An Object in Motion Tends to Stay in Motion

“An object in motion tends to stay in motion,”  those words stuck in my head from about mile 4 of the Red Nose Half Marathon on January 4th and were a game changer.

Leading up to the Red Nose Half, I had just completed week 11 of my 20 week marathon plan, and the long run for week 11 was 20 miles.  I had finished that 20 mile run with ease and was riding a huge high going into week 12 of training.  Here’s my 20 miler which became 21 miles:  http://connect.garmin.com/activity/420791032.  The next battle that ensued within me from about Tuesday of that week was whether or not I should actually race the Red Nose Half on the following Saturday or just use it as a training run.  After all, my plan called for a 10 miler or a 10k race both of which would be MUCH less taxing on my body than a half marathon at race pace.  I had signed up for the Red Nose Half in Columbus, GA prior to deciding I was going to run a marathon, and the Red Nose was the half I planned to try to PR since I had missed a PR in Savannah.  It is a free race, so I could have just decided not to go, but about 15 people were going from our local running club, so it was going to be a fun race.  Honestly, I went back and forth on what I was going to do several times a day leading up to Saturday, and I did everything I could possibly do to derail any thoughts of racing the half including but not limited to running 7 miles the day before the half, eating the wrong type of food for dinner, staying up late Friday night, not bringing water with me for the night before or morning of, and neglecting to really hydrate at all for the race.  I was hoping that early on in the race my legs would be heavy, and I’d be able to make the call at mile 3 or 4 to NOT race it.  Jeneen and I had sent numerous text back and forth all week about whether we were going to race it or not, and just when we thought we had decided we weren’t going to, the other one would bail on the decision or throw out some reason why it really might be OK.  Even at dinner Friday night, the conversation of pros and cons continued.

Early Saturday morning at 6:55 AM, I got a tweet from Jeneen asking me, “what is it woman?  Imma say it.  RACE DAY.”

To which I replied, “It is what it is.  Depends on how I feel around mile 2 or 3.”

Our group had decided to meet at 7:10 in the hotel lobby to walk to the start of the race, so we gathered in the lobby and headed over.  We met up with a couple of other MRTT chapters for a quick photo at 7:30, grabbed pins for our bibs, and used the restroom, then it was start time.

MRTT chapters at Red Nose Half

MRTT chapters at Red Nose Half

I was still wavering in my decision and hoping my legs would tell me not to race it early on due to my attempts at sabotage, but if I was going to race it, then I wanted to be on pace for a 2:15 PR!  I lined myself up with the 2:15 pacer just in case.  As the start gun fired, we took off, and the group pacer was quickly leaving me.  In my mind, I was already starting to think that it was going to just be a training run.

rednose group

As I hit the 1 mile marker, my watch showed 10:10 which truly scared me.  I’ve never started long runs at that fast of a pace.  The 2:15 pacer was out of my sight already at this point, and I realized he was going much too fast for that time goal.  I decided to slow down.  I missed my time for mile 2, but I felt like I was struggling at the pace I was at.  After the race, I realized I had slowed down to 10:27, and I think if I had seen that at mile 2 with how I was feeling I might have thrown in the towel on racing it, but by the time I reached the mile 3 marker, my lap time was 9:58, so I attributed the way I felt to starting too fast, so I slowed down again.  Mile 4 was too slow, but it brought me to an overall average which was almost right on target of a 10:18 mm to reach my 2:15 goal.  This was the time to commit or not.  I needed to decide if I was going to go for it.  My legs weren’t feeling great, but they weren’t really struggling either.  I had my doubts still as to whether I could hold the pace for 9 more miles after the 7 mile run the day before, but I had a pretty good start, so I decided to go for it, and if I crashed at mile 10 (really thought I would), then I just crash.

So, back to that little quote…..

I had been yo-yo-ing back and forth with several runners since I use a 3:1 run:walk.  I was passing two ladies in particular every single time I ran, and they’d pass me as I broke to a walk.  I think this had been going on for about a mile, so I’m sure they were getting annoyed because it was getting on my nerves as well, but as one of my favorite sayings go, “it is what it is.”  As we came down a slight incline just before a hill around mile 4, I ran up behind them and heard one saying, “an object in motion tends to stay in motion.”  Now, I have no clue if this was directed at me or not, but I felt like it was.  These two ladies had been running separately, but they had just paired up before I passed them, and this is the conversation that ensues?  Ok, ok, yeah, I know.  It still could have been some totally random conversation, but if it lights a fire under your butt, just go with it, right?  So, I did.  From that point on, kicking their butts became my mission because yes, “an object in motion tends to stay in motion,” but this girl is going to crush you even with walk breaks!  The Galloway method works!

rednose

Are those eyes really a look that you want to mess with?

