Wednesday, October 13, 2010
I feel the need to post a non-ankle related blog entry, but there's nothing either good or interesting to say about the nutritional part of my recent actions. Let's just say cookies and pizza have me saying "What in tarnation, Tootsie Pop?" a bit more than I'd like lately. The pizza is the side effect of friends coming over for a little couch commiseration on Sunday and the cookies were labeled "Breast cancer cookies" and had pink M&Ms in them. "Good intentions" are no excuse for poor dietary choices, ya doof!
So as a topic, that leaves me with my new shoes (black Clarks slip-ons bought at TJ Maxx for $40, which is really all there is to say about them) and exercise. Pilates has gone well for the last couple of weeks. I decided that I'll be able to keep up with the class just fine and there's no need to switch to the beginner's class. I may be a beginner at Pilates, but I'm not a beginner at crunches, leg lifts and stretching. The biggest problem for me is doing everything barefoot. My feet cramp a bit, but less the second week than the first.
The gym is pretty darned enjoyable for me and that's what I'd really like to write about. Besides the obvious reasons for enjoying the gym (endorphins, a feeling of accomplishment), I also enjoy people-watching at the gym. One of the benefits of regular workouts is that I see the same people pretty often. And just because I am super-shallow sometimes, I will tell you that one of the people I see most often is a very good-looking, tall young man with an amazing aptitude for push-ups. On Monday he was doing push-ups about two feet from where I was doing crunches and it was a bit hard to keep my mind on form. Or, my form, at least. And before anyone gets any ideas, I may be single and gaining confidence in my own attractiveness every day, but this guy appears to be a bit out of my age bracket and that limits my interest to strictly observational. He sure is pretty, though...
So there are my slightly embarrassing, totally silly thoughts for the day. I hope that the Gym Fairy brings you a bit of eye candy to make your workouts more fun, too!
Tuesday, October 12, 2010
So, I'm kind of hesitant about posting this blog. Yesterday, everyone advised me to go to the doctor because my ankle felt worse in the morning. I want to thank everyone for their concern. It really is appreciated. Admittedly, I've always been someone who's put off going to the doctor, so my bias is probably going to show here, but I'm not ready to make an appointment yet. Although it hurts in the morning, it feels substantially better later in the day, so I think the situation is improving more than I thought it was yesterday.
I did figure out a couple of things yesterday. The first is that sitting without moving my leg at all for over an hour during my drive to work yesterday allowed it to stiffen up. On the drive home and the drive in this morning, I flexed my ankle gently for the whole drive and it was a lot more comfortable and flexible when I got out of the car. Second, I really need to replace the shoes I've been wearing because the heels are totally worn down. The wear pattern on the heels is causing my naturally funky walk to become even more exaggerated. You know how running on a cambered surface can cause joint issues? When I wear these shoes, I take the camber with me.
And really, who doesn't want an excuse to buy new shoes?
So the other reason I'm hesitant to post this blog is that I have to fess up to working out last night. I was going stir crazy from the lack of activity and needed to work out. I planned to do my usual 4x10 minute sessions on the elliptical with strength sets interspersed, but was prepared to switch to the stationary bike if there was any problem with my ankle. Not only was there no problem with my ankle on the elliptical, there wasn't even any noticeable slowdown between what I was able to do before and what I did last night. My strength training wasn't really affected, either- even the stuff I do for my legs. I can't say that was 100% fine, though, because my standing alternating dumbbell curls did put more pressure than I'd like on my ankle. Apparently, my body is not keen on the extra 40 pounds! Which makes me even more grateful for the 40 pounds I've lost since last year. When extra weight bothers me now, I can just put it back on the rack. And perhaps, just to be safe, I should sit on the weight bench to do my curls for a while.
I'm obviously a long way from being ready to get back to running, but I am getting better. I'm also keeping a watchful eye out for any new developments. If there's any change other than"getting better," I promise I will call my doctor. And my post-shoe shopping activity tonight is TV, ice, and elevation. I'm not pressing my luck. Much.
Tuesday, October 12, 2010
I'm a day late on this...
~*~ WTF Challenge 10/11 - 10/15 ~*~
Part 1- EXERCISE AND NUTRITION
Vampires suck. So do injuries!
During my last WTF template dates, I was able to accomplish... not a lot, as far as exercise goes. I wanted to run 9 miles, but my body rebelled. I did substitute a full-body strength training workout and 40 minutes on the elliptical for a planned run, and I went to my second Pilates class. I was most proud when I was able to get through the second Pilates class with better form and less foot cramping than the first.
As far as nutrition goes, I was glad that I didn't let emotional eating get the better of me. I did eat "not-good-for-me" food, but in carefully measured portions. (I ::heart:: my kitchen scale!) I still want to concentrate on improving limiting sweets.
This week, my go-to snack will be Laughing Cow Light and whole wheat Toasted crackers, my favorite 115 calorie snack.
My go-to exercise will be weight training and the elliptical.
I am going to attempt to switch from the tricep extension machine to free weights because I already know that I can do dumbbell curls (and free weights are more effective than machines).
Encourage me by reminding me that a little down time means success later. (Again. Some more.)
