Monday, April 30, 2012

Do Not Fear the Chiropractor! aka Runners and CrossFitters with Degenerative Disc

At my appointment today I wanted to whip out my camera phone so bad and take a photo of the xrays of my back and neck.  But I felt weird doing it with the doctor standing there, so I didn't.

The one thing that I was not surprised about was exactly where the degenerative disc is located since I saw that 2 years ago on another xray with the mean doctor downtown.  Thats all he focused on and I guess rightfully so since I had gone in for extreme lower back pain, but like I said he was mean and basically told me to quit running right then and there.

Right.  Second opinion was next.  Anyway back on track...

What a chiropractor will do is show you the whole kit and kaboodle.  Prior to taking xrays they did this other thing, kinda like a bone scan I guess, where they roll this thing up and down your back and it picks up any 'negatives' or 'anomolies' in your spine and assign a number/color to it.  Also not surprised that there was a lot of red bars towards my lower back.

However there were some red bars a bit higher up and even so far up as in my neck.  The x rays showed the same thing; in the neck I mean.
Not my neck x ray, however it shows what a bone spur looks like, and I do have 2 of them (small).  Mine are 1 at the top  of the five vertebrae that you see, and then at the bottom.  I also have a narrowing of the disk in the exact same place as the photo.
Additionally my neck is definitely off kilter and needs adjusting as well.  Just because I haven't had any pain from it, doesn't mean that I won't at some point if anything jarring occurs to set it all in motion.

So.  On to my back issue; again I don't have a picture of my x ray, but here is a photo to give you an idea of what disc degeneration is (and we ALL have it occurring; just takes something trivial or non-trivial to make it become a nuisance).

Mine is probably more like the 2nd one, probably not THAT bad, but bad enough to where it is pinching the sciatic.  What we are trying to avoid is the one that says Degenerative disc, since that puppy looks almost gone bye bye!
Here is another photo giving you an idea of the inflammation of the nerve ending
I wasn't quit sure what to expect, but after going over all the x rays I went in for another 10 min of e-Stim, then about 10 minutes of massage.  I still have one knot of muscle that is (was) EXTREMELY sensitive and it hurt like hell whenever she would attempt to rub it out.  She did what she could without me coming off the table, then it was time to wait for Dr. Batterton and my first 'adjustment'.

Initially Dr. Miller had gone over my x rays, so I thought she was going to be doing the adjustments but I was happy when Dr. Batterton came and got me.  At first she just used this tool; best way to describe its like a nail gun or an air gun, and when pressed to the skin where it needs to go and 'pulling the trigger' it feels like pressure but not to where you hear anything cracking; more just like its moving whatever it needs to move tiny tiny teensy movements.  She worked on my lower back and then my neck with this contraption.

Then she placed her hands along a certain area in my lower back, told me to take a deeeep breath, breathe out and when I did that, she pushed and I heard the crack.  Then she did it again.  It doesn't really hurt, but what little pain there was, was instananeous and quickly was gone.

Once she was done with that, she had me lay on one side, one leg straight, the other bent, then did something weird with one arm (felt like a pretzel), then I honestly dont remember what she did because a) I had my eyes closed and b) it was over before I knew what she had done.  All I heard was a crackle/pop, felt it crackle/pop and she was telling me to roll over to the other side.  :/


Then it was over.  For today....I go back Wednesday for another adjustment.

As I am writing this, I actually feel tons better.  There is some residual soreness in my SI joint, hindering me a bit, but nothing compared to the last couple of weeks, and the past couple of days.


So remember on Friday after my initial 'treatment' how great I was feeling? Well by Saturday morning I wasn't quite as elated.  There was some discomfort still, not sure why I thought I was miraculously cured, but I already knew I wasn't going to be running for a few days.  Looks like its going to be a bit longer than that....anyway, I hopped on the bike and rode 17 miles and was extreeeeeeeeeeeemely careful on a couple of the roads leading me to the bike paths that are very uneven and bumpy to raise my booty up to avoid any unnecessary jarring.

I stopped a few times during the 17 miles to get off the bike and just stretch a bit and really I felt 'ok'.  Not great, but ok.

After coming home, I iced etc., and while I did experience some returning pain  throughout the day, it wasn't horrible, but it did dampen my spirits...
Sad Face
Sunday morning my plan was to get up feeling much better and head to Buffalo Bayou to do 5 miles.  And when I say 'do' I mean [walk].


Well when I got up, the pain was definitely back and I just iced and stretched until it felt a bit better, then headed out.  I haven't run the bayou in so long, and while I was anxious to experience all the new renovations to the path etc., I was not really looking forward to walking the 5 miles.

Again I stopped multiple times along the way to throw the legs up to stretch them which seemed to help as I went along, I could feel the sciatic tensing up (shortening), and it did seem to help.