The next few miles gradually sped up, and just before mile 7 I got my first glimpse of the 2:15 pacer again.  YIPEE!!!!!  I was quickly reeling him in, maybe too quickly.  I soon caught and passed him just before the turn around, but I still had about 5 miles to go, and I needed to wait a little longer before I really started pushing myself.  I think mile 8 was probably the last time I looked at my lap time because it was 9:45 and freaked me out, once again, to be at that pace that early.  I decided that if I didn’t look at my pace, then maybe I’d stop over thinking it and just run, so the rest of the race was just a mind game of trying to run by feel and telling myself, “just 3 minutes until another break.”  As I passed mile 10, I told myself, “it’s just a 5k left, 3.1 miles.”  I wanted to maintain my pace and try to pick it up a little if I could, but I still didn’t want to look at my watch.  Over the next 3 miles, I managed to keep my eyes off my watch almost the entire time.  I did catch a glimpse of an instant pace that was rather shocking, but I did my best to quickly put it out of my mind and not think about it.

As I turned the last corner of the race, and headed up the hill, I saw the 2:10 pacer crossing the finish line.  Holy COW is what was going through my mind, and yes, I looked at my watch at this point.  I was going to finish well under my 2:15 goal.  I crossed the finish line at 2:11:15, and my last 5k of the race….well, it was within 20 seconds of my 5K PR.  Here’s my Garmin info:  http://connect.garmin.com/activity/424428183

Oh, and as for those two ladies, they finished sometime after the 2:15 pacer, so yes, Galloway’s method may not be their preferred way, but maybe they should give it a try.  😉

finish

Got to love race photos.

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Savannah Rock N Roll Race Recap

5 of us were to meet at Starbucks to leave for Savannah on Thursday afternoon, but life would throw us some curve balls leading up to our adventure.  One of my BRF’s Kelly started having neck pain and arm numbness earlier in the week.  We ran together Wednesday morning, and she was doing ok, but by Wednesday afternoon, she was in a lot of pain.  Her symptoms were eerily similar to my problem with my neck that kept me off my bike for a couple of months.  Wednesday evening, I got a text from her saying that she was going to the chiropractor and her doctor on Thursday morning, and she might not make it to meet us to leave at 1PM.

Thursday morning started off pretty crazy as it usually does when I’m going anywhere since I wait until the last minute to pack, but I managed to get my stuff together and triple check to make sure I had everything, and then check again.  I think I have some OCD tendencies, but somehow I still managed to forget my pillows.  I left the house with a couple of errands to run prior to picking up my BRF’s.  I filled the car up, and I headed to Dani’s house then Gem’s house to pick them up, and finally to Starbucks to grab Kelly who had called earlier and said she was going to make it.  When Kelly arrived, we could tell that she was in a lot of pain still, but we were all hopeful that she’d feel better the next day.  Natalie finally arrived about 20 minutes late, which is par for the course for her, but we love her anyway, and we tease the snot out of her about her lack of time management, but she seems to handle it all in stride.  We managed to fit all 5 of our luggage into the Suburban, and we were off.

The ride down was fairly uneventful, and we arrived in Savannah in about 3 1/2 hours.  We found our house, quickly unloaded the car, met Rachel at the house, and headed to the expo.

savannah expo

6 of our 8 housemates at the expo

The expo was huge as usual at the Rock N Roll events.  We all picked up our packets and several of us changed our corrals which was very easy to do.  You just had to ask at the corral change table, and they put a sticker on your bib with your new corral.  After changing corrals, we all wandered around for an hour or two, and I spent way too much money before we left.

We drove to Riverstreet, and actually found parking.  Parking on Thursday night isn’t too bad since most of the runners don’t arrive until Friday.  We found a restaurant called Barracuda Bob’s that had great food.  After dinner, we headed back to the house where we met our other 2 housemates for the weekend Kris & Jennifer.  The two of them didn’t know any of us before meeting us in Savannah, but they fit right in with our crew, and we all had a great weekend.

