MOBYCARP   173,607
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Observations from the sidelines

Thursday, February 09, 2012

The bad foot still hurts, but it's easier to bear when I know it's not a stress fracture. Tape it up in the morning, get to work, do what I need to do. Today I managed to walk for 21 minutes at lunch. It mapped out to a slow 18:36 pace per mile, but that's faster than yesterday. I don't know if the foot is really better, or if I was just more gutsy on the early part of the walk today.

It's day 2 of my reduced calorie limit. At the end of the day, I have consumed 2332 calories and I'm satisfied. It's a bit of a surprise to have adapted so quickly, considering that a week ago my minimum was 2800 calories!

Observation: Even when tracking, much of eating is habit. Today I had to pay attention and stop some of the habitual eating while changing the timing of other habitual eating.

Observation: Scarcity makes things more precious. This evening, I enjoyed my greek yogurt more than I did when I was maintaining on 3000 calories per day.

Observation: Food choices are more meaningful with lower calorie limits. It's no longer a case of deciding that I need another 150 calories of anything so I may as well have those Doritos; now it's a case of deliberately refraining from snacking on the craisins I took to work so I can have a banana in the evening.

Observation: This comes back to one of the first lessons I learned on SparkPeople. I must track. everything. I. eat.

I can do this on the nutrition side. The exercise side is still pretty frustrating, but that is going to get better. Meanwhile, I will do what I need to do to stay in the game with the Springiest Maintainer challenge.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

RG_DFW 2/10/2012 8:53AM

    Sensible.. way to stay in the game

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EMMANYC 2/10/2012 8:36AM

    As someone who has dealt with stress fractures more than once, may I please give you some advice and ask you to stop walking so much? The doctor's office might not have seen a stress fracture now but that doesn't mean it's not there. And if you keep walking on it, you could very well create a stress fracture that wasn't there in the first place. If you don't let your foot heal, you're just going to delay - and delay - and delay healing for months and months and months.

When I had a stress fracture in my leg in 2010, it took five months to really heal - but that's because I kept trying to exercise every few weeks. I walked to and from work every day (15 minutes in each direction), and I really should have just cut that out for at least a month, too. I think that if I'd cut out the walks to and from work for 4-6 weeks, I would have healed a lot faster and might have been back to walking and running in eight weeks (instead of 20).

I know how frustrating it can be not to be able to do the exercise you love, especially when you're trying to maintain your weight or lose. But trust me, giving your foot a true rest now (e.g., a month off) will enable you to heal and get moving again sooner than if you try to keep up with a walking routine.'

There are other exercise options - strength training, deep water running etc.

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LINDAMARIEZ1 2/10/2012 7:59AM

    It has been a life long dream of mine to be a runner! As a kid and in my 20's I ran like the wind but it got away from me with the pounds! You are an inspiration! thank you!
linda emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

ps I nominated you for a motivator!!!...Inspirational Story!!!

Comment edited on: 2/10/2012 8:02:07 AM

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WATERMELLEN 2/10/2012 7:55AM

    Using your brains to make your life work: yeah.

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ARLENE_MOVES 2/10/2012 7:41AM

    Learn something everytime I read your blogs. Thanks!

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ONEKIDSMOM 2/10/2012 6:50AM

    Excellent observations! You are so "logical", Spock, old buddy! And gotta say I'm jealous of your 2332 while I'm living between 1200 and 1500! Still, I totally agree with those trade-off decisions: give up the handful of this at 10 a.m. so I can have my fruit when I walk in the door at 5 is so reasonable.

Hang in... injuries heal. Just too slowly for most of us, who would really like that hypo-thingy from Star Trek!


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BD3269PM 2/10/2012 6:35AM

    Thanks for sharing. You are doing great. Tracking food intake is so important. It really helps to see where we need improvement. I track my exercise too. It helps me to remain consistent and feel a committmetn to do it almost every day. You can do this!!! emoticon emoticon

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KRISZTA11 2/10/2012 4:21AM

    Great blog, thank you for sharing!
Thanks to tracking you became a master of our metabolism.

I like to track my food too, and looking back to pre-Spark time I'm not surprized I was so helpless facing weight gain again and again as I had no idea what I ate.