 I don't know...but by Sunday afternoon I was in so much pain it was difficult to sit, lay or do anything.  However in my attempt to feel better, I was putting some biofreeze on my back and while doing it I was concentrating on really pushing into the skin; like giving myself a massage.  As best as I could that is.  What I noticed was the harder I pushed and the longer I went, the time span of it hurting would decrease.

Ah.  The massaging was working so I kept at it off and on until I went to bed and when I woke up this morning there was no more of the intense pain I had had yesterday afternoon.

So after all of that, and then today at the chiropractor, I am seriously taking the next few days COMPLETELY off.  Even though I feel so much better, I need to make this residual crap gone, and I figure since I haven't exactly been resting and really tending to this issue, I should at least just give myself a break for the next couple of days.

Killing The Fat Man - Episode 5

I will get a post up about my activity this past weekend AFTER I go to the chiropractor today for my first 'adjustment', or as some call it: 'manipulation'.

Either way I hope it renders great results!

Until then, enjoy episode 5!

Note:  I have these labeled, so for anyone needing the previous episodes, just click on the label name and it will bring them all up.  

Easy peasy lemon squeezy.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Glory Glory Glorious!

Today was my appointment to meet the doctors over at Batterton Chiropractic Clinic.

I woke up this morning SO excited!  

Last night I did indeed go to the gym, did only 30 min on the elliptical, 2000m row, then about an hour on the weights (both free and not-free).  :O)

When I got home, I iced off and on all night, but as the night wore on I started to have this 'pain' in my ass.  Like in my left ass (same side as DC).  It felt like a really really pulled muscle; or a bad sciatic strain.

By the time I went to bed I had sat cross legged on the floor long enough and did enough child pose's to help stretch it out enough to where I slept just fine.

This morning I immediately stretched, but the pain in my back had literally become the pain in my ass.


I came in to work for a couple of hours then headed over to my appointment, filled out the new patient forms and waited.

The patient patient.

First off the head doc, and owner, female came in to consult, which we went over everything in my history, to my activity level, what my current status was and on and on and on.

Thankfully she is a runner, both doctors there are (both female btw), and one even does CrossFit.  A lot of athletes go there, runners, cyclists, and triathletes, so I felt like I was in good hands.  I did not know any of this prior to making the appointment, but I am not surprised given its location.

After all of that, I went for Xrays and some spine rolly thingee pictures (which we will go over on Monday), then I went on to some mobility exercises to determine any issues and range of motion from my next down to my feet.

Then came the best part!!!

eStim and ice first!

I didn't have the little thingees on shoulder just on my lower and mid-back.
Then they put this huge ice pack that pretty much covered all of me on top of me and started the machine.
It was awesome!  Like little elves tap dancing all over me.

After 10 minutes of eStim and ice, the massage therapist came back in, un-did everything, and then lotioned me all up and began what was initially very painful on the left side.  She could feel 2 very big knots which were just muscles all bundled up from the inflammation and what-not.  I thought I was going to come up off that table at first.  She would go as much as she could, or rather however much pain I could take, which I sucked it up because I wanted her to really get in there.  She would move to the other side ever so often to give me a break before starting back in.

She said by the time she was done, one of the knots was basically gone and good Lord I could FEEL the difference immediately, just lying there!

And when I went to get up off the table and walk?  Oh goodness....soooooooooooooooo much better!

I seriously could not believe the difference!

I have to keep icing as much as possible, even giving me something I can use at work, take it like I have been the next couple of days to let the inflammation continue to work itself out, then on Monday we are going to go over all my xrays and what-not, then they will do an official 'adjustment'.

Thank goodness for insurance!  Prescribed massages for a co-pay?  My insurance only approved me for 20 visits in a year, but hopefully going once a month after getting 'fixed' will be just fine to 'keep me in line'!

I should be back to running and CrossFit on Monday!!!!

Whoop! Whoop!

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Killing The Fat Man - Episode 4

Making progress with my own battle!  Seems that resting yesterday, lots of icing, and lots of fish oil may have helped.  Gonna hit the gym today for some cardio and some weights. 

Chiro appointment tomorrow morning!

I'd like to say I am optimistic about running on Saturday, but I just can't be too sure of that.  If I do, it won't be for any significant distance, but at least it will be running!

Now the next installment for CrossFit's Killing the Fat Man series!!

If you watch him in the beginning when he is attempting double unders, he does the same thing I did (and what most people do when learning) and that is the HEAVY landing over and over and over because at that point you aren't able to string several together and be smooth about it.  For whatever reason a person feels like without that heavy landing you just aren't going to be able to do it when it actually hinders the process because at that point, you're sunk and you have to start over.

This is what did my back in; all the jarring I did that day with a total of 15 minutes of attempting double unders.  Was suicide for my back.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Snap. Crackle. Pop.

I broke down yesterday after a lot of research and speaking with a few people and made an appointment with a chiropractor for this coming Friday.

They could have taken me today, but honestly the thought of someone touching me in any way makes me want to cry.  I am a huge baby and I know its going to hurt.

