Finally Back to Pounding Pavement… Errrr, Synthetic Track

I barely slept last night. I tossed and turned all night, fearing I would oversleep. When my alarm went off at 4:45am, I was already staring at the ceiling waiting for it. I got up, put on some rain-proof clothes, and took Chip for a walk in what was supposed to be an absolute deluge. Except it was clearly done raining for the time being. I poured a cup of coffee and ate an Untapped Maple Waffle as I drove in the dark, now kinda raining outside. I pulled up to Harry Downes Field – the official Brookline High School athletic fields – and parked just across the street in total darkness. I walked through the gate, put down my water bottle, and – for the first time in 16+ weeks – I turned on my running watch and started going.

20180918_060712That’s right, today is the day I was allowed to start running! And I wasted NO time! Actually, I knew I had to go early because after 1pm-ish, the fields/track are for high school sports teams only.  And even though meteorologists (and my friends) kept warning about the remnants of Hurricane Florence causing a monsoon this morning, I got in my 20-minute workout without a drop of rain…just a whole lot of humidity and sweat.

I’m following a strict return-to-running plan that Coach Jack recommended and my orthopedic doctor approved. Today’s workout was:

  • 3-minute warmup (power walking)
  • 30 seconds of running
  • 30 seconds of walking
  • Repeat run/walk intervals 17 times for a total of 20 minutes of movement
  • Total mileage: 1.5 miles

I felt great! I mean, I felt like I was going to die and I was panting and my right calf was tight as hell and I forgot to trim my toenails and my hamstring was on fire but MY TIBIA DID NOT HURT. And that’s really all I cared about today. I ran, without pain, for the first time in almost 4 whole months.

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Ramp-Up Week 1: Complete

I survived my first week back to activity! My week went like this:

  • Tuesday – 45 minutes of biking, resistance level 4 (8.66 miles)
  • Wednesday – 45 minutes of biking, resistance level 6 (8.65 miles)
  • Thursday – yoga in the Boston Public Garden with Jess, a very gentle flow class
  • Friday – strength training by Kristina, a solo session because no one else showed up for the 6am slot!
  • Saturday – yoga on the bowling lanes at Flatbread Pizza Company with Meghan, a very challenging class (but didn’t panic when putting all my weight on my left leg like I did on Thursday!)
  • Sunday – active recovery, on my feet all day running errands, meal prepping for the week, doing laundry, and cleaning my apartment
  • Monday – 45 minutes of biking, resistance level 7 (9.33 miles)

Continue reading

Ramping Up

It’s only been 3 days and I already feel like lightyears away from my injured self. On Wednesday, I upped the resistance to 6 and spent another 45 minutes/8.65 miles on the bike. I definitely felt the added resistance – my legs felt like jello and sadly, my body felt like garbage. I could tell last weekend that my iron levels were down.

20180823_183341This happens to me from time-to-time (I’ve been rejected from donating platelets twice this past year, but successfully rescheduled within a few weeks both times), especially after a particularly heavy period. When I woke up on Sunday, I was covered in bruises, including one massive one on the inside of my wrist. I have no idea how I got 90% of these (walking into my farmhouse dining table in the middle of the night Saturday explains the one on my upper thigh). I also had the telltale swollen, painful tongue.

For whatever reason, the meal prep recipes I’ve been making lately haven’t included much spinach and I have swapped meat for fish in a lot of my dinner recipes (because summer!) so it makes sense. I made sure to eat red meat on Tuesday and Thursday, and added tons of spinach to my breakfasts this week. My tongue is starting to return to normal and the bruises are fading, so hopefully we’re on the right path. But man, that really zapped my energy levels for most of this week. Continue reading

Healed!

20180821_082115I know, I know. I still owe baby shower updates. And I’ve been drafting a 543,095-word blog post about all my DIY projects for my “new old” apartment. I’ve been slacking in terms of blog posts, and sadly also in regard to working out, but not when it comes to projects around the apartment!

