And the beat goes on

I just began my 2nd week of half-marathon training with a 6-mile long run this morning.

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I knew I could do it easily and feel that these first few weeks are boring because I don’t feel challenged yet. I guess it’s like everything else…baby steps.

Speaking of babies…I have a new great-niece and I am dedicating all of my training runs to her–Lillian Ann. She has become my new inspiration.

I’ll be back in a few weeks after I am further into my training.

Same Journey but Different Path

Today, after spending the past month working on getting my level of running back up (almost) to where it was before I got injured last September, I started my training for a half-marathon.

I am following a personalized program on My Fitness Pal. I decided that since I have no particular race in mind, I would set it up for at least 4-5 months of slow training, as recommended by my pain specialist.

I recently did an 8-day mini-runstreak, and I knew that I was ready and able to handle it.

My end goal is to run a HM on or shortly after my 70th birthday in 2018. I’m up for the challenge. So, between now and then I’ll continue with my running, strength training, and Boot Camp.

I decided that all my training runs will be dedicated to my new grand-niece, Lillian Ann. I actually wanted to wait until she was born before I began the program and she was born 2 days ago…it couldn’t have been timed more perfectly.

#IRunforLillianAnn

Finally off the injury couch

I am so happy to report that I am finally pain-free from my hamstring/glute injury.

A few days ago, after doing weeks of run/walk intervals, I completely ran 3.50 miles. I took a few breaks to stretch out my back and hamstrings. It was more of a jog than an run but I wasn’t walking. Other than feeling tired, I had no residual pain and it gave me a great feeling of accomplishment.

It is probably the first time in my life that I actually followed medical advice. The pain specialist told me to take 6 months off and rest and concentrate on re-educating those muscles with stretching exercises. I did and I also began doing restorative yoga.

The most important lesson I came away with was the importance of stretching before and after a run. Prior to injury, I was very complacent when it came to this, but no more. With that being said, I’ve been using resistance bands, stability balls, etc. to do stretching and strengthen the glutes. I also recognized the need to do more core work and my trainer and I have been doing more of that in our sessions.

I now look forward to running my first 5k, since fall, in Gettysburg in a few weeks.

Back in the running shoes, again

It’s been a few months since I’ve posted. Since October, I’ve been dealing with an injury that started out as a muscle pull and turned into tendinosis in my hamstring and glute, where the two meet.

If there is one thing I’ve learned, it is go see the doctor right away. Don’t depend on Dr. Google or Dr. WebMD. In other words, leave it up to the professional and don’t self-diagnose. The actual injury happened in September and I thought I could cure it myself. That was my first mistake.

So, I went through 4 weeks of physical therapy because I wanted to be able to run my first 10k, which was in November. This race was on my bucket list for over a year and I had signed up for it a few months prior to injuring myself. I got myself well enough to walk the race. I was disappointed because I had trained to run this and had my time down to a 14 minute mile. My walking time was just under 2 hours.

After this, I ended up going back to not doing anything but doing the exercises that I brought home from PT. Around Christmas, I had so much pain that I could hardly walk. I went back to the sports doctor and had an MRI which showed tendinosis in the glute and hamstring. He referred me to the pain specialist and two weeks later I had my first and so far, only cortisone shot. I’ve been trying to hold off on a second shot.

Last summer, 10 of us signed up for the Hot Chocolate 15k in Philadelphia, which had I been able to run, I could have trained well for it. I put a lot of money into it (race fee, hotel, train ticket). This was on April 1 and I knew that I wouldn’t be able to run this thing. However, I did cross the start line but at 4.5 miles I had to drop out because of too much pain plus some intestinal stuff going on. I walked over to the finish line to wait for my friends and I did get a finisher’s medal to bring home.

While I wasn’t able to run, I did keep up with the personal trainer to work on upper body strength. I am now at the point where a run/walk is bearable. I know I have a few more months until I can expect to feel completely well, and I know that I will be dealing with this the rest of my life. I always thought that my first injury would either be foot or knee related.

