SoCS – The empty feeling of not running

It has been a LONG time since I did an exercise or health post.  To be honest, I haven’t really exercised in ages and I’m far from healthy in terms of what I eat and how much weight I’ve gained in the past few years.  I decided to make a change (again) and instead of just jumping into something, I decided to make a plan.

I’m probably way over-thinking this, but that’s what I’m good at, so I will try not to let it get too out of hand.

I stopped running a few years ago (was it last year?) because I was in pain.  I went to a physical therapist once, but according to him, I had to relearn how to walk and run and I figured it just wasn’t worth it.  But I’m sort of missing it.  Now that it’s warmer, I see runners on the sidewalks and I am starting to realize that the empty feeling inside is longing.

I just had a thought today about when I went for my first run.  I did it because my sister told me that she had started running and she also told me how much she loved it.  My sister and I have this not so healthy competitive thing that happens with us, but this time, that competition got me up off my ass.  I was actually at her house, and the next morning I just got up and went for a run.  I didn’t have the right shoes.  I didn’t know what the hell I was doing.  I just did it.

Boy, was it hard!  I hurt for a few days and barely ran for most of the mile I was out, but at the same time it felt so good!  After that, I was hooked.  Pain sort of deals a blow to all that nostalgia that running can offer, but I think I’ve learned enough about my body to understand what I need to do.

I’d already decided that I was going to go for a run in the morning, but then the doubts started creeping in.  Is it going to hurt?  What if I can’t run very far?  What am I even doing?  Who am I kidding??  But then the voice of reason reminded me of that first run and I am all set.

This blogger is going for a run tomorrow morning.  I’m hoping that it will help dispel that empty/hollow feeling that’s been plaguing me.  Even if it doesn’t, I’m sure there will be other benefits to it.

Happy Saturday everyone!

Stream of Consciousness Saturday  is hosted by Linda G Hill. Today’s prompt is “empty/hollow.” Use one, use both, entirely up to you. Enjoy!


Mindful Monday – A Long Lost Friend

I stepped back into blogging on Saturday and I’ve been feeling much better about life.  I also feel like I want to take that next step to a healthier me.  It’s been a rough few months of pain, extreme emotion and trying to find my place in my own life, but I realized a while ago that if I was going to make any significant changes, I needed to be coming from a better place.

I feel like I’ve finally reached that place.  Maybe I won’t allow myself to run anymore, but there are things I can do, I just haven’t wanted to do those things because, I don’t know… I was grieving?  But, now that I’ve basically pulled my head out, I’m realizing that I may still be able to run, I just need to work my body up to it and do the things that will stretch those muscles and make it easier to run.

I don’t need a physical therapist to show me how to exercise… maybe it would help, but I spent an entire summer running more than I ever have with no pain whatsoever.  I think the reason I was able to do that, though, was because I was also doing cross-training.  I believe there were things in those exercises that worked the muscles I need for running.

So, I’ve decided to force myself back to cross-training.  I’m giving up the gym and my running shoes and I’ve decided to put in a DVD!  My sister gave me a DVD workout series forever ago and I did it for maybe a minute, but then I stopped because… well, I liked running way more.  I’m realizing, though, that I like a more toned, thinner, healthier me, too, so I need to do whatever it takes.

Will it be hard?  Absolutely!  Am I ready to do it?  Yes I am.

I’m giving up 45 minutes of laying in bed every morning, but I’m committing to a full 4 months of this video.  I’m excited to see the results, not just at the end, but along the way.  I miss that high you get when the endorphins are pumping, and I’m looking forward to it.  It’s like I rediscovered a long lost friend and I can’t wait to catch up!

How about you?  How are your goals going?

Bee at A Spirit of Healing is currently hosting Mindful Monday while Colleen at Silver Threading is away.


Mindful Monday – Running and Pain

When I was in high school, I remember someone made a suggestion that we run a 5K.  I remember training hard for it and getting so excited for it, but a few months before the planned event, I started to notice pain in my hip.  I stopped running and saw my doctor.  He told me he couldn’t find anything wrong and I eventually forgot about it; but I also stopped running.

I didn’t start running again until my mid-thirties.  The pain started again, but it wasn’t as bad and it wasn’t constant.  I found a few stretches that actually helped it and I was able to manage it.

However, in the last few months, I’ve noticed the pain has actually increased quite a lot.  It isn’t something I can ignore any longer, as much as I might want to.  It hurt pretty bad last week, but I decided to run a 5K with my son last Saturday.  We didn’t run the whole thing, but by the time I crossed the finish line, I was limping and I’ve been in constant pain ever since.

