Friday, March 29, 2013

Funny Foto Friday: Time Spent At the Gym

As I type this, I'm procrastinating a little on going for my 8 mile run.  A lot of miles, but I know that I can handle it - as long as my legs cooperate.  But, I suppose that is a lot like saying "I can totally walk across the USA as long as I don't stop" or something dumb.  Oh well, off to running!

To be fair, I'm usually on the treadmill while checking myself out. **FLEXES**


What funny foto friday post around a holiday would be complete w/out a creepy picture??

Nice try SANTA. You don't get ALL of the holidays
You REALLY need to learn how to wait your turn.

Finally, the weekly picture of my son.  A few weeks back we had a lot of free time at Target so we went over and tried on some of the hats.  He looked good in all of them and well, now I have head lice I think.  Happy Friday!




Thursday, March 28, 2013

Running and saws and also more running


I'm stubborn.  I can admit it.  For 90% of things I’m fairly easy going, but for the other 10%, I dig my heels in and scream “NO WAY am I going to put on pants to go get the mail just at the corner”.  So, it should come as little surprise that for my 6 mile run on Wednesday, my second run back, I was VERY determined to finish.

As you might remember I was SORE after my first run back. So horribly sore that I could barely walk. But, it did go away for the most part by Wednesday and I was able to head out for an early morning run.

It is funny what you forget about after taking off as long as I have. When I was standing outside my place waiting for my Garmin to sync, I twisted the wrong (right?) way and realized I had NO nipple tape on.  To all of the ladies reading, let me explain via URL: This would NOT work.  So, I took off my shirt and threw it in the bushes.  Also, I realized about 2 miles in that I totally forgot water or ANYTHING!  Good news is that I did poop before I ran. Not sure if I could forget that.....

Anyway, I got 0.1 miles in – less than one minute, and my calves nearly completely cramped up.  I stopped and said a swear. I briefly considered stopping but instead I stopped my watch and started to walk.  After a bit I started back up again and ran another 0.75.  More achy cramps, more swearing, more walking. Lovely.  After some period of walking I ran some more and made it to the 2 mile mark before....walking...swearing, etc.  BUT THEN, things loosened up enough that I was able to run the last 4 miles.

The good news is that both calves were equally painful/sore so it isn’t a stress fracture issue so much as it is a getting back to running issue.  So, I’m actually very very happy with the run.  My calves however are still very cranky about it.

Moral of the story: Listen to your body, yes. That is, unless your body is being a stupid bitch then just turn on the stubborn part of your brain and do what you want.  (That should not be considered coaching advice... like, at all...)

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

This weekend I helped a buddy cut some holes in his ceiling for more air conditioning vents.  As you can see, unfortunately for Jeff while he was up in the attic sweating, I was taking stupid pictures of myself down below.  Unfortunately for me, I think I sucked in a little bit too much insulation and I coughed for 3 days afterwards.  Serves me right for the pics I suppose.
Have saw, will travel

If you only knew the ridiculous outtakes...



-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I had a sales meeting the other day where all of the conference rooms were full so we decided to go to a coffee place.  Since I was already 3 cups into the day and I didn’t want to see any more hallucinations than normal, I grabbed a coconut water in one of those little juice box deals.  Now, I have NO idea whose mouths these freaking things were made for, but it wasn’t MY mouth.  I dribbled that stuff down the front of my shirt with every sip.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Finally, something to brighten your Thursday  - tou might remember the Nike “find your greatness” advert.  It’s a GREAT ad.... Check it out here.  Go ahead, I’ll wait....


Well, the kid featured in the video recently lost THIRTY pounds and credited the commercial spot with helping him kick-start the change. You can read about it here. That goes to show you that, regardless of the reason, getting healthy is always a good thing.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Running Post Stress Fracture

On Saturday, I did something that I haven’t done in 6 weeks. I man-scaped!  I ran! After receiving the thumbs up from my doctor to run, I finally felt comfortable to head out for a quick 4 mile test run.  It was everything that I hoped it would be (kind of)!  I ran in the heat of the day without a shirt on (per doctors orders – have to get 30 min of sun), I saw a few other runners, I blew snot out of my nose, and because I didn’t bring any water my mouth was dryer than the Sahara.

