A running injury WHILE NOT RUNNING?

So it seems that I got my very first real, had-to-go-to-the-dr running injury. I should be very proud of myself considering I have long had the goal of pushing myself to run so hard that I puke. Never actually did that,. but came close. It just sounds so kick-ass die hard! Maybe someday……
The problem is it didn’t actually happen when I was running. I still felt great and normal the next morning after a long run when I got up. It was after my daily hour and a half drive to work that it hit. I got out of the car and bam- it just started hurting and I limped for 3 or 4 days before it settled into an almost ignorable constant pain.

Anyways, according to the Dr I sprained my something indefinable. Whatever it is right where your leg bends at the body. I don’t think it has a name. Whatever it is it has caused me not to run since my last post except for 1 pathetic and painful not quite half a mile run which convinced me to take the last couple weeks off, even though I hadn’t run for a week before the Pretty Muddy 5k either. Unfortunately that had little to no effect on it, it still hurt just walking.

So off to the doc I went. He gave me 10 days of anti-inflammatories and said not to run/jump/skip/etc. for another two weeks. Really? I think I already gained 4 pounds. While it is kind of cool to get a prescription to be lazy I think I better start some upper-body something to make up for it. Why didn’t I try harder to learn to walk on my hands???

The up side? I think maybe I was actually becoming a real runner, because I actually miss it and can’t wait for my 2 weeks to be up. Hopefully I won’t be over it by then. Granted, it wasn’t a gee, I didn’t run today thing but more of a gee, I haven’t run this month thing, but it is a start.

Plus, all this down time made me learn to play Minecraft, thanks to my younger son’s tutoring. Video game addicted much? Why yes. The bad thing is that stupid Minecraft is just like real life, I keep getting lost. But in the game I can’t call my uncle for directions so I have lost 3 or 4 houses now. Which isn’t as bad as it sounds since every once in a while I run into them again and get a nice little virtual-homecoming.

Not my typical weekend!

Last weekend was definitely not my typical weekend. I was invited to a friend’s 40th birthday but skipped it – to go to dinner with the Pretty Muddy blogging crew. Me, skip a whole lot of drinking with friends to meet a bunch of strangers after work? Not likely, but I did.

We met first at Little Everglade Ranch to get a sneak peak of the Pretty Muddy course. We jumped in the back of a pickup (we were invited up front, but where is the adventure in that?) and were driven around the 1st 2 miles of the course. It was really fun to get to see everything before the crowds and to have an idea of what we were facing the next day.

Why didn’t we go the full 3.1 miles? Because driving around the over-unders the truck got stuck in the mud. I cannot even think of a more appropriate end to a mud run tour than that. So in the best tradition of horror movies everywhere, just as it was starting to get dark all the women decided it was a good idea to just walk back. Was I REALLY the only one there that knew that is how EVERY scary movie starts?? But not only did we make it back we were able to hitch a ride back in a tiny work truck which was a (bumpy) fun ride in itself.

After that we met at Kafe Kokopelli in Dade City for dinner. The restaurant is a neat place to visit; the staff was beyond friendly and attentive. I got a quesadilla and it was good, but then how do you mess up a quasadilla?  I heard no complaints from anyone about the food and the apple cider was good! What was even better was the company; I had a great time listening to everyone’s stories of their blogs and their adventures in running.  I think I was the only one at the table that hadn’t run half a dozen marathons. (feeling wimpy…)

Saturday morning was Pretty Muddy. I’ve run a couple others with my boyfriend, son, and other friends but going on my own was pretty intimidating. No pun intended. Much.

Even as I was parking my car my typical surge of this-is-outside-my-comfort-zone confidence was showing itself. Why am I here? Do I really think it’s going to be any fun at all doing this alone? It’s not like I’m going to be able to do all the obstacles and I’ll probably be walking across the finish line last person of the day… 

Turns out I met someone at the starting line that I ran the whole race with (sorry Jessica for talking pretty much the ENTIRE time). I had an absolute blast, all of the obstacles were very do-able, and I was able to run most of the race. I am SO glad I decided to stay and run!

