Saturday, September 28, 2013

Marathon Madness: Taking a step back.

Well, I'm into week 4 of marathon training. Supposed to be doing a 10 mile run this week, actually! Guess how many miles I have mapped out in my training schedule this week?


Awesome, right?!

No. It's not awesome, but I'm keeping a smile on my face and a positive attitude here.

Let me recap week 3.

At the end of week 2, I had my 9 mile run. Then I worked the weekend. Well, while at work that Saturday I felt a strange discomfort in my L great toe. So I took the rest of the weekend off. All weekend at work, I proceeded with caution. I decided to cross train and rest until I feel better. 

Monday -30 minutes spin bike, 20 minutes eliptical - 30 minutes shoulder workout. Barely any foot pain!
Tuesday - 40 minutes spin bike - 10 minutes elipitcal - 30 minutes back/bicep. No foot pain at all!
Wednesday - 5 mile run (easy pace 8:35/mile) - leg work out. New running shoes, no foot pain, I hit the ground running!
Thursday - 4 mile run with speed work (40 sec hard, 20 sec recovery) After my 12 hour shift on my feet, I had no pain. So went for a run! Felt great!
Friday - Rest Day - Another painless 12 hour shift on my feet! So happy I was healed!
Saturday - Chest/triceps. 20 minutes elliptical. 20 minutes running. (started feeling a slight twinge in my foot, but ignored it)
Sunday - 8 mile run. Felt great the entire run, until the last 0.5 miles. No pain, just didn't feel "right"

I headed to work Monday morning, and the pain had returned. In fact, I had tears welling up in my eyes as I triaged ambulance, after ambulance. I even found myself praying to God, "Please, let the patients stop coming so I can just get a 5 minute break to get off my feet."

Yeah, right. Manic Monday's in the ER provide zero respite. 

Now my left great toe hurts, and it kind of shoots up my entire foot. I will be seeing my podiatrist the Monday we get back to Tucson.

I'm very nervous that I will have yet another marathon that I'm signed up for, but cannot run. Last time it was due to work commitments, this time due to an injury.

But I'm going to take care of my body. Keep my legs strong by weight lighting. Keep my heart strong by biking, swimming, and rowing. And we shall see!

I have done a ton of research trying to find websites, articles, and blogs on "running a marathon after an injury" -- and I'm having a really hard time! So we will see how this goes.

A few rules I've made for myself going forward:
  • I will not curse at or be jealous and mad at my husband, when he goes out for a run. He's not injured, so he shouldn't fake a pity injury to make me feel better. I WILL be supportive of him. From my bike. 
  • When I do start feeling better, I will not push it. I WILL procede with caution and stay healthy.
  • I will be very mindful of my diet - making sure I'm getting adequate calcium, protein, and vitamin D to build strong bones and muscles. 
  • I will remember that life will go on if I don't run this marathon.

Friday, September 27, 2013

30 days of Gratitude

I'm stealing this idea from my sister, Lisa, as I think this is a great way to "refocus". We have so many great things to be thankful for.

This summer adventure has put light on that. From the bad moments to the best moments ever -- if I've learned anything it's that my life is very full and my husband and family are rockstars.

So here it goes!

1.  I'm most thankful for my ability to adapt. I feel like I am a very "adaptable" person. In fact, my old manager (you know, the guy that didn't let me run the marathon) once described me as a cat. And that I could be throw from any height, and will find a way to land on my feet. I've moved to new cities twice now where I knew no one, and had no idea how to get around...and I've found my way. I learned to work at 2 new hospitals this summer, with completely new charting systems, department flow, etc. Back in AZ, I was the Nursing House Supervisor, as basically a new grad, googling policies and procedures when surgeons would call me to get the OR operational during the off-hours on weekends. I've lived in a sorority, I've lived in a big house, and I've lived in a hotel room. I am proud that I can adapt, and still feel calm wherever I am placed.

2.  In this moment, the things I love most about my family are their love and foundation they gave me. I am who I am because of them! There is a sense of joy that is indescribable that I feel when I'm with my family! 

3.  Something that made me smile today -- my 41 mile bike ride. A little foot pain is forcing me to take a break from running (until it feels better, and until my podiatrist tells me I can resume marathon training). I'm going to be honest and say I sobbed uncontrollably shedded a few tears this week over the matter. It felt really empowering to get on my bike, and just ride for 2 1/2 hours today. It made me feel "me" again!

