Saturday, January 31, 2009

January Recap & a race report of sorts

I've never really tracked my monthly mileage before, but the Garmin makes it pretty darn easy (sorta)...I gotta figure out how to track my treadmill mileage more accurately.

Here are my stats:
Run (outdoors) - 56:45
Run (treadmill) - 5.25

The treadmill run mileage is an estimate...I have one Nike+ workout recorded which sorta corresponds to one of runs saved in the treadmill memory, plus there is one more short run I'll go with those numbers. Come to think of it, I don't remember running much on the treadmill this month and my quick review of the Hefferblog supports that claim in that there's not much of me complaining about running with Dread. Sooooo

January Run - 61.70
January Bike - 11:31

Yep...those rockin' bike miles all came from today because while Mik, Alberta, and BBJ ran the SuperRun 10K, and while Betty and Elsie ran on the bay, I rode around the bay on my bike.

I don't have any fancy sort of touring bike. I have a pretty standard Trek street/trail bike. It's a nice bike and all...but it's not meant for speed.

This is what I learned about me and biking today (and I have TONS to learn about biking)
  • Biking was gentle on the hips. They didn't hurt at all during or after the ride.
  • Biking is hell on my ass.
  • There is a whole different set of muscles involved in biking. I haven't recently used some of them. I suspect I'll know more about that in the morning.
  • I don't sweat as much when I bike as I do when I run.
  • My toes FROZE...what do you bikers do to get your toes to be warm? Do I just have my feet on the pedals wrong?
  • It felt great to get my heart rate up and just MOVE...sitting around and "resting" for a week was starting to wear on me.
We got a REALLY early start this morning. The track club was meeting at hour before the 7:30 am SuperRun started. Betty wanted to get there even earlier because she needed to talk to Coach Paul before the race, so I picked her up at 5:45 and we were at the start of the race at East Mission Bay as the race volunteers were setting up.

It was dark.

Betty...searching in the dark for Coach Paul...Even he wasn't there THAT early...the good news is that we were the first ones to use the porta-potties! A real thrill!

Betty explained to me that If I held the camera above our heads, we would stop having double chins in our self-portraits...who knew? I learn so much from that woman...I swear!

Mik and Kat showed up as the sun rose.

Since Elise wasn't running the race, Betty and I drove over to the west side of Mission Bay so they could run together and I would ride my bike. I decided to run around the entire bay...about 12 miles...I knew that if I rode around the bay, there was a chance that I could see some of my track club friends as they came off of Fiesta Island...

Here let me post a map so this all makes sense.

I'm not sure why it looks like I was riding in the middle of the bay, but it sorta gives you an idea of where I was...

I stopped riding at Fiesta Island (which doesn't show up on the map, but it's about where the I-5 symbol is) for a couple minutes to see if I could find any of the herd...I had really good timing.

BBJ finished in 50:32...AWESOME.

Mik and Kat screamed past me.

I don't think Mik ever saw me, and Kat only saw me at the last minute...They also had great races (Mik = 55:46 and Kat = 55:16)

I didn't get a picture of Alberta, but she came in at 59:51 (official). She said her Garmin time was around 57 minutes. I'm so proud of her (and a little jealous...).

After I saw my friends, I continued on my ride and took some photos of the bay and the new walkway that's on the Seaworld side of Mission Bay. It was quite lovely.

After our runs and rides, we all met up at World Famous for breakfast (and mimosas). For some reason I didn't take a picture of the group (I mean how many shots of us eating breakfast and drinking mimosas can I really post?).

I hear there's a football game tomorrow... Hope whoever your rooting for wins!

Friday, January 30, 2009

Foto Friday & Carlsbad 1/2

Can't help but make one last mention of last Sunday's Carlsbad 1/2 marathon...I may end up dwelling on it for awhile as it appears that it was my last run for a couple weeks ((weep, weep, weep)).

That being said, for NikeMom's Foto Friday, I've got some pix from Brightgroom (which posted their photos quite quickly earlier this week), and since I'm shameless in "borrowing" from any race photographer, heeeeeeeere's the herd.

Betty and me, all smiles.

We did get lots of face time from Brightgroom phtographers, which I suspect is due in part to the fact that we I tend to wave like a dork whenever we I see a camera, AND that we were wearing the day-glo lime green shirts. Alissa asked where they came from. They are Race Ready shirts and in addition to being obnoxiously bright, they are really, truly comfortable, lightweight running shirts. None of us would have worn them through all these races if they weren't also comfy, that's for sure (well...BBJ didn't wear his, but I think that he doesn't like the color; not the shirt itself). I also have their running shorts...which have a bunch of pockets on the outside. Not very flattering, but extremely useful.

Betty and I purchased these at the 2007 AFC 1/2 Marathon expo, but they're also available online. AND they'll do custom made shirts. During the race Betty and I talked about getting some personalized shirts made for the herd. We had some t-shirts made about a decade ago, so we have a really cool heffer-logo that we can use...stay tuned. (Soooo, since I've given them a huge shout-out, do you think the'll send me some freebies? Gosh, I hope so).