The lady I spoke with told me there would be x-rays of course, even though I have had those before and know exactly what and where the issue is and then they would do a 'treatment' or some term like that. 

Which basically means they are going to make me lie down on a table and push and 'manipulate' things and its going to hurt like hell.

This morning when I got up, obviously it still hurts, and I went straight into the living room and proceeded to do my own PT that I learned from the last time I had rehab with an actual physical therapist.  

Yesterday in my research I saw that 'downward dog' may help, but I couldn't even get into that position to save my life (we also do this in CF during stretch time at the beginning of a session).  This morning after my usual positions, which include childs pose (which actually feels really really good AND helps you go to the bathroom btw), I attempted down-dog and my range of mobility before it hurt was a bit better than it was last night.

I have decided to skip the gym altogether this evening, and just go home and relax.  I will probably take a walk along the bayou which is roughly a 2.5 jaunt  if I make the single loop there close to home.

My hope is that by the time I get to the chiro on Friday that more of the pain and inflammation has subsided so that its not quite so painful.

If this particular chiro does not administer cortisone (I know most don't), then I am going to ask him for a referral to someone close by that can.  I have 2 events mid-May and I would like to still be able to do them!  

As much as I fear needles, at this point I don't care.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Walk Before You Run

Winston Churchill once said: Personally I am always ready to learn, although I do not always like being taught.

I totally get that.

The first time I remember being injured was in 2007, when I developed a severe case of 'runners knee' and had to be banished to the elliptical early in the training season for the 2008 Houston Marathon.  If I remember correctly it was 6-8 weeks and I ended up having to drop to the half marathon due to missing too much training time.  I was still a new runner/marathoner and didn't have the base at all to just pick up and keep going.

Then in 2009, late Spring I ended up with a stress fracture (left tibia) and was out for a couple of months.  During this time is when I picked up cycling and swimming.  By mid-Summer I was back to running and was training for my first duathlon and triathlon.

Then in late Summer 2010 while training for my first Chicago was when the degenerative disc situation first reared its ugly head.  I continued to train through (thankfully it didn't hurt to run, just hurt to do anything else pretty much!).  I went to physical therapy for 6 weeks, learned my limitations and within a short period of time, I was good as new.  

Or as good as new that I would ever be again with my 'disease'.

For 2 years I have known those limitations, yet sometimes pushing the envelope just wee bit further than I should sometimes, but always knowing when to pull back on the reins.  

Last week I did not do that and for that I am paying the price.  

Yesterday after the gym, I decided to reeeeeally take it easy, which meant being horizontal pretty much the whole day (I had the day off from work).  I feel awful whenever I am like that (lazy) but I knew I needed to just suck it up and be a slug for one day.

I also started back on glucosomine yesterday (triple strength).  I should be taking it all the time, but obviously I quit somewhere along the way.

This morning when I woke up I was nervous about how it was going to feel getting out of bed.  Yesterday the pain was so bad it made me nauseous and I broke out in a sweat.

Today I was actually able to walk with minimal pain as soon as I exited my hibernation cave.  This is a good sign.

Now I just have to keep my patience intact and not do anything to alter the healing process.  

My plans at least through Friday are the same as they have been:  elliptical, rowing, and some weights (anything that doesn't require me to strain the lower back).  I don't even know that I will attempt running unless its 2-3 days past the day the pain is actually non-existent.

CrossFit will be on hold as well until I think the danger has passed for a relapse.

Last Tuesday was the last day since I have CrossFit and its killing me!  I haven't run since Thursday and thats killing me too!!

Patience is a virtue.

But its also a bitch.

Here is a video of a guy who discovered CrossFit to help with his substance abuse addiction.

It is awesome.  And I can so relate.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Killing The Fat Man - Episode 3

As far as Killing the Injury (my own struggle), yesterday I went to the gym and did 40 min on the elliptical, then hit some weights for 30 minutes.  Everything was fine and dandy until I thought it was OK to pick up and swing a 25lb kettlebell.  Womp womp.

Today I am still in pain when standing or walking but still...I hit the gym, did 1 hour 10 min on the elliptical (it does make it feel better).

Then I hit the rower and alternated 500m each with a .25 mile distance on the elliptical x 4 (for those mathematically challenged, thats 2000m rowed and 1 mile on the elliptical). 

Ugh.  Injury sucks but at least I can still stay active.  Just making sure I am x'ing out any and all unnecessary carbs during this time, including limiting vegetables and fruits.  Mostly fruit though.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Know When to Say When

Welp.  I guess my little lower back flare up is a bit worse than I originally thought.

I think the last time I wrote about it was last Wednesday, can't remember, but on Thursday, I did go to the gym and run 6 miles on the treadmill and everything was fine.

