16 October 2012

the new normal: back to the old normal

as if it wasn't already obvious, i am taking a break. my neck was bothering me all weekend, i can't turn my head to the left fully, my shoulder is up, and i started getting all those weird random pains again that i used to get - a sudden sharp pain like being stabbed, very local, and in odd spots - the back of my right hand, the midpoint of my shin. anyway, no more running, no more sit-ups, no nothing new until the problems have been dealt with. i still have my cycling though, so it's not like i'm getting no exercise at all.

also, note to self: start taking a vitamin d supplement again. the days are getting shorter. wonder if that could be part of my problem?

in other news, here's what i ate yesterday, pretty good i think!

11 October 2012


this morning i lay in bed for a minute before starting my sit-ups. and i thought, maybe sit-ups are the problem not running? it makes more sense for sit-ups to hurt my neck than running, but i'd done sets of sit-ups semi-regularly through the summer, with no problem. maybe it's some combination of the two? anyway this morning sit-ups really hurt my neck and shoulder! so i only did six. i think i'll look up safer situps, or maybe find some other indoor exercise to do that doesn't take a lot of space.

10 October 2012


i think i'm not going to follow the c25k path. i think i'm just going to run at my own pace.

the neck pain last week really freaked me out. actually what freaked me out was not so much the pain as the loss of mobility. i couldn't turn my head enough to touch my chin to my left shoulder. i need to be able to do that to ride my bike. so i'm going to let my body be my guide, and go at the pace that doesn't cause me damage.

i skipped running on friday because of my neck, and monday because i overslept and we had a teenager staying in the house and it was a holiday. but today, i ran. that'll do.

05 October 2012

c25k week 4: unscheduled day off

couldn't sleep at all last night because my neck was bothering me. my left had is sore and achy this morning too, bah. so i opted not to drag myself out of bed today, and instead spent some time doing stretches. thinking i should probably go see angus again to see if he can fix me, or more importantly help me stop making things worse!

just to be whiny for a moment, it seems unfair that when i finally get myself on the road to getting back in shape, i start hurting again. wah wah, poor me.

04 October 2012


well, i've had a pretty good day today - ate what i was supposed to eat, drank lots of water, got exercise - but this pain in my neck has been bothering me. i first noticed it a couple of days ago, and today it's bothering me more.

now, about a year ago i saw a pain specialist who theorized that i have thoracic outlet syndrome. he ordered a million billion tests (blood tests, ultrasounds, you name it) and gave me some exercises to do, and some diet/supplement recommendations which made a world of difference. so much difference, in fact, that i didn't follow up and find out what the ultrasounds revealed.

annyhoo, today i googled thoracic outlet syndrome again, to see if the running could somehow be causing something to go wrong, and i found this page with some exercises which might be useful. it also has a diagnostic exercise your doc might try on you, the EAST test or "hands-up" test. basically, you hold your hands up in the air, "elbows slightly behind your head," for 3 minutes, opening and closing your hands. so i thought i'd try it. it's certainly tiring - anyone holding their arm up in the air is going to find it tiring, but not so bad, i thought. "maybe it's not tos after all," sez i.

then - whoa nelly! i start to realize i can't open my left hand all the way. i have a shooting pain in the base of my thumb. it still hurts. and it's so tired/heavy it just dangles. my right arm is fine.

so, i'm going to get back to doing the stretches and exercises which helped in the past, which i (foolishly) got lazy about doing. and add some new stretches to my arsenal. and be more careful about posture. and never forget my fish oil. and i might just go to bed with a heating pad right now.

eta: i just found an article on pubmed describing a variant of charcot marie tooth which "may be misdiagnosed as thoracid outlet syndrome." ack! my mother had cmt, and it's hereditary. time to pack up the google and go to bed!

c25k week 4: rest day

no run today, so i did 20 sit-ups and flossed my teeth.

flossing sort of feels like a workout. it's just as arduous, and takes just as long. because i have a retainer wire along my lower teeth along the lingual side (or inside, for people who don't know ortho lingo), i can't just floss like a normal person. i have to thread the floss under the wire. it's tedious, and because my teeth are still pretty tight on the bottom, hard to get the floss through there. blecch. so i don't do it as often as i should.

i wear my essix retainer without fail, though. mainly because i can feel my teeth start to move if i forget it even one night. and moving teeth is the worst thing ever! after all my suffering, i will not let them shift back if i can help it!

03 October 2012

c25k week 4: run 2

today's run was the same as monday's: 1/4 mile run, 1/8 mile walk, 1/2 mile run, 1/4 mile walk, 1/4 mile run, 1/8 mile walk, 1/2 mile run, bracketed by a 5-minute walk before and after.

about 2/3 of the way through the first running chunk, i thought, "ugh, i don't want to do this." but i could see the end up ahead, so i knew i could do it. the second chunk, i saw i was about to get a red light, so i put on a burst of speed. wow! what a great feeling! did that again when i was almost home, just for the fun of it.

i have felt a few twinges in my left foot at night, but that's it so far, thank goodness.

and boy was i tired yesterday! holy cow. didn't help that i did not get enough protein during the day - it was a going away party for my boss, so i had cake for lunch. by the end of the day when my son and i were getting back on the bicycle to ride home from the library, i just wanted to lie down. then we drove downtown for dinner, and i almost fell asleep at the table! got the kid to bed early so he could have extra reading time - and i fell asleep! woke up to him yelling "mum, i'm done my book," went to turn out his light, and then back to sleep again.

today i will do better. i am bringing salmon to have for lunch, with some salad (lettuce, mayonnaise, and celery) and some fruit to snack on. i've also set up reminders in my calendar at work so i will snack at regular times rather than waiting till i'm ravenous.

02 October 2012

c25k: day off

today is a day off from the c25k, so i did 20 sit-ups this morning instead, which gave me a chance to really look at my legs. my left calf is still noticeably smaller than the right. it's been 2 whole years now since i broke that foot! i'm amazed there's still a difference. half-tempted to dig out my old aircast and wear it on my right leg to even them out, but really i'd rather shoot myself. i guess i'll just stay lopsided, and probably no one will notice but me.

speaking of my broken foot, it did give me a few little twinges, last night as i was falling asleep. but that is it, thankfully!

i'm just doing the math in my head now... the back/shoulder chronic pain started fall of 2009 (i got a few twinges in my shoulder yesterday during my run, actually) but currently seems to be manageable with fish oil supplements. then in the winter of 2009/2010 was the horrible time, when i got less than zero exercise and ate a terrible diet and put on a ton of weight. then in spring of 2010 i ran a 5k and was slightly killed by hills, and then had all of the breathing tests done and the puffers and whatnot. and september of 2010 i broke my foot and got my braces.

still climbing back from all of that. but slowly, slowly!

01 October 2012

c25k week 4: ha ha!

ok so this morning i did the actual week 4 of the c25k plan, and yeah, that is not what i did last friday! kidding myself.

but not really. i did the week 4 this morning no problem, feel good! one of the big differences between what i ran this morning and what i ran last friday is that today i had longer walking intervals. on friday, my walking intervals were basically crossing the street. i was terribly stiff the next day! today i did the proper amount of walking intervals, and stretched a bit at the beginning and end of each one.

so yeah, week 1 to week 4. i kind of want to get through the rest of it by the end of the month. which is close to doable considering i skipped some early weeks, but probably not a good idea...