I think it has something to do with a nerve because the pain shoots all the way down into the right side of my calf.  I have a doctor’s appointment and I’ve stopped running and working out all together in an effort to rest and heal.  However, it isn’t just going away like it has in the past.

I honestly don’t know what I’ll do if I can’t run any longer.  It is such a release for me.  I’m sitting here looking out the window as I write this, thinking it is such a perfect day for a run.  I’ve almost talked myself into it a few times today, but I need to find out what is causing the pain and see if I can fix it somehow.  Living with constant pain isn’t something I handle well, if the last week is any indicator.

Until I can figure it out, I’ve decided to focus more on eating healthier.  I’m not great at “dieting” so for me it has to be watching my intake and all the little things I let creep into my diet when I’m not paying enough attention.  I’m hoping I can find a balance that will work and I’m sincerely hoping I can keep running.

Bee at A Spirit of Healing is currently hosting Mindful Monday while Colleen at Silver Threading is away.


Mindful Monday and #LoIsInDaBl Day 8 – Running and Hiking Apps

If any of you have been following my blog from the beginning, I used to talk a lot about running and training for Tough Mudder. Right about the time I started the blog, I also signed up for Tough Mudder with my sister. We weren’t actually able to participate that year because my sister ended up in the hospital and is still trying to find her new “normal”, and last year was just a bust when it comes to exercise.

There were a couple of things I found out through that journey, though. The first is that I love to exercise. I love how it makes me feel and as long as I make it a scheduled routine in my life, I follow it pretty precisely. The second is that I don’t necessarily love all exercise. We were doing a lot of cross training for Tough Mudder and I realized I didn’t like it at all, although I did notice that it helped with my running times and endurance.

I already knew that I loved running outside, but if there was any sort of adverse weather (I live in northern Utah, so we have quite a bit of crappy weather), I just didn’t do it. And once I stop exercising, it is hard to get back into the routine. The app I use for running outside is called Runtastic. It tracks my distances and my pace, as well as how many calories I burn. I love the app, although I don’t use it much anymore since I started going to the gym in October of last year. I think I will start running outside again once the weather is nicer. I still prefer that to the elliptical or the treadmill.

Last year, I’m sad to say that I hardly ran at all, but the one thing I rediscovered was my love for hiking. I spent quite a few years waiting for my friends and family to go hiking with me. We ended up going a few times, but not nearly as much as I wanted. Last year, I was fed up and decided to take matters into my own hands. I went on a few hikes with the family but I also went on a few by myself.

The app I found and love for hiking is called AllTrails. It shows me the trails near me and actually maps how to get there. It also shows reviews from other hikers and their experience on the trail. I went on a trail earlier in the year before I found the app and ended up getting totally lost because there was a fork in the trail that led to the waterfall I was trying to find and I missed it entirely. It always helps to be prepared, especially when you are hiking unfamiliar trails.

I finally feel that I have a workout schedule that works for me, and I also have a fabulous partner (my boyfriend) who keeps me motivated. I miss running and competing with my sister, but right now, I hope she knows I’m doing it for the both of us.

I hope you all have a blessed week!

Love Is In Da Blog is hosted by Bee at Just Fooling Around With Bee. Our prompt today was “An app I love for mindfulness or a healthier life”. We are also combining today’s post with Mindful Monday hosted by Colleen at Silver Threading.


SoCS – Some Exercise and Some Inspiration

Not all of you have been following me since I began this journey, but last July I posted about a tragic event in my life and how much it shook me and changed plans I had made for the rest of the year. I didn’t go into much detail since it wasn’t my story to tell, but today was a milestone and I can’t help but write about it, even if I have to stretch the “some” in there to make it fit into SoCS.

My sister was diagnosed with a blood clot less than a year ago and while I’m more grateful than I can say that she survived and it didn’t turn into a stroke or anything worse, I’m amazed at the journey she has been on and how long it has taken to recover. She isn’t completely there yet, but she has come leaps and bounds from that three-day hospital stay and needing help just walking from one room to the next.

Last year, my sister and I were engaged in training for the Tough Mudder. That didn’t actually happen and won’t happen this year. It was a long-shot when we signed up for it and I’m not surprised I didn’t actually make it, but just the thought that I could do it and spent four to five months actively engaged in exercise and working towards it is something I’ll never forget. It helped me see what I’m actually capable of.

Just to put things into perspective, last year, my sister and I were clocking 30-33 minute 5Ks and our times were continually improving. Needless to say, she hasn’t been able to run since her diagnosis, but it’s a goal she has set for herself. She loves it way more than I can say I do.