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HEALTHIERKEN 2/10/2012 12:05AM

    MOBYCARP, you're such a pragmatist! With your approach to both trials and triumphs, you're an inspiration all the way : )

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MSLZZY 2/9/2012 11:12PM

    Once that foot heals, activity will no longer
be a problem. It takes patience and we humans
are not known for being patient. In time, it
will get better. Hang in there!

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 2/9/2012 10:14PM

    I went through something like that during my 6-month shoulder rehab.

While I mostly managed to maintain my weight, it was frustrating to watch my muscle melt away.

It did come back though. And it was good not to have a whole lot of fat to get rid on top of everything else, which is what would have happened if I'd continued eating my original amounts.

Hang in there. Injuries suck.


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A better day

Wednesday, February 08, 2012

This morning the doctor's office called. No stress fracture shows on my x-rays, so the game plan is tape the foot for arch support, do the other obvious stuff, and wait for it to get better. If it's not better in a couple of weeks, call the doctor again because that might mean it's a small stress fracture that just didn't show up.

Today, with the foot taped, I was able to walk 20 minutes at lunch. That mapped out to a S...L...O...W 19 minutes per mile, but that's all I could handle. I really had to take my walking in small pieces, but that's better than not being able to walk at all. I was able to get ice from the cafeteria at work to fill my ice bag, so I could ice the foot down while sitting at my desk.

As I write this, I have 11,893 steps on the pedometer. Just about all of them were cheap steps, but that's still better than I've done since last Friday. Hopefully, this will be the start of a long streak of 10K steps per day.

I'm beginning to think that I will be able to run again, but I'm not yet willing to predict when.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

RG_DFW 2/9/2012 9:29AM

    do what you can but you seem to be wise enough to listen to your body and not to push it.

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ONEKIDSMOM 2/9/2012 7:28AM

    What MSLZZY said... patience is hard for some of us... but essential to the healing process. One day at a time, walks that don't cause the injury to get worse... and some day... runs again.

emoticon A ponder... the only "walking" exercise icon Spark offers is female? Whyissat? Don't men get credit for walking?

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KRISZTA11 2/9/2012 3:19AM

    emoticon your foot lets you walk that much!

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MSLZZY 2/8/2012 11:32PM

    Take your time and heal properly! Then you can work
back to where you were. Cheap steps, but steps all the

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Non-exercise bummer

Tuesday, February 07, 2012

Today is day 2 of a streak of not getting 10 minutes of cardio. It's also day 4 of a streak of not getting 10K steps. What about the kettlebell flow drill, you ask? That turns out to work the muscles in the shoulders harder than they're used to. I may be able to revisit that tomorrow, after giving the shoulders some rest time.

That bad right foot bothered me so much this morning that I didn't do my Turkish Get-Ups. I didn't think it was a good idea to be holding a 45 lb. kettlebell over my head while finding out whether I could really press my back foot through the movement of standing up.

So I went to have my doctor check out the foot. The hurt area is the metatarsal. Most of what I've been doing is the right stuff to try. I should also tape the foot for arch support, and look for running shoes that provide arch support. The doctor suggested a local running store that does a good job of fitting these.

That's the game plan, unless it turns out to be a stress fracture. So I went and got my foot x-rayed. Predictably enough, there was nothing on the x-rays that was obvious to the lab tech; now I wait a day for the more highly trained professional to read them and give the results to my doctor.

So now I guess it becomes even more important to control what I eat. If this gets extended, I think I'll need to cut more calories out of my allotment; but I have the calories to cut, 200 at a time just like I added them.

I don't want to think about what happens to nutrition if it turns out to be a stress fracture.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MSLZZY 2/8/2012 9:36AM

    Hope all is better today. Rest that foot and I hope
there is no stress fracture.

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RG_DFW 2/8/2012 8:29AM

    Perhaps it gives you an opportunity to find other sets of exercises that will take your system near the cardio range without using the legs, necessity being the mother of invention...

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MILLERGIRL719 2/8/2012 6:52AM

    Good luck with the xrays. I hope it's nothing serious.

