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Brain tumor survivor | triathlon & duathlon finisher | wife | cat mom | friend to many | supreme smart aleck. I'd like coffee and a book please.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Taking Some Time Off

This is a "forced" time off per my new doctor of podiatry. I had some more x-rays done when I arrived at his office which offered a better picture of what was going on. Better in that I was actually standing up and actually applying pressure (my weight) to my foot instead of lying on a table and putting my put in the required position at Southwest.

Dr. Benson figured that I probably had a stress fracture during the summer and that at this point it is 90% healed. He also informed me that I had a bunion which probably helped to cause the stress fracture. He explained it all and I don't think I could explain it here. All I know is that my foot is only slightly deformed - what else could be wrong with me? I asked if the bunion would get worse and he said possibly...that's reassuring. He suggested that I not run until the New Year or walk or ride (outdoors). In true fashion I asked if I could ride my bike on my trainer and he said as long as I was just spinning and not applying pressure, like standing up, then I should be fine. Until the first of the year I'll be hanging out, spinning on my trainer and probably doing pilates to my hearts content. The fact that I can't even walk for fitness is even sad for me and I hate walking! That says something I think.

There is a "First Day" run on Dec 31 and Tom and I decided that the 1.5 mile would be doable, especially since I will do NO running and really, it is right before the New Year...so it is fudging just a little, but still, I'll just have to take it easy. Our plan was to do the 5K that evening, but when I start up again I am to take it really slow and just do embarrassingly short distances - no more than a mile at a time - and even less - for a week or two and then work up from there. I suppose I could do that - I really need to try to be a better patient about stuff like this. If I re-injure myself I might have to be in a walking boot for longer than a couple of weeks and the Duathlon may not happen and that would be a very sad. So I'm going to do all I can to give my foot a rest and let it heal completely.

the bare minimum

I have not been on my trainer or to the track to run/walk in a couple of weeks. I have been doing some pilates - IT'S TOUGH. I plan to do pilates again this morning and quite possibly a VERY SHORT run...maybe a mile, it's a little cold ;)

Tom and I are planning to run the First Run in Portland on the 31st that is going to be a very slow 3 miles...unless I can talk Tom into the 1.5 miles. If I do that then I'm just being a whimp! I know I can run the 3 miles...and I should!



Decided to do run only (2 miles)...my doctor appointment was moved up - gotta get going!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Random Stuff

This week I got out with Kristan to the track and we walked...still congested and thought it best not to push it.

Also, got my x-ray results back - EVERYTHING IS NORMAL. Dang it, my foot still hurts and so does my hip. I go to the podiatrist next week, at least I'll have my foot checked out. Might have to go back to my doctor about my hip. Maybe I should start running and riding again like a fool.

Did some pilates yesterday - ooh, baby - that is hard! Good for my core which is key to good cycling and running.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Slowing down for the holidays

It has become apparent to me that I will not be running anytime soon and that I should be resting. We have been on the go since who knows when and now that I have a cold I guess this is just a sign that I'm supposed to chill for a while, which stinks because I want to get on my bike...even though it's on the trainer at the moment. That's pretty desperate. The running thing can wait, but my backside cannot get soft...must remember what that saddle feels like...ugh.

On the flip side, I have an appointment with a podiatrist in a couple of weeks - oh please be a good doctor - who is a marathon runner, so this should be good.

Until I get to the doctor I will focus on getting rested and well and maybe get out and walk at the track while Kristan and Kevin run.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

It's really the holiday season...

We are just back from vacation and had one opportunity to run - the Riverwalk in Naperville. It's a nice path that is AWAY from the road and all the crazy driver's in Naperville - I still hate driving! Our run was brief and cold, but at least we got out.

We did get MILES AND MILES AND MILES of very FAST walking in. Marcia and Teddy have two speeds - Fast and REALLY fast. It was all good though because then I didn't feel like I had to go for a run. Also my foot has started to hurt again - a ha! Just in time for the doctor! There was a message from The Vancouver Clinic about scheduling an appointment with a podiatrist...YAY!

Here's to getting back into a routine...

Monday, November 24, 2008

Pre-holiday bloat...