But, if I am being honest, it wasn’t all rainbows and unicorns. Far from it, in fact.  Here are my initial thoughts from my first run in 6 weeks...


My “internal pace” clock is totally out of wack
The overall pace of my run was 7:17/mile. I wanted to run around 7:45 – 8:00.  Before, I could lock in on 7:30ish pace pretty easily, let my mind wander to how much I miss Simon Cowell on American Idol, and hold that for miles and miles without looking too much at my Garmin.  However, having not run for quite some time, I no longer had my cruise control.  My pace looked somewhat like an EKG.  Up, down, up down.   It was all over the map.  I really hope it comes back soon because the jumpy pace was tough to push through

Running shoes felt...strange
Probably the most interesting / sad thing was that I hadn’t put on running shoes in FOREVER so they felt really strange. They felt snug and warm like a condom for my feet. Normally I’m in dress shoes for work or flip flops so it was really strange to be in running shoes again.

Cross training works!!  Sort of
Running requires two things: Spandex and watered down Gatorade Cardio-vascular endurance and muscle strength.  With the exception of a week where I moped around about having a stress fracture, since being hurt I’ve been pool running and biking as much as my body would allow – sometimes more so.  These have trained my cardio-vascular endurance.... my lungs and my heart.  However, for some reason, they did not work specific parts of my legs.  What this means is that two days after I ran my 4 miles (Monday) my legs were SORE. Post marathon sore.  Not just sore near my stress fracture, but my quads, IT bands, etc.  Pool running is supposed to avoid this to a certain extent, so I’m not sure if I was doing it wrong or what.

Recovery is not linear – it will have ups and downs
I certainly didn’t have expectations that I’d go out and blast 4 miles pain free and everything would be awesome.  But, I didn’t think that I’d have as much trouble as I’ve had over the last 3 days.  The reality is that the soreness that I’ve had is really troubling.  On Monday, my legs were sore enough that getting up off of the toilet was one of the hardest things I’d done all day. I had actually planned on running 6 miles that day but I had to push it to tonight. I keep having thoughts that are best summarized by “If I can’t run 4 miles without being a wreck, how am I going to run 26 miles in 20 days??” I honestly don’t have a good answer for that, I really don’t.

I Haz Sad
I’m trying to keep it all in perspective, but the soreness that I’ve seen has really taken a lot of wind out of my sails.  I’m putting in so much effort to get to the starting line and I’m not 100% certain that I’ll get there.  I feel like the frequent response that I get from people is to just not run this year and try to qualify again next year.  However, the reality is that it took nearly everything I had to qualify this time.... what if I’m not able to do it?

But, on THAT happy note I’m reminded of the very common saying: if it were easy, everyone would do it.   Another test run tonight!!

Friday, March 22, 2013

Funny Foto Friday: First day of spring!

A little bit of a grab bag of fun pics that I've collected over the last few days in my non existent spare time. (Read: while on the toliet) Most importantly, I'm trying to get as much done while at work so that I can focus on what is important this weekend: A TEST RUN!!


Oh man, it's been COLD outside.  It seems like the new national past time is sharing pictures on facebook and twitter about how the Groundhog was TOTALLY wrong when he said that spring would come early.  (Newsflash, he is a big toothed rat.)

Just kidding, this is Phoenix.  I think the weather is supposed to be a mix between beer garden weather and windows down on the way home weather.  I'm not sure which.  Something like this:

In fact, at 5:30 this morning I was in the pool. Not sure if this is going to work, my video on the new social media sensation "vine". You can just check out the video here: https://vine.co/v/bDKY5xww7A6  Or, I guess another video here: vine.co/v/bDKYExTUmix.



Didn't I tell you that Chuck Norris was everywhere?  Well, he is.  Including HERE:

Damn straight.

My iPhone is hollering that I have 6GB of pictures of my son, so I have been taking them rather sparingly.  So, just trust me that he is as cute as ever.  Happy Friday!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Chuck Norris, See through pants, and more!


