No Running–Week 4 Recap

Okay, this is no running business is starting to get hard….

I miss running. BUT, instead of being a negative Nancy, I got my butt in the gym last week to get my workout on in other ways.

Screen Shot 2015-12-27 at 8.12.46 PM

#igotthis

Monday was my first day of vacation (aka: no work and kids still in school) and I did some Christmas shopping, got in some good walking, and wondered why I didn’t wear a pedometer or something.

I met one of my running buddies at the gym Tuesday morning for my first official attempt at swimming. We were there for a good hour and I learned how to put on a water cap and goggles, swim without plugging my nose with my hand, and the 1-2-3 breathe method. I felt like a rockstar when I finished because I felt like I accomplished so much–and I had!

I abhor wearing bathing suits so getting in one is something huge for me; I went in knowing absolutely nothing about swimming and managed to freestyle swim without looking completely ridiculous; opening my eyes underwater and swimming without plugging my nose were things I just never did. It took a while for me to get used to trusting the goggles and practice not breathing/swallowing in water but after a while, I managed to somewhat get it down. I was SO thankful for my patient friend T–I would never have attempted the feat on my own.

12366418_1003677153029919_6746476693784032120_n

Wednesday I met up with the same friend at the gym. Technically I was supposed to wait for my check-up on Monday for bike clearance but I’m pretty confident I’ll get it so I went with her to spin promising myself I would take it easy–especially whenever I had to stand on the bike.

And I was completely fine. Still no pain and I def took it easy–so much so, I felt like the instructor was pointing me out when she yelled, “If you’re not dying then you’re not riding hard enough!” I wanted to tell her I was new (and injured), lol!

Sssh! My first time spinning!

Sssh! My first time spinning!

I was back in the pool Thursday and I felt like the honeymoon was over. I had left Tuesday feeling good about how I’d done with my swimming attempts but that morning, I felt like I had regressed. I wasn’t breathing correctly, my butt/hips were sinking, and my strokes were all over the place. We practiced a few things to help correct them and then jumped in the hot tub to recover. I was pooped!

12449239_10105764797047401_433927644_o

It was Christmas Eve and my kids left Santa cookies and carrots for his reindeer. My little guy wanted to eat Santa’s cookies sooooo bad.

12373212_10105753431454141_7104604463020589463_n

Pleeeeease Mommy!!??

Fridays are my usual rest days and I did just that. It was a nice relaxed Christmas and we hung out in our jammies all day. It was perfect.

10177852_10105754471479921_1456480989144836161_n

My Christmas present to Mom ❤ #adeletickets

And I did do a one minute plank before bed too 😀

My husband ran his 16 miler Saturday morning like the machine that he is–he’ll be running Phoenix Marathon–and I hung out with the kids all morning. I did a short arm/upper body workout before bed and called it a day. I’ve been looking at some good, short routines I could do at home to work my upper body. Any recs?

Sunday I was back at the pool. My friend T, and two other buddies joined me and we worked on a few things to help with my breathing and strokes. After a few tries, I felt improvement and that made me feel better. Swimming is hard. I like hard, but I also like feeling like I’m at least progressing and not wasting people’s time. My friends are amazing and would never feel that way, but you guys know what I mean.

My first check-up is Monday, today, and I’m nervous. I never felt any pain so it’s hard for me to gauge if my injury has been improving. I’m just hoping whatever he sees on the x-rays shows things are going the way they should. I want to run!

I’ll update on Instagram 🙂 Hope you all have a great week!!!

–How was your Christmas? (If you celebrate)

–Do you think swimming is hard? What tips can you offer me?

MRI Results Update—Officially Injured

Welp, I’m out for the count….

MRI results came back with Grade 4 Bilateral Tibial Stress Fractures. Yes, both legs.

To say I was completely blindsided is an understatement. I had been feeling zero pain and had not gone in to see my doctor for anything other than cramping. But, my buddy Runner Jenny is the sports doctor’s assistant and she had called for x-rays as a precautionary procedure–just to see.

I’m so glad she did.

She was there at the medic tent in San Diego. She saw me screaming in pain; I am not kidding when I said I was all sorts of miserable at the end of that race. Having worked with hundreds of athletes, Runner Jenny knew my situation had to be more than just cramping issues.

I mean, did I like hearing the news that for 6 weeks I could do nothing–no running, no biking, no elliptical? Of course not, but had I never gotten my legs checked, I would’ve kept on running along until I really did feel pain. And I’m pretty sure by then it would’ve been awful and an even longer recovery time.

The doc said while he definitely thinks I need to work on my sodium/electrolytes intake, my muscles could have also been overcompensating for my weak bones. Just a bad combo all around.

I know my personal diet sucks. You guys have heard me talk about it before. I know I need to improve my eating habits. I’ll be talking to my regular doctor about that and potentially adding vitamins as I def feel I’m lacking nutrients (since McDonald’s and In n Out don’t really provide me with any). Maybe even see a nutritionist. All I knows is I have to get myself figured out here if I want to continue running AND if I want to improve as a runner. I think for me, that’s my biggest decision. If I’m okay staying where I’m at, I’m sure I can manage. But if I want to get faster, I need to make some serious lifestyle changes.

