Go Shorty

Friday was a very special day… to me, my family, my boyfriend, and probably like 10 of you out there.

MY BIRTHDAY!

(For those of you that sent puppies I haven’t received any yet, so I’m extending my birthday through Thanksgiving to account for extra shipping time.)

In honor of this momentous day in my life, I have bit of fun news to share….

Running on Hungry will here on out be known as Vine to Wind.

(So if you’ll please do me a solid and update your Google Reader/bookmarks/etc, I’d greatly appreciate it.)

Why the change?

When I started Running on Hungry about a year and a half ago, it was all running and a little healthy living- I felt like if I went outside of the constraints I had set for myself, and wrote about anything else happening in my life (San Francisco life, wine, travel, other workouts, daily life, humor) I was losing direction of my blog.

The Bay Area is such an incredible place, that I wanted a blog title/direction that would accurately portray all aspects of my life – not just the running part.

So Why Vine to Wind?

Contrary to popular belief, the “Wind” isn’t referring to air blowing in a rapid direction. It refers to the windiest street in the world, Lombard, in San Francisco. And that vine? The vineyards of Wine County about an hour north. (So quite literally encompassing life in the Bay Area – I’m so clever it hurts sometimes.)

With this title, and new direction I hope to share more – still plenty of running, healthy recipes (coughmealideascough), travel, SF life, restaurants, pilates, spinning, and so much more. Nothing will change on the blog aside from the title, URL and the look of it (goodbye free WordPress generic theme that I loathed from Day 1), it just makes me feel like I have more of a creative license to talk about things aside from running.

And it looks so much prettier too.

Also a HUGE THANK YOU to Jenny from PeanutButterJenny Designs for creating the best blog design I could have ever asked for. She literally read my mind. Highly, highly, highly recommend her if you are looking for an amazing web designer.

Hope you continue to follow along… but if not… well there’s really nothing I can do about it. But I’d love it if you did.

Hope you had a wonderful weekend.

Cheers!

8 Minutes

That is precisely how long I ran for yesterday.

It was an incredibly triumphant and proud moment mixed with a post-run feeling of extreme frustration.

The good:

  • 8 minutes, .6 miles NO PAIN
  • Upped the speed from 4.8 to 5.0 (watch your back Kara Goucher, there’s a new speed demon in town)
  • FELT SO FREAKING GOOD
The bad:
  • 8 minutes of running, bringing my monthly total to 12 minutes of running
  • My body wanted to RUN, fast… but my mind took over this matter
I’m not trying to sound ungrateful, really I’m not. Just allow me one paragraph of pity-partying.
But when something you love to do (run) gets taken away from you, and then finally, after a month of willing it to happen, you get to do that thing (run sweet run) again, only to have to cut it short at a fraction of the time (1/8th)  you normally would do said activity… well it sucks.
And I’m done.
I’m beyond thrilled to be able to run again. I long for the day that I can set out on an 8, 9, 10 mile run and just cruise with the wind at my back (or in SF, blowing directly into my face as I trudge up hills), but lets go for a positive mental image here.
I’m planning to stick to an every-other-day “running” (the quotes will stay until I get to a pace that most people are not able to walk comfortably at), increasing by a few minutes each time – assuming there is zero discomfort in my foot. I’ll get my speed back in time, for now I’d like to just work on building back up – first time goals, then distance goals.
Then once I’m fully healed… the quest for the 1:45 half-marathon begins. I set my current PR (1:50:03, although my Garmin would say it was 1:49:59 – but really who’s getting technical? Not me this girl) at the Kaiser Half on SuperBowl Sunday and I naturally already registered for it again.
I’ve seen what life is like in a boot and I have no intention of ever going back.
If you are able to run (healthy and pain-free), take a minute to appreciate that first, second, third, sixth, tenth mile on your next run. I was definitely guilty of taking my miles, my speed, my races for granted. Until I couldn’t do that anymore. And then I realized just how big a part running plays a part in my daily life. (And also wallet but that’s another story – goodbye Healdsburg Half, Us Half, CIM bibs – we would have been great friends.)
For runners, running is a way of life. A social outlet. A constant goal to work towards and improve. Therapy. Fun. Something that we do day in and day out.
No matter how far your next run – 4 minutes or 40 miles… do me a favor and take it all in. The miles, the scenery, your pace. All of it.
And kick the ish out of your next race.