Man, I'm already starting to feel the holiday bloat and I haven't done anything different...must be in anticipation of Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years.

We are heading out on vacation - to Chicago and I've packed my running gear and hope to get out at least a couple of times later this week. It will be better than nothing. I will miss our annual Thanksgiving Day ride though, I always look forward to that, I guess it will be a run instead :)

Tom and I went to Southwest yesterday so I could have my x-rays done 3 views of my foot and a couple of my hip(s). We'll see what is going on in both places, hopefully nothing that will slow down my plan to start training in January.

Today I received my monthly newsletter from Wenzel Coaching - I like the different articles. This month there was a short article about adding multisports to your race season - I thought it was appropriate since my goal is to do a duathlon in 2009 among other things.

I am trying to tell myself that not riding everyday is okay, it's the holiday season, I need to let my body rest...good luck to me! If I don't get any activity in my day I get antsy - almost a little crazy. I'm trying to change my attitude towards doing the things to maintain some of the condition that I had built up over the spring and summer...I'll make it though, I might drive everyone around me crazy, but that's their problem!

It's so hard this time of year for me to get out on my bike, it's dark when I leave for work and when I come home. I would ride to work, but I have enough anxiety during the summer when its light and the roads are dry. I have come to the realization that there are people that will not accept cycling as a means of transportation so riding when the late afternoon is dark and the roads probably would be wet does not appeal to me. If we lived closer to where I worked I wouldn't have any problem making the decision to ride. Man, this is what happens when I spend the majority of the summer riding to work because of gas prices - I miss riding almost every day!
Until then I'll have to ride on my trainer and do my pre-training runs with Kristan and Kevin as often as possible. I have a really great 10K training plan that I want to follow when the new year is here so here's to the next month going by quickly which I'm sure it will!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Thursday, November 20, 2008

doctory stuff

Since I will start some serious training for the Du I decided that I should probably see a doctor regarding the pain in my foot and hip. Today I went to my family physician and as usual, neither hurt so it was me just trying to explain what was going on and answering a lot of questions because when the pain isn't there it's hard to describe what was going on. After my doc did a few things to try to determine what was going on with my foot she decided that an x-ray should be done. Then she did some funky things pulling and pushing on my leg to figure my hip out...nothing. I did find out that I am extremely ticklish when someone is prodding in my hip area. She quit pretty quickly!

According to Dr. Jill I am more active than the average human being...which I find a little surprising, but I guess it makes sense. This spring was all about training for the 5K and this summer was all about not driving my car so much and bike commuting as much as possible....so yeah, more active. I REALLY miss all my summer activities - but I figure when March rolls around I'll be out on the road again either on foot or on my bike - so it's not that far away.

Until then I guess I better make my way over to Southwest and have some x-rays done. I'll start taking an anti-inflammatory to reduce some irritation...and MAYBE I'll get in to visit a podiatrist which is what I really wanted to do in the first place.

Did a short run this morning with Kevin & Kristan...we beat the rain!

Monday, November 17, 2008

New Shoes, Treadmill and other tidbits...

Man, what a weekend! Friday night we went to Fit Right Northwest and I got my shoes and Tom had his gait analysis done...and he got shoes too!

I managed to pack my running clothes and new shoes for our trip to Seattle (thought I could at least run on the treadmill at the hotel). Treadmill, ugh...not too bad though. I got two miles in, a much needed workout. Although the day before we spent pretty much the WHOLE day walking. Qwest Field is quite a distance away from Pike Place Market! It was a good day though. Anyway, I thought that I would be bored, but the display on the treadmill that thing is FILLED with all sorts of information for my puny little brain, so I spent the half hour just mesmerized with the changing numbers and my BPM. There really was no time to get bored, but it was a little slow going. My goal was to run 30 minutes and hopefully get two slow miles in. I did it so and my shoes were awesome!