Friday morning, Kelly was still in a ton of pain, so she called someone to drive to Savannah to come pick her up.  It sucked, but for her, it was definitely the best thing since she is still in severe pain today.  She has already had an MRI, and it showed a couple of herniated disc.  She’s in a neck brace, and hopefully it will heal on it’s own.

We were going to drive to Kroger, but as we walked out the back door of the house to go to the car, I saw a big brick building that I recognized from last year.  Yep, that’s right.  Kroger was literally across the street from our house.  We all made a quick trip to Kroger for dinner items, and then we all walked around Savannah to check out the sites and to see where the start and finish lines were.  As we stepped out our front door and walked down the steps, we could see a tent set up at Forsyth Park for the race already.  We were just over a block from the street with the finish line, so we walked to Forsyth Park, and headed towards the start from there.  We were about a mile from the start line which would be about a 15-20 minute walk on Saturday morning.  While on Bay St., we decided to try Tondee’s Tavern for lunch, another GREAT restaurant.  I’ve always stuck to the rule of nothing new to eat the night before a race, so for dinner, we were cooking pasta in the house, and for lunch at Tondee’s I stuck with ribs.  I’ve eaten ribs hundreds of times before, and they’ve never caused an upset stomach in the past, plus it’s lunch, so I should be good, right?  WRONG!  They didn’t bother my stomach, but if you’ve been following my blog, then you know that I had a pretty bad allergic reaction last month while in Florida.  Well, guess what?  That’s right, 38 years of my life and I’ve only had one allergic reaction a month ago, so it only makes since that I’d have another one the night before my half.  My head had started itching an hour or so after lunch, but I didn’t think much about it, but as the evening went on, I started itching more, and then I realized I had hives popping up, not tiny hives either.  I was in denial and hoping it was just something on my skin, so I headed to the shower only to discover how many I had all over me.  After my shower, I walked to Kroger to purchase Benadryl and Pepcid, but by this time, I was getting nervous and itching like crazy.  I took the medicine, and over the next hour, the reaction just continued to get worse, so I admitted that I needed to go to Urgent Care.  I’m not sure if it was anxiety or if the reaction was affecting my breathing, but my chest did feel tight.  Dani rode with me to UC.  She’s a nurse, so I was in good hands.  I walked in, and the nurse working called the dr on call.  He gave orders over the phone to give me a shot of Benadryl, Zantac, and a steroid, and he would be there shortly.  When he arrived, he listened to my breathing, and asked if I was having any trouble breathing, and I told him my chest felt a little tight, but I wasn’t sure if it was the reaction or anxiety, and he said I wasn’t breathing in all the way.  He proceeded to look at me and ask if I was running the race in the morning, to which I replied, “yes.”  He then said, “you know there are other races, right?”  Ummmm…. no!  I told him, “yes, but I trained for this one.”  He then asked what time the race started.  It started at 7AM, and that facility didn’t open until 8AM, so he wanted me to come in to the other Urgent Care that is 24 hours in the morning before the race to do a breathing treatment.  Ugh, our house is less than 2 blocks from the finish line, and we’re surrounded by the course.  Some roads are already closed.  Yeah, that wasn’t going to happen and me make it to the start in time, so back to the house I went feeling kind of out of it from the Benadryl and not really knowing if I’d be able to run the race in the AM.

I didn’t sleep well that night, apparently the steroid counteracted any sleepiness that could have been induced by the Benadryl.  I woke up every hour at least looking at my watch to see if it was time to get up yet.  Dani said the steroid (dex-something) was a lot stronger steroid than what I probably had the first time.  Finally, around 4-something, the house started to stir, and we were all up and about.  All the hives were actually gone!  It took days last time, so it must have been a stronger steroid, and I didn’t wait as long to go to the dr this time either.  I felt back to normal, so I was hopeful that I could PR my half.  Since we were so close to the start, we decided to wait until 6:15 to head to the start line for the 7:00 start.  One last potty trip, and we were all out the door.  The weather had been up in the air, but it ended up being a pretty nice temperature.  It was a little chilly, but not too cold.  I headed out in a short sleeve shirt, hat, ear cover, gloves, a skirt, and arm sleeves.  On the way to the start, we passed a set of porta-potties, so we stopped one last time since we were about 2 blocks from the start, and we got to Bay St. right around 6:55.  We snapped a quick group photo and headed to our corrals.

