed for two hours and his excitement never waned!
 Daddy only chose the most challenging courses while Mommy did whatever it took to get to the top!

I can't wait to go again! I'm definitely going to make rock climbing a more frequent addition to my workouts!

Monday, October 19, 2015

My CycleOps Saves My Training!


Being a busy mom of four there is not a lot of time to get out on the road for my rides. I usually have at least one kiddo with me, and if I don't it's usually too dark or too busy a traffic time be out there. So my CycleOps Fluid 2 trainer is literally my saving grace for my training! I get on there early in the morning when the boys are still asleep, during naptime, or after bedtime. There have been times when I make a picnic in our workout room for my youngest and get in a quick ride while he eats lunch. I do whatever it takes to get it done while taking as little time away from my family as possible.
I recently did my longest ride ever and it was on my trainer! I rode for 2 1/2 hours! It was as much of a mental challenge as it was a physical challenge! I had to exercise some serious mental fortitude! But I got it done!

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Slow Swimming

In my focus to improve my stroke I feel as if I have sacrificed my speed. I am so slow! But I am staying focused and hoping that as my form improves my speed will also improve.

My goal is to see my average pace under the 2 minute mark! I cannot wait for the day!!

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

My First Love, Trail Running


My love of running first originated on the trails. I have always enjoyed hiking. My husband and I, even when we were first dating would go on long hikes and camping trips. After we had kids, we would take them along. So it was only natural when I started running I headed straight for the trails.
I feel like I can breathe more deeply when I'm out on the trails. I can quiet my mind and be at peace. My own little escape.
My very first race was a 10k trail run. I had only started running 4 weeks before! I worried that a 10k was a little ambitious, but I went for it! My time was 1:08:25/11:00 pace and I thought I was flying! I was so proud!
My next race was almost two months later. It was also a 10k trail run. My time was 59:57/9:38 pace. 8 1/2 minutes off my time and I made my first PR!
After that I was bitten by the speed and distance bug. I was ultra focused on improving! I still hit the trails on occasion, but not as much. I am determined now to get back to the trails more often. While always looking to improve, I need to also remember my love of running and the peace I find on the trails. 

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Letter to myself for 6 months from today

To Iron Jill,
     For 6 months you have trained for this day. You have put in countless hours, sweat, and I'm sure there were even tears along the way. You never gave up! I am sure the old doubt and anxiety is creeping in but remember to trust your training. On October 10th, you have yet to bike even 35 miles. You are running 10 miles. And while you can swim the distance 1.2 miles you are dreaming of faster times. I know with hard work and determination you have increased your mileage, gotten faster, and are even stronger now. You are ready! Training is not just a physical challenge but a mental one. And each moment you dedicated to your training has brought you to this moment. I want you to go out and fight hard for your goals. But I want you to have fun and enjoy the race. Remember to smile, remember to say an encouraging word to another athlete who may need it, remember that this is your dream and you are living it girl! Things will likely go wrong and you will be challenged in ways you couldn't imagine. And from these things you will learn and grow, so take them in stride. Remember it's one foot (or stroke or rotation) in front of the other and just breathe! You've got this!

Truly yours!!

10 for Texas Race Recap

I was anxious going into this race like I am every other race. My coach had me using heart rate training. Usually I would run full out and hard every run, so I would know what I was capable of. I would also end up injured. Heart rate training has kept me injury free, but I was going into this race not knowing what I was capable of. My coach had given me a goal pace of 8:10!!! I have to admit I thought she was a little crazy, but of course I hoped she was right!! I felt like 8:10 was a very ambitious goal. I figured I would aim for 8:20 and make my stretch goal 8:10 and if I was really lucky I would make it somewhere in between. My friend Meredith and I went on a warm up run before the race and this is something I will always try to do. Usually the first mile of the race I spend working out aches and pains and any kinks I have. This time I didn't have to. I felt great from the start. I was at an 8:00 pace and my legs felt strong and my breathing was steady. A few miles in I saw my coach Gena and her husband Greg. It was great seeing them out there! I was getting hot so I started getting water at every station and taking a drink and pouring the rest on me. I made it to the halfway mark and I still felt great! My pace was steady and each step closer I knew I could do it. At about mile 9 I saw Coach Gena and Greg again. She said I was at an average sub 8 pace! I got excited and started pushing harder and my breathing was all off. Another runner reminded me to focus on my breathing and I did just that. I got it under control, I made it up the bridge and down, and turned the corner towards where I knew the largest crowd would be waiting. I took my headphones out so I could hear the cheering. When I did that it caused my phone to slide out of my armband and fall on the ground. Here is where I learned a very important lesson. Never ever under any circumstances bend over after running really hard for 10 miles. First my knees hit the ground and then I fell forward. The crowd collectively gasped, went silent, and then cheered as I got myself up and started to run again. Oh the humiliation! I remember scanning the crowd wondering if there was anyone out there I knew that may have witnessed  my lack of grace. My friend Leanne snapped this pic right after I got back up. I swallowed my tears, put a smile on my face, and made it to that finish line. I was hyperventilating at that point and had trouble keeping back the tears of humiliation. My parents found me and my mom told me I had to have finished in close to 20 minutes. I waited a few minutes for them to post the first sheet of results. I got my finish time of 1:20:46. I knew it was really good but I still didn't know my pace. I was ready to just get home. In the car I checked results and there it was an 8:04 pace!! 8:04!!! I did it! I didn't just meet my goal I surpassed it! Nothing like a little dose of humility with my pride! 

I ran this course a year ago with a finish time of 1:30:27 and a pace of 9:03. This year I beat my time by 10 minutes!! Ain't nothin' gonna keep me down! Got my PR baby!!

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

When I run I am free......

When I run I am from self doubt, free from criticism, free from negativity, I am free from any demands put on me. It's just one foot in front of the other and breathe.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Just Keep Swimming

18 months ago today I took my first swim lesson with my little guys! At 38 years old I finally learned how to swim! My bike accident that required 2 surgeries and lots of physical therapy kept me out of the water for several months. I got back to it and look at me now! I can swim a mile in open water!!
Drag vs. Propulsion test appears I have high drag and my catch and pull thru is ineffective. 😁 However, while I was embracing my suck and trying to learn from it, I was stopped and asked how I got so good at swimming and was told by two women that they wish they could swim like me!! Nothing like a little perspective and a reminder that not too long ago I was the one watching and wishing!!