This is why I like to run. This is why an all women’s race like Pretty Muddy is a great idea for women who would love to try something new but just aren’t sure. Since I started running I’ve met people I wouldn’t have otherwise met, and done lots of things I wouldn’t otherwise have done. My only competition is myself, yet somehow I keep finding myself jumping headfirst out of my comfort zone and into (or in some cases over) the fire.

The funniest thing about mud runs?  I hate beer but you always get a ticket for a free beer after the run, and it is always the best drink EVER.  I thought maybe I was turning and tried a beer or two elsewhere.  But no, beer is strictly a running thing for me. I can live with that! 

Set goals? OK, FINE.

So I’ve been reading a lot of other people’s blogs and it seems that at the beginning of the month people do crazy things like join challenges and set goals. I can’t be certain, but I think they intend to actually follow them too. There are crazy people out there! There are crazy people right here too, so I decided to join them.

I actually joined 2 things on line today, both which seem like fun. 

The first is 100% fun, I joined Lindsay’s Foodie Pen Pals at The Lean Green Bean. Basically you sign up on her site and she pairs you with 2 other ‘pen pals’. The first one sends you a box of food and you send a box of food to the second one. There isn’t any limits on what you can send except for it shouldn’t go over $15 and of course it ought to be shippable.  So I am now on a hunt to find great food made locally, seems like my items should be very Floridian!

The Lean Green Bean

The second is maybe not as fun. At  MizFitOnline she issued a challenge to quit all processed foods for 30 days.  Actually, she said she got it from Greatist, but there are so many posts there I can’t find anything about it.  I did find this though. I won’t be trying it for 30 days as alcohol does slightly strike me as processed, but I’m sure I’ll find a reason why that’s not true before the 30 days are up.

My other goal for this month is to actually HAVE a goal for running by the end of the month. I know I want to be a stronger runner, but I don’t know what that means, even just to me. Do I want to run further? Do I want to run faster? Do I want to run more often? Can I call it a running streak if I only run 1/2 a mile a day?

Yes, yes, yes, not officially.

So for the moment my only running goal is to decide on a goal and to run at least 3 times a week. That’s always my goal, rarely what I actually do.

Paddling in Vacationland

What’s the best type of workout there is? The kind that you do because it’s fun and it just happens to be good for you. I took a vacation day for Halloween and then remembered I didn’t actually have anything to do all day, so I went paddleboarding. It’s been a couple months since I’ve been out so it was way past due!

I don’t go out on the bay when I’m by myself, so I stuck to the inlets. There are occasional dolphins and manatees swimming through, but I didn’t see any this time. The reason I stick to the inlets? Once we took the kids out in kayaks just a bit past the mouth of the bay and saw a dolphin, oh no wait that is NOT a dolphin fin, it’s a shark fin. Which was super cool until it started following the kayak my boyfriend and son where in. It just looked and swam off but if that happened to me on a paddleboard I have little doubt I’d panic and fall off.

Anyway, one of the awesome things about living in Florida is that you can turn a vacation day into an actual vacation without any effort at all. I know people who think it’s too humid… too dangerous because of hurricanes… too whatever. Maybe they meant too awesome?

There are a couple small beaches to stop at along the way.

 This is my favorite area to paddle in, when it’s low tide like this time you can walk around and see tons of little fish, huge birds, and crabs running around.  If it’s high tide you can paddle through lots of little pathways (are they paths if it’s on water?) which always makes me feel like I’m far, far away from civilization, which is actually a few minutes away.

Although I didn’t see anything big I did see a bunch of rays and a bald eagle!  This is only the second eagle I’ve seen outside of a zoo so I think its super-cool.

The rays are color-disguised, I usually only notice them when they take off, but you can still see him in the picture if you really look.

The bad thing about paddleboarding?  I have so much fun I don’t notice I’m worn out until I get back.  That board is magically a whole lot heavier trying to put it on the car to bring it home than it is when I leave in the morning!