Tuesday, July 7, 2015

I worked out last week and went to the Endo!

Haha, since it is almost Wednesday it's really too late for a weekly review so I'm not doing an official one.  Plus, there's other stuff I want to talk about.  So if you want to read my drivel and see numbers and whatever head on over to DailyMile and get your fill.  Here's the short version:  I ran 19.4 miles last week.  Yep!  Felt good, started eliminating some walk breaks (in fact I did a 3 miler with only taking the first walk break before being ballsy enough to just run the rest), and I tested out some speed (all good there too).  I also did my three lift days and my bike ride and all is well there too.  All good in da hood.

Tori and I chillin' on the North Shore waiting for the 4th of July fireworks to start.  We just spent the afternoon at the Pirates game and we were in quite a goofball mood.

Yesterday morning (Monday), I had my appointment with my Endocrinologist.  If you recall, my Ortho was concerned about a hormonal underlying factor that may be contributing to my repeated stress injuries.  I am, afterall, working on just a partial thyroid since having a tumor excised in 2007.  I haven't noticed anything bizarre personally and my basic checkups have always been ok, but hey, anything is possible so I humored him with this appointment.  The Endo and I talked about everything from my diet to my previous eating disorder/habits, to my bowel habits (pleasant stuff, right) and my training history.  We did a recheck of family history, all the meds I've taken in the last 30 years, and my bloodwork and body composition trends.  Of course I don't look or feel sick and all of her poking and prodding in places didn't come up with anything so off to the lab I went.

I got tubes of blood drawn for not just my thyroid hormone levels but for calcium, potassium, Vitamin D, proteins, and the standard generic metabolic panel stuff.  The lab was working fast today and my doc had the results not even 2 hours later.  Everything is just fine!  If anything, my calcium is on the low end of the normal range, so my Endocrinologist recommends that I increase the dosage of the calcium supplement I currently take.  No biggie.  There seems to be absolutely nothing wrong with me.  I just have standard risk factors such as being thin framed, female, over 35, Caucasian, etc and on top of it I train more intensely than the average person and I'm silly enough to get carried away with it at times.  This is me.  But, I'm glad that's "all" the problem looks to be.  Now, she does want me to have a repeat DEXA scan.  I had one last February (2014) after my first round of stress fracture and reaction fun and insurance will only cover one every 2 years.  That one came out perfectly fine, and she sees no sense in trying to get approval for one before the 2 years is up so I will have the next one in February 2016 to see if my bone density has even changed at all.  She did say that even if I did show degeneration that there was still not much that would be different as far as treatment... the main thing is adjusting my training should problems continue to arise.  So, that's that!  As for today I am healthy and fine and looking forward to the journey ahead.

Speaking of journey that lies ahead:  This week is my official start to MCM training.  I had a great recovery run on Monday (bright and early before my appointment) and I had a freaking awesome "tempo-ish" run today.  By heart rate I was running in the 7s during my tempo mile (yeah, just 1 mile out of 5 - baby steps, ok? I'm already breaking my "no speedwork for a year after an injury" rule.  I can break my own rules.) and didn't feel like I was pushing ridiculously hard.  That's a good sign!

After Training Day #1.  I don't look that excited, but I was... I was just all hot and sweaty and stuff.

Coming into this training cycle I'm in a much better position than I thought I'd be.  Given the fact that I 1) made myself stop running when I did and didn't try to force the marathon even though it was right there and therefore stopped an actual break from happening, and 2) kept up my fitness in the gym and through walking and other crosstraining, I didn't have to start from zero.  So I'm "coming back" (I don't really want to use that term) much faster this time around than in 2014... I'm still being careful and conservative with my runs.  Part of it is fear, I won't lie.  I'm still looking to have a strong finish and not so much worry about matching or beating last year's time.  But I'm happy that I'm not feeling like crap and having to start with c25k all over again!

I know I've described it before, but my plan starts out with 4 days of running per week with the option of working in a 5th easy or recovery paced day when and if I feel ready to.  But in general I will have 1 recovery run, 1 "tempo" run, 1 800m repeat workout (good ol' Yassos), and a long run.  I will have 3 strength training days - two will have specific core focused exercise during them.  One day will be straight lifting - no cardio.  One will coincide with my recovery run, and one will have my crosstraining (bike) day added to it.  My biggest struggle is balancing the lifting and the running.  Already I've had to cut back a bit on the lifts because, especially after leg day, I didn't feel like I was able to recover fast enough to feel 100% for the next day's activity.  So, this week I played around with cutting down some supersets and eliminating some things in favor of others.  This has worked out, but I can still sense that as my running mileage increases I will need even more leeway to recover.  I'm staying flexible, but if I need to cut the weights down to two days per week, either doing two total body circuits or one day upper/one day lower that will be fine.  I just don't want to quit heavy lifting altogether.  I like the way I feel and look with the muscle.  I also feel like I'm carrying my running posture better.