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HEALTHIERKEN 2/8/2012 1:35AM

    MOBYCARP, if anyone in this Team can sort out what needs to be done to get the best out of this situation, it is you. You are consumately analytical and ruthlessly self-directed. You can do it!
emoticon emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 2/8/2012 1:36:13 AM

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ONEKIDSMOM 2/7/2012 8:37PM

    What happens to nutrition if it turns out to be a stress fracture: chair exercise, determine basal metabolic rate, and yeah, eat less. Sigh. Not fun.

However, I've lived on 1200 calories a day while losing, I could do it again if I had to... I just might whine a bit, though!

In fact, I have had to dial back the calorie range with this current rotation of illnesses... because I haven't been as active. Doable. And one of these days I'll be able to say I'm in my narrower range, too.

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STRIVERONE 2/7/2012 8:32PM


You might try this tool:
on Mizuno's site to get an advance idea of what you need. You don't have to apply the info to buying a Mizuno shoe although a pair is on my "get them someday" list. They do have models that have a very good reputation for arch support.

You might also take a look at this video on the LiveFitRevolution site. A Mizuno rep. talks about proper shoe fit without pushing the Mizuno brand:

Vinny C.

emoticonFull Disclosure: LiveFit is a site that like SparkPeople, has been very helpful to me and Mizuno have supported them on several occasions.

Comment edited on: 2/7/2012 8:35:18 PM

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Maintenance Adjustments

Sunday, February 05, 2012

I got up this morning, my bad right foot was not as bad as yesterday. However, running was still out of the question. I was encouraged that the area that hurts has migrated toward the toes; that tells me it's more likely to "only" be a strained tendon or muscle, and not a stress fracture.

Since it appears unlikely that I'll be able to run for a while, I cut 200 calories from my daily allowance. I've made this adjustment before, and I'm comfortable with it. If the string of non-running goes longer than a week, I might have to cut more calories.

Besides the adjustment to nutrition, I need to do something about exercise. I can still do my morning TGU/windmill combos, which tell me the foot is less troublesome this morning than yesterday morning, and my KB snatches. The foot didn't bother me at all while doing 10 KB snatches each side using a 45 lb. kettlebell.

Since the KB snatches didn't bother the foot, I thought I'd see about doing a KB flow drill for cardio. So this afternoon I started doing a few swings with a 25 lb. kettlebell. That didn't feel like I was doing anything, so I stepped up to using a 35 lb. KB. I did 15 minutes of KB swings, snatches, clean and presses, and high pulls. That's the start of a new streak of at least 10 minutes of exercise per day. It's also an unfamiliar form of cardio, so it may take some time to build up to being able to do this for 30 minutes; but it's something to work on.

After doing the KB cardio, my foot felt so good that I tried going for a walk. I managed 20 minutes, but it was clear that a long walk wouldn't be wise. The next streak of 10K steps per day won't start today.

Adjustment to nutrition, adjustment to exercise . . . what else? Oh yeah. Motivation. Yesterday I noticed that I was taking in another notch on my belt. This afternoon I went out and tried on some Wrangler regular fit 32 x 32 jeans. They fit. I didn't buy them, but only because I found a pair of off-brand that fit the same way and that I liked better.

I can now wear the same size jeans that I wore in high school. When I joined SP last July, that wasn't even in consideration as a possible goal. The motivation part comes in because I want to keep being able to wear those jeans. I need to do what I have to do in order to keep fitting those jeans, even with a bum foot.

My sister says she blogs as a pep talk to herself. Today, I see her point. Not being able to run could be a major downer. It's hard to avoid all disappointment, but it's more productive to focus on doing things so I'm in shape to run when the foot gets better.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KRISZTA11 2/6/2012 5:08PM

    emoticon to the emoticon jeans size!
And congrats to planning this unusual week nutrition-wise.

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RG_DFW 2/6/2012 8:21AM

    I'm impressed that you're back to your HS jean size. Way to go!!!

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MSLZZY 2/5/2012 10:37PM

    Wow, the same size as high school! Impressive!
And the workout sounded great, too!

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ONEKIDSMOM 2/5/2012 7:47PM

    That pep talk to oneself is most important when you *can't* exercise, for whatever reason... like a hurt foot. Or illness. Or crazy mad work schedules requiring splitting up the exercise or drawing a line in the sand.