Stress Fracture – The Update

I’m pretty sure last week ranked right up there with “most exhausting week of my life”.

I work approximately one hour (sometimes +) from where I live, so grabbing the early shuttle is necessary 4 out of 5 days a week. This means waking up at 5:15am to attempt to put some semblance of effort into my appearance – run a flat iron through my hair (the keratin treatment I got a couple of weeks ago has literally changed my life and I will never go without them again), throw some tinted moisturizer, eyeliner, and mascara on, get dressed in a pre-selected outfit from the night before (I have a slight “shopping addiction” – some may call it “shopaholism” and I do not take getting dressed lightly) and run out the door to catch the 6:20am bus.

Yes I just made up “shopaholism” but in my opinion, it works.

Only lately it’s been all of the above… minus the “run” out the door. The word “run” has been entirely abI don’t want to constantly be thinking about it. Some people may also call this “DENIAL” but I am not one of those people.

Week before last, I was able to function at work without crutches. By the end of the week I was booting around like I owned the place. I had a follow-up with the Foot Doctor (I believe we call them Podiatrists) that Friday afternoon and I went in with very little expectations.

He squeezed the living hell out of my heel, and, much to my surprise, I had no pain…. not even the slightest hint of discomfort.

He explained that with stress fractures it’s not so much the actual bone breaking, but the fibers that make up the bone breaking down. The recommended treatment is to rest, stay off of it, and cross train to allow the fibers that build the bone back up to replenish and take over the fibers that break the bone down. Basically there has been World War 3 happening in my heel the past 3 weeks.

My stress fracture was a repetitive overuse injury. The constant motion of running (lately in less than how do you say “supportive shoes”) lead the fibers that break down the bone to overtake the fibers that build it back up… and here we are.

Needless to say my Brooks Pure Flows are now a permanent part of my wardrobe and will be the only shoes I run in (whenever that happens again – really any day now foot, I’m waiting on you) . Sorry Vivo Barefoots, but we can still walk together. Preferably with a dog.

At the end of the appointment the doc said those magical words: “I WANT YOU OUT OF THE BOOT.”

Say whaaaaat?

Evidently if you wear a boot for too long you start overcompensating on your right side (I already was because I have little to no coordination in life in general) and run the risk of injuring your other foot. He didn’t want that. I certainly agreed.

So last Saturday morning, for the first time in 3 weeks… I walked normally.

I  put on my running shoes, and made a slow, but pain-free walk up a few blocks to meet my mom for brunch. As the weekend went on I walked more and more (still slowly) without pain. Brooks Pure Flows I’ve never loved you so much.

Oh look another completely unrelated picture of a dog that isn’t mine on this blog. I don’t even care, she’s so darn cute and will soon be at my desk on a daily basis.

The caveat was – I had to wear running shoes last week. My beautiful shoe collection has never felt so neglected.

I took “wear running shoes this week” to also mean “wear Lululemon with your running shoes this week”. And so that is exactly what I did.

My office is pretty casual so I wasn’t crazy out of place in my active-wear best, and I won’t lie, it’s been pretty cozy and lovely and all… but I wanted out of workout clothes/shoes and into my clothes.

I was in a state of denial last Monday (weird I know) and wore a low wedge to offset the pressure to the heel. Then I just accepted it and went with the running shoes the rest of the week. I’m happy to report that in my running shoes I can walk at a bit faster of a speed (like 3.1 miles an hour instead of 1) without any pain. Today I’m finally, finally wearing normal boots. Not the kind you pump up with air that weighs 10 pounds. That makes me happy.

Something else that makes me happy? A totally original photo of the RED CUPS Starbucks has finally started handing out. (In my opinion this should be every season.) I also realize I’m the first person to post a photograph on a social networking site of said red cup. I march to the beat of my own drum.