That being said, another area of improvement where I think this 6 week hiatus from running will allow me to work on, is my upper body strength. Since that’s pretty much all I can do, I’m gonna work hard this winter so that when the sun’s out my guns are out.

1486_shirt_db5d6ceb14b3bcebedfe531e1f810ab5

Yeaaahp, that’ll be me alright…

I’ll focus on my core as well — and this happened before the injury….

I SIGNED UP FOR MY FIRST TRI!!!

So that pretty much means I need to get in the pool. I feel like this injury is forcing me to work on the things I never did when I just ran. Do you believe in signs? Because I kinda think this is a big, fat, huge one right now.

Anyway, there’s the update. Six weeks of no running. I walked the Hot Chocolate 5k this past weekend (having downgraded from the 15k)

12342271_10105697995198841_1300590559251147269_n

With one of my walking buddies at mile 2 🙂

and I transferred my bib for the Fiesta Bowl 1/2 marathon I was supposed to run this Saturday. My next race is January 17th, Rock n Roll AZ and I’m hoping Runner Jenny my doc will let me do it. I figure I’ll be keeping myself in shape these next six weeks and my expectations for that race will be to simply finish.

I’ll go back for x-rays to assess progress in 4 weeks. In the meantime, gotta put in some work!

Thank you all for your support on Insta and Facebook! Once again, I’m grateful I have this outlet to “talk” about things and have people share their experiences with me. It really helps!

❤ , helly

–How do you stay motivated through injuries?

–Best upper body exercises?

–Tips on learning to swim? (I don’t know how!)

Stress Fracture?? Wha??!!

So Tuesday I went to see a sports doc to get answers about the crazy cramps I’ve been having. I don’t cramp all the time but it def has been happening more often. I cramped at mile 8 at Chicago Marathon (despite wearing compression sleeves, taking salt tabs, hydrating at every station, and fueling as practiced) and then ran a half marathon 3 weeks later with zero cramping (took zero salt tabs and one Gu). Two weeks later, I ran the USA Half Marathon where I experienced insane crampage that left me at the medic tent post race. I had carried Tailwind the entire race and drank water along the course as well–even took a Gu at mile 6 only to cramp up at mile 12 barely being able to cross the finish line.

It’s just so weird.

Anyway, the doc ordered x-rays which at first I thought was odd considering I was there for muscle related issue, but I was game. Soon after, the doctor came back into the room, sat down, and said, “It looks like you have two stress fractures. The one on the left looking worse than the one on the right.”

“Wait, what??”

I’m not kidding. That’s exactly what I said. I was there because of cramps. I had zero pain from my shins (where apparently there was a huge bump).

He walked me to the x-rays and there it was, what seemed to me a huge mountain on my shin bone. He also pointed to a thin little line across the bone that did not look good. The right shin was not as bad and we focused our attention on the thing growing on my left leg.

He rubbed his had along the bone and asked me what I felt.

Nothing.

He was quizzical and said perhaps it was an old injury. I had been there two years before (almost to the date) for shin pain in that exact same leg. At the time though, another doctor had diagnosed severe shin splints. Interestingly, I was in pretty serious pain then and for sure thought I had a stress fracture.

But apparently now I did?

He said an MRI would tell us if the fracture was active or if it was from an old injury. But until then, no running.

I argued. I mean, I wasn’t in pain! I had a race on Sunday! And a half in two weeks!

Nope. No running at least until I got the MRI.

So, here it’s been 6 days since the last time I ran. Six long days, the longest I’ve gone since I don’t even remember when.

Everyone is doing a running streak and here I am starting a NO running streak.

tumblr_inline_numw0nHqOp1s55dye_500Anyway, I got the MRI done yesterday and now I sit and wait to hear back. I’ve got the Hot Chocolate 15k on Sunday that you better believe I’m running. Maybe slowly, but I’m doing it. Seriously, nothing hurts and I feel completely fine. Last Saturday I ran 6 uneventful, cramp free miles.

In other news, I’ve been pretty sick with a cough/cold/sinus thing along with a tooth that’s been hurting major, so this rest from running has helped me deal with these other health issues. I’m actually having my tooth (teeth actually, because there’s 2) pulled next week. Fun times in Helly Land lemme tell ya.

And Phoenix Marathon? I don’t even know what I’m going to do with that. I’ve done zero training for it and I’m not sure if I’ll be able to start something consistent any time soon. It’s been a tough week but I’m hoping things will turn out okay.

So that’s what’s new 😀 What’s going on in your lives? Any surprises like me lol! (I hope only good ones!)

–Ever had a surprise injury?

–Phoenix Marathon is the end of February. Think I still have time to train or should I drop down to the half?

EDIT: In my sleep deprived sick state, I failed to add that the doctor said my cramp issue and stress fracture are unrelated. (This is why I was so confused I was getting x-rays–why did he call for them in the beginning??) He diagnosed me a “salty” person and that I needed to really increase my salt/electroyte intake pre and during race. Even though I already take salt/electrolytes when I race, I need more. I’ll be experimenting with that in two weeks when I hopefully run Fiesta 1/2 Marathon. Thanks for all the love!! ❤ , helly