Training Plan
Today I printed off a training plan (which is free on the Runner's World website) to get to a 10K distance. I'll have to use a lot of treadmill time to get down my pace for a 14 minute mile and then try to get used to pace so I don't try to do TOO much. I hope to start training after we return from our trip - that's the plan at this point. I have over six months to train for the Duathlon - but my main concern is the running of course. I know that I can ride so that's not a problem, anyone could ride 12 miles pretty quick if they need to. I just see the second 5K being very slow. As long as I finish I'll be happy with that.

WHY would I do a Duathlon? That question has come up more than once. I had to think about it because I have been having thoughts of doing one for a little while. The main reason is because I think it would be fun. The serious reason...because I can.

The way a person goes thru cancer treatments really says something about that person. My cancer wasn't as devastating as others, but the treatments certainly were not that easy. The radiation even though it was painless, it caused a fair amount of fatigue, which surprised me. I had radiation to my HEAD! I still don't understand that...oh wait, I had 1/2 doses of chemotherapy to go along with that, so that probably didn't help. I was a little tired after six weeks of daily doses of radiation and chemotherapy. The chemo was a regimen of 5 days a week every 4th week - ugh. That was plain harsh on my stomach since my chemo was in pill form. That went on for 12 months...that's a long time! The pills just made me feel sick to my stomach and eating was not a fun activity at that time either. So just getting thru the day was my job. That's not to say that it was like that all the time - I got out and still did fun stuff, but the fun days were limited by how I felt. If I felt crummy I would rest, felt down I would ride to raise my spirits and if I felt good I would do long rides (anything longer than 5 miles). So being a cancer patient taught me to just deal with stuff as it came along and to take care of myself as well as possible. My attitude about my health changed during my treatment days and I decided that I wanted to take better care of myself.

This year was a year the biggest change - my decision to have MRIs done every six months. That was a decision that I made back in January, but only after my appointment with my oncologist at that time. When my quarterly MRI came around again I had already decided to start training for my first 5K. My MRI results came back good, yet again, so it was hard to say "Yeah, I want to keep doing this every 3 months..." The plan was changed and it was the best decision I have ever made!

This summer has been the best summer yet...did a couple of 5K's for fun, rode a bunch of organized rides, did a lot of bike commuting and I started thinking of a new challenge a few weeks ago. This is my goal for 2009 to complete a Duathlon and get some of my friends to suffer along with me.

My new goal is significant because 2009 will be 5 years since my diagnosis and so much has happened in 5 years - no more tumor, treatments etc, less MRIs and doctor appointments, less stress overall - MORE happiness and fun! I will never stop having regular check-ups, but that's something I can live with.

Cancer Free is a phrase we never talk about...I'm a healthy happy survivor!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Morning Run

This morning I met Kevin & Kristan at the Track and we spent about half an hour running and walking and visiting. It felt good to get out so early in the morning.

Tonight Tom and I are going to Fit Right NW to go buy my new shoes!!! I'm excited...my left foot was giving me some trouble this morning, so only 1.25 miles of running this morning.

Man the track at CRHS is NICE!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Run with B-Shift friends...

Tomorrow will be my first run with someone other than Tom in a long time. I'm psyched too because I do so much better in the morning than in the evening. Will be meeting at the local high school track tomorrow morning and hopefully do some speedwork...I am looking forward to getting my new shoes tomorrow night!!!!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Happy Veteran's Day

Tom decided that he didn't want to take his Fuji OR his new Sidi shoes out in this weather...and I needed to get out and do something so I did an easy two mile run. Even in the wet cool wind it wasn't that bad. I am already starting to miss dry pavement! Oh well...should make for good training.

Monday, November 10, 2008

New Running Shoe

This is the shoe that I hope to have by the weekend.
I can't wait!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Gait Analysis

Today after church I made my way over to Fit Right Northwest on the east side to have a gait analysis done. I figure if I want to do some serious training for this Duathlon I should probably should invest in a good pair of shoes.

The first time I had my gait analyzed was at the Health Expo the weekend of the Bridge Pedal. That was a particuarly fun day as I took advantage of several services that were available that day. While I was having a chair massage Tom was "next door" having a talk with a couple of people representing a running specialty store and decided to hop on the treadmill and have his gait looked at. After I my massage was over I made my way over and he said I should have them look at my funny run and get some suggestions. At the time, the guy said that I my right leg is nearly normal and that my left leg had some pronation - which I sort of understand, but not really all that much. Bottom line is my foot rolls inward slightly on the left side which requires me to run with a shoe that has mild to moderate stability. Their shoe suggestion was the Asics 2130.