Friday morning since I was off work, it was such a nice morning that I set out on the bike and clocked 24 miles riding the Heights Bike Trail into downtown, back and then went the bike trail along White Oak until I had to turn around due to the fact they aren't through with it past a certain point (which is 6 miles from my house).

Then Friday night I noticed that it wasn't hurting when sitting down, but rather when I was upright which goes against all previous flare ups.  Generally walking and running made it feel better.  Not now.  I had trouble walking out of the restaurant last night, but really wasn't too concerned about it.

This morning when the alarm went off I originally just turned it off and went back to bed and thought since it was going to be so cool and nice today that I could run on my own instead of running with Kenyan Way.  So when I did get up and out the door, I knew right away that there would be no running today, and probably for a few days (hopefully not longer than that).  

The pain was just excruciating in my lower left back and I knew that it would be more dumb than dumb to even try past the few feet that I went.

I came inside, grabbed my backpack and took off for the gym.

I went at warp speed on the elliptical for 1 hour and 10 min and it felt so much better doing that!  No impact, no impact, no impact!  Then I got on the rower; did 1000m as fast as I could and then did about another 30 minutes of weights.

My range of motion forward is much better; I can lift the leg much better and I guess the best part that the recent flare up hasn't been so bad that I have numbness in my foot from it.

Its the little things.

So at least for now, no running and no jumping rope until its better.  I honestly think it might have been all those attempts at double unders that might have done me in.  When attempting double unders I tend to really pound into the floor whereas with single unders I am smoooooth as buttah.

Oh well, whatever it was, its done and now I just need to recooperate.  I will keep at the elliptical, rower and weights.  If by Monday things feel better I will probably go back to CrossFit and do whatever parts of the WOD each day that I can.  If there is any running involved, I will do the rower and with double unders, I will just have to have one of the coaches give me an alternative.

ps: going on day 14 with no Diet Coke.  I actually bought a can of it yesterday for whatever reason, took a sip or two of it, and poured it out.  Just tasted funky and me no likey funky.  :O)

pss: even when injured its ok to work out, just alter it to be certain you don't further injure yourself.  so many people I know use injury as a reason to take time off or become complacent.  and become fat.  I have no plans to sit on my laurels whenever my running is halted or whatever.  I will not undo all the work I have done with running, CrossFit, biking and what-not just because of a little hiccup.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Reading Rainbow

I had read this when it was first released...


Then came this one...and I bought it as soon as it was available for my Kindle...I was about 1/4 of the way through it I guess when The Hunger Games trilogy took over my life....
So my Sex and the City prequel(s) just had to wait...I didn't expect to get so sucked into The Hunger Games et al ...

Read in a matter of days...

Read in a matter of weeks...

This one took me a bit longer ... was harder for me to follow/be interested in ALL of it...I sped-read through parts :)
Then the movie came out...and then I finally got around to picking back up with Summer In the City (which was AWESOME if you are an SATC fan)...I just finished it on Wednesday...

So now I am fiiiiiiiiinally embarking on my next book!

No bigger Meb fan than me!!!
I've read 2 chapters already...and I am hooked...

And then next in my list???

I bought this one for my Kindle a few months ago, but its been waiting for me to finish with everything else first...

I thought about starting the series that is so hot right now:  Fifty Shades of Grey

I've heard A LOT about this series, and yes I know its very sex driven, bordering on super-raunchy (heavily S&M material), but with all the press and hoop-la over it (plus my friends all say you can't put it down), I had to get it for my Kindle!!!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Brown Chicken Brown Cow Rice

No one says it better than Mark Sisson over at Mark's Daily Apple.

It's been a couple of weeks ago, that something on my Facebook sparked a bit of back and forth commenting re: paleo/no grains thing...I don't recall what I wrote, or who said this but it was something along the lines of 'I can't fathom brown rice ever being bad for a person'

Something to that effect.

Well here is what I have to say to that.

This past Sunday I tried my hand at making chicken curry (which turned out SOOOO good by the way; next time I make it I will post the pictures and recipe I used).

I have been trying to rid my house of any and all grain/non-Paleo items and I had one of those boil-in-bag things of brown rice and I thought "oh I will just use that with the curry, and thats one less stupid grain in my house".

So that's what I did.

I had a cup of it with my chicken/veggie curry that evening.

Within an hour or so, I felt like crap and I looked about 4 months pregnant.
The next morning when I woke up, I looked puffy.

But I took the leftovers to work.
But I left early due to fractured toe, so the leftovers stayed at work.
By Monday evening, I felt better, but still seemed 'puffy'.

Tuesday I had my leftover brown rice and curry.
And guess who was 'pregnant' and feeling like crap within hours?

This girl.

Wait, there's more.

Since eating said oh its so good for you brown rice, I have had the strangest cravings for all things floury/carby.
Yesterday I gave in and had a muffin.
This morning I had a tortilla.

And guess who looks and FEELS like crap?

This girl.

This shit stops right here and now.  I hate feeling lethargic and just crappy.
It also makes me feel 'depressed'.