Dr. Foot Man also told me I could try jogging for 10 minutes on the treadmill on Wednesday. That would be ~5 days ago. My foot was a little sore so I’ve been opting for Pilates, Barre, Arc Trainer-ing (I refuse to Elliptical), and upright Stationary Biking.

I walked for a mile on Friday on the treadmill (while watching our new obsession Breaking Bad on the iPad), and then completed a circuit of Arc Trainer-ing and biking. Saturday was Pilates and Sunday was a spin class. I’m thinking today may be the first attempt at a 10-minute jog… depending entirely on my foot. I want to heal fully and completely before I remotely introduce running back in.

Especially because I may or may not have 4+ half-marathons that I’m already registered for in 2013. But that’s for tomorrow’s post.

Heel it’s time to heal. Go Time. Let’s do this.

I will leave you with the single greatest iPhone application I’ve found to date – WEATHER PUPPY.

You can thank me later. In the form of puppies.

Happy Monday 🙂

Stress Fracture Week #1 – The Workouts

And so wraps up Stress Fracture Week #1.

Fitness wise, I feel pretty good – I mean at least I did something right? And forget even remotely working on my triceps – those babies are going to be strong as steel by the time they’re done with these crutches. Also crutching is tiring.

Also tiring?

Being the cutest dog ever.

 

My friend Jenna sent me this picture of her dog and I just about melted.

Moving forward my plan is to do 2 (modified) Pilates classes, 2-3 stationary bike sessions, and ideally 2 swim workouts a week. I feel like that way my cardio/strength level will stay where it is, and I’ll get the benefit of cross-training different muscles I may not have been using while running/pilates-ing exclusively. Also that will allow for me to continue my assault on the unlimited frozen yogurt machine at work guilt-free.

Sunday (The scene of the crime) –  The straw that broke the camel’s back (heel). The Nike Women’s Half Marathon. Regardless that this race was my downfall and that I was in pain from the first step I took, I loved every single mile. (I also realize how stubborn/potentially stupid it was to run 13 miles in discomfort (mile 1-8)/pain (mile 8-13), but it was the first onset of any discomfort while running so honestly I didn’t know any better.) Looking back the most compelling thing that sticks out in my mind is how much I had in my tank and how fast I wanted to run. I wanted to BLAZE up those hills, and fly through those downhills. I have no doubt a sub-1:45 was in me Sunday morning. My foot just had other plans.

 

The last time I ran. 8 DAYS AGO. The horror.

Monday – Stationary bike 10 miles

Tuesday – Stationary bike 10 miles

Wednesday – Rest. Throw pity party. Get a haircut and a pedicure.

Thursday – Stationary Bike 6.85 miles, few sets of ab work

Friday – Stationary Bike 7.25 miles

Saturday – Stationary Bike 8 miles

Sunday – 45 minute Spin Class – I was a little apprehensive but since I’d had no pain biking all week long, I decided to go for it. About 30 minutes before class started (you begin to plan way ahead when you don’t have functioning use of half your feet), I strapped on the boot, grabbed my spinning shoes, took the bus 4 blocks, and went for it.

The class went pretty well – I got a few “what the hell is she doing here with a boot and crutches?” looks but overall uneventful. I know I said I went to a spin class, but in reality I just spun the wheels… changed up the resistance a bit, but couldn’t do any of the fun standing, hill climbs, jumps, etc.

To make myself feel better I headed to Plant to pick up omelette specials for boyfriend and I and a couple fresh juices from Thrive.

Then had a minor pity party as I attempted to set up my iPhone 5. After about 10 hours of sulking about the phone, and one conversation with an extremely nice lady from South Carolina at AT&T support, the 5 is up and running and I’m so in love with it I’ll look past our little indiscretion from yesterday.

Also something I’m in love with?

This.

The end. Have a great day. Go Giants!!! Go for a run. (Subtlety is not my strong suit.)

Total: ~52 miles biked. I’ll take it.

Crutch + Boot + Work

I’m sorry I forgot to share with you all the #1 reason having a boot doesn’t suck;

HANDICAP PARKING PLACARD FOR THE NEXT 6 MONTHS.

This my friends, is San Francisco parking GOLD.

The two major perks?