savannah group

Our group at the start

Dani and I headed to corral 11 to start together just before the corrals all started to move.  As I started in mile 1, I knew my pace was a little fast as the course starts with a slight downhill, so I quickly slowed down, and ended up right where I needed to be for my average over the first mile.  The next 2 miles were pretty much flat and right on my target pace.  I’m not sure what happened in mile 4, but somehow, I ended up at an 11:10 average which was definitely slower than I needed to be, but I quickly got back on target and was starting to hit negative splits, and all was going well until around mile 10 when my pace went back up to 10:31, and I felt like I was struggling to breathe some.  I kept debating if it was all in my head or if my chest was really starting to tighten up, and then I started hearing myself wheeze some.  I’m still not sure if it was from the allergic reaction, or if I just got in my head, but miles 10, 11, & 12 were a struggle, and I finally felt like I caught my breath again around the end of mile 12.  I knew I was going to be close to my PR, but I wasn’t sure as to how close because I thought my PR was 2:17:23, but that was my Garmin time, not my official PR.  I hadn’t entered it into my Garmin page, so I was going off the wrong time.  My real PR was 2:17:42.  I wish I’d have known, and I keep kicking myself for not knowing it.  I question if I could have pushed just a little harder in that last mile if I’d known if was that close.  Mile 13 came in at 10:03, and I felt I had lost my PR, so I wonder if I didn’t push as hard as I might have in the last 2/10ths.  When I finished I thought I’d missed my PR by about 30 seconds, but later I found out my real PR, and my official finish time was 2:17:54.  12 seconds, 12 freaking seconds!  Was it that I didn’t know my PR?  Was it the allergic reaction?  Was I just not back to where I was before injuries?  I don’t know, but January 4th is the Red Nose Half Marathon in Columbus, GA.  It’s a free certified half marathon, and I WILL PR it.

As for now, I have allergy testing on December 4th to try to figure out what I’m allergic to, and on December 7th, I’m running my longest race to date of 30K(18.6miles) in Rome, GA.  I’m feeling pretty good about it.  I have a 16 mile run next weekend, then the race will be my next long run.  I’m hoping to gain some confidence in myself by running this 30K, and we’ll see what the future holds.

My Garmin data http://connect.garmin.com/activity/403210069

MRTTsavannah ASR savannah

Savannah is upon us!

At 12:50PM today, 4 of my running friends and I are piling into my car and heading down to Savannah for the Rock n Roll Half Marathon.  3 other running friends will be meeting us down there this evening and staying in the house with us, so there are 8 of us total.  Of the 8 of us, this will be the first half marathon for 5 of the ladies.  It should be an exciting and fun weekend for all!  You can track me by following me on Twitter @StephanieMid

The last 2 weeks leading up to this race are proving to be challenging for several of these ladies, including myself.  After my 15 mile run, I realized that I needed to go up a half size in my shoes, so I bought the same brand, same model, just a half size bigger.  They were a different color as well.  They are the Brooks Ravenna 4.  I have loved my original pair, and I never had sore feet when I started wearing them for the first time, but this new pair is a different story.  As soon as I put them on, they felt different.  I could feel something pressing against my arch.  I just figured I didn’t remember how my others felt when they were new, so I went ahead and tried them out on a 5 mile run.  My calves were locking up, my hip started hurting, and my feet just felt off.  I thought maybe my laces were just too tight or something, so for my next run, I loosened them some and gave them another try.  After that run, I hurt so much that I decided I’d have to set them aside until after Savannah.  I was hoping I didn’t do anything that would still be hurting me by race day, and I think I’m ok now, but I did skip my 8 mile run on Sunday due to pain.  I stressed over it some, but in all honesty, I wouldn’t have gained anything from doing it, so it’s all good.  My hip feels better, the arches of my feet are no longer hurting, my only remaining problem is that my calves are slightly tight which is due to mistake #2 (I should have titled this, what NOT to do before your half).

What was mistake #2 you ask?  Trying a spin class for the first time in over 5 years the week of your race.  I know, I know, you’re all saying “no, you didn’t!”  Yes, yes, I did!  I’ve been itching to get back on my bike, and last week I rode for the first time in months, and my arm didn’t go to sleep, but my legs were sore afterwards, so I didn’t want to ride my bike this week.  I figured in spin class I’d just dial down the resistance and keep it low, so I wouldn’t get sore.  Well, maybe that’s not really possible.  I walked out of the class knowing it was a mistake, but luckily, that was Tuesday night, and my calves are the only thing still feeling tight.  I think they will be fine by Saturday morning.