Today after I did a short run on the treadmill at Fit Right NW the gal pretty much confirmed all that the Expo people said, but I got to try out some shoes - by running on the sidewalk in front of the shop. I tried 3 different pairs - Asics 2140 (the 2009 model of the 2130), Brooks and New Balance 768. As soon as I stood up with the NB's I was sold and even more so after I did the test run. The Asics were good too though, so I ended up doing a side by side comparison...running with one of each shoe. By far the New B's were the shoe for me. I'm excited I'll be getting those in the next week!

After I left Fit Right NW I went over to Borders - it seemed like a shame to NOT go since I was out there anyway. I was hoping to find a training book of some sort. After looking thru several Tri books and a couple of marathon books this book finally made itself known to me. I hope that this will be helpful - it certainly couldn't hurt. So with the book and the purchase of new running shoes, I'll be well on my way to my first Duathlon!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Running Buddies...

A new option was presented today! I was talking to Kristan and she mentioned that she, Kevin & Jeff F. were meeting at CRHS to run at the track....this may be the easy way to get a work-out it yet. I wouldn't have to run everyday, but at least a couple of days a week and then use the trainer a couple of other days and maybe do some strength training.

This weekend I'll be making a trip to FitRight Northwest to have my gait analyzed and get a recommendation for shoes. I hope to start running with K, K & J by the time we leave to go to Chicago...DANG IT!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Cycle Trainer

25 minutes on the trainer = 25 minutes that I'll never get back - EVER.

Although, at least I "rode" my bike. Riding my bike on the trainer is my very least favorite activity. It makes running more enjoyable by comparison.

So to break things up I have come up with a very interesting training idea for the early morning hours during the week after Tom leaves for work. I could run like a mile on the road and then ride the trainer for 10 minutes or so and then run another mile on the road. What a stroke of BRILLIANCE!

I REALLY can't wait for Spring to get here again.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Suffering and Getting Other People to Suffer

Run this afternoon was rough. As soon as we started (at the track) I could feel that my back was a little sore and what pain I had moved to the right side, above my hip...NEAT. I eeked out one mile and then walked half a lap and then decided that I could run another mile. I finished okay, but my back has me a little concerned. This is a fairly new problem and I hope it is temporary.

Friday afternoon I sent out an email to get some people to say they would do the Duathlon. Tracey might and Kevin has a boring life so I guess he's in. Should be fun...hoping to start training with people here and there.

Going to the chiropractor this week anyway...probably should get a massage too!

Friday, October 31, 2008

The Day After

I don't think that my foot is going to be a problem - I woke up and felt no pain. On the flip side, my hip is bothering me, but only in the morning. Hmmm...

My plan is to run again this evening and get back on track with my running. I was going thru my running book and spied a training plan for racing. I don't know about racing, at this point I'm really just interested in having the ability to finish a DU.

As far as cycling goes, I'll probably end up setting up my Trek on the trainer for indoor riding during the week and then ride on the road on the weekends. It's a good thing that the cycling comes back pretty easily after some time off, especially with the trainer all set up.

6:37 Update

I couldn't waste a perfectly good dry evening with running so I rode instead of running when I got home tonight - but I got a little crazy and decided to run the private road that goes past our house...not quite a mile, but I did okay. I think I'm going to like this!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Good Run!

It has been a while since my last run so I decided that I would go to the track and run there to find out where I am as far as distance. I set my watch/timer for 30 minutes and got started. I got to 2.25 miles in 29:30 and ran an easy 30 seconds to finish. I'm actually pretty happy with my time - I really have not gotten out to run very often for a long time. I'll just continue running to get back up to a 5K distance and work on strength training along the way until I start my REAL training. I am hoping to increase my speed because I know I can do a faster 5K, but I will be doing it twice with the second time AFTER a 12 mile ride...hmmm.