I don't know if anyone else out there has ever had that reaction to grains, but I have noticed a pattern.

Because I have some other responsibilities this week on my plate, I was unprepared with food coming to work today and I struggle at the cafeteria (hence the tortilla this morning; at least I told them to leave off the potatoes and only had egg and sausage), I marched myself right over to Whole Foods to get sustanence for the rest of the day!

Some steamed garlic and spinach, a few broccoli flowerets, and a big turkey meatball (no gluten fillers added) that was wrapped in cabbage leaves and steamed to perfection.  Thankfully I have fish and grassfed beef thawing at home for meals for the next few days.  Plus I have the next 4 days off, so I can get a handle on this nonsense.  Stupid, stupid brown fucking rice.  :O)

So basically my point is...just like I pointed out on Facebook that evening, everyone is different.

I don't know, maybe brown rice is good for you. 

But science points otherwise, and for this girl, brown rice is the devil!

So all you grain loving, cereal eating, potato experts out there, go ahead and eat what you will.  But don't tell me what's good for me and not good for me.

I have the mind/body connection thing worked out and I know what makes me and what breaks me.

That is all.

Carry on.

Killing the Fat Man - Episode 2

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Killing The Fat Man - Episode 1

I am loving this series with Gary, a fat dude, who eats badly and never exercises embarks on the CrossFit journey.

This is week 1.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Toe'ing The CrossFit Line :O)

Obviously no running today.  Toe feels a teensy bit better...probably try to run tomorrow to see what is what...

So CrossFit it is!

Unfortunately today I battled a lot of pain in my back (its flared up again), and even though I saw the WOD and its one I would have probably usually skipped (due in part to the fact that I either can't do it at all, or I suck at it)...

But off I went like the good little girl that I am!  I would do what I could with what I had.  Its the CrossFit way.  :)

Warm Up:
3x ME (max effort) HSPUs (handstand pushups)
Rest 2 minutes btw attempts
kipping is allowed but no plates or ab-mat!

I am not able to do handstands even up against the wall because I have the propensity to want to throw my left leg up last and thats my bad side for my disc issue and it just hurts me every time.  So instead I assisted some of the new girls with theirs.  Newbies tend to be a bit scared to do them like they are going to fall over or onto their head.  So I felt good having been some help! I am able to do headstands since I dont have to kick my legs up as hard, but rather just slowly push them up and against the wall.  Still working the core just not as much as a handstand.

3 Rounds (in any order; I started with the Push Jerks, then PA's then DU's)

100 DUs (no singles allowed today.  If you couldnt do DU's, then you tried to do as many as you could for 5 min, each round btw!) 

The great thing about being 'forced' to do DU's is that it made me do much better at them!  I was actually able to do 3 in a row!  I would then get excited and mess up!  Oh well...its a process.  Additionally the jumping rope didnt bother my toe as I was making sure to land on the balls of my feet which is proper anyway and staying off my toes.
20 Pistols (10L/10R)(these are very hard for me to do, especially on the left side with my back since thats the side with my degenerative disk, but I did them, just not very low, but not holding on and going as low as I could was what we were told, and I did it)

10 Push Jerks (155/105#)  I originally racked my bar for a total weight of 45lbs and while J was telling me how to do the move, he was like 'put more weight on there.  You lifted that waaaay too easily.  Its supposed to be hard.'  So I added on 10 more lbs and went at it.  And I did it for all 3 rounds and I didn't die.  :O)

For time!
I actually didn't post a time.  By the time I got to the 3rd round of DU's I was just done.  I did them for 3 min and just tossed it in.  I picked up the bar and did 2 additional Push Jerks and called it a day.  My back was killing me, my toe was starting to hurt more and it was time to stop.  When I stopped I was at 23min, and I was a hot, sweaty mess.

I am taking tomorrow off from CrossFit altogether and going to run on the treadmill.  If the toe bothers me, then I will do a combo of elliptical, cycling and rowing totaling one hour.

You Are What You Eat (aka You Can Run But the Fat Won't Hide)

Remember when I wrote this?

Well I was reminded of this again just last night while at CrossFit.

Amber and I were cooling down on the rowers and one of the guys was talking to us and somehow he made mention of his mid-section and that he still had 'this' because of how he ate, Amber said her too, but because of the fact she likes to drink...(which um both of you are cuckoo because you are both in amazing shape, but I get that its personal and individual how we as athletes view our own bodies compared to what others see)...

So it got me to thinking about something else that I noticed over the weekend while at Kenyan Way.

There is a person that recently started showing up once or twice at KW again, who had taken an extended amount of time off due to injury and then once they were healed, they didn't seem to be running as much and of course was a poor eater to begin with (their food choices I am sure can be counted on 2 hands:  BW3's, Whataburger, Chilis, Freebirds, peanut butter and jelly and Mexican food)  And always the same thing at each place.  ALL poor choices.