The second thing this injury has taught me is to not be complacent about stretching before and after working out or running.

I am also training with the trainer once a week for an hour of full body training. I really love legwork and need to rebuild the muscles up in my legs…LOOK OUT LEG PRESS!

My goal is to get my running time back up to at least do a 17 minute mile for a 5k in June. I feel like a beginner but at least I may be down but I’m not out.

Since My 60-day Run Challenge I’ve Developed a PITA

It’s been about 6 weeks since I posted about my 60-Day Run Challenge. I was happy to raise over $700 for our local sexual assault counseling center.

Since then, I have been on and off (more on) the injury couch. After nursing myself, I decided to make an appointment with a sports doctor. I went 2 weeks ago and the verdict is/was tendonitis in my hamstring and glute and some minor hip issues. That being said, I began some short-term physical therapy. The exercises that I have been diligently doing twice a day at home have benefited me greatly.

I have had 3 consecutive pain-free days and am keeping my fingers crossed that it stays that way. A few weeks ago, I had so much pain that it nauseated me. Thank God that is gone.

Through this, I have realized that my trainer and I need to do more core work (which I hate), so along with the PT, they are working together on a program for me.

Hopefully, I will be allowed to begin a walk/run program next week. It has been killing me not to be out on the trail, especially now…this is my favorite season.  Also, I have the “Across the Bay 10k” coming up on Nov. 6th. I know I’m going to probably have to walk it, but if I don’t do it, I’ll just have an expensive tee shirt. Nah…I’m gonna walk it.

So, that’s where I am at.

 

What a 60-day Run Streak Taught Me

This past Saturday, my #60dayrunchallenge” aka #MilesForSARCC  came to an end. My initial goal was to run 2 miles a day, but it got a little more real and out of control and 211 miles and 60 days later, I learned and discovered:

1. I’m capable of much more than I give myself credit for.
2. I have an over abundance of friends and family, who, without their love and support, I couldn’t have done this. (“It takes a village.” Hilary Clinton) Thanks, everyone!
3. I can go the distance, and it hasn’t killed me…no more 3 mile limits.
4. I love trail running more than pavement pounding.
5. I got my first pair of trail shoes.
6. I want to do more than a 5k or 10k race
7. I learned how to use the video function on my phone.
8. I learned how to do a Facebook Live video. (Keep watching this spot. 😀👍)
9. I learned the importance of keeping hydrated during this hot and humid days and now I don’t do runs without my hydration pack.
10. I discovered new trails and running routes.
11. I’m learning to like hills…not ready for the “L” word yet.
12. Running can be a solo activity or teamwork and sometimes both at the same time.
13. Joining a great running group (Lebanon County PA, Moms/She Runs This Town) is everything. Peer support at it’s finest. Thank you ladies!
14. My pace per mile has improved by about 1 minute. I can now do a 17-18 minute mile.

There are probably more things that I will realize after I post this, but my future plans is to a week to regroup and then begin preparing for my 10k Across the Chesapeake Bay, in November, and also start training for a half-marathon (my goal for 2017.)

I know that anything I do is because of God’s will and my determination.

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60 Day Challenge Update

I’m into day 27 of a 60 Day Challenge that was given to my running group by a fellow group member. So far I have run 87 miles. My goal is 120 miles, and I am way ahead of my proposed plan of 2 miles per day.

I love this challenge and have been using it as a training tool…intervals, hill work, learning how to pace myself. I’ve been running longer distances and have a new found love of trail running.

I’ve once again left my comfort zone by signing up for my first 10k in November…the 10k Across the Bay in Annapolis.

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Again, taking on a new challenge–fear of heights and bridges…double-whammy. However, I am looking forward to it and I’m also thinking that I might take this 60 Day Challenge past 60 days because I am thriving on it.

I’m also thinking that I want to train for a HM as a 2017 goal. I’d welcome any comments or recommendations on training programs.