June 19, 2013

Fear as a Motivator

Me and this dang hip!

Monday, I was pleased with myself when I looked in my calendar and noticed that I haven't been to see my PT in three weeks. That's the longest stretch I've gone since I started treatment with him! I thought surely this was a good thing that I could wait so long in between sessions....

Let me back up a little.

This past weekend I went to Beaver Creek with the bf and a bunch of Anchor athletes to watch them run the Tough Mudder. In order to spectate some of the obstacles, you have to walk up and down black diamond ski hills, which took a big toll on my hip and back. Once we were back on flats, I mostly felt okay but I decided to go in to the PT to get things straightened out (especially after noticing it had been three weeks...don't want to wait so long that I have to start over from the beginning again).

After that session, my back isn't as tight as it was, and my hip felt fine when he was finished. We chatted about how it would be a good idea if I went out for a wog (walk + jog) that evening, so I tried to do just that. I got home, put my garmin on and head out...except I only made it a mile and a half. Technically, I walked 70%. The flare of pain was almost immediate, so I decided to head home and sit on the lacrosse ball for a little while and try to work out the kinks in hopes that I could go for a run in the morning before work. (Bonus: I think the inhaler worked)

I woke up at 5am yesterday, got dressed and ready to go, and I kid you not...I made it about 400 ft before the pain felt like that old bone on bone feeling. I know it isn't bone on bone...but you can imagine what that feels like. It isn't comfortable. It's even uncomfortable just sitting. Before work, I went to the grocery store to finally buy more glucosamine. I used to have a huge Costco bottle of that stuff, but I think I gave it to my dad when I found out it was working for him...and I'm sure I said something along the lines of I would buy more for myself and I just never did.

The cool thing about these:

- Smaller pills (they are still pretty big though)
- It contains Vitamin D, which I know I'm deficient in and just never got around to buying and taking the pills
- It has a blend of Chondroitin and MSM, most bottles only have one or the other
- They are buy one get one free right now at KS

The problem is that I don't really know if this will solve anything. I'm seeing the PT this afternoon and I'll bring it up and have a chat about things and other ways I can help myself so I can keep running. I also want to know, if it is a hip imbalance, can you do harm if you try to run through the pain?

Either way, I will take these things religiously and hope and pray they help at least a little bit. The box claims it will start working to improve joint comfort in 7 days...man I hope that's accurate.

The other topic I want to discuss is how much you are supposed to let someone else's insight impact your plans.

I recently joined the email list for ultra runners and posed a question to everyone on there to gain a little guidance for this upcoming 50 miler. From what I gather, these folks know their runs and are very experienced. The general consensus is that I'm crazy for trying to do that distance with my history and current state of physical fitness. I can see their point, but at the same time my mental reply to nay-sayers is that I did make it about halfway through the DC 50 (I know halfway is not all the way) and I think I would have finished had it not been for weather conditions and being freshly injured the month before. Is it all in my head? Am I just delusional?

I think another piece of the problem is that I am letting something someone said to me months ago still reverberate in my head. You always quit. Hard to shake, because I can recall so vividly all the races I did back out of or never started:

- Rosaryville 50K, DNF at Mile 10
- DC Rock'n'Roll Marathon - switched down to the half during the race
- EX2 Trail Half, bumped down to the 10k mid-race
- North Face Endurance DC 50 Miler, DNF
- several races DNS (Big Sur, 70.3 Boulder, etc)

I do think I have my work cut out for me...it is an ambitious goal. History speaks for itself.

And to be completely and nakedly honest, I am terrified of failing, of quitting, of re-injury, disappointment...the list can go on.

I'm learning to use fear as a motivator until I can just let it all go; count the miles and push on to the task at hand.

"You can conquer almost any fear if you will only make up your mind to do so. For remember, fear doesn't exist anywhere except in the mind." ~Dale Carnegie

This post got deep.

Here are some pictures from Beaver Creek! The Anchor athletes kicked major butt! I'm so proud of everyone!

June 10, 2013

Golden Gate Canyon: Take Three

Time for a real post with actual words and sentences in it!

Sometime in August, 2012 I went to Golden Gate Canyon State Park for my first taste of Colorado trails, and also my first trail experience after my DNF at North Face DC 50 Miler.

That's when the photo to the left happened. I got so carried away looking at the beautiful trees and feeling happy about being on a trail again that I forgot to actually look where I was stepping. And I wore road shoes out to the trail. I'm sucha amateur sometimes. After that spill, I retired from running for time being and took up crossfit instead, and here I am now trying to get back into the running groove.