When I find myself about to make a bad or questionable decision as far as nurtition and workouts, I will simply ask myself... what in tarnation do you think you're doing, tootsie pop?
Part 2- THE REST OF YOUR LIFE
Try to think of things that you usually spend money on during the holidays, and see if you can find a way to save money there, by making them in your specially set aside 'me-time'. Blog about what you figure out or what you think you might attempt to do. This may also keep you from picking up too much extra candies and goodies in the season aisles that will end up in your tummy.
DO NOT FORGET YOUR WEEKLY RITUAL QUIET TIME, DO IT AGAIN. YES, AGAIN.
Monday, October 11, 2010
Since my "hurt and frustrated" status update this morning, I now feel about 80% better both physically and mentally. A large part of the frustration is that I actually felt considerably better last night. I was even looking forward to my workout tonight and thinking about running for just ten minutes at a :30/:30 interval, just to feel like I wasn't losing ground. I spent most of the weekend on the couch with my ankle iced and elevated, and the closest thing to exercise was taking laundry up and down the stairs and going to the grocery store on an emergency peanut butter, garlic and Cascade run. A couple of friends came over yesterday, so that made it easier.
Then this morning, I woke up and all the pain came rushing back to my ankle. It hurt to stand on it. It hurt to walk on it. Heck, it even hurt to just move it a little while I was still lying in bed. Keeping it in the same semi-flexed position for an hour while I drove definitely didn't help, and the nearly-quarter mile walk from the parking lot to my desk was a bit of a nightmare, especially when I got about 100 feet from my car and realized that I'd left my laptop in the car and had to go back for it. All of that adds up to a status update full of worry and self-pity. Fast-forward four hours and I feel loads better. I'm not sure if that's real, Aleve or wishful thinking. In any case, I'm forbidding myself from running tonight, but I'm not totally ruling out the elliptical or the stationary bike. I need to do something. Er, something that is not swimming. I'm not a swimmer.
One thing that has helped a lot (besides the encouragement and sympathy of my Spark Friends) was looking at some of the articles on the Runner's World website about dealing with injury. I am also forbidding myself from freaking out about not running. There are 19 weeks between now and the half marathon. That seems like such a small amount of time to me, but it's not. It's really not. It's a little less than five months. Going by my current training plan, I was exactly on track on Oct. 2nd and I am now a week behind. Naturally, getting off track of something that's been working so well is going to rattle me a lot. However, Jeff Galloway, the same person who came up with that plan, has plans on the official RunDisney site, and according to those, I am way ahead of the game. My six mile run on Sept. 25 would have put me at week six on this schedule!
So, does that mean I'm going to use this new training plan, instead? No. But it does help me see that getting a little off track doesn't have to equal a total derailment. That, and it's probably not smart to get too attached to a particular plan. Life doesn't follow a plan. Injuries laugh at plans. The only thing I can do is figure out a way to adapt. So I won't be following my plan to the letter. That's no reason to start with the wailing, rending of garments and thoughts of "I can't do this!" I can. I will. It may not be what I expected, but it will be.
Friday, October 08, 2010
So, this weekend I'm going to listen to my better angels and treat my ankle as if it's made out of spun glass. There are about a billion things I'd rather be doing this weekend, but I will sit myself down with an ice pack, a bottle of water, and a couple of pillows for elevation. I have a neoprene ankle wrap I'm wearing for about an hour every two hours or so. I'm trying to time that to coincide with times I need to walk somewhere. I'll try to limit the amount of time I put weight on it, but we'll see how well I can follow that. (Besides, if you don't get up and walk around a bit, sitting down too much can turn from a figurative pain in the butt to a literal pain in the butt.) I have a back log of TV on the DVR, so that should keep me somewhat occupied.
Unfortunately, I also have temptation in my house in the form of half-empty bags of chips and a frankly astounding amount of alcohol. On the other hand, I don't really eat or drink either to excess these days. (At home alone, anyway. Guinness at the Claddagh is not part of that statement.) To ward off temptation, i think I'm going to pick up my knitting project again. I can knit and watch TV at the same time. And if I get too stir crazy and have to go outside and sit in the sunshine, I'll grab my book and my pillows and take my ice pack out onto the Adirondack chair on my deck.
I had been thinking about going to the beginner Pilates class my instructor has at her home studio on Saturday morning. I think I'll take a "wait and see" approach to that though. I was also thinking weight training and exercise bike at the gym at some point this weekend. I had my second Pilates class last night and was able to do it without bothering my ankle too much. I just skipped flexing and pointing that foot. Standing doesn't hurt. Leg raises don't hurt. Walking? That hurts.
As frustrating as it is to sit on the sofa and be still when all I want to do is exercise, I'm going to try my hardest to resist. If I can at least make it through the weekend, I think it would be so much better. If it's not better by Monday, I'm going to be a good girl and call the doctor. And when I can run again and be relatively pain-free, I'll think about how I protected my joints and I'll feel better about what I know is going to be a long, boring weekend. Last weekend, I commented to my friend that I should buy a lottery ticket because "I'm due for a win." Running pain free and preventing more injury is a big enough win for me.
Oh, and the two pounds I lost despite all the drama, stress and pain this week is a pretty good win, too!
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