Our speedy Mik

Alberta, on her way to a PR

Me...I am happy :-)
Betty, with long sleeve shirt on...

Honorary heffer-dude, BBJ - no lime green for BBJ today.

Alberta, me, Betty...end of race (hmmmm, Alberta must have taken her compression shirt off as well??? Am I the only one who keeps her shirt on during a race?)

Hip Update: The hip is feeling better. The bruise is turning a really pretty deep-purple color, and the edges are starting to green, which is a good thing, I think. Here's the really strange part (as if all of this isn't kinda odd). I wore jeans yesterday, and they seem to have left their mark on my hip as well.

Can you see that lovely vertical mark going up the center of the bruise? I'm pretty sure that's a mark left by the inseam on my jeans (and no...I'm not wearing hottie, skin-tight jeans. They're just regular jean, but they certainly made an impression !).

I had NOOOO idea that I bruised this easily. Still...I'm doing lots of icing, stretching, more icing...I'm also noticing that I need to clean my mirrors :-))

There's a 10K tomorrow that I'm registered for with the track club...No, I'm not going to run. I've learned my lesson. The PT said bike riding is OK, so I think I'll take my bike to the bay and ride there while the herd is running...I can also be an unofficial photographer

I also went back to RoadRunner Sports yesterday and exchanged my shoes...back to the NB 1224's...Unfortunately, they only had the really obnoxious fuscia-pink color. I won't be using them for a few more days. I'm hoping on Tuesday to start back in with some easy walk/run/walk therapy.

On a side note: This will be my 15th post this month. That's a record for me and probably occurred as a result of me having most of the month off. I'm sure I'll be back to my twice a week schedule now that I'm back to teaching. I have no idea how some of you, who work full time (some of you even teach) and post every day or every couple days or so, do it. (But I'm glad you do!)

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

The Dangers of Self-Massage

I had other ideas for the title of this post, such as:
  • Be Careful With "The Stick"
  • Don't Rub Too Hard
  • Warning! "The Stick" Can Hurt!
Quite by accident, I ended up at the Physical Therapist's office today. (Only partially an accident...his office called...I picked up the phone...they said they could fit me in at 12:30 today, so I said, "OK.")

In fact, after I posted this morning's beautiful photo of my hip-bruise, I figured out how I managed to hurt myself. As I was looking at it's purple-ness this morning, I realized that the bruise was in the EXACT SAME SPOT as where I was massaging my hip with "The Stick" know...this thing...

I had been using it repeatedly, and apparently quite vigorously, throughout Friday and Saturday, in an attempt to massage my sore hip into some kind of submissive shape for the 1/2 marathon.

Apparently, massaging quite vigorously can lead to this:

My hip today...pretty, pretty...

So... I sat down with the PT. He took a good long time talking to me about my running habits, how much I ran, my stretching routine, my shoes, when I started to have pain, etc, etc. And according to him...turns out that I made three pretty critical errors which led to my hip-trauma.
  • I switched shoes. He told me to NEVER switch shoes when you find a pair that work for you. I should know this, but I let myself be talked into moving out of my stability + New Balance 1223's into a more neutral shoe...BIG MISTAKE! So I'm going back to Road Runner Sports to exchange the current New Balance 1063s for the more current model of New Balance's Stability+ shoe, the 1224s.
  • I decided to run a 1/2 marathon anyway. (ah was worth it, because I had a great time and I don't have another long race in my sights until late April and the La Jolla 1/2 Marathon).
Then, I showed him my hip. (I hadn't fessed up to it yet)

He laughed when he saw it and made everyone come see my third critical error.
  • I overused The Stick (clearly).
Actually, he did a really nice job of explaining how I'd probably had some small strain in my hip muscles, which may have even happened before I switched shoes, but was aggravated by the shoe switch, by the extra mileage I ran in the new shoes, then which was aggravated even more by my overuse of the stick, and then I further abused my muscle by running 13 miles on it.

He did say that only women can withstand that much pain. A man would have folded. We both joked about how the toughest women are in their 40's and who have given birth. I don't know if I agree with him or not, but I'll take it as a compliment.

His "therapy" prescribed for fixing my sore hip is as follows (Hey, I paid cash for this as my insurance didn't cover it, so I figure I own it now).