I know I mentioned above that I'm starting to eliminate my walk breaks, but I do intend on keeping them around for my long runs for another couple or three weeks if not more.  They force me to keep the pace slow and they really do give the body a break, so they have a very worthwhile benefit to me right now.  I'm going to keep increasing my run time, though.  This week's long run will be a 7:1 ratio.  We'll see where that gets me. :)

Something else that I'm doing differently this time around is I'm just letting myself have fun with it and not take everything so damn seriously.  Yeah, it's fun to break records.. yeah, it's fun to go fast (sometimes), and yeah it's fun to run lots and lots of miles and feel that wonderful exhilarating exhaustion that comes after a long or hard run... But a major flaw I have is taking it to an extreme of number/data crunching and running (pun intended) scenarios in my head and playing mental chess with myself over what ifs.  I may sound and look like I'm just having a freaking blast with it, but it is exhausting and I don't want to get to that point.  That goes for the speedwork, the mileage increases, the adding another run day, the practice half marathon I'm contemplating, and even the heart rate training.  If I need a break, if I need to just have some fun and remember why I've been willing to injure myself several times over for this silly sport then I'm going to do it - whether that takes the form of a rest day or an easy run in place of my tempo or tossing out the heart rate monitor for a run here and there or whatever.  Also - I've been contemplating not oversharing... I might not always post up my paces or I might not post up a verbose overly analytical weekly recap every freaking week on top of Dailymile, Strava (yeah I got suckered into another account because my MCM social circle decided to make a group on there.  It's actually really freaking cool and puts DM to shame), etc. I'm not trying to be antisocial, I'm just trying to stay sane and not obsess over the numbers... the paces and the mileage and the intervals and the cadence and the heart rate and the dates....oh those numbers... (I probably should have been a mathematician or something lol).  I just want to have fun.  Do my very best with what I've got, absolutely.  But that doesn't mean driving myself nuts, right?  I'm just your normal (lol - come on you have to laugh) middle aged mom who happens to love running as a hobby and knows a little bit about some stuff.  That's all.

MCM Goals: Healthy at the starting line.  Happy during training.  Beat the bridge.  Eat the damn donuts this time.  Do not walk ONE STEP of the Iwo.  All the rest is just details that will fall into place.

Oh, in other aspects of life - thanks to everyone who sent out positive vibes for me regarding my interview I mentioned.  I think it went pretty well, but we'll see.  Needless to say I've been job hunting.  I enjoy personal training, but a full steady income it is not and I need to get back out there making some real stable money.  Kids are expensive.  lol  I'm just kidding (actually, no I'm not), everything in life is pricey these days and I hate feeling like I'm not doing much.  I'm a busy body and I like having a ton of things to do.  Dead time and me don't get along, so I'm always looking for something to do.  I'd rather be getting paid for it, of course. ;)  I'm actually pretty excited because I've got a couple of leads that seem promising.. Of course, who knows.  Time will tell.

 That's what's happening here.  It's marathon training time! (again)

Meatball is still not a fan of kids going to camp.  We packed another bag for another camp session and here she goes with the "no! Don't Go!" thing.


  1. So happy to hear that you are getting better and are able to slowly make your way back into the full runs. Good luck as you start your training for the MCM. I can't wait to follow you as you train for this.

  2. Good luck marathon training! When I was marathon training last summer I decided to not focus on time and I ended up with a 15 minute PR! It's so freeing to just go do it!

    1. Thank you Steff! I'm hoping that by just focusing on the moment and having fun with it that I won't be so uptight and stressed all the time. So far so good!

  3. Yay for being able to run! Hoping that you stay healthy and happy during training. Like you said, everything else will just fall in to place. Good luck!

  4. I have a similar pic of me after run #1 of training, ha ha. You're in such a good place physically and emotionally to start this training. Great that you had a thorough check-up & got the green light for everything. And I love the just-for-fun mentality of training. I think we're similar in that I can also get a little obsessed with the numbers and everything, but hey, when I ditched my HRM last week & just ran, it was so freeing. You're so smart about all this that I know you'll strike the right balance of putting enough of yourself into the training without going overboard. Can't wait to follow along! Also, never heard of Strava. Might look into it.

    1. Thank you Jennifer! Yes, I can take obsession to the extreme. It's a blessing and a curse! That's even why I am liking Strava - it analyzes EVERYTHING. It even keeps an updated predictor based on the training you upload for potential race times, etc. It's really cool (and saves me time and number crunching.. haha)!