How is it that I decide to do things that makes me train during the gray, cold, dreary months of the year? I have a book called Slow Fat Triathlete, but I have seemed to misplace it somehow. I'll have to get that out for inspiration. I'm excited about my new big goal for 2009. I hope that my training will be much more enjoyable than when Tom and I were training for my first 5K. The 5K training was downright miserable and I was only JUST able to run a 5K by the time the Livestrong Challenge came around. I'm hopeful that when this Du is here I'll be good and ready to go.

Tonight's run was also a test to see how my back is feeling - not bad; and how much pain I have in my foot - that will come tomorrow. My back is not bad, just a couple of twinges here and there, but that was it. I have decided to keep visiting my chiropractor so that I don't have to have a big overhaul every 3 or 4 months. It was really bad last weekend! Might as well take advantage of my medical benefits and the number of visits that I'm allowed in one year. I have some catching up to do - like maybe 25 visits by the end of the year!

My happiness is running 30 minutes straight and not feeling like I might die!

Monday, October 27, 2008


This morning I went to my chiropractor to get my spine all realigned. Man, it was MESSED UP. So, now my doctor has gotten to the point where she only uses an activator to make the adjustments on my spine, which is much gentler and kinder, but offers the same result. I go back again Wednesday after work for any additional adjustments and I'm good to go.

I tell myself this all the time, I really should go to the chiropractor more than once every few months or whenever my back is all messed up! This should do though - I want to run pain free and also not inflict more injury.

All I can think about is training for the Duathlon. Now that I don't have to throw the LIVESTRONG challenge into the mix I think I can be a little more selective on what other runs I might want to do in 2009.

Today is my day off of all activity, let my body rest and heal and then I'll hit it again tomorrow as I will bike commute to work tomorrow.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

No Livestrong 2009 for us...

Today Livestrong sent out the Challenge schedule for 2009 and sadly Portland is not on the list for 2009, but Seattle is. As much as I would like to participate again, it is unlikely that we will go to Seattle for the event. Which is okay because if the Livestrong Challenge was schedule in Portland for the same weekend, it would be the same weekend as the Duathlon.

I made a commitment to do the Blue Lake Duathlon and I'm sticking to that goal!

I had hoped to get out for a run today, but my back has been hurting most of the day - a run would not help. I guess I'll be off to the chiropractor this week...although, I felt something readjust, so it's not as bad. We'll see how things go tonight and then I'll make a decision in the morning.

Friday, October 24, 2008

New Gadgets

I added my running and cycling log to this blog tonight...the running log is way off though. I did not discover this log until after we did the Livestrong Challenge, so it looks like I'm not running...which in reality I am not, but some miles have been logged.

I'm going to run this weekend at some point to see how my foot feels and then call to make an appointment. I'm not sure that the running will help my foot, but at least I'll be able to tell the doctor, if and when I get that appointment, what the heck is up.

My cycling log includes all the rides that I have done since the beginning of this year. If I had not started training to do the Livestrong 5K I think there would be more cycling miles. Although, this last Spring was cold and rainy, so I am not sure that there would be that many more miles on the log.

Cyclocomputers are evil little pieces of technology...

Already planning for 2009

I have been wanting to do a Duathlon for a couple of years now. Since Tom and I successfully trained for and ran the LIVESTRONG 5K AND did the Mt Hood Jazz 5K run, I am pretty confident that I can do a DU in 2009. More specifically a sprint du. The Duathlon I'm looking to do is the Blue Lake Duathlon next June. 5K run, 12 mile ride, 5K run.

Admittedly, I have slacked off quite a bit from my running. A lot of that has to do with the fact that I LOVE to ride. Another reason I have slacked off is because I have been experiencing some foot pain. So I'll be making a date with a podiatrist to see what is going on with my foot. Hopefully the problem isn't major otherwise it will be a while longer before this Du happens...ooh, that's not good thinking...only positive thoughts!

The purpose of setting up THIS blog is to hold myself accountable to my training and if ANYONE is reading this hopefully I'll get some encouragement! If I want to be consistent with posting updates I have to actually do some training. This should do it - I hope!

Here's looking forward to a new adventure!