Five times a day:
  • 2-3 minute ice massage - To do this, I've made a bunch of paper-cup water-pops. Then I peel off part of the paper cup and rub the ice on my hip. This is easy to do at home, but will be pretty messy to do in my office.
Here is one of my ice-massagers. Edith recommended the same thing to me for my shin splints last January when I was training for the marathon.
  • 2-3 minutes "gentle self-massage," of my hip with my hand. (Yes, when he told me this, it was all I could do to not burst out laughing cuz, as you know, I am soooooo mature that way...AND oh yeah, he also told me to use "any old oil I have for the self-massage...motor oil, Wesson oil. I didn't need to go out an purchase any expensive fancy kind of oil... oh...AND, he said this all to me with a straight face. I of course was busy examining the wall paper because all I wanted to do was giggle.
  • 20 minute ice-pack on hip.
  • GENTLE Stretching (Vickie, he loved your pretzel stretch and said it was exactly the right one. You helped me to look like not a complete fool).
Next week I can start walking/running for really short amounts of time (like a 10 minute walk, 10 minute run, 10 minute walk, preceded and followed by the three above steps)...and I can add 2 or 3 minutes of walking and running a day until I'm up to an hour...then I can back off on the walking part until I'm up to full speed. Should take about a month (woo hoo...just in time for the Carlsbad 5000 and well before La Jolla!).

So...I've purchased a lot of paper cups, filled them with water, and have them stored in both the freezer in the garage and the kitchen freezer. I've promised not to beat myself with a stick again. and

So...let this be a lesson to all you tough women (and men) out there...don't beat yourself with the stick, self-massage is certainly acceptable, and use ice.



"In fact, my thigh felt pretty much like someone was hitting it with a bat every time that my left foot hit the ground...." ("Ran. Finished. Happy. Sore." Hefferblog. January 25, 2009) it looks like it too...

This photo doesn't do the purple-ness of my thigh any justice!

Walter thinks I need an intervention because I keep talkin' about this 10K I want to run this Saturday...


Sunday, January 25, 2009

Ran. Finished. Happy. Sore.

It wasn't my best 1/2 mary ever...but it wasn't worst.

Here's the short version of the race report
  • Ran it (pretty consistent 12 mm pace throughout - 12:12 official)
  • Finished it (2:39:55)
  • Happy (I had moments of complete bliss that I was running)
  • Sore (My hip...currently sore, but OK...the bottom of my right foot, that's another matter)
Now, for those of you interested in MANY MORE DETAILS...settle in, this'll take awhile :-)


I'll have to tell stories about my and Betty's trip to the expo the day before the race. Suffice it to say that getting to the Carlsbad Mall required 5 U-Turns, 1 3-Point Turn, Crossing 5 traffic lanes in order to make a quick right when I was in the left hand turn lane, and traveling on several curvy roads. Let's just say that Betty doesn't travel in cars well to begin with. By the time we got to the expo, she looked like this:

No really, this is what happens when you move the iPhone when you try to take a self-portrait...

Yay! El Camino Real...We found it!!!

At the expo, we did think the line of porta-potties in front of the start/finish lines would be a problem the next day (the start/finish lines were on wheels, and they were in different locations the next morning, but it still looked funny).

You know I like to exit a porta-potty to start a race with the best of 'em, but this is sorta ridiculous!

I also let Betty get me convinced to let a chiropractor look at my feet. You know the guys,...the ones who look for the 40-year olds and tell them to have a good race, then ask if they run with any pain (who doesn't run with pain?)

Betty says: "She does."
He says: "Let's check your alignment. Take off your shoes."

Now I'm sure that there are endless combinations of pressure points on ones feet that a person could push to get your knees, or thighs or (watch it...I know where some of  you are going with this) move...but I also know some people who SWEAR by their chiropractor, and since I'm a sucker for a foot rub, I let the guy look at my feet.

Really, nothing is more attractive than sitting straight legged on an exam table in a sports expo. Geez, I need to lose a few...

Race Day Notes
We got to the mall in pretty good time. Thanks to all my u-turns the previous day (and because I finally looked at a map of Carlsbad and not just the race instructions rather crappy instructions) I knew the back way into the mall...and we found the perfect parking place next to the handicapped spot (Thanks BBJ)!

It was massively crowded when we got there. And although you in other parts of the country will think we're nuts, it was a little cool for us So.Cal weather wusses, so we all wore sweatshirts and gloves....that would end up being a little bit of a problem later.
I didn't do much of a warmup, but we all did make a bee-line for the porta potties (It was about a 40 minute drive from La Mesa to Carlsbad, so we were all ready), but that's pretty much where we all lost each other for awhile. We lost Mik until after the race because she was best at spotting the place with the shortest lines (the corner...she is the clever kindergarten teacher, isn't she?) ...luckily most of us wore the exceptionally bright lime green shirts, so we spotted each other. I loved the moment when Betty stood on a planter and lifted her sweatshirt so that the neon-shirt could act as a beacon. I swear that's how I found her the first time.

I also decided, after using the porta potty, to go back to the car to store our sweatshirts and gear, rather than use the gear check, which could have been a mistake, because when I got back, Wave 1 was starting. I ran over the the start and (luckily once again) spotted Betty's shirt, but sadly lost BBJ, Alberta, and Mik (although they were in Wave 3 anyway).

Betty and me, before the run. Once again the dayglo lime-green shirts saved us as we got separated in the crowd and nearly lost each other

Race highlights!

