Wednesday, 30 December 2015

Dear Renee

Dear Renee,

Today Paula, Lori and I went to the gym while you were at work. We ran side by side on the treadmills, reading the closed captions of Live! With Kelly and Michael while you sat at your desk, working hard and wishing you were with us. Or maybe you're just laughing at us behind our backs while you eat popcorn with your feet up on your desk.

We thought of you often as we ran, wondering why we were here and you were not when this whole thing was your idea. We questioned why we were at the gym for the fourth day in a row, working harder than we ever did when we were running three times a week outside. We praised your ability to motivate us to be here day after day while you send us updates on your new Garmin monkey Todd and his banana addiction.

We tried to make you proud. I ran my first 5k since the stress fracture. Lori has been running 10k a day. Paula has added biking to her routine. Oh, and I can't forget the weight training.

We hope you had a good day without us and that you didn't miss us too much. We did miss you but we know that before too long you'll be back with us, running side by side, trying to get that PB for Todd and feeling like death when we're all done.

Oh, and by the way, you may not have noticed, but we have not had a post workout tea break since this whole gym thing started. That was one of the deciding factors of joining a gym. So you owe us big time.

See you in the New Year,

Your Bestest Running Gym Buddies.

Sunday, 20 December 2015

Spider Pig

Eight weeks.

I haven't been running in eight weeks and truthfully, I haven't missed it one little bit. I could so very easily give it all up and forget that I ever decided I wanted to learn to run.

Except for the fact that I'm registered for a half marathon. And I convinced Renee, Lori and Paula to register as well. If I give up now I might as well enter the witness protection program.

The results of my x-ray were inconclusive. No stress fracture could be seen, but as I have learned, x-rays aren't the best option where stress fractures are concerned. It is however, awesome at letting you know that plantar fasciitis may rear its pain filled head at some point in the future.

Since the x-ray wasn't of much use, my GP suggested I have a bone density scan. I signed up and had my appointment three weeks later.

Fortunately, I don't have a lot of experience with hospital procedures which is probably a good thing since hospitals have the ability to make me pass out. I don't know why, but every time I sit in a hospital waiting room, it gets unbearable warm and I have the uncontrollable urge to lie down on the cold tile floor to prevent myself from collapsing into a heap of uselessness. Giving blood and have injections also have this same effect.

So while I lay on the x-ray table, feeling the cold alcohol wipe run across the back of my hand, I tried to focus on something other than the fact that the last time I had a needle stuck in my body, I passed out. The cute animal pictures on the ceiling weren't helping so I put all my concentration into getting as much oxygen into my body as possible, taking big deep breaths, trying to not let the technician know that I was a basket case.

It must have worked because I didn't even feel the jab and the technician didn't waver in her explanation of what was involved in a bone density scan.

Right now I was being injected with a small amount of radioactive material - the same amount I would be exposed to during a regular x-ray. I can't really comment on what she said after this point because my brain was now singing the Spider-Man theme song.

"Is he strong? Listen bud, He's got radioactive blood.
Da da da, dum dum dum, something, something that rhymes with blood.
Hey there, there goes the Spider Pig!
Can he swing from a web, no he can't he's a pig..."

I apologize to all the Spider-Man fans out there. I really know nothing about the guy. I am, however, more familiar with the Spider-Pig. For those of you who aren't, here is a short video.

But I digress.

Results of the bone scan didn't show any break or fracture but it did show that there had been some sort of inflammation in the area that had been causing pain. Everything looked good now though so my GP gave me the all clear to go for a short, slow run.


Motivating myself to go out in the cold to start running again proved to be no easy task so when Renee suggested we join a gym I jumped at the idea. Well, not really jumped. It was more like resigning myself to the fact that it was time to get off my butt and get back at it.

Five days before Christmas we had our first visit to the gym. I headed straight to the treadmills determined to get my first run done and prove to myself I could still do this. Renee hopped on the machine next to me and we started out at a brisk walk for half a kilometer. The goal was to start running at this point. As we neared the 1/2 k mark, I started to feel scared. What if I started running and felt the pain in my foot again? What if all my cardio was back to square one? What if I couldn't do this anymore?

With Renee cheering me on, I started to run. It was slow and short like my GP recommended but I did it. There was no pain and I could still talk to Renee as we trotted along side by side. I'd say Day One was a success and I'm actually looking forward to Day Two.

Maybe this won't be so bad after all.