  • The Whole Foods Parking Lot in Pacific Heights will no longer cause me road rage
  • METERS (I no longer have to pay for them… ever. OK, for the next 6 mos.)

Silver lining?

Today is my first day attempting this foot contraption combination at work. I’ve worked out in my head the logistics for getting to/from work in Silicon Valley and any incidentals during the day:

  • Begging Muni to drive me 4 blocks from my apartment to where my company’s corporate buses pick up (Today’s scenario went like this Me making a scene with my crutches: “I’m just going 4 blocks.” Bus Driver noticing crutches/boot/scene: “Uh yeah, just get on the bus.”
  • Work bus for an hour
  • Nicely asking co-workers to take my bag up to my desk while I stop off to pick up breakfast downstairs at the cafe
  • Nicely asking yet another co-worker to take my breakfast up to my desk while I wait for the elevator to go one floor upstairs
  • Planning 10 minutes ahead for all bathroom/kitchen/anywhere trips
  • Sucking it up and eating whatever is at the cafe downstairs because riding a beach cruise to another cafe with a boot and a skirt on seems ill-advised
  • Strategically planning how I’m going to get the 25 yards to the gym with my bag/crutches/boot in tow
  • Strategically planning how I’m going to get from the work bus back to my apartment after work if boyfriend isn’t home yet (begging bus driver to just drop me off)

The past couple of days boyfriend worked from home and was able to chauffeur me to/from multiple doctor’s appointments, going back and forth to the freezer to grab ice packs, making sure I’m elevating, Advil-ing, and staying off my foot. I literally can’t thank him enough, so I’m putting it on the internet where it will stay forever and ever. (Thank you so much, you mean the absolute world to me.)

This weekend I have big plans of…. doing nothing. I can’t teach my Sunday Pilates classes because I can’t move, so demonstrate lunging or anything else that involves standing upright seems to be a bit out of the question. (I did however sign up for multiple spin and sculpt sessions at a nearby studio to keep up my fitness in the upcoming weeks… and finding a pool is next on my list.)

I plan to catch up on TV, bike at the gym, bake, clean the apartment (which will probably take 2 hours to do in a 600 square foot apartment because of my lack of movement), and relax.

And just hope I can ditch the crutches by Monday. The doctor said to use them as long as I felt pain when bearing weight on my bum foot. I tested it this morning and let’s just say it didn’t feel like rainbows and sunshine and puppies.

Hope you have a great weekend!

Stress. Fracture.

So um, this happened today.

Oh yes my friends, welcome to the world of a Calcaneal Stress Fracture.

Basically, it’s a heel stress fracture. It’s a pretty common spot for runners to injure, and typically stress fractures are a result of overuse, and happen over a period of several months. I imagine the dull nagging of last week coupled with running the half on Sunday was the straw that broke the camel’s back. Or heel in my case. (Or at least this is what I’ve been told from the wonders of the internet/the sports medicine doctor.)

The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons agrees:

A stress fracture is a small crack in a bone. Stress fractures often develop from overuse, such as from high-impact sports like distance running or basketball.

 

Most stress fractures occur in the weight-bearing bones of the foot and lower leg. Studies show that athletes

participating in tennis, track and field, gymnastics, dance, and basketball are at high risk for stress fractures. In all of these sports, the repeated stress of the foot striking the ground can cause problems.

 

Rest is the key element to recovery from a stress fracture.

 

The bone we’re caring about is on the lower left. You know the large one that helps you run.

The good: It was caught early enough that 10-14 days on crutches should be all I need. A return to running can than happen (albeit slowly.) I’m cleared for biking/swimming/strength training. What that means is that I will probably go out and buy a road bike, all of Lululemon’s biking gear and register for a century ride tomorrow while simultaneously joining a master’s swim team.

(Joking… kind of.)

The bad: Um no running for 10-14 days. That’s like telling Lindsey Lohan she can’t drink for 5 minutes. It’s that long. Goodbye Healdsburg Half Marathon. I hardly even knew you. Or your delicious wine tasting that would have happened at the finish line.

The ugly: The crutches. Need I say more? After 5 hours of these bad boys I’m more than ready for a boot.