You can do this. And you're worth it.

And Mega-Congrats on the high school sized jeans! emoticon emoticon

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Broken Streaks

Saturday, February 04, 2012

This morning my right foot hurt. I don't know precisely what injured it, thought I strongly suspect that it's banged up from running. This is somewhat frustrating, as my bad left thigh has improved to the point where I feel good about testing it with a 6 or 7 mile run.

I don't feel good about taking my right foot out for a 6 or 7 mile run. Even 2 miles is out of the question.

On advice from the longer term runner in my office, I started icing down my foot last night. After breakfast at McD's with daughter this morning, I bought a flexible bandage to hold the ice pack on. Then I went to my volunteer job doing tax prep and quality review of tax prep.

I was on my feet most of 4 hours, but with not as many steps as you might think. At the end of the 4 hours, my foot hurt even when I wasn't moving it. I came home, took an ibuprofen, and strapped on the ice pack. When the cold of the ice became more uncomfortable than the ache of the foot, I took the ice off and could function; but taking a long walk seemed foolish. So I'm resting that foot this evening, and I'll see how it's doing in the morning.

As I write this, my pedometer shows 5564 steps for the day. There is no way I'll get in 10K steps; it's unlikely that I'll even get in 6K. I did not have 10 minutes of cardio today, either. In theory, I could do 10 minutes of kettlebell swings, cleans, and snatches with a relatively light weight and not bother the foot; but if I were going to do that, I should have done it this morning before taxes. SP will think I got 10 fitness minutes in because I did my KB snatches and TGUs this morning; but I didn't get 10 minutes of dedicated cardio.

So . . . my 202 day streak of 10K steps will be broken. So will my 209 day streak of exercising at least 10 minutes a day. (I could claim exercise for some of the things I did, but I won't. They were all things I'd do even if I weren't tracking fitness.) On the bright side, when these streaks start again (hopefully tomorrow), SP will track the new streaks accurately from when they really start. That wasn't the case to date because SP didn't start counting until I told it to, which was after the streaks actually started.

My weekly streaks are still alive. However, if the foot isn't healthy enough to run on tomorrow my 16 week streak of running 20 minutes 3 times a week is likely to be broken next week. If that's the case, I should cut my calorie range tomorrow in honor of not being able to run as much as I have been.

This is a bummer. But I do need to let that foot heal, and if it isn't better by Monday I need to call my doctor. And I need to eat less if I'm exercising less, particularly since I've already got rid of some of my larger clothes.

Oh, well. At least I know what I need to do before my girth expands. It remains to be seen whether I can do it well enough to prevent my girth from expanding. Chances are, things aren't as bad as they look to me right now; but I do need to live through this and do the things that need doing so I can get better.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MSLZZY 2/5/2012 6:23PM

    Take care of that foot! If you take care of it properly
now, you can always, as you said, start a new streak.

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KRISZTA11 2/5/2012 5:55AM

    I'm sorry about the foot, that's too bad!
I feel uncomfortable breaking streaks too,
but it happens (for me, it is mostly "Don't eat mindlessly in the evening").
However, the streak info always shows the longest streak and % of successful days, and that is still good to look at.
Take good care of yourself and get well soon!

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FROGGGY13 2/5/2012 1:54AM

    I am home with a bad cold and coughing, so I'm breaking an exercise streak too. You've got to heal first: it's just a day, and a streak is a tool for you, not something that takes precedence over your health.
i hope your foot gets better very soon.

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RG_DFW 2/4/2012 10:22PM

    Streaks are set up to be precarious - one thing goes wrong and it wrecks 200+ days. I know mine will eventually come to an end and I've tried to prepare myself mentally for it. When it happens, I'll do the same as you which is to start another.

Sorry about the foot, I hope it gets better very soon.

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ONEKIDSMOM 2/4/2012 8:49PM

    Heal. First, don't get injured. I didn't get 10,000 steps in today, either... I shoveled snow, which was plenty of exercise, without steps adding up. 13.5 inches, says the TV weather dude. Wet, heavy stuff.

Take care... as you said, things look not so great now, but with a good night's sleep, they'll get better!

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