Now, if only my 2 running buddies Gem and Kelly can get to feeling better too.  They are both suddenly dealing with some pains.  Gem is having some knee pain, and Kelly is dealing with shooting pains down both her arms this morning that sound a LOT like the pains I was having from the nerve in my neck that took months to get better.  She is heading to see a chiropractor this morning to see if he can help her.  I’m praying both of them feel better quickly and can enjoy the race.  😦

We load up at 12:50 and head out, so we should get to Savannah in time to check into our house 3 blocks from the finish line, and then head to the expo.  The expo was amazing last year, and I can’t wait to check it out this year!

Good luck to any of you out there that are racing this weekend!

Allstate 13.1

Early Sunday morning, I met my running peeps from Moms Run This Town and Atlanta Southside Runners at Walmart to carpool to Brookhaven for the Allstate 13.1.  We arrived a little before 6AM with our crew which gave us plenty of time to meet up with some people who were meeting us there and to hit the porta potties, take photos, check bags, and just hang out with each other for a little while.  Everyone seemed overly relaxed for this race.  For many, it was a training run in preparation for their upcoming full marathons, and for me, it was a training run for my upcoming half in Savannah, which would hopefully translate into a great race for everyone.  Not having the pressure of a time looming over my head is often when I run my best races.

Around 6:50AM, we headed to our starting corrals.  A few people with us were in the A, B, & C corrals which were the only actual corrals.  The rest of us lined up by the pace team signs in one huge corral, but since it was a smaller race, this wasn’t an issue.  My plan was not to PR this race since I still haven’t worked up to running over 10 miles since my injuries, so I headed towards the 2:20 finish time with Dani, Jeneen, and Keri.  On the way, Jeneen was questioning whether she needed to line up at 2:20 or 2:15 because she wanted to PR, but she sometimes underestimates herself, so she was thinking 2:20 would be a PR (which it would be), but 2:20 for a PR for her was aiming pretty low considering how she’s been running lately, so I piped up and told her she had to beat my PR which was 2:17, so she had to get in the 2:15 corral.  I had all the confidence in the world that she’d have no problem crushing it.  A quick fist bump, and we left her at 2:15.

MRTT McDonough/Stockbridge  https://www.facebook.com/groups/mcdonough.ga.mrtt/

Left to right
Keri, Dani, Me, Jeneen, & Joy

The corrals started to move, and Dani and I started walking forward.  We were about 1/10th of a mile from the start and everyone was starting to run, but I didn’t want any added distance since I was already worried about hitting the wall at mile 10, so I walked to the start.  At the end of mile 1, Dani told me we were ahead of our planned pace, and we were, so we slowed down, but that lasted until about the end of mile 2 for me.  At that point, I got tired of trying to “watch” my watch, so I just decided to run a comfortable pace for me.  I was still using the run:walk method that I’ve been using, and I kept it at the 2:30 run to 1:00 walk that I’ve trained with, but I ran the speed I felt like running.  This might not have been the best plan for a “training” run, but I had initially thought I’d try to run 8 miles or so at tempo, so just running what was comfortable was a good gauge for me to determine where I was in my quest for a PR in Savannah.  Looking back at my splits, my flat, rolling hills, and downhill miles were pretty close to the pace I need in Savannah, but I definitely struggled on the long uphills.  Somewhere around mile 8 or 9, I decided to add an extra 10-15 seconds into my run portion of my interval, so I’d simply run while I continued to count to 10 or 15 after my watch beeped to start my walk.  By doing this,  it was also taking 10-15 seconds off of my walk break.  I did this for 3-4 miles other than around 10.5 miles where I had to walk a little extra up a hill.  The extra run time didn’t seem too difficult, and I have 4 weeks until Savannah, so I plan to play around a little with a 2:45 to :45 ratio between now and then.  My last 2 miles ended up being my fastest which seems to be a typical pattern for me.  I think when I get a certain distance from the finish adrenaline takes over, but by the time I reached the finish line after those last 2 miles, I was out of breath and felt slightly nauseated.  I think I can speed up the rest of my half, but I won’t have that much left in my tank at the end.  I had more reserves left for those last two miles than I’d want if I were trying for a PR.  It’d definitely make me wonder if I had really given my all if my last 2 miles at Savannah are that much faster.