What ability are you thankful for? What do you love about your family? Or what is bringing a smile to your face today?

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

San Antonio Sightings: Roller Coasters. Botanical Gardens. Good times.

With only a few weeks left in San Antonio, and Ryan finally is in a school where he get's his weekends to enjoy -- we are taking advantage of living in a different city. I also know that I probably will never return to San Antonio again, unless I have to.

Pretty much, I will never come back unless we some day have a son or daughter who decided to join the Air Force. Then we will come to San Antonio to attend their graduation from Basic training (which is the city for Basic training in the Air Force)

Can you tell how much I love this area of Texas? 

I will post more on that later.

We had a delightful weekend! We each picked something we wanted to do. Saturday we went with Ryan's choice: Six Flags Fiesta Texas.

If you asked my family how I do at amusement parks, they would start laughing. One time our family went to Valley Fair in Minneapolis. There is a picture of me (age 6?) on the "kiddie coaster"(you know, the train that rides through a garden). I was sobbing, and squeezing my poor cousin so hard, he probably had internal bruising.

Being an adult, I know I had to hold it together this weekend. And I did. For the most part. But, I must say every time we got "strapped in", I would recite the exact same line. Word for word. By the end of the day, Ryan would recite it with me (laughing).

"Oh my god. I'm strapped in. I can't get out. I don't want to do this. I'm scared. I think I ought to get out. Please!! Oh God! It's starting! Oh God!" 

And then I would proceed to say Hail Mary's.

I'm sure the people around us thought I was completely nuts. But I don't care. It was my coping mechanism!

Anyways, I had a blast! Do you ever do something that feels mentally therapeutic? Roller coasters did it for me. It felt good to scream, laugh hysterically, feel my stomach in my throat, confuse the sky from the ground, squeeze my husbands so hard his fingers turned blue. Good times!

Being I didn't eat anything ALL DAY (except for my protein shake after our workout)-- (I was too scared to eat, in fear I'd loose it all on the rides). Afterwards, we went to a restaurant called Chuys and enjoyed margaritas and shared the Fajitas for Two (which could probably serve a family of four).

It was a good day!

Then Sunday we got to do "Abby's ideas". Drastically different, yet still very satisfying.8 mile run and church started out our day.....

Then we went to the San Antonio Botanical Gardens. The only downside to this little outing was that it put my husband into a crazy allergic reaction where he couldn't stop sneezing. His eyes and nose got all swollen, too. I was honestly worried his lungs were going to close up....I felt like a helpless nurse and wife.

Note to self....don't take husband to Botanical Gardens when he's not allowed to take his allergy medications. (It's banned by the Air Force for pilots)

The display of the season was "Savage Plants" -- featuring venus fly traps and other Carnivorous plants. So cool! I'm going to let the pictures do the talking here. 

I highly recommend this if you're ever in the area! It's only $7/person, and it's really beautiful. Don't go in the summer though, way too hot. It's right in the middle of the city, and such a peaceful sanctuary!

This was the scenery when you walked into the "Conservatory Room". This is the room that displays their "Carnivorous Plants". This room is changed every 6 months! It felt like a tropical paradise. I love plants.....

Here is a close-up of my favorite "carnivorous plant" we saw that day. The Venus Fly Traps are, obviously, amazing. However, they were very small and difficult to get a good picture of. Well, with my i-Phone. If you looked inside these "vases", you could see little bugs swimming around in it's pollen. Pretty cool! (I can't remember the name of this plant...)

The next room was the "Spice of Life" room. It had black pepper plants, cinnamon trees, pineapple trees, and the list goes on! My favorite was this Chocolate Tree. I love chocolate, so had to share this!

This aquifer went through the entire garden (which is a HUGE plot of land!) - and naturally provides water to the vegetation! 

Our last stop at the gardens was an area called "Texas Hill Country". It featured landscape of the region. It was a sanctuary of pines trees, a pond with turtles and ducks, and it just put you at peace. As we walked around and "people watched", everyone else must have felt the same peace we did. Many people were sitting at the benches pondering life, taking in the sights, and enjoying the shade and quiet. 

This was the tree that we found our solace. 

Which was followed by my husband's allergic-attack. Which was followed by me saying, "I think we have had enough vegetation for the day!" (I felt so bad!)

Awesome weekend, all in all! Two weeks to go! Actually, less than two weeks. I'm so ready to have a kitchen again. And living quarters with separate "rooms" and "doors" and "windows".