The MRI confirmed that there is in fact a fracture. What happens next? The radiologist diagnoses me, sends my scans to my doctor I saw this morning, and he lets me know how bad is bad. Preparing for the worst (6-8 weeks in a boot) but hoping for the best (10-14 days on crutches/in a boot).

After my MRI I naturally did what any normal person would do when throwing themselves a pity party – I spoiled myself rotten. We’re talking pedicure, haircut, the works.

I also came up with a list of benefits to being on crutches. Try not to be jealous.

-Always get a seat at a bar/restaurant/what-have-you

-Convincing MUNI drivers to take me 4 blocks up the street to my bus stop just got easier

-Get really familiar with celebrity gossip magazines on the stationary/spin bike

-Get reacquainted with my swimcap and goggles

-Rekindle my high-school self and wear a pretty sweet backpack at all times

-Have dog owners feel sorry for me and quickly agree to let me pet their dogs on the street without throwing me wary/weird/creeped out looks

-Develop arms of steel

Any other suggestions?

I’ll leave you with some happy thoughts. This is Charlie. He’s almost a year old and he is the cutest, most adorable Golden Retriever since the one I met last week at work.

 

(Also if you can… go for a run tonight. It’s been 72 hours of no running and I’m already judging people as they run by me on the street. Do me a favor please and go out on a solid run… and enjoy it the entire time no matter what your splits/the weather/whatever is/are 🙂 )

Treadmill Half-Marathon

I really got after it last week. (Promise I’ll have a training recap up tomorrow!)

After being wounded on Monday’s run, and several applications of Neosporin, I woke up Tuesday morning at 5:45am feeling about 90%.

Naturally I deemed 90% damn good enough to hit 6am Pilates- and with the exception of some knee twisting, I was on-the-ball for the entire class. True I got hit with a few shots, but I was not longer walking with a limp (See what I did there 50 Cent?) and therefore the next appropriate thought was towards my long run of the week.

Last week’s long run jumped up to 13 miles, and I was planning to do it Saturday morning. Then boyfriend’s mom invited us to the Giants game Saturday afternoon. I know myself well enough to know that after a long run I’m pretty much deemed useless for the following 12 hours and prefer to lay in a stationary position on the couch while stuffing my face with whatever available gluten-free carb is within reach.

Then my company announced a celebration party on Friday evening (a certain acquisition just went through and it’s nice to celebrate!)

It was becoming increasingly clear to me that getting up at 7am to run 13 miles and then afterwards having to able to function in public on Saturday just wasn’t going to happen.

It’s also becoming increasingly clear to me that after driving home for an hour, no exercise will ever happen so I force myself to workout at the gym at work instead.

I did what any sane person would do.

I took to iTunes, rented The Hunger Games on our iPad, trekked to the gym at 5pm on Tuesday, and hopped onto the treadmill.

I set the speed to 6.8 mph (8:49/pace) and pressed play.

And 1 hour and 50 minutes later, after completing 13 miles, I (in so many words) hopped off the treadmill. I will also add that I was ready to eat my arm off I was so hungry.

But none-the-less I had completed my long run. And after a day of 6am pilates, a commute, and a full day at work. I won’t say that it was the best long run I’ve ever done, or even that it was particularly enjoyable (it wasn’t, even while watching Katniss kick some ass), but I did it, and I feel stronger for it. Plus, I did it in just about the exact same time as my fastest half-marathon, which I was pretty darn happy about after just 3 weeks of marathon training (and several nights of, *ahem* beverage consumption at weddings).

My point here is that yes running on the treadmill is (generally) less-than-ideal for most runners. I’m probably of the 1% that actually like it because I can zone out on my Kindle and be a freak of nature while reading a novel. But it is useful for building up mental stamina and powering through boredom. And compared to running on a hamster wheel, no matter what race you’re training for will be a lot more exciting.

Besides that mental strength really comes in hand right around mile 22 in the marathon. Trust me on this one. I started talking to myself at that point telling myself that “You have 30 minutes of running left. Modern Family is 30 minutes. You always whine and complain about how fast that goes by. JUST KEEP GOING.”

Hope your week is off to a great start!