A little over a month ago, I bought a Garmin 210 to replace my old running watch. Then I remembered how my old Garmin died on me before I crossed the finish line of Bear Mountain 50K. So I did some research (okay I didn't do hardly any research, I just asked a friend...kind of the same thing) and found out that for just a liiiiittle (a lot) more money, I could get the Garmin 910 XT, which has a battery life of 20 hours!!! SO I took my butt to REI and exchanged that bad boy and got an awesome sale price thanks to Memorial Day. Win all around!
I am in LOVE with this watch!

The following weekend, I decided to take my new watch out to Golden Gate Canyon for a trail run and see what the watch is capable of in terms of altimeter, etc. Well, I set out using my iPhone maps GPS and ended up in Golden at a mobile home park called Golden Gate. Not exactly what I was aiming for. I took two turns from there and somehow ended up at Red Rocks. I had to finally call a friend to get me back to Golden Gate...hours after I originally left the house. By the time I got to the park, I was hungry, it had gotten pretty dang cold outside and I was overall just done with it.

Can you see how ridiculous that day was? Point B was the trailer park, Point C is Red Rocks, and Point D is finally Golden Gate.

Once I finally had my park pass, got lost inside the park, finally found the trailhead I wanted and set out, it was overcast and about to rain. Lucky me. I got about half a mile down the trail when I decided it was to effing cold for me and turned back for the car. The fun thing was that the first half mile was mostly downhill. On the way back to the car, I had to stop and catch my breath (how out of shape AM I?!) thanks to me being a pansy about altitude.

The next day while waiting for the boyfriend's second soccer game to start, we got to chatting about how I might have exercise-induced asthma.  I've always thought I might have it, but in DC it was easier to run with it and Bruce was always sick so I never got it checked out. Now that I'm in Colorado and struggle to breathe when I'm not even moving, it's hard to ignore.

I went to the doctor, explained everything, and she prescribed me an inhaler to try out and see if it takes care of everything.

This past Saturday, the boyfriend and I decide to head back out to Golden Gate. He drove this time. We did not get lost. Hallelujah. I did my puffs of the inhaler before we set out for the trail. I'm really good at spraying my tongue with it. I was under the impression that he was going to go hike or do his own thing while I went for a run, but he told me at the last minute that he would run with me. Poor guy. I think he thought I was going to keel over out there.

Luckily this time it was a little warmer, but we did get rained on for most of the time we were out there. We start off by hiking, then ran the tiniest bit, and I started having a hard time breathing right away (on the mostly down hill area). I told him that we would have to walk for a while, so we did about 2.5 miles out...most of it downhill.

Things turned ugly when we turned around. Any slight incline left me wheezing ridiculously loud.

You could hear the hummingbirds everywhere!

At least it was pretty...

We had to stop several times for me to get my breathing under control, but we eventually made it back in one piece. Not going to lie, I wanted to cry a whole bucketload. So frustrating.

Normal Picture

Realized he just snapped twenty pictures in two seconds

Confiscating the camera

The trail we were on would be a nice one to run if I can get my breathing under control.

Last night I spent a frustrating amount of time trying to get all the Garmin software onto my computer so I can actually use the Garmin Connect website to track everything. It's pretty awesome! It shows you EVERYTHING! So on Saturday's hike, we went up to 9,285 ft elevation, with an elevation gain of 1,096 ft!

It's supposed to be a hot 98 degrees today, so I'll be heading to Anchor to do the Randy WOD, and maybe a short run after that. Giving the inhaler another go round.

Tough Mudder weekend is almost here and Cancun is less than two weeks away!!!!

Our hotel!

June 03, 2013

My First Year in Colorado!

I'm just days shy of being in Colorado for a year! And since I haven't done much running this past year and thus haven't really been on here that much, I'm going to treat to you a a year of photos!

Potomac Heritage Trail in VA....now onto the CO pictures!

Roadtrippin with my baby bear!
First time at Golden Gate Canyon State Park, first taste of CO trails!


First trip to Boulder

Work Conference to Chicago

My first Crossfit Competition! Deadlift PR

New roomate...handsome devil!

Winter Park

My first 30 mile bike ride
Running of the Green 7k

He just loves the snow!
Steamboat Springs trip!

Hot Springs

Birthday Boy
Girl's Night


I'll get in big trouble for this one...

So that's that. A year here in Colorado. A lot has happened in a year. I can't believe I ever thought about leaving this beautiful state to go back to DC! I miss the Northern VA trails sometimes and I definitely miss my friends, but I wouldn't trade my life here to go back. I love love love my crossfit gym. I love all of the amazing people I've met that are now like family to me. I love day and weekend trips to the other beautiful areas of Colorado. I love the two new dogs around me. I love my roommate :)

Life is oh so good.

I'll do a real, written post soon...entailing how I'm going to go to the doctor to see if I have sports induced asthma, Bruce going to the doctor (again..poor guy), and my upcoming runs and new training plan!

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