My Garmin data from Allstate http://connect.garmin.com/activity/386840209

I’m still liking the Galloway run:walk method, and I can honestly say that I don’t think I’d be doing as well coming back from injury if I was trying to just run the entire way.  I still feel some twinges in my hip when I do long distances, but the walk breaks seem to be just enough to keep the twinge at bay.  I’d probably have re-injured myself by now if I wasn’t using the run:walk method, so I plan to stick with it for a while.  Part of it is curiosity too I think.  I almost feel like I’m doing speed work using it, so I’m curious to see if I can continue to hold the running speeds that I’m hitting while gradually lowering my walk speed and/or time and increasing my run times.  It’s not something I’m planning to do quickly, and it would obviously start with only short runs, and maybe the last couple of miles of long runs, but it’s something that has peaked my interest to try.

Crossing the finish line

Crossing the finish line
Official time 2:22:58

Allstate 13.1

2 medals because I entered the Atl Challenge by completing the Allstate and Publix half marathons

Excitement is off the charts….

….for my upcoming race schedule that is!

After my injection in my neck last week, most of the numbness in my arm seems to be gone.  I’ve only had mild numbness once or twice since the day after the injection.  I still haven’t attempted to get back on my bike, but my focus has now moved onto my upcoming running race schedule.

This Sunday, I will be running the Allstate 13.1 in Atlanta, but it is simply a training run for the Savannah Rock N Roll Half which I want to try to PR.  My plan for Allstate is to run part of it as a tempo run.  I’m thinking 8-9 miles. I then have the Monster Dash on Oct. 20th before the Savannah RnR on November 9th.

My current PR for a half is 2:17:07.  I’m still using the run:walk method, but I’m optimistic that I may be able to PR using it at Savannah. I just need to either speed up my walk or change up my ratio.  Yesterday, I was able to average a leisurely 11 minutes a mile on a 7.7 mile run using a 2:1 ratio.  When I got home and looked at my Garmin numbers, my run pace was usually around the low 9’s or high 8’s, but my walk was really slow, so I’m hoping to work on this over the next 4 weeks, and see if I can get my overall pace down for Savannah.  I’ve really been enjoying using the run:walk method, and I feel like my recovery time from day to day is much better.  I am no longer reaching the end of my long run feeling exhausted like I couldn’t run any further.

My Garmin data from Sunday

After Savannah, my race schedule is going to get a little crazy!  I have the Serenbe Hill Country 15K on Nov. 23rd.  I ran it last year the week after my very first half, and it KICKED my butt!  I’m hoping for some redemption this year.  It’s an awesome race, but it’s a trail run, and I haven’t ran many trails.  My biggest concern is whether I need to stick with the 15K or drop to the 5K because after Serenbe, I just registered for the Rome 30K on December 7th because of peer pressure and due to being temporarily insane.  I’ll be running it with one of my BRF’s Jeneen.  It’s a big jump to try 30K for me, but I need to test the waters of farther distances.  Right now, I just want to finish the 30K and not die at the end. 😉  If the 30K goes well, then I will be moving up my timeline on my first marathon to run Albany on March 1st, but no commitments yet!

For next year, I am registered for the Red Nose Half, Albany, Publix, and the Ragnar Trail Relay in Conyers, GA.  I’m looking forward to getting a Ragnar Relay, marathon, and Half Ironman checked off my running bucket list sometime in the next year provided I can stay injury free, so stay tuned for updates on my journey towards these goals!

 

Injury update

Since my last update, I went for an MRI on my neck and got the results.  The MRI showed that I had a bone spur on my C6 vertebra that was pressing on the nerve that goes down my arm as it exits the spinal canal.  It also showed some other minor disc issues, but the bone spur is what seems to be causing the issue with arm numbness and pain.   The orthopedist said a bone spur in that area is actually pretty common, and if we did MRI’s on everyone over 40 (which I’m not), then we’d see it on over half the images, but since I’ve had a pretty active life it’s not unusual at my age.  For lack of a better word, he said it was basically some arthritis forming.  Yeah, yeah, just go ahead and say I’m getting old doc.  THANKS!  He thinks that with a cortisone injection the inflammation will go down, and the numbness and pain will get better, and surgery won’t be necessary.  Thank God, because I’m not really sure that would be an option I’m willing to consider.  The pain would have to be really bad before I am willing to go that route, and luckily I’m not in a lot of pain.  As a matter of fact, most of my pain is now gone, so it’s mainly just the numbness that is bugging me still.