I’ve watched her in her darkest moments when all she wanted to do was go home and I’ve watched and listened to her reach milestones and goals. I can tell you she has never lost hope and never given up. She has learned acceptance, and (probably the hardest thing for her and me) she has learned when to push herself and when to accept her pain. If only we could all deal with illness and setbacks with as much grace as she has shown in the past year.

Today, I’m not sure if she had an ultimate goal besides finishing 3 miles. She’s walked two miles in the past few months, but I think it took her 45 minutes or more. Today, we walked 3.2 miles in a little over 56 minutes. The last half mile was a test and I wasn’t honestly sure if she would make it. She had a moment when she slowed way down and I told her we were so close. She said her brain wasn’t communicating with her legs anymore, but instead of giving up, she started telling her legs to move forward, just put one foot in front of the other, and within a few moments, she was back on pace. When we could see the finish line, we started jogging. It was a slow jog, in fact slower than what we were walking, but she jogged across the finish line. I have no doubts that she will continue to push herself and will get herself back to her normal running pace and we will be all over the race scene by next year.

She inspires me every single day, but today I am overwhelmed with pride and joy and hope.

Stream of Consciousness Saturday is hosted by Linda G Hill. Today’s prompt was “some/sum.” Feel free to click the link and join in.


Love Is In Da Blog – Running (Or the lack of it)

Bee gave us a great prompt for today. She said to post a picture showing something you love to do. I couldn’t stop thinking about my poor, lonely running shoes, sitting under the chair where I threw them the last time I went running.

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I miss them. I miss running.

I am sad to say that I haven’t been for quite some time. In fact, looking at Runtastic (the app I use to track my mileage and time), the last time I went was January 11th. That is just plain sad!

I can’t decide if I like or hate the part of Runtastic that sends me a notification every Sunday that looks something like, “staying active is good for your health, let Runtastic help track your activities,” or “get out and run today”. It hasn’t ever said that last one, but I usually feel like a huge glutton every time I get one of those notifications now. It only does it when I don’t log any activity, or when I only log one. If I’ve run more than one day, it will tell me how awesome I am.

I miss those notifications, a lot!

So, this is the kick in the butt to myself to figure out my scheduling issues and actually get out and run. “Scheduling Issues” is just an excuse anyway! I don’t know why I haven’t been on the weekend, except that I’ve been too full of excuses that sound a lot like “I’m too depressed to exercise”, when in fact, exercise would actually help my depression; something I’ve proven to myself over and over again.

Sometimes it’s just getting past the negativity in my own head that is the hardest part, because I really do love running!

What about you? Do you have something you love to do but have let other things get in the way?

Momentum Matters

I finally managed to talk myself into a run yesterday, thinking it would be amazing and I would fall in love with running all over again and realize I need to have it a part of my life. It’s been a little over a month since the last time I ran and I was missing it. I have to say, I found moments of bliss in my run, but it wasn’t everything I had built up in my head.

For one thing, it was 35 degrees outside; which isn’t half bad if you know how cold it’s been here lately, but is a bitch when you’re used to running in much warmer weather. For another, there’s some people who don’t bother to shovel their sidewalks, so I either had to run in the street (scary as shit) or run through snow (also scary as shit for fear of slipping and falling on my face).

I also realized that momentum matters. My lungs were screaming at me about a half mile in and I became exhausted really damn quick compared to when I was running three miles like I was a doe frolicking in the forest.  My sister proceeded to make me feel better by telling me it is much harder to run in the cold, but still. It shouldn’t have been so hard and probably wouldn’t have been if I’d stuck with that workout program I started in December but didn’t bother to continue.

When I finally made it home with a not so good time and a few stops to walk a bit, I went inside the house and about died. My lungs were even more mad at me for forcing them to breath freezing cold air and then walking into warm air. I sat on the couch heaving and coughing, just praying for it to pass. It finally did and I’m happy I went, but it was rough!

I’ve given myself quite a few pep-talks on my blog and this is no exception. Momentum does matter and I know I need to be way more consistent if I ever hope to make it through Tough Mudder, whenever that will be this year. I’m still planning on doing it, even if I have to do it alone, which is a very real possibility. I’m thinking I need to sign up for a 5k to keep myself motivated in the coming months. I went on the run yesterday hoping it would spur me forward, when in fact it actually made me realize all the pretty awful things about running. But the only way to get back to what I love about it is to push past the pain, and I plan to do just that.

This could also be applied to writing. I am so grateful to JustJoJan for giving me a reason to not just blog every day, but to write every day. I’m getting used to this writing thing and feel that it is giving me what I need to push past the lethargy I was battling at the end of last year.

Here’s wishing you all motivation and momentum in whatever goals you are pursuing.

JJJ 2015