Miles 1-2 - I got to run, for the very first time, with Betty wearing nothing but her sports bra as she decided to take off the white shirt she was wearing underneath the lime green shirt. We are running about a 12 minute mile pace. Hip feels OK, but I can tell immediately that I'm going to feel it all day. The question is "how much?"

Mile 3ish - I decided to stop and stretch my hip.

I hope I'm doing this right. This is one of the stretches that Vickie described to me.

Miles 3-4 - Feeling pretty good. Carlsbad is beautiful. Due to the lime green shirts, Penny spots us and we run with her for awhile. Hip is hanging in there. I actually have moments when I'm not thinking about it

Betty and Penny run backward for a bit so that we can get a shot with the ocean and pier in the background...

Miles 4 - 6 - Yay...GU!!!! They were handing out Gu! 

There were a few bands playing along the way. The band at about Mile 5 is covering Van Morrison's "How Long Has This Been Going On" We were laughing at the poor lyric choice.  We did enjoy running up a hill to the next band, but I can't remember the song.

Running/Dancing up the hill

Lots of Brightgroom photographers on the course. Many of them commented on the Neon-Green Shirts...I'm expecting PLENTY of face-time!

This was a pretty fun part of the race because we can see those who have already made the turn around and who are headed back. We spot Brian, who is cruising with the 1:50 pace group. In the distance we see Mik.

Miles 6 - 8 - Were all about the cowbell. Betty (mostly) and I pretended to be Christopher Walken ... much to the entertainment of those around us.

I suspect this get's posted after lots of races...but does it REALLY ever get old?

At the 10K mark, we ran over a timing mat, and when I checked my Garmin, I could see that there would be no PR today... I couldn't help but be a little disappointed, but really I was just happy to be running. For while I had that feeling of just utter bliss, at the day, at the run, at running with my friends, at the beautiful place in the world I was. 

Miles 8-9 - I got separated from Betty for awhile a couple of times. I'd get ahead of her, then she'd get ahead of me. My hip and thigh were really started to bother me, so I stopped at about Mile 9 to stretch some more (not the lying down stretch I did earlier. I was mostly afraid that if I did that, I wouldn't get up!)

I thought I'd read that at Mile 9, there'd be more GU, but none were around when I went by. Luckily I brought one with me (just in case), so I sucked it down and felt a little better.

Mile 10 - The sun came out for a bit. Betty and I looked at each other and almost simultaneously said "F-ing Sun." I knew that Penny was going to be really pissed because she HATES the SUN. She was nearby, so we ran over to her and we all bitched about the sun coming out. Luckily, it went back into hiding pretty quickly.

Hip Report - still not feeling very good, but a good song comes on my iPod (8-mile Eminem. I'm not really a fan, but it's a great song to run to.), and I just put my head down and ran to the beat.  I also began to suspect I was favoring my right side more than I thought I was, and as a result I a blister was forming on the outside of my right toe. I was surprised because I have really calloused feet and haven't had blister issues for 8 or 9 months. Maybe its the shoes.

Miles 11-13 - I was pretty much running out of gas and all of the muscles on the upper part of my left leg, especially my left-front-thigh are pretty tight. In fact, my thigh feels pretty much like someone is hitting it with a bat every time that my left foot hits the ground, but I run some, and I feel no shame in walking, especially down the last hill since running downhill hurts much more than running uphill. As I came to the last corner, I again, put my head down, find a good running song to finish to, and ran to the finish.

Overall:5957 out of 7147
Women:3330 out of 4284
F 45-49:295 out of 418
Age/Grade:45.62% Place: 5251
Finish:2:39:55 Pace: 12:12
Tag Time:2:39:55
Gun Time:2:51:35
6.6 Mile:
 Pace: 12:13

OMFG - Do I look done or what?

After Race Highlights

I was feeling a bit sad that I didn't manage to meet up with Yas or Lisa at the race. BUT as BBJ and I walked to the car, and I was telling him about it, I hear this voice shout out, "Alice?" and it was Yas. She spotted me in the lime-green neon shirt, so I got BBJ to take a picture of us.

What are the odds? Yas was driving out of the parking lot when she spotted me! 

Other tidbits:

We learned today that you're supposed to leave your running shoes on for 40-50 minutes after running so that the capillaries in your feet don't expand and that way you won't have sore feet the day after a long run. I'd never heard this before. Betty decided to investigate.

We call them the man-dals. Betty will have to report on whether or not wearing a shoe or sandal mattered after running. Usually, taking off my shoes is the first thing I want to do when I get to the car!

We waited in the parking lot for a pretty long time after the race because it looked like gridlocked traffic everywhere. Finally, we left and managed to almost be the cause an bumper-bender when a really nice woman let us pull out in front of her so that we could go left. I had plenty of room, but she decided to give me a little and backed up into a car that was waaaaay to close to her to begin with. I was sooooo glad to get out of the lot unscathed! 

We went to breakfast in Encinitas at one of our favorite breakfast places - It's a place called Honey's. They make great breakfasts, quickly. We were so hungry, I think we were in and out of there in less than 30 other words, we just INHALED our breakfast.