A quick grab bag of stuffs for a Wednesday.  I can’t think up a name that rhymes, so let’s just call it... mid week mixins.  Oh look, see what I just did there?

There are lots of reasons why I like the internet. Connecting with people around the world.....  Illegal music..... Instant news..... Porn..... Information overload.....  But I think that the thing I like most about the internet is its ability to pluck people from relative obscurity and make them internet famous.  Case in point: Chuck Norris.  Dude is everywhere.

However, yesterday this picture came across my desk.  Chuck Norris shaved his beard!!!  And, more importantly, he looks like a mix between Mick Jagger and that crazy uncle we all have.


---------------------------------------------------------

Work has been crazier than a 10 year old at an espresso factory, but I'm getting by.  Who am I kidding?  the only thing that is getting me through this week is the fact that I'm going on a 3 mile test run this weekend!!!

---------------------------------------------------------

This  morning, I yelled to my son that it was time for a shower and he comes running with the iPad (which he calls an iPack). “Play iPack in the shower!”  Yeah, think again buddy….

I need to use this pic as part of my New Years Double race report, but he did this all on his own...
Haters gonna hate

---------------------------------------------------------

Finally, I have NO idea why someone didn’t email me about this story when it first hit the wires. You guys really dropped the ball. Turns out that lululemon made one model (version?) of their $100 yoga pant styles a BIT to form fitting to the point that they are see through!  Seriously.  Check out the story here.  


To be clear, yoga pants are amazing.  I mean, I’ve never wore any, but I assume.  But, you can’t tell me that part of the testing process didn’t include the “shimmy into a pair a size too small with white underwear and try to do downward dog” scenario.  Lululemon fail! Or, win? Jury is still out.

Now, I’m off to find a yoga studio.... or maybe just a Starbucks in Scottsdale on a Saturday morning.... either way...

Monday, March 18, 2013

I can run!

Look how happy I am!!!
Seriously, if you haven't read the story behind this
picture check it out here.

Eventually.  But, not right now.  But I can bike which I couldn’t do before! I can ride the ass crushing bike that might make me impotent.  Yay......

As you might remember in case I haven’t been bitching about it enough, I have not one but two stress fractures in my right leg bones.  I had a 4 week checkup last Wednesday where I had an x-ray to confirm gender confirm healing.  Long story short I can’t wear dresses anymore  there was enough healing to get me to the Boston Marathon starting line!  Hooray!!!

As I sit here I’m exactly 4 weeks away from Boston.  So, this week I’ll bike and aqua-jog, next week I’ll likely do the same but with more volume with MAYBE a 3-5 mile test run, and then the 2 weeks before the race I’ll try to work up to a 10 or 13 mile run.  Seems easy enough on paper....

The reality of course is that I’ll have to have nearly everything go perfect to be able to get there with no issues.  So, I’m trying to be smart and coach myself like I would coach anyone else.  Listen to your body, take rest days when needed, wear booty shorts under my work clothes for “training”, and ease into the new plan like you’re squeezing a tube of toothpaste.  Essentially: don’t do anything dumb.  So, since my doctor visit, I've logged trainer rides of 60, 90, and 120 minutes and have aqua jogged for an hour.  It feels GOOD to be moving again....in place...indoors...

Kidding aside, I’m over the moon excited about my positive doctors visit.  I am going to go in after 3 months to do a bone density scan and another blood test to make sure that everything is looking normal again, but other that I am free and clear!



Friday, March 15, 2013

Funny Foto Friday: 4 miles doing WHAT?

Just a quick funny foto Friday update because I'm half way through writing a recap of my stress fracture doc update post!!!

That gets me thinking about some "tests" I could do.
Wait, nevermind....

I actually had a similar situation to the above except, maybe a little less R rated.  The last two days I have been riding the bike trainer indoors.  I'll put my Garmin on to track time and heart rate.  Well, for some reason it finds a satellite even though I am indoors so the map and distance end up a little... Wonky.  I usually override the distance based on time, but generally speaking the watch will say that I go about 0.15 miles per hour.

SOMETHING was going on while I was on the trainer!


When you have friends like this, who needs enemies?  Happy Friday!



Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Overcoming Real Adversity - Iram Leon


As you might imagine, I’m a pretty upbeat guy.  The humor and levity that you read on my blog is extruded from my pores at any given moment. (Hence my glisten)  However, I can admit that this stress fracture is really taking its toll on me.  It is sort of like a little bee. If he flies by once, you say “oh fun, a little bee. Buzz buzz little dude – have fun making honey!” However, sometimes that bee sort of hangs around your head for a while.  Soon, your thoughts float from sweet honey to “oh god, am I allergic to bee stings?  Am I going to end up with swollen lips like Octo-mom after all of this is done?? GET AWAY BEE.

This weekend I had a “long aqua-jog” of 2 hours on Saturday that went great.  I was ebbing and bobbing and all was right with the world.  I even got to pee in the pool a few times.  It was heavenly. But, Sunday’s “recovery” aqua jog found my leg being a bit funky in a similar way as my stress fracture was.  Read: the pain was back.  So, I cut my recovery short at 40 min on Sunday and skipped today.  I have a follow up appointment on Wednesday to check the healing progress via x-ray.  I was hopeful that I would get the green light to bike and do some LIGHT running but now I’m not sure.  How can I easy run a marathon in 3.5 hours if I can’t float in a pool for 2???

-------------------------------



Shifting gears slightly, a story recently came across my desk (doesn’t that make me sound important?) that has to be shared – and honestly probably should have came before talking about bees and peeing in the pool.

You see, some people have issues. Like, real issues.  Iram Leon has brain cancer.  The bad kind that kills you (not sure there is a good kind....).  In fact doctors say that he won’t live to see 40. He is taking pills that make him throw up, can’t drive because of past seizures, and has scars from surgery.  But, he is a runner.  A fast runner.  In fact, he won the Gusher Marathon this past weekend with a time of 3:07.  Did I mention that he was pushing his SIX year old daughter in a jogging stroller?

Yeah.

Anyway, you can read about his race here or read his race report here or follow him on twitter here.  I am not sure that I could tell his story any better than he himself did.

So, whenever I’m feeling bad about my little silly stress fracture that WILL heal eventually, I guess I can just think of Iram. Cause, he is sort of bad ass.



Friday, March 8, 2013

Funny Foto Friday: Handsome


The other day, I had a bit of a setback with my stress fractured leg.  I went to a karaoke place with coworkers and stood on my feet for a few hours (maybe singing a few Britney Spears songs, don’t hate).  Afterwards, my leg felt... different. Not pain, not even discomfort, but I could certainly tell that it wasn’t 100%.  Frustrating for sure.  I took an extra rest day from aqua jogging but I expect that I’ll be back at it on Saturday with at least 2 hours worth.

I fell in to a burning ring of fire....


But, on a bright if not strange note, the private room that we reserved for the 15 or so of us had a stripper pole in the middle of the gross shag carpeted room.  Have you ever been anywhere with coworkers that involved a stripper pole? It was HR’s worst nightmare.  Fortunately, everyone basically acted responsibly and on the bright side I earned $18 in one dollar bills.

Why yes, I DID try to get myself perpendicular to the pole. 
Didn't make it to 3 O'clock, maybe to 4...


A few days back (a week?) I posted about how I bought some Ben and Jerry’s ice cream in a “woe is me, my leg is broken” fit but I didn’t eat any that night.  Well, I am happy to report that I did eat some two days later.  I am unhappy to report that it hasn’t even crossed my mind to eat it since. :(

Tastes like comfort


A few misc funny foto Friday pics this week.  Enjoy!

Wait, I don't get it!?  Oh, right....
Made this one extra big.  You're welcome.

Mmmm, colors are GREAT


Oh crap, this means I probably only get 20 miles to the gallon.  Shit.



Finally, my son’s uncle is a commercial pilot so airplanes get brought up a lot in our house.  As a result, the trip to visit my dad and grandfather was particularly exciting for him.  I seriously think that he could have stayed here and watched these take off all day long.  Hell, I probably could have too.  Happy Friday!


Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Injured Runner Support Group


All in all, I have a lot of good things going for me.  I have a good job, a fun son, my looks my big teeth.....for which to chew food, a big nose.... uhhh... that aids in awesome smelling... Maybe it is best to not list my "attributes".  But, that said, being hurt is pretty annoying.  When I’m not running there are lots of things that have to change:

  • I have to eat less food so I don’t gain 15 pounds (I’m already up 7.  Opps)
  • I can’t wear my booty shorts
  • People avoid talking to you about running “Ohh, can I talk about this with the injured boring runner?”
  • No excuse to stare at booty shorts
  • I have a buildup of snot in my nose that is no longer socially acceptable to snot rocket out
  • I've had to cut back my use of the word "Fartlek" much more than I would like


Hugs!!!
Fortunately though, an injured runner support group has sprung up out of thin air and welcomed me with their either previously or currently injured arms.  I’ve received numerous emails offering advice, support, and a healthy dose of snark to help me get through the blues.  Not only that, but tweets and facebook notes have poured in to see how I’ve been coming along and if I’ve been running.

I’ve had a number of great resources come my way.  From waterproof iPod cases, first hand accounts on the benefits of aqua-running, and even sample workout routines – fellow runners have been more than willing to help... even if only to lend an ear.  I didn't expect it, I certainly didn't request it, but it is great comfort to know that the running "community" that we've created is one that really does care.

So, in my (surprisingly limited) spare time because I’m not running, I’m going to try to do the same.  Heck, I might even do it when I am back to running! Kidding, I totally will.... but I can’t promise that I won’t have booty shorts on while I’m doing it.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Aqua-Running In Iowa?! Not so much


Over the last 5 days I’ve been out of town visiting my dad, brother, and grandpa with my son.  4 generations of men.  After the trip it is any wonder that I can chew with my mouth closed and close the toilet seat – let alone flush.  If its yellow let it mellow if its....

Of course, what this really means is that my house was totally unoccupied and you missed out on stealing dozens of dollars of valuables!  Turns out my 1980s VHS tape collection weren’t very high crime targets.  Who knew!? Whatever, more Michael J Fox on a hoverboard for me! Suckers.

I had packed the massive aqua-running floater belt, trunks, etc for the trip but the timing didn’t work out to get to a pool.  I will 100% admit that I could have forced going – but it would have 100% been forced between nap time, craft beer drinking time, visiting with family time, craft beer drinking time, and the strange 4:30pm early close of the pool.  Turns out, when the high temps are below freezing, there are fewer options to swim available.  Stupid stress fracture....  When I’m running, it is easy to force myself to get out, but with aqua-running, it is much harder.

You'd be very surprised how often it happens...


This trip was the first time that I traveled to Iowa alone with my 2 year old son.  Let me tell you, what workout I lost by not getting in the pool, I gained chasing after him. (Just kidding, I don’t buy into the whole “time on feet” cross training that people use to say that mowing the lawn is a replacement for a run.)  I took more snacks than I should have and found all SORTS of new iPad things for him to stare mindlessly at “learn”.  Of course, I will admit that there was more than one trip to the bathroom with him on my shoulders while I pee’d in the urinal and there MIGHT have been some coaxing for him to press the unlock button when he locked himself in the car.  Father of the year....

Do I look like I've been traveling all day chasing after a 2 year old?
Yeah, that is what I thought, too

Best parent of the year award goes to??


But, after nearly a week off, this morning was a new day and I got back into the pool for an hour’s worth of splashing around.  One benefit of aqua-running vs regular running? Peeing in the pool.  Yeah, I did it – while running. I figure an idiot bobbing around in the pool was enough to stare at I didn’t need to stop in the middle and just float there for 10 seconds.  I figure that since I smell like chlorine after a shower and throughout 2/3 of the day afterwards, there is enough in the pool to take care of whatever is making it burn “down there”.

Overall it was a great trip, but I really need to get back on the fitness wagon.  When my only option is pool related, the logistics are sometimes insurmountable. But, soon I'll be running again and that excuse will NOT fly.

By the way, is peeing in the pool bad etiquette?  If so, uhhhh I was TOTALLY kidding in that part up top.