Thursday, March 26, 2015

I'm falling apart.. again!

It's been awhile since I've mentioned my injuries that have been haunting me for the past couple years.  There hasn't really been any change in status on my back.  It's not surgical, I've had 2 steroid injections (and don't want anymore), have gone through physical therapy (twice) and seen several chiropractors.  At this point it's more about managing pain, understanding there will be good days and bad days, and trying to avoid known triggers (i.e. long car rides, lying on my back on the floor, etc).
I've also started going to a chiropractor (yep, my third!) that is not associated with any sports rehab or physical therapy facility, but comes with a recommendation from a runner friend.  It's close to my house which is a huge plus, and I like being in and out without all the PT nonsense that did not work, not once.  We do stimulation and ultrasound and then he does a quick adjustment.
Then.. introducing a new issue:  my knee!  It's been hurting since an earlier ski trip to Wisp in early February. I went to see Dr. Davis, who you might remember rubbed me the wrong way a little after he kind of dismissed me when there was nothing more he could do for my back.  The thing is, it's easy to get an appointment with him, so I returned.  Given this is Ironman year, and wanting to be aggressive, he ordered an MRI.  I am happy to report that I have a healthy knee, structurally!  He did see a "change in signal" in some cartilage that he believes might be the source of my pain.  He prescribed some anti-inflammatory meds and physical therapy and wants to see me back an two weeks.  Hmm...
The thing is, I hated [with a passion] the physical therapy team associated with his office. I chatted with my chiropractor about this, and he believes that the stimulation and ultrasound could be beneficial to my knee, so I have been going in to see him for a double dose of treatments.  I have researched some physical therapy exercises and can do those on my own.  If it doesn't get better in a couple weeks, my next step will be a physical therapist or rehab facility that my team recommends, or perhaps the physical therapy office that I went to for my foot. The good news is that the MRI shows there is nothing seriously wrong; that's the important thing.

Oh, and speaking of my foot... I am hoping it's just the weather nuances, but my foot has been hurting a lot lately.  I've scheduled yet another appointment with Dr. Lutta, so stay tuned for an update on that.... //sigh//  
But.. I've still been plugging away, getting ready for the start of racing season!  Under 200 days!  Also, my friend, Paula, found out this week that she was accepted into the Marine Corps marathon (it's a lottery), so I'm thrilled to know I'll have a distance running buddy through the summer!  Now, if only the weather would get nice; there was freezing rain yesterday.....

Monday, March 16, 2015

Lucky Leprechaun 5K

A couple weeks ago, Joann sent me a link for a 5K to celebrate St. Patrick's Day.  We love St. Patrick's day, so we both signed up.  It usually is the sign that spring is here.  Not so much on this day, and we were both woefully under-dressed for the 40 degrees (if that) and pouring rain (the weather forecast said 65 degrees!!!).  We settled for a "before" picture in the parking garage before Daz drove us over to the run start.
It was pouring rain.  It was freezing.  We huddled under one of the awnings in the Town Center until the very last minute.  When we saw people moving to start the race, we darted to the back of the line.  Immediately, we started brainstorming ways of cutting the race short...
We started off at a pretty good pace, and I was able to stick with Joann, who is often much faster than I am.  It was in my favor that she hasn't been running in awhile!  We were passing a bunch of people and I noticed at the first mile that we were doing about a 12.5 minute mile.  Not bad!
We took a few walk breaks, but not for very long and generally only on the uphills.  And yes, there were hills.  More than you'd think would exist around the Reston Town Center!  We kept passing people.  It's always such a weird concept to me to pass so many people as I'm generally the one getting passed.  Granted, we hopped into the starting corral at the very last minute and towards the end, so if people were seeding themselves correctly (which rarely ever happens), it stands to reason we were faster than the back of the line.
Oh, those hills!  And the rain.  It never stopped raining!  The only thing that kept us going was the thought of brunch and cider at the post-race party.  Joann had done this race before so she knew the course and kept me apprised of how many more turns there were and where the hills were.  Our pace was actually getting faster and I knew that if we kept it up, we could finish under a 12 min/mile pace.  I can't remember the last time I've done that!  We timed our last walk break so that we could finish strong on the last incline.
Finally, to the finish!  Still so very cold and wet, but with big smiles on our faces because we knew breakfast was nearby.  Once we were done, we grabbed some water and a banana and started making our way back to the parking garage.
And yes, we finished with the best 5K pace I've done in a long, long time.  A success all around!  Luckily, Joann had the brains to think to bring her old keyfob from when she lived in the town center, and we were able to dry off and change clothes in the condo building's lobby restroom.  She even brought a hair dryer which we used to dry out our shoes since neither of us had thought to bring a second pair. 
Cheers!  Good times at the post-party at World of Beer, sampling ciders and fueling up on breakfast tacos. Daz and Darcy came to join us for a bit as well.  Not quite the nice springtime weather we were hoping for, but a good day all around.  We do love our day drinking!
side note: official race results list us at 37:57 total time, and 12:15/mile.  You'll notice my garmin lists our distance a touch over 3.1 miles, which accounts for the discrepancy.  We placed 442 and 443 out of 642 female runners.