JENELOPE   13,317
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Yet another reason to love the gym

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. emoticon 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! emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LITERARY_CHICK 10/14/2010 1:03PM

    Eye candy is always good encouragement. Look to your heart's content just don't loose total focus on why you are crunching.

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POOHLA711 10/14/2010 8:44AM

    This post made me smile.
I definitely people watch at my gym. What I like the most is to see people making progress. There is one couple that joined my gym pretty shortly after I did about 2 years ago and they were both probably over 400lbs. I have watched the two of them each lose a significant amount of weight and it just makes me proud that they are doing so well, even though I've never spoken to them.
Unfortunately, the majority of the men who work out at my gym are either high school kids or senior citizens, but my hubby works out there, so I have all the eye candy I need. emoticon

As for the breast cancer cookies... You know, a lot of healthier foods are promoting breast cancer awareness this month, too... Maybe choose Activia Yogurt next time instead of the pink m&m cookies. emoticon

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FOXXYROXXYD 10/13/2010 5:24PM

    Eye Candy always makes things more enjoyable. One of the trails I hike is also used for training the UNC cross country team... need I say more?
emoticon score on the shoes!

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FUNFROG79 10/13/2010 4:48PM

    I'm thinking of joining the gym myself. Thanks for the inspiring blog! emoticon

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ROZELL99 10/13/2010 4:42PM

  Life is good.

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I'm pretty sure this is positive progress

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? emoticon

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.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JENELOPE 10/13/2010 3:58PM

    @Catherine, it's a little of Column A and a little of Column B. Yes, I always fear getting bad news from the doctor, so that's part of why I put off going. I think that's true of a lot of people. However, the bigger part is that I honestly do feel much better and I want to give that a chance before calling for reinforcements. I've been doing RICE for a little less than a week and at this point, it's getting better instead of staying the same or getting worse. For instance, I was able to walk about a quarter mile this afternoon without an ankle brace without a significant amount of difficulty or pain. On the other hand, I'm also being alert for new developments. I decided yesterday that I'm giving myself through this weekend and if there isn't at least 90% improvement, I'm calling the doctor. If things change or degrade, I'm calling earlier.

I hope that reassures everyone that I'm still listening to Sensible Sally and not the Gung-ho Psycho! emoticon And I'm honestly not ignoring the excellent advice given by my very wise Spark Friends.

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LITERARY_CHICK 10/13/2010 11:14AM

    Listen to your body. It sounds like your body said to move so since it didn't make you uncomfortable, I think you made the right decision.

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FUNFROG79 10/12/2010 7:36PM

    I'm not a fan of the doc either, but I put off treating my knee and next thing I know I'm off to surgery and can't run for almost a year and packed on additional 15 lbs. You know your body, so it's your choice and you will know when to go. Hang in there! We are all rooting for you! emoticon

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LIVE2RUN4LIFE 10/12/2010 6:28PM

    Are you avoiding the doctor because, despite what you say in the blog, you fear what he will tell you? If you are correct about your ankle and there is nothing seriously wrong, he will confirm it. On the other hand, if you are not correct, he can help you avoid a permanent injury. Yes, you'll be ought some money. But not as much as you will be if it turns into something serious. But you know this.

Comment edited on: 10/12/2010 6:35:41 PM

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FOXXYROXXYD 10/12/2010 3:13PM

    EVAMATHENA is correct, only you know your body. And while you ARE smart, I think you are also a lot like me when it comes to injuries and going to the doctor... STUBBORN!
Earlier this year, two days after finishing my first 5K, I sprained my ankle pretty badly during a cool down walk. I DID NOT go to the doctor and I DID NOT stay off of it like I should have. Result - it still bothers me and I have rolled my ankle more in the past 6 months or so than I have in my entire life (and that is saying something because I have had a ton of sprained ankles:). So.... do what you feel like you can do without causing more damage BUT if it doesn't get better see a doctor just to be sure. Keep in mind, this is all said in love my friend!
The neoprene brace is awesome - wear it when you work out if you aren't already!

Stepping off the soapbox now


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SIMPLY-EVA 10/12/2010 2:31PM

  Your a smart girl, really, only you know your body. I am not a big fan of the Dr either but I dont put it off until I am ready to go the emergency room by my DH so thats a good thing. Anyway, I hope you feel better each day.

Take care,


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~*~ WTF??? Challenge Post 10/11 - 10/15 ~*~

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

I'm a day late on this...

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
~*~ WTF Challenge 10/11 - 10/15 ~*~
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emoticon 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.

emoticonAs 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.

emoticon This week, my go-to snack will be Laughing Cow Light and whole wheat Toasted crackers, my favorite 115 calorie snack.

emoticon My go-to exercise will be weight training and the elliptical.

emoticon 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).

emoticon Encourage me by reminding me that a little down time means success later. (Again. Some more.)

emoticon 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?


emoticon 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.


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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FOXXYROXXYD 10/12/2010 12:14PM

    I *heart* my kitchen scale too. My son and DIL found one for me that is the perfect size for the RV - the whole thing is not much bigger than a blackberry! It's awesome!

You're still resting your ankle, right Tootsie Pop? emoticon

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FUNFROG79 10/12/2010 11:21AM

    Grat job! I love Laughing Cow cheese! emoticon

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Keep calm and carry on

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.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FUNFROG79 10/11/2010 3:34PM

    I would defintely head to the doctor! Thinking of you! emoticon

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LAURIE5658 10/11/2010 3:31PM

    I'm with Catherine. If the ankle is not feeling better...get to the Doc! Yes, you have plenty of time but right now you need that ankle 100%.

Best wishes!

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FOXXYROXXYD 10/11/2010 3:29PM

    Way to go! Great Attitude! 19 weeks is a lot of time and you are going to ROCK the rest of your training and your race... as soon as you heal.
And, um, did you go to the doctor?

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CLWALDRO 10/11/2010 3:24PM

    I would try 30 minutes of ice and 30 minutes of heat and see if that makes any difference in how the ankle feels. I f it does not i too recommend that someone take a look at the ankle. as far as swimming if you are not a swimmer you can do the running in water at the deeper water levels with a float belt this can get the running action without stress to the joints. emoticon

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LIVE2RUN4LIFE 10/11/2010 3:03PM

    Maybe it's time to take that ankle to the doctor if it is worse after a weekend of RICE.

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Planning to win, not wallow

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!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

POOHLA711 10/11/2010 8:25AM

    I hope you had a restful weekend and that your ankle is healing!

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DRPOOH63 10/10/2010 1:43PM

    I hope you are having a good weekend and resting that ankle. Short time rest for long term strength!! emoticon

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FUNFROG79 10/8/2010 6:04PM

    Two lbs, whoo-hoo! I feel your frustration, but I know you can do this! Relax and enjoy! emoticon

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FOXXYROXXYD 10/8/2010 3:16PM

    Those two pounds are an awesome win!!

Trash the chips.... but not the alcohol :)

Have a good relaxing weekend and be good to yourself. You deserve it and so does the ankle. That ankle has done some really hard work for you lately - take care of it and get it back to 100%! You can always work on your upper body if you get too stir crazy!!

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