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Showing posts from October, 2012

Sadness and Gratitude (but Mostly Gratitude)

This past weekend was one of great joy peppered with moments of sadness. It was my birthday weekend, but it was also the weekend I had previously planned to be in D.C. to run the Marine Corps Marathon. While I'd somewhat made peace with the fact that I wouldn't be able to run the marathon, due to injury, I knew that the actual race day, the same as my birthday, would tug a bit at my heart strings. But I was lucky enough to stay occupied with birthday activities all weekend long, with only a couple of intermissions in which to take my quiet time to be alone and just feel sad.

The weekend started off with birthday coffee with a friend at the Oxford Exchange. This is a new venue in Tampa, basically downtown, that houses a coffee shop, a tea shop, a bookstore, a home goods store, a restaurant, and rentable upstairs meeting space. The building is historic, located across from the University of Tampa campus.


The coffee and tea vendors that occupy the building just happen to be two o…

My First Reiki Session

I don't pretend to know much about Reiki. What I knew before going into this session was that it was a form of energy healing of Eastern origin, based on the body's chakra system. Throughout my injury, I've done every kind of hands-on treatment I could think of or read about, but it occurred to me that there was another source of healing I hadn't tapped into: energy medicine. Actually, my aunt Pattie is the person who suggested Reiki early on in my injury when I posted about it on Facebook. Only later did it occur to me that I had a friend who was a Reiki master and practitioner. So I asked her if she'd be able to give me a session. She happily obliged, and we set a date.

I had my session a couple of hours ago, and this is what my experience was like:

First, it was a casual meeting, as Melissa and I had known each other for years, and we met in my office and closed the door.She sat across from me and put her hands up, palms facing my body, and pretty much said, &quo…

A Belated Ashtanga Yoga Preparation

Yesterday morning I did something I hadn't done in exactly one year and one day: I attended an Ashtanga yoga class. For a number of reasons--chief among them the priority that marathon training took in my life, but also the lack of offering at my preferred studio--I stopped going to a regular Ashtanga class. But I often missed it. So I was very excited that "my" yoga studio, Bella Prana, announced last week that they'd be offering Ashtanga classes twice per week. Further, I'd taken my only Ashtanga classes with the two instructors who happened to be staffing the new classes, so I had two happy reunions to look forward to.

The Sunday class was taught by Eric Wheeler, who is special to me because he is the instructor who ignited in me a deeper interest in and appreciation for yoga. Way back in the days when he taught at the USF Rec Center (2005-06 or so), I would attend his class with the intention of getting a physical practice, but he helped open my mind to yoga …

So, Just Kidding

Monday I posted that I had made my decision about whether to participate in the Marine Corps Marathon, and that my decision was to go. But last night, I came to my senses. (This is pretty much how all the days since my injury have gone--I will go, I won't go, I will, I won't...) I've been unbelievably stressed over this decision and over trying to train effectively for a marathon when I CAN'T RUN. In retrospect, the decision should have been more obvious to me, but I suppose a lot of things look better in retrospect.

Further, I'm also planning to run a marathon in mid-January, and it just occurred to me how little time I'll have to train for it even if I don't go to MCM. If I did go to MCM, I'd undoubtedly be taking time away from healing my leg, and then I'd be in this same "should I run or should't I" predicament for that marathon. That's not what I want.

But as a good friend pointed out to me last night, I have to commit to whic…

MCM Training: Week 14: Decision Time

I gave myself a deadline of this past weekend to decide whether I would try to run the marathon, now 20 days away, or forgo it in favor of more recovery. After a week of more concerted therapy efforts, more rest, and lots of reflection, I've decided to go to DC and "do" the marathon. Whether that means running, walking, or a combination of both, I feel confident I'll be able to finish within the time limit and, more important, not further injure myself.


Throughout most of the day Saturday, I was almost certain I would not go. I was feeling the same sort of background pain in my calf, in addition to other pains in my body--right IT band, left piriformis, right back-of-knee, achy shoulders--and I felt like my body might never feel good again. I was pretty despondent, despite getting to spend the day with my sister, mom, and niece. In fact, I've noticed an increase in depressive symptoms during the past week, in particular, even though I've tried my best to prep…

Epsom Salt Believer?

I hesitate to put this in writing, but today my leg feels better than it has all week. This is particularly surprising because I had a rough day with it yesterday. After feeling the pain all day, I went to the gym after work to try to get some cardio in. I first went to the elliptical machine and stayed on it for a whopping 15 minutes. But I could feel some mild pain even with that. So I then moved to the stationary bike and managed another 15 minutes (I hate doing stationary things). I then did a circuit of three weight machines, went to a treadmill to power walk for 10 minutes, and did the circuit once more. I left feeling very frustrated that this "low-impact" workout took so much effort (partly because I didn't know what to do), and I still felt like my leg was bothered by it.

When I got home, I ate dinner and then drew a hot bath with a lot of Epsom salt poured in and just soaked in it for as long as I could take the heat. I then applied my ice pack for about 30 min…

MCM Training: Rehab Accountability List

I realize today that I'm not taking my rehab as seriously as I've taken my training. While I know the various reasons for this, I'd rather not delve into those and instead would like to make a list of actions I should be seriously focusing on to help my recovery. My hope is that publicly declaring these actions will help keep me accountable during a time when I'm really having to dig deep to stay motivated.

Ice 3x per dayDo strengthening exercises given by PT 1x per dayStretch 2x per dayIncorporate elliptical or speed walking 2x per weekTake epsom salt baths 2x per weekBike longer than I think I canGo to bed earlier to get appropriate sleepListen to my body; if it hurts, don't do itBe grateful for what I can doPractice yoga--for well-being of both body and soul If anyone would like to help keep me accountable, I welcome your efforts!

MCM Training: Week 13 plus Diagnosis and Treatment

Week 13 This past week was my first full training week without running (mostly) or CrossBoot. It was definitely challenging to find activities that could replicate the levels of intensity I achieved in those two things. I had one bad and one good experience on the bike, and I did a lot of yoga.


I also did a couple of things that I should have known better than to do. For example, on Saturday afternoon, I attended a lindy-in-the-park event, put on by a group of swing dancers who have recently begun organizing new events. (As a side note, I originally moved to Tampa because of swing dancing, and I used to be heavily involved in it; but as the local dance scene changed, my interest began to wane.) I haven't danced in over a year, and I was excited enough to want to go and see some old friends and try my dance legs out. But dancing on concrete in rubber-soled shoes was just about the last thing I should have done. Swing dancing--lindy hop, specifically--can involve a lot of jumping an…