Friday, November 26, 2010

As promised–video review and update…

“Goals allow you to control the direction of change in your favour.”
Brian Tracy
First a review of the aerobic step I received from CSN Stores. I was very excited when I came home on Tuesday and saw this big package on my doorstep. Not only did they send me my order quickly, they didn’t charge me any shipping fees. Smile

When I spoke of buying the step, a few of you gave me ideas of how you use yours. I loved that…thanks! Therefore, I shall now show my favourite way to use the step and stay in shape for running.

The jumps…

Of course, there are tons of other ways to use this super solid step. Thanks again to CSN for this great opportunity. BTW, the gravelly Lauren Bacall voice is a side-effect of taking so many asthma inhalers…the corticosteroid powder is messing with my vocal cords. Oh and the little dog you see, that's Flocon (Snowflake in English) he's my mom's and I'm keeping him for six months while she's keeping herself warm in Florida this winter.

UPDATE: The piriformis seems to be under control. Iron Mike was right on when he said it seemed to be early onset. If I’m careful, and follow everyone’s advice, I should be okay. My PT was on vacation this week, so I didn’t see him, but I may not need to right away after all. Marcia suggested I do sidesteps with a stretchy rope; Mom Running from Cancer suggests I stretch and use the foam roller; and both Anne and ajh suggested I roll with the tennis ball. I’ve been good about stretching and rolling, the tennis ball really makes a huge difference and the pain is much much diminished. Yay!
As for the prednisone, I’m still on it and must take it for another 8 days. However, by next week, things should be back to “normal”. No use dwelling on it too much, at least I know I’ll feel better soon.

One of the things I decided to do is try and work on my speed a little bit. I don’t like to suffer and realized that I may have been holding back, especially on my shorter tempo runs. No need to warn me about overdoing it, I'm doing this with care and caution. So on Tuesday, I had a 4K tempo run to complete and figured I’d try and push it a little more, without looking at my watch, and see if it made a difference. Indeed, I ran at a pace of 9:31m/mile, the fastest I’ve ever run. I was pretty excited. I then repeated the exact same pace on Thursday for another 4K. There is not much that beats that feeling of pride. Although I will not be blogging much, know that if you are interested, I am on Daily Mile and I always enter my runs.

Another cool thing is that my 16 year-old niece has signed up to do the Hypothermic Half with us. So, I'll be doing a few of my long runs with her. I'm really excited and love to tease her about crossing over to the "other side" ;)

Finally, I may have another short post coming up next weekend as I will be a volunteer elf for the Santa Shuffle over here on Mount Royal. Lots of family and friends will be running and it’ll be fun to Pay it Forward this time around. I’m pretty excited about volunteering.

That's it for today, I'm off to complete my workout for today, after a warmup on the bike trainer. Happy belated Thanksgiving to my friends from the U.S.A. and happy running to all.


Saturday, November 20, 2010

Here we go again!

"I've been unfortunate enough to be working, and recovering from a few injuries now and again."
Jason Statham

Is this a typical pattern for newbie runners? First, runners knee followed by a foot injury and now, drum roll please...feels like piriformis syndrome! I've always had pain, on and off back there beneath the left butt cheek, but it never lasted. When I went to Niagara Falls, I got a free massage, and the student told me my piriformis muscle was extremely tight and probably causing what felt like sciatica. But, I did my half-marathon and I was fine, no pain. THEN, last Sunday, the plan was to do 10K. Beautiful weather, I'm feeling good...let's do it! By the time I was almost at 9K, I was seriously cramping up on the above mentioned butt cheek and actually ended up having to walk. It felt like someone had creeped up behind me and started squeezing my sciatica nerve...ouch!

Tuesday, I decided to bike instead of was absolutely beautiful outside and I could have enjoyed a nice outdoor bike ride. Sigh...why did I put my bike on the training so soon? See, once the bike is on the trainer, and you've changed the back tire for the special indoor tire, then you can't take it out again. I have so much to learn! Next year, the back tire only gets changed when there is significant snow on the ground. Anyway! The point of this was to say that I biked instead of ran.

Also, I rolled and stretched and iced...and yesterday, we went for a short 4K. It went fine, the pain was definitely bearable and not constant and I rolled again when I got home. BUT, then that night, as I'm laying in bed, totally not running, I felt mild pain, like I have a bruise or something. This lasted all night and had happened last Sunday evening too.

There you have it, the latest on the list of Anne's injuries. Anyone else dealing with Piriformis Syndrome? I'm going to make an appointment to see my PT, Joseph the magician, next week...hope he can make this go away too!

On a more positive note, NOT! I'm now back on prednisone...interestingly, my lung capacity remains pretty good even when the inflammation is through the roof. This means that my quality of life is not affected as it once was when the inflammation set in. It is what it least I can still do what I enjoy most..."Live, Laugh, Run" :)

Lately, I'm thinking of taking a blogbattical (after I've done my promised review and video of the jumps I do with the aerobic step :)). Life has been busy and wonderful, but leaves me with little time for a cyberlife. Of course, there is no way I can just go away and not know what is going on with my bloggy friends. However, if I go by Marcia's definition of her runbattical, which includes its fair share of running, I can be on a blogbattical and still check in once in a while. You'll also hear from me whenever something exciting happens in my life and just must be shared. The main thing is, I'll be unplugged much more often and even when I read, I will mostly not be commenting. Chances are, I'll be back in full force as summer approaches along with my marathon date (May 29th)! :)

Happy running to all!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

I bought my trainer!

“All of the top achievers I know are life-long learners... Looking for new skills, insights, and ideas. If they're not learning, they're not growing... not moving toward excellence.”
Denis Waitley

Not so much that I'm a top achiever...but, I do like trying new things. After hurting my foot and barely being able to walk, let alone run, for close to a month, I bought a bike. I loved biking and although I am back to running, I decided that it would be a good idea to continue cross-training on the bike in the winter. So I bought a trainer :) 
My new trainer!
First, I bought the trainer, which cost about $200 (I got the cheapest one)...then I bought a special blue tire for my back wheel, to avoid ruining my road tire, another $50, then the stand to hold my front tire steady, another $, I paid the young man to change my tire for me ($8). Overall, it cost me about $300. Totally worth it! I can keep all this for years to come and bonus, I can read while riding my bike!
Must figure out a better way to hold my book...

Running: Today, I went for a 7K, supposedly long slow distance (LSD) run. It was beautiful out and I just enjoyed my run, forgetting to look at my Garmin. I felt the way I normally feel on a run, though I did tell myself to slow down a bit at some point. Again, not because I looked at my Garmin, I just felt I was perhaps going a bit faster than LSD pace (should be at least 7 min./km). I was so surprised when my Garmin Training Center showed me my pace was faster than tempo pace...what?! My average was 6.22min/km (10.14min/mile) first Km was 5.57minutes. Seriously, it totally did not feel that fast. Yay I mean oops ;)


Friday, November 5, 2010

I thought it would be was easy (or vice versa)

"If we all worked on the assumption that what is accepted as true is really true, there would be little hope of advance.
Orville Wright

Tuesday, I felt good about starting a new program. The plan was a nice short 4K. I assumed it would go well...that it would be easy. NOT. I was so tired after just 2K, that I was feeling a bit queasy and stopped after a mere 3K. Okay.

Thursday, I felt tired and I had a glass of wine at lunch, it was raining and chilly. So, the idea of getting out there and doing another 4K didn't thrill me. I assumed it wouldn't go well...that it would be hard. NOT. I floated through this run, I felt great and completed 5.2K without any fatigue.

I guess assumptions cannot be made about how our run will go :)