Somewhere in the middle of caring and not caring

March has been interesting. It’s the first month where I’ve not been actively training for something. NYC Marathon training started last July and I’ve pretty much been going non-stop since.

I knew after Phoenix Marathon last month though, I was ready for a break.

At the same time, I’m super excited to get started on BQ training, so I was hesitant to do absolutely nothing during my recovery month.

Some days, I’ve been motivated to run and strength train but honestly, most days other days I’ve simply eaten all the things.

I’m surprised I even reached 50 miles this month. Most have been “easy” and some have been an attempt to run fast, lol. I have a half marathon at the end of April that for a moment, I contemplated attempting a PR (it’s flat, super local, and a fun race) but my heart isn’t into training for that. I have Boston Qualifying on the brain.

So that’s why I don’t care so much about not caring. I was due a stress-free month, and I needed this little break to prep for my BQ attempt at St. George. It’s funny that the first day of April is registration, though. Once March is over, the fun begins again. 😀

–How long, if at all, do you take breaks from running? 

–What do you do to maintain fitness on your running breaks?

The Coldest 3 Minutes of My Life–Cryotherapy and other fun stuff from my weekend

It was an eventful weekend in HellyLand, 😀 !!

Friday, my Moms Run This Town chapter hosted an event at our local Athleta store. Discounted prices for the win!! I didn’t walk out with anything (so proud of my self-control), but it was so much fun to meet up with friends for a girl’s night.

Saturday morning I went to my very first cryotherapy session! So what is it and why does it matter?? According to the website

What is Cryotherapy?

Whole Body Cryotherapy is a technique involving exposure to extreme temperatures ranging from -200° F to -250° F for two to three minutes. Extensive research on Cryotherapy has determined that it is a dynamic source for pain relief and reduction of inflammation, ideal for athletes and those with active lifestyles that seek rapid recovery treatments.

Potential Benefits

  • Release of endorphins, the mood-enhancing hormone, which makes you feel energized
  • Reduction in muscle pain and inflammation caused by medical conditions, injuries, or exercise
  • Decreases recovery time from injury and fatigue.
  • Pain relief for chronic conditions such as arthritis, fibromyalgia osteoporosis, multiple sclerosis, ankylosing spondylitis, and more.
  • Alleviates symptoms of mood disorders, such as depression, anxiety, insomnia and more.
  • Improves immune system functions, muscle strength, and joint functions.

I’m in the “I’ll try anything once” camp so when the opportunity came to try cryotherapy for a discounted price, I was on it. Even though I hate the cold, lol!

The place I went to, Self Cryo, had two very friendly people leading the way. A group of us had signed up, and the two employees were very knowledgable about the process and assured us first timers that we’d be okay. We were told to keep our underwear on, we had gloves for our hands, and socks and UGG boots for our feet. Once inside the machine, we would take off the robe provided.

When it was my turn, I asked one of them to keep chatting as to distract me and he did, asking me questions and making the 3 minutes fly by.

#brrr

I was instructed to turn in a slow circle inside the machine so that my entire body would feel the cold temperature (it was like dry ice blowing from a vent kinda). I could feel my legs start to burn from the cold, but I kept moving. I did let out a “Holy fuck” and one of the girls in line told me, “Just think about the BQ.” And of course then I was fine 😉

Before I knew it, it was over. I wasn’t sure what I expected to feel exactly. My legs were cold but the rest of me was okay. Now, two days later, I don’t really feel anything different. I guess it was more of a relaxing thing?? I did sleep very well that night, lol!

Later that afternoon, I went for a little run. It was funny because while I experienced freezing temps earlier, it was 90 degrees outside when I went out!

After my run, I showered and then went to see Eddie Money in concert!!!

I do love me some oldie’s music!

So while I did sleep very well that night, it could’ve been the cryotherapy session or just the busy day I had, lol!

Sunday morning I got in 5 easy miles and then in the afternoon we took the kids to our local Ostrich Festival for some fun rides.

I’ve been trying to keep myself active and am going back and forth on trying to snag a PR on a half coming up soon. A part of me wants to chill before BQ training and a part of me wants to take advantage of the flat course, lol! We shall see 😀

–How was your weekend? 

–Have you tried cryotherapy before?

–What’s the last concert you’ve been to?

Friday Five: 5 Ways To Cope With Injuries

 

When I got the news that I’d have to painfully (pun intended, lol) get through 6 weeks of no running, I made the decision that I was going to go all the way–I was going to listen to my doctor and do what I had to do to make sure I came back healthier and recovered. No cheating, no small runs to get the crazies out, none of that.

So, here are five ways I was able to make that happen:

1.) Surround Yourself With People Who Work Out

I know this sounds awful for someone who’s injured. Why would you want to see brag stories from people doing what you want to do? But let me tell you, for me, it was motivation. I wanted to do what they were doing and I wanted to do it well. Sure, I could bust out a 5 miler if I wanted to, but I knew I’d pay for it later in some way and the goal is to be able to do this for a long time, right? Eye on the prize.

I kept up with blogs as best as one can during the holidays and it was actually fun to see my friends’ successes on Instagram/Facebook/etc. I cheered them on, congratulated, lamented with the ones who didn’t do well, and I still felt connected to the running world.

I lived vicariously through my friends who continued working out and knew I had to make sure I could keep up when I did return to running.

Which meant…

2.) Do What You Can!

For us, running is everything. Nothing can really replace our one true love but when it’s on a hiatus (i.e taking a break), we have to resort to back-ups.

I threw myself in what I could do and at the beginning it wasn’t much. I didn’t even know how to do it!

12366418_1003677153029919_6746476693784032120_n

The first two weeks of my injury, all my doctor wanted me to do was swim. He wanted zero impact on my legs. Well, I didn’t know how to swim but I have friends who do and luckily, they were patient enough to teach me how. I’m still learning, lol!

I swam when I could, and I focused on upper body strength and my core. All things that