Eileen (a friend of Betty's who was along for the ride. I wonder if she knew what she was getting into) and Betty

BBJ and Mik

Here's the rest of the crew's finish times. Everyone had a really excellent day. 

BBJ - 1:59:30
Mik - 2:08:16
Betty - 2:41:32
Alberta - 2:20:45

Carlsbad is a great course. One built for PRs. I'd run it again next year in a heartbeat...maybe I'll even get one there next year.

(And, yes, I've had peas on my hip all afternoon!)

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Fabu, Fabu

I've been tagged twice in the last week, but I've been so busy moaning about my life that I haven't responded. In all honesty, I'm sorta sick of hearing myself whine about my sorry  hip. Thanks for hanging in there with me.

And thanks to Anne and Lisa for tagging me with the "Your Blog is Fabulous" Award. I'm really quite flattered. It's a very sweet honor and I love both of their blogs as well (so I guess I'm fabu, fabu this week).

So, here's my list of five things I'm currently addicted to:

1. Blogging and reading all your blogs. - I took an online quiz that said I was only 61% addicted, but I think it was being generous. Let my kids and hubby tell you how much time I spend doing's baaaaaad.

2. Running (duh) - I've never felt my addiction so genuinely as this week when I couldn't run and I've been going through DTs all week (medical lingo from my mom for withdrawal symptoms. I think its some kind of latin for delirium tempors....or the shakes).

3. Ciabatta bread - I keep trying and trying to give up some carbs...especially what I call the "white foods" (white bread, sugar, white rice, potatoes). I do really well until I'm in Trader Joes and I see the loaf of Ciabatta...there's something about that airy, almost sourdough taste that makes me buy it EVERY. SINGLE. TIME. I could eat a whole loaf, I swear it.

4.  Real Housewives of Orange County - I know, it's hard to admit it publicly, but I am absolutely addicted to this train-wreck of a show. It's like slowing down to look at a car accident. I know I shouldn't look, but I can't help myself.

5. Coffee - Absolutely addicted to this. I know it's wrong, but I just can't get my day started without it.

So I'm tagging (although it was difficult, because I think almost everyone's been tagged...and I think all your blogs are fabu, fabu, but just in case. Here's some shout outs to a couple who haven't blogged about being fabulous yet.

Yas - Who is running the Carlsbad 1/2 marathon tomorrow morning too...and I hope we finally get a face to face meeting.
Reluctant Runner - Who was my first blog-friend, since we ran our first marathons within a week of one another.
Al - because no matter what, she makes me laugh at her running adventures...and her dog named Guiness.
Vickie - She saved my life this week with her awesome stretching advice. My hip is sooooo much better thanks to her advice.
RBR - I'm pretty sure she's been tagged already too, but I just love her blog, and that fact that I can always see that she's online on a Friday night...such is the life of a teacher, and I know that's the first time all week she's really had to go online.

Looking forward to tomorrow's Carlsbad 1/2 and running into (haha) Penny, Yas, & Lisa.

Unrelated to my addictions, I thought I'd post one photo of the shwag picked up from the expo...I've never gotten a loaf of bread before!

Woot! Woot! Woot!

Friday, January 23, 2009

Do Bad Things ALWAYS Happen in Threes?

I don't even really know where to start with this week... I know I've been out of the loop for a few days...and then I wrote this rather esoteric post from Vegas with a sorta vague reference to going to doctor's appointments with my mom...

Here are the notes I took from the appointment.

Cheery notes, huh?
That's what the doctor's appointment was mom has lung cancer. I've known about it for a couple of weeks. So, I flew to Vegas for the day on Wednesdayday so that I could go with her to the appointment with the surgeon.

Actually, there's some good news (if there could be such a thing) and that's that they caught the lung cancer REALLY EARLY. If you've been reading awhile, you may remember that in October, I had a pretty wild trip to Vegas because my mom ended up in the emergency room. Turns out that all the tests she ended up taking to make sure that she WASN'T having a heart attach (she wasn't) turned up a small mass on her left lung....less than 3 cm. According to the doctors they almost NEVER see lung cancer at this early a stage unless it is found by "accident" because there are almost no symptoms. We're certain there are angels watching over mom.

I'm not sure what good I did being at the appointment, other than to hold my dad's hand, and try to crack the occasional inappropriate joke (my role in life). My mom on the other hand - she was completely amazing. She gave her whole medical history like clockwork. She knew dates and tests (PET scans, and MRIs and CT's and medications, and the dates of the tests, and lord knows what else. I usually get stumped by the "when was your last period?" question).

I do like the surgeon. She was matter-of-fact and thorough, and even managed to inject a little humor. When asked about previous surgeries, my mom reported that she'd had two c-sections, but that was a REALLLLLLY LONG time ago when she had which the surgeon looked at me and responded, "well, THAT'S gotta make you feel good..." It was a nice time to inject some humor. We all needed the laugh.