During their time off I read that they gained 25lbs or so.  I initially found that hard to believe until I saw them; first from a distance and then up close.

Yep, they sure did and it wasn't muscle either.  Its especially noticable in their face, arms and mid-section.  I think the most jarring part of those 3 is how puffy this persons face is and it honestly just makes them look like a completely different person than I use to know.

I also read that this person is trying to shed the weight, to get back to a better 'racing' weight.  I read this over a month ago I guess it was and when I saw them this past Saturday, well whatever they are attempting to do isn't working.

And because I know this person, I know that their mindset is that exercise (running) and eating a bit more concious is going to do it.

Their idea, like so many people, is that if they cut out calories, run and not alter their overall way of eating that that is going to work.

It might for a bit...but 25lbs is a lot to lose.  And without making a significant change in your way of eating, its just not going to be a good result.  This has been my experience.  Several times. 

Now that I am seeing such dramatic results, I won't ever forget it.

If they continue to eat out as much as I know they do, eat processed food, and limit vegetables to corn, green and pinto beans, well then its going to be a long haul for anyone. 

You just cannot exercise yourself out of a bad diet.
You just can't.

If it was a few lbs, I would say sure...easy enough I suppose, but 25?  That's a lot for anyone.  Something drastic is going to have to change.

Something that can be maintained.  And by something, I mean a way of life/eating change.

I wish that I could bottle up my experience(s) for everyone because everywhere I look I see people that are struggling, are trying stupid things and just trying to starve themselves for whatever gain and then will be soon enough before they are right back where they started.

As a runner you cut too many calories (and nutrients) then you cannot perform.  Changing WHAT you eat is key.

Same is true for any sport.  Even CrossFitting.

This morning I was reminded again at the progress of changing the way I eat, the way I look at food, my output...and coupled with variable physical activities, has made on my body.

My pants are baggy again.  My shirts fit better.
People say 'are you losing weight?'  I walk around naked a lot.  Even in front of mirrors.  :O)

So forth and so on.

I kinda feel bad for this person I was talking about above.  They are extremely critical of themselves to begin with; very emotional...It would seem most of their life they have made not so great choices in many areas of their life, and the latest choices in the past year, well...seem to have taken its toll on them physically.

Honestly, I almost did not recognize them the first time and even just on Saturday as they passed me I was like WTF?  Man...and that's when I felt sorry for them. 

They looked completely miserable. 

At one time I tried to 'help' but to no avail.  They eat what they eat, and resort to corn, green beans, spagetti, pbj and try to cut calories to lose and just run.  It's not going to work long term, if at all. 

If I could I would send them a message, but I won't since I know the outcome of that. 

Oh well, my message is to anyone reading I guess...

If you are unhappy with your life, your achievements, the way you feel, the way you look...what you eat has everything to do with it.

My diet (as a noun, not a verb), is vast.  I try anything and everything and my palate appreciates so many foods that are so good.  And so good for you.  My cooking skills are so much more rich for it as well.

I am never deprived.  Never.  It is so wonderful. 

Life and eating can be one huge roller coaster...One that thankfully I have gotten off of;

My life in general, hasn't been this full in years, and I believe that the way I treat my body once I learned to love me, and get over all the bad in my life, did I become the happy person I am today.

My body is happier.  My mind is happier.  My relationship(s) is happier.  Everything is happier.

My 'happy' is loud!

Monday, April 16, 2012

Rainy Days and Mondays

So after my visit to the doctor, I came home and caught the last hour of the Boston Marathon on Universal Sports (so glad I have that channel).

I had a lot of friends running it and they all were slower than they normally would have been; some muuuuch slower than they normally would have been thanks to the heat and the direct sun beating down on them to make it even worse.

Great job everyone!

I hit up CrossFit for the 6pm class and only had to slightly modify it thanks to the rain they changed the WOD, which was to be a lot of sprints followed by a lot of rowing.

Warmup:  1000m row


50 air squats
50 butterfly sit ups
50 push ups (I had to modify to use my knees since I couldnt get up on my toe(s) which I loathe!)
50 Double Unders (200 singles if not able to do DU's)  (I had to modify and to 50 step ups on the box)  Waaaaaaaaaaaahh!  I love my jump roping!

Repeat all 4 again
For time!

 I cooled down with a 500m row and 10 toes to bar (I can do a couple at a time now, but have to drop from the rack to rest a few seconds and reset)

Getting stronger!!

First CrossFit Injury (Self Inflicted Of Course)

Sunday afternoon when I went to open gym for CrossFit, the day before the owner had come in and cleaned up and stacked everything all nice and neat including the boxes we use for box jumps AND for ease of us short people to use to get into the bands on the pull up racks.

Since I wanted to work some pull ups with bands first, I needed a box and was trying to get one off the top but they are steel and heavy.  J helped me get it off and I was carrying it over to the rack and when I went to set it down, I didnt really realize there were steel bars flush along the bottom that connected the 4 corners.

