Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Too Cool for School

I am Very, Very Important.  Because not only am I Training For A Marathon, I also have an Injury.  And I am Participating In A Study about said Injury.  I think this actually might make me kind of cool. 

It's my pesky patella getting all inflamed about stuff.  I actually didn't injure it by running at all; it was due to moving, of course (why, oh why, do I not just stay in one place?  My mother would like to know the answer).  They tell you to lift with your legs and not with your back so I did and this is what happens.  It could also be because my shoes were worn out.  I think I intuitively knew that but I was too cheap to buy new ones (not cool).

Now it means a lot of icing (not buttercream, sadly) and days of rest.  Fortunately, I saw a poster on a bathroom wall and now I'm participating in a study at the university on Injury Prevention for Runners.  It's specifically for patella pain - can you believe my luck?  I actually signed up before the pain so now it's not so much about prevention as it is about some treatment.  My version of an Injury isn't that bad apparently.  My knee was groped by the cute professor and he declared it salvagable.  I'm not sure about my dignity, however.  I was wearing kneehighs and I hadn't shaved my legs in two weeks (not cool.).

The study theorizes that strong quads will keep your patella pain-free so I'm now on a regimen of exercises that I have to do every day.  It means that I can no longer say, pompously, that I don't watch TV because only reruns of "The Office" (cool) seem to make all these squats and leg lifts bearable.  My knee does feel better, I'm happy to report.  I've got three more weeks to go on the study; I'm hoping by the end of it that if my thighs are no smaller, at least some of the cellulite will be replaced by muscle.

I'm not used to my body betraying me like this.  I've never had an injury to speak of - likely because I didn't exercise.  My body was there to serve me so I never paid much attention to it.   Now it needs service and so it's one more thing to think about, another thing to fit into my days.  I suppose this is good preparation for aging, as one body part after another begins to fail.  I suppose with running the odds of those running parts - legs, hips, knees -  failing first are greater.  Another reason to exercise, then:  there's a greater cool factor in have a knee go than, say, your bladder.

I'm thinking I should get a brace or something; a visible sign of my coolness.  Limping alone isn't enough (that will only be cool at kilometre 40, unless I'm vomiting as well).  I should also learn how to pronounce the parts of me that are hurting.  I only remember one, 'miniscus', which I actually thought was a sport. 

I have some work to do in the cool area.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Makin' Time

You can spend all your time, makin' money.
You can spend all your love, makin' time.
The Eagles

Hello?  Anyone still out there?

I'm here.  I'm alive.  I'm moved.  Work is crazy busy.  I'm trying to stay away from the flu of swine and any needles connected to same.  Got my old place rented out to My Boys.  Moving sucks but I'm in a good place with a good friend (I'd forgotten how fun it can be to have a roommate!).  She's not afraid  of the BBQ and I'm not afraid of the grocery store.  We're both anal retentive and like to eat.  It's a good match.

I'm still running, though.  Mostly like a chicken with its head cut off these past few weeks but I'm running all the same.  I just ditched the blogging!  How is a girl supposed to fit it all in????  When I took up the marathon a friend noted that I would have to plan my life around it.  No problem, I thought.  I'm great at making lists and schedules (see anal retentive comment above).  I LOVE being efficient with my time.  I get excited thinking about how to arrange the calendar - what errand I can run on my way home from this or how to piggyback something onto something else to take care of that.

Other than the week after Thanksgiving, when the packing and moving were in full swing, I have been able to get most of my runs in.  But I couldn't find the time to sit down and write.  I *gasp* was overcommitted.  A laughable thing for someone who inherited her mother's Type A-ness and makes a living off of making To-Do lists.  Also laughable for someone who's 38 and unmarried.

My time is maxed out.  It makes me nervous to think about what it will be like when I'm running really long distances.  Come marathon time, my entire Sunday will be spent in my running shoes.  When will I have time to do anything else?  I'm already trying to think of how I can fit in my runs while fitting in the other things I have to do.  I was going to run to my book club meeting last week but it was too far.  I'm thinking of running to the grocery store with a backpack and then walking back.

I'm worried that I'll start to resent all the running I have to do.  Right now I don't really WANT to do it.  It's an obligation.  And when it starts eating away at time for the things I DO want to do, it will make me cranky.  This is what discipline is all about, I suppose.

I think that this, really, will be less about time than energy.  I do have time but usually not enough energy to do it all.  So how do I make the energy?  When l start to love it,  guess.

Highlights from the past month:

* I ran my first race 10k race.  I made some time doing that - 2 minutes faster than my fastest 10k!  I felt pretty good.  My biggest fear was being last.  Someone always has to be and I laid awake nights worrying that it was going to be me.  But I finished respectably in the middle.
* I ran 4k straight through - first time ever - and it felt good.
* I have my first running injury: patellafermellanutellawhatever.  The under-the-kneecap pain.  Not fun but I'm hoping not too serious.  It's cramping my style a bit right now.
* I'm in a half-marathon clinic!  Our goal race is the Hypodermic Half in February...gawd...
* Still eating like a horse.

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