Mom's going to have surgery week after next, which is scary, but the doctors have all been incredibly optimistic that they can get the whole mass in the surgery and that since the cancer has been caught so very early that its treatable and curable... some relief there, but it still sucks...a lot.

I'll probably be spending a fair amount of time in Vegas for the next few months...

Oh yeah...the hip and the Carlsbad 1/2 Marathon...which is this it really seems of little importance, but I know now more than ever how much I need running in my life because not being able to run has made me just a little nutty.... especially today when the promised physical therapist called to CANCEL my appointment. Can you believe that...he has me wait for the entire week to see him, then cancels at the last minute. I wonder if I'd be charged if I canceled at the last minute? I wonder if I'd have to wait a week if I were an elite athlete?


Luckily, there is the Internet and my local shoe store (Movin' Shoes is da best) to help me with my self-therapy. First, Vickie from "Living and Tri-ing in River City, sent me an email and offered to send me the stretches she does for her hip pain, which when she described it, sounded EXACTLY like mine. Then she sent me a really detailed explanation of the stretches. It's on my computer at work, or I'd post some of it here...BTW, describing how to do a hip flexor stretch with only words, and no pictures, is one pretty tough task, but Vickie described it perfectly. (I've been doing one where you lie on your back and grab an ankle and a calf...I'll have to post Vickie's description, but it is the best hip stretch I've ever done, but boy does it hurt...but it's a good hurt, not the bad-hurt that I've been having. She has a really funny post today about swimming with Tai-Chi should check it out.

Then the guy at Movin' Shoes told me about a few more stretches I could do and I bought The Stick for some hip massage. Then I went to Target and bought a tennis ball (it was one of Vickie's stretches) and a heating pad and some Epsom Salts.

Who needs a physical therapist? I have frozen peas and The Stick!

I figure I have 33 more hours to stretch, heat, ice, stretch, soak, ice, massage, ice, heat, soak, and stretch, my hip into some kind of submission.

At this point, I know a PR is out of the question. I haven't run all week (well...I tried to run on Thursday morning, but it wasn't pretty) and to be honest, I don't really care about that. I may not even run the whole race, but I will be out there and I'm going to have a really good time, and I'm going to run for my mom. I know I'll get to meet up with Penny and Yasmin and maybe Lisa (so that when we run into each other at Lake BP, we'll recognize each other!) and of course I get to run with Betty and Mik and Edith. It'll be a good day.

Again, thanks for all your well-wishes for my hip and my mom in my last post. I know my mom occassionally reads my blog and we both really appreaciate all of the LURVE your sending our way.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Hip Report 2... Live! from Vegas!

Just a quick report. I'm in Vegas tonight, so that I can to to some doctor's appointments with mom tomorrow morning. Gotta blog from the iPhone, 'cuz the 'rents don't have a wireless network...although I guess I could use dad's iMac... This seems more appropriate I'm covertly blogging from my old bedroom (even though it's not my old bedroom, nor am I sleeping in my old bed...but, I digess...).

First if all... Can I just say that I love Vegas? Best people watching city EVAH!!! Highly entertaining peeps on the airport tonite. My faves were the woman wearing red leopardskin tights and ugg boots... Or another woman who was being transported to her gate on a dolly... I kid you not..

Anyway, the hip...oh yeah...that. The physical therapist called me back yesterday (monday). He told me if my hip hurt, I shouldn't run (a little "duh" there, right?) but he can't see me until Friday to do any further diagnosis...GAH!

Here's the weird part. Most of the time, my hip doesn't hurt. Yesterday afternoon, I was feeling a little antsy, so I even did some yoga. (Rodney Yee's, Yoga for Athletes...a good stretching DVD). Nothing hurt. In fact, the only time I remember that I have this little hip issue is when I WALK...then I do feel some tension, especially when I first start walking (BTW McCarran Airport in Vegas is ENORMOUS! So I walked some tonight).

So...I'm going to go for a walk in the am and I'll do some stretches...see how it feels. I'm feeling pretty optimistic about Carlsbad...or I'm in denial...

Again thanks for all your happy-hip thoughts and for believing in hip fairies for me...I really have appreciated all of your advice and comments!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Hip Report and Diversions

First...thank you to all of you who have been sending positive vibes and energy toward me and my tricky-icky-hip. I really *heart* all my friends (blogging and non-blogging). I find it wondrous and amazing that I have this community of peeps who are really-fo-sho-real friends. I had lunch with my sister today and at several points found myself telling her stories that involved "this friend in South Dakota, or in Iowa, or in Minnesota, or in LA, or in Canada who...blah, blah, blah." She probably wonders how I know all these people around the world.

OK...gushiness aside. Today's hip report is about the same as yesterday's...that is--no change so far. I was beside myself with grief today when I woke up. Somehow I thought that I'd wake up and the hip-fairies would have come in the middle of the night and magically taken all my hip-pains away. Imagine my disappointment when I got out of bed this morning and my first step on my left foot was felt in my hip-joint...GAH!