I’ve been eating really well, but hardly exercising. I’ve average 2 trips to the gym each week to ride the bike with zero resistance (all I was allowed to do, cardio-wise) for 30-45 minutes. That was actually intentional, because I stopped wearing the boot as of Sunday, August 12. I went to IKEA that Saturday, and wore it there knowing I’d be walking a ton and lifting heavy furniture/boxes, but by the time I got home I was ready to take it off…for good.

So, because I was walking around unprotected for the first time in over 2 months, I decided to take it easy on my leg and only bike every third day. Ben the PT said this was a good call. I had no pain, so I was hopeful the boot was finally going to be retired. Continue reading

Returning to Low Impact Activity

Parts 2 and 3 of Throwing a Baby Shower are coming – I promise. But in the meantime, here’s what’s going on with yours truly.

20180721_081605It’s been almost a month since my last injury update on here, which was also the last time I saw my doctor. I still have another 2.5 weeks until I see her again, but I’ve made some major progress lately.

First of all, the last two weeks of July were completely unproductive in terms of my recovery and fitness. I was so busy the week leading up to my best friend’s baby shower that I got in a pool running workout on Monday but I spent Tuesday-Friday doing last-minute crafts and prep for the shower. Then after the shower (SPOILER ALERT: it went perfectly!), I felt like I needed a few days to decompress and cuddle with my dog after work instead of shooing him away from me & my hot glue gun. And then it was just SO. DAMN. HOT. I couldn’t even take him for a 5-minute walk without sweating through my clothes, so the thought of getting in my car and driving to what I knew would be a jam-packed public pool was just not appealing to me.

I did, however, get serious about clean eating again. Pre-shower, I made turkey tacos for my work lunches with only a small amount of meat and a crapload of veggies in each one. The following week (last week), I made these Cold Sesame Noodles with Shredded Chicken. Then this week, I’ve been having Greek Chicken Bowls – my favorite by far. Not the lowest calorie because of all the yogurt, but I’ve been trying to slowly reintroduce dairy back into my life in small quantities so as not to upset my stomach. While I no longer crave ice cold cow’s milk and think almond milk is here to stay, there are a lot of healthy recipes that incorporate Greek yogurt, which is also a healthy swap for sour cream in recipes. And it’s a source of healthy fats – which I know I struggle to get enough of Continue reading

Throwing a Baby Shower, Part 1 of 3

The Planning

When my best friend Juls (Julia but referred to by her high school nickname Juls because it’s too confusing with our other best friend being named Julia!) found out she was pregnant with her first child, she lived in Georgia and we weren’t able to have a shower for her. They moved back home to Massachusetts just after her son turned 1. This past New Year’s Eve, I showed up at her new house with good beer and snacks and was excited to celebrate with them and a few of their friends. But before anyone else got there, she told me she wasn’t drinking.

She wasn’t drinking!

She had taken a pregnancy test earlier in the day and the rest is history. I kept my mouth shut until she started telling people (aside from her family and other close friends, who knew sooner). But the wheels in my head were already turning. I had so much fun throwing her bridal shower in 2013 that I couldn’t wait to throw her a proper baby shower. At first she wasn’t too keen on the idea of have a baby shower for her second baby. We both find it incredibly tacky when people have multiple baby showers. It’s just not appropriate to continue asking for gifts, but some people thrive on attention.

Juls is not that person, and this wouldn’t be her second baby shower. At first we settled on the idea of a “sprinkle” but finally she took off the reins and let me go wild. Continue reading

Healing, Slowly But Surely

20180707_072148I had my first follow-up orthopedic appointment this morning. It’s been 5+ weeks since the pain first began and 4+ weeks since I got the boot, the crutches, and the grade 1 anterior tibial stress fracture diagnosis.

So how’s it been?

Weeks 1-3

As I wrote about earlier, the first 3 weeks on crutches were hell. I barely left my dad’s house during the second week and my apartment the first and third weeks; Chip and I were miserable on every pathetic “walk” we took; and the pain was pretty intense. Then we survived 4 hours in the car to get to our happy place – my family’s cottage in the Adirondacks. It was like a switch flipped. Continue reading