Since it was heavy, as I was about to set it down, I just kinda dropped it and it landed right on my big toe.

The pain was excruciating but I didnt think much about it until a few hours later when I went to return some movies and the sharp pains shooting up my foot made me a bit nervous but it subsided.

This morning when I woke up, I immediately surveyed the damage and I had a swollen purple/black toe.

It didn't really hurt so much to walk unless I put regular pressure on it but if I tried to touch it or move it, obviously it was very sore. 

Can't really get a sense of how bruised it really is with a camera shot...

And then the back side.  Its just bruised along the bottom
After being at work for a couple of hours, icing it under my desk I finally decided to go have it x-rayed to see if it was in fact broken.

There is a teensy tiny fracture in there, but nothing major thank goodness.
They taped it up, told me to keep it elevated, take ibuprofen for pain if necessary and thats it.  I knew they wouldn't do anything more but I wanted to know.

They also told me no running, no CrossFit and no high heels for a few days.

Yeah.  Right.

I will lay off the running for a couple of days but no way you are keeping me from CrossFit and high heels.  :O)

Sunday, April 15, 2012

More, More, More...How Do You Like It? More, More, More

The last long run with Kenyan Way (Spring session) was today, with the Summer session starting in a couple of weeks.

I really didn't know how much I was going to do, but ended up just doing 8 with KW.  For some reason when I got the 2nd water stop I wasn't at 4 miles yet, so I ran down South, or was it North, until my Garmin beeped for 4 miles then turned back.

Hot and humid was the same name of the game this morning, but at least there was a strong wind (never a headwind though) that kept it reasonably OK temperature wise I suppose. 

I will more than likely keep my Saturday runs at 8-10 miles, more like 8 from here until time to train for my half marathons (since I am cancelling the one I had coming up in June).  If I hadn't been signed up for Austin this weekend, I doubt I would have kept running those 10milers on the weekends like I have been.

I am completely enjoying all my other physical activities, and the balance is just right.  It took me a bit to figure it out, how to balance it all and not be freaking out about not running enough, but now I can relax even more which has been my goal all along.  I have some duathlons coming up, possibly a triathlon or two, and I just can't get enough CrossFit.  

I love how it makes me feel, the things I can do that I have never been able to do, nor thought I could, and most importantly how my body is reacting to it.

I caught a glimpse of myself in a store window while running our route yesterday and yeah, I'm pretty darn golden with what I saw.  Now to improve upon it...  :O)

So after my run, stopping to get my iced coffee (still no Diet Coke!), came home, showered, put on fresh clothes and hit up CF for the 9am session.

I had to take a picture of the WOD because there was no way I was going to remember the WOD and it wasn't posted on the website. 

Had it been I am not sure I would have shown up for the beating I saw on the board when I got there....

Really?  Ugh.  Really.
Thankfully when its a 'buddy WOD' you and another person SPLIT the workout.  So the coach suggested that to make it 'easier' we each run 400 to start (that = 800m) then split up the rest into what would = 6 rounds, then run the final 800 in the 6th round.

While it did make it more 'bearable' it was brutal and I was like wtf am I doing here after a long run?  And thinking back we should have just run out mile at the beginning and be done with it, because after all the rest running another 400m each was brutality.

I know that seems weird, but seriously, you try it :) 

Total time:  29:36 
Anytime a WOD takes over 20 min to complete, you know its an ass kicker.  Good grief I hope I don't see this one again for quite some time!


After that, it was on to Skyline CrossFit to watch 2 of our coaches and 2 of our peers do a BRUTAL CrossFit competition...

This was 2 of our coaches after the 3rd round.  The bodies did indeed hit the floor.  Good grief there were some BEASTS at that competition.  Amazing to watch!

Today they opened the gym for what they call 'open gym' where you can go and just do whatever.  There is a suggested WOD, or you just do one of your liking or practice whatever skill you want to work on.

I practiced a bit of everything but mostly just worked on my kipping (with no band of course).  The kipping (the swing) is muy importante to even begin to do a kipping pull up.  Without a proper kipping, its just not going to happen.

We were there an hour and a half, before I had to leave for food.  I was worn the F out.  Practiced double unders, snatches, kipping, and pull ups (of course I still need a band on the pull ups, but pull ups always are a benefit).  Threw in some butterfly squats, some burpees, and then thought it was a good idea to carry a 25lb plate around the block (300m).  Um.  Doh.  That shit is hard and you can't rest it on your head and if you stop to rest you have to get into a full squat and keep holding the plate.

After that I was donezo.

Can't wait to see what tomorrow brings!!!

Friday, April 13, 2012

The #1 Great Thing About Not Having a Plan

Is that a person (me) can decide at the last minute (today) that while I did indeed pay for this race (a year ago to be honest), and up until now, did plan to go and complete the 10 miles along with 2 of my friends (who also signed up a year ago, but have not trained, and 1 dropped out already)...