I do have a picture of the bag-o-peas in my pants

OK...its a picture of me with a bulge on my hip. Really my hips are not quite that lumpy; that's what it looks like when you have a bag of peas stuck down your pants. What EXACTLY were you expecting?

So...I'm a little sad, but optimistic that the hip-fairies will come tonight. (I'm being Peter-Pan like and saying over and over, "I do believe in hip-fairies. I do believe in hip fairies"...maybe if you all say it with me, they'll arrive in the middle of the night and fix my could happen.)

Sooooo....since I needed diversions to keep my mind off of my hip, we went to the beach yesterday. We had some relatives from NoCal in town, and since it's 85ยบ in January here...the beach is the place to let me tell you the ocean water is cooooooooold, but kids don't care.

DramaGirl, Turbo, and friend playing on the beach. Nice surf yesterday.

Relaxing in the sun (Turbo, DramaGirl and N0Cal Girl)

In other diversions. The SDTC has some photos of the last two week's runs. Here's one of me yesterday, before the popping incident.

See...look how happily I'm running...GAH! Not a pain in the world.

BBJ and I had a good giggle after our run when we learned that when doing squats or lunges "if your butt's in the air, you're doing it right." Food for thought.

BBJ made a new running friend this week... I hear she told him LOTS of good stories...

Finally. Meet Scotty, the newest member of our running group

Scotty has a REALLY interesting way of making new friends. (Oh and thanks to BBJ for pointing out the photo to me. I'd completely missed it the first time through)

I'm hoping to hear from the sports therapist tomorrow...

Finally...a huge congrats to all who ran in today's PF Chang's 1/2 and full marathons. I'm looking forward to all the race reports.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Shit, Shit, Shit...

My run this morning with SDTC did NOT go as planned, and now I sit here with (my favorite) bag-o'peas-ice pack on my hip... I'm FREEKING OUT because I'm afraid that I may have really hurt myself... I shoulda taken yesterday off...GAH!

Here's the scoop. Got to the track club workout a couple minutes late. The herd is in Tahoe, but I found BBJ pretty quickly. (BTW: I learned on Tuesday night that BBJ does NOT enjoy being goosed from behind as a greeting...who knew? So I withheld this morning...But I digress). Anyway I stretched w/BBJ and since we were chatting, I took off running with him in the "B" group (these people run something like 8 to 9:30 min miles, which I do not, but they also have longer runs, which I wanted to do, and I don't care about running at the back of the pack).

Anyway, BBJ quickly left me in his tracks, but I was cruisin' along. I was feeling really good. My right achilles has been bugging me lately, but not this morning. My left hammie has been calling my attention to its presence, but not today. Then all of a sudden, out of the blue, for no reason at all, I feel this "pop, pop, pop" in my hip.

"Oh" I thought, "that's sorta an unusual feeling" but since my joints typically pop and click and settle in the first couple miles of all my runs, I wasn't too alarmed, although I will admit that this popping and clicking was very different than normal.

So, I slowed down a bit (from about a 10:30 pace to about an 11:00 pace) and kept running....still feeling some residual...well...I don't want to call it pain, because it didn't really hurt, per se, but I could FEEL IT in my hip every time my left foot hit the asphalt.

At a mile and a half, it did it again...which is when I started to really freak out... I though of Irene and how she fractured her hip last spring. As I've written before, I live in perpetual fear that at some point I'm going to get hurt and have to quit running (Sorta paranoid, but that's how I am). So today, I did something I haven't done in a really long time. I stopped running. Then I turned around, and walked back to the start. Again, feeling it in my hip every single step of the way.

I talked to Coach Paul about it. He made one of those faces that you really don't want to ever see when you're a runner. I wanted to see the "oh, just rest a day or two. It's no big deal." But he made the squishy "oh that's not good" face.


So. I've left a message for a sports therapist, and hopefully, I'll get to talk to him soon.

I'm so sad. Carlsbad is in 8 days...

I'm hoping that if I just stay off it for the week, it'll be OK...

Friday, January 16, 2009

I'm Not Gonna Lie...

It doesn't suck living here...

The cost of living and housing is pretty rediculous, but it doesn't suck. And yesterday, I decided it was worth every penny.

It's been a busy/crazy week. I'm trying to get five different syllabi ready for all my classes. My mother has some health issues, so I'm going to go to Vegas next week to see her and doctors. A deficit of time and (mostly) money are causing me to NOT go to the annual heffer-Tahoe event this weekend (yes, the herd will be in Truckee, CA...if you're in the neighborhood, the Tour d' Truckee will probably take place on Sunday the girls a bev, wontcha?).

Also, there's this...on Tuesday night I went to the SDTC track workout. We did strides and calistentics. I had my iPod in my back pocket and I must have scrunched it somehow when I was doing situps, because this happened.

How sad is that? The screen is white with just a couple of black spots...GAH! Remember that time and money issue I was speaking of...I've got neither one to deal with this...