On August 30th, the orthopedist referred me to a pain management doctor, but the doctor was to call me.  After a couple of days of not hearing from them, I stopped by their offices on Sept 4th, and I was able to schedule an appointment for tomorrow Sept 10th.  However, the appointment is only for a consultation to discuss the injection.  I wanted to go ahead and schedule the injection as well, but I was told that I had to wait until after the consultation to do that, so hopefully, I can schedule the injection by the end of this week or next at the latest.  My husband keeps telling me that I’ll be self-healed by the time I actually get the injection, and I’m beginning to think he may be right.  At least I can make it to about mile 3 or 4 now on my runs before my arm goes numb, and it doesn’t usually hurt anymore when it does, so my half training is getting back on schedule.  I still can’t bike though, and I’ve been told to stay off my bike until after the injection and preferably  until all numbness is gone.  I’m hoping I can return to biking by the end of September.

My DBS has been put on the back burner for now since I’ve been dealing with my neck issues, but I really think the slow down in everything has probably helped it as well.  I haven’t been able to do all of my exercises for it since some of the positions aggravated my neck worse, so it’s been a vicious cycle, but I’ve been taking my running return slowly, and I’m using the run/walk method doing a 4:1 interval right now.  I’m not back to the speed I’d like to be, but my mileage is almost back on track for my upcoming half marathons this fall, and my hip is holding up.  I was able to do a long run of 8.5 miles yesterday, and I still feel some tightness in it, but no pain, and that’s what counts!  I also ran the Big Peach Sizzler 10K on Labor Day, and even though I did it as a training run and wasn’t trying to PR, I was able to PR it since I hadn’t actually ran a 10K since last August which was my first 10K.  I could have definitely ran it faster and it wasn’t a PR I’m thrilled about, but it was a PR none the less, so it did make me feel better about my half marathons starting next month.

~ Train smart & have fun people!

Injuries Suck!!!

Ok, so what’s up with me?  I know I’ve been kind of quiet, and honestly I think it’s because I’ve been slightly depressed due to frustration with injuries.  I miss my training buddies, and I miss TRAINING!  But, things are looking up.

After my last update, I went to the PT for my arm numbness & pain which is believed to be due to my C6 vertebra compressing a nerve.  My shoulder had started hurting so bad that I couldn’t finish my last 20 mile bike ride, and I had to call my husband to pick me up on Aug 1st, and I went to the PT on Aug 6th.  The PT did some manual manipulation and put my head in a traction device at PT which felt good at the time, but as soon as I stood up from it, my arm started going numb again.  She instructed me not to bike or run for the next week. ARRGGHHHH!!!!  I still have not gotten back on a bike, but last week, I was able to start back running, and yesterday, I did my first swim since the beginning of August.  My arm is still going numb and starting to hurt during runs, but during my swim Monday, it went numb, but it didn’t hurt.

I feel like I’m totally starting over again with my running since I was off running for well over a month due to my hip, and now I’m still having to run with pain in my shoulder.  My hip feels better though!  🙂  Last week I ran 3 days for a total of only 11 miles.  I’m definitely behind for my upcoming half marathons, but I’m trying to take it easy & not try to build up too fast, so I’ve been using the run-walk method.  This week’s plan is to run 3 days with a total of 13 miles, so I ran 4 miles this morning.  I have just over 6 weeks until the Allstate half which I will be running as a training run, and I have just over 11 weeks to the Savannah RnR half which I was originally going to try to PR, but at this point, since I’m still not 100%, that doesn’t seem very likely, but I’ll see as it gets closer.

As for now, I have an MRI today of my neck which I’m hoping shows the doctors whatever they need to see to make this numbness & pain go away, so I can get back to my full training schedule sometime in the near future.  The PT said she thought I’d probably need injections in my neck to help with the inflammation to relieve the pressure on the nerve.  I’m pretty nervous about having an injection in my neck, but if it’ll help, then I’m willing to try anything right now.