I wasn't even upset that it was going to be hotter than hell.  I was going to run/walk the thing, get my medal, hear some awesome music and drink some beer.

It was the reason last night I took the day off, went to a lovely dinner.
It was the reason I was either going to CrossFit or go running on a Friday since I wasn't going to run with KW on Saturday for a change (to rest up for Sunday of course).

But now heavy thunderstorms are predicted for race morning, with high winds and possible hail.

So not having a plan?  Yeah.  Totally works in my favor, because I can, at any time, change my mind.

Which I am doing.  Right now.

Yeah it might not rain.  But then again it might.
And guess who doesn't want to run in the rain when I don't freaking have to?

This girl.


Instead of going to Austin to run a 10 mile race that I wasn't even all that jazzed about (now). (I was a year ago obviously), I am going to still run this evening AND run with Kenyan Way tomorrow too.  And I will run 10 miles anyway.  More if I want to.  Less if I want to too.  In my own city.  And not spend a fortune on gas.  And ... and ... and ...

Then I will go to CrossFit afterwards.  Because I love CrossFit.

CrossFit makes me so happy.  CrossFit makes me much happier than running.

But a place in my life for both...and cycling... Can't forget cycling and swimming!!!

And everybody lives happily ever after.


No Regrets? Hell to The Yes I Have Regrets!

I'm sure at some point you've been asked, "What's your biggest regret?" If you're like 90% of people I know, you respond with the typical, "I have no regrets/everything happens for a reason/every mistake has made me who I am today."  Holy bullshit.

If you claim to live a life with no regrets, you are probably in denial, or you haven't fully lived, loved, or taken any chances. You can't tell me you don't regret hurting someone at some point, or not taking a kick ass job when you had the chance, or letting someone you love walk out of your life. To me, regret doesn't mean sitting around and obsessing about what could've or should've been; rather, it's a realization of "I f***ed up." You recognize it, learn from it, grow, and move on. In my opinion, regret is what drives some of us to evolve into better people.

I recently read this article, in which the author, a palliative care nurse, outlines the top regrets expressed by her patients in their final stage of life.

The reasons were similar in that each directly addressed the happiness of the individual. There was no mention of money or material wealth (in fact, many regret working so much); instead, the responses dealt with emotional happiness and the fostering of quality relationships.  The article really made me think: if I found out I had only weeks to live, what would be my biggest regret(s)?

Framing that earlier question about regret within the context of  your final days will likely change the views of all my "No regrets, bitches!!!" friends.

I'm a person who believes time is precious and shouldn't be wasted. I fill my days with activities (mostly work though) but I'm beginning to realize it's not just about the quantity of things I accomplish each day, but the quality of them, as well as the quality of people I choose to share my life with.  And that leads me to my biggest regret: I wish I would've quit more.

You heard me.

I wish I were more of a quitter. I can't tell you the number of times I've stuck with a situation or relationship that is creating drama and pain simply because walking away would be "quitting", aka an admission of failure.  This was the most true with the fiasco that occurred from 2007 to 2011(ish).  I told many many people during that time why I didn't/couldn't just walk away, even telling him at some point, it was because I wanted to 'win'.  Ugh.  Now he (at least up till now) is my biggest regret and mistake.

And boy how I did indeed learn from it.

I look around at people I know and realize that I'm not alone in my behavior.

There seems to be an ever growing abundance of martyrs and individuals willing to go down with the metaphorical ship because damn it, quitting is for losers!

Many times we make excuses for our misery.  We justify that many people have it worse than we do, and I don't disagree; I'm simply asking, is "not terrible" acceptable? 

I'll even go so far as to suggest that relationships and experiences filled with mediocrity and lack of fulfillment can be just as detrimental to your happiness as those which are outwardly negative.  Look at your job.  Your partner.  Your friends. Your neighborhood. 

Is there a reason to stay?  Or maybe, just maybe, are there things in  your life you need to quit?

Please don't take this as me telling you to give up on everything in your life that isn't perfect. 

It's not an implication that problems can't be resolved or that life doesn't have its ups and downs.  But let's face it: when something has run its course, you know it.

Therefore, maybe what we perceive as quitting isn't really quitting at all; it's acceptance. It's finally opening your eyes and acknowledging that you're dragging around dead weight that serves no purpose. 

So many of you (myself included) have eliminated the toxicity from your food supply, but what about from other areas of your life?

If you are focused in on the quality of your nutrition, why are you not so eager to demand quality from all of the other elements that comprise your day?

Simply put, if you are aware of things in your life that serve little value, you should cut them loose and reclaim every precious moment they've been stealing. 

Spend it with the people you love, doing the things that matter.

So friends, I give you permission to quit that which does not add value to your life.  

I hope that someday, you look back and celebrate your risks, forgive your mistakes, and come to the conclusion that your positive experiences far outweigh any regrets.