THEN, perhaps because I'm just a tad stressed about all these things (and a few more), I consumed about 40,000 calories in comfort food, snacks, and other crap on Wednesday...

So, yesterday morning I decided to NEEDED to go for a run. Lisa wrote on her blog about some running therapy at Lake BP, so started by heading off to there. As I was driving, I though to myself..."Self, it would only take me about 7 minutes longer to get to the bay, let's go run there instead!"

When I got to the bay, I thought "Self, let's just go run on the boardwalk."

So I did...and I won't lie. It was BEE-U-TI-FUL. Go, ahead and throw things at the computer cuz you're sick of me waxing on about the loveliness that is this January in San Diego... I can take it. YOu should all move here...really...I did...

And of course, I'm posting a few photos (because it's Photo Friday!). I don't know that the iPhone camera does them justice...

Another seagull...this one is not giving me the stink-eye...

The beauty of January...South Mission Beach sans thousands of people

Actually, there were a fair number of people on the Boardwalk for a Wednesday morning--mostly seniors, mothers with strollers, what appeared to be college students, and probably college professors, none of whom have started classes yet. The run absolutely made me feel much better and less stressed, even though I did a Penny, and started running north (sun to back) and finished running south (sun in face).

5.04 miles
55:35 minutes/11:01 mile

This morning I ran at Lake BP. Not much to report, other than the run was much more difficult and I walked some (why is that?). I did figure out how to use the lap button on my Garmin so that I could mark my mile splits. (duh! push the little button that says "lap"). Is there a way to get it to mark laps automatically, like every mile? I'm sure one of you Garmin experts knows how to do this.

4.11 miles
47 minutes/11.28 mile
Mile 1 - 10:52
Mile 2 - 10:50
Mile 3 - 12:25 (yeah...that's when I walked for about 1/4 mile)
MIle 4 - 11:19

It doesn't add up to 47 minutes because it also includes the last .1 mile that I walked. doesn't suck to live here...which makes me feel better about the other stresses in my life. I'll be running with the SDTC in the morning. The schedule calls for an 1:15 minute run. I probably should have rested today, but the therapy was necessary.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Just Some Randomness

  • I did Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred for the first time yesterday. I am going to try to work in some of her know, as both strength and cross training, a couple times a week. Level 1 was doable...I could do the ab work and the cardio (although I will admit I've never been able to kick my own that part was more challenging...and why does high-impact aerobics seem so much more high-impact than running?), but anything that deals with weights and my upper body strength? fuhgettaboutit...So I feel it in my shoulders and upper arms today. I used some 4lb hand weights. I'm thinking that I'll have two sets of weights sitting around next time I do the workout--the 4lb ones for some of the floor work and the bicep curls, and a set of 2lb weights (I'm such a wuss) for anything where I have to lift weights over my head or to my shoulders. GAH!
  • On Monday, Steve, from Steve in a Speedo? Gross! told his story about how, even though he is a speedy-speedster now, and I couldn't even keep up with him for one lap around the track, he didn't start off that way and he posted some blog-worthy photos of himself from his early running days from high school. (NICE!). He says he's going to have a whole "best newbie story and embarrassing photo" contest later this month. I don't know if I have an embarrassing newbie story, but I've got a good photo from my first 5K (about three years ago).
  • This is me...taking a little break and WALKING during my first Carlsbad 5000 in April 2006 because running an entire 3.1 miles was entirely out of the question. There are several embarrassing elements to this photo. 1) the size of my thighs; 2) the fact that I'm running in some crappy New Balance cross-trainers. I'm pretty sure that it took this one race for me to realize that actual running shoes would be a GOOD IDEA! and; 3) that I decided "down the sports bra" was the best place to keep my iPod during a run. I swear, I was just adjusting the volume on my iPod when the really clever photographer took this shot; I am NOT checking out my boob. I do love that the Britegroom Photography guy decided to take this shot. I'm sure those race photographers LIVE for moments like this (some woman checking out her own boob and the guy who's picking out his shorts from his ass). Click!
  • speaking of shoes, I'm off to RoadRunner Sports this morning to get some new running shoes. I'm just tired of the random achilles and foot pain that has become increasingly worse after long runs over the last few weeks. After Sunday's 10 miler, the bottom of my feet were just KILLING me and my achilles tendon is still pretty tender. I'm pretty sure I just need new shoes. I got this current pair about a week before the AFC 1/2 marathon in August. I've run two half-marathons in them and trained, 400+ miles in them, so I'm due.  They look OK, but I have just been feeling the road in them. I do need that cushion-y support.
  • I'm going to my first Tuesday Night Track workout with the track club tonight. I both dread and enjoy these workouts. I dread them a little because it's a hard workout. We'll be doing 8x100 strides tonight. And, since it's early in the track-club season, the track will be really crowded. But they're enjoyable too because it's a nice 1-hour workout and the speed work does really help me increase my speed and form. It's also another chance to get together with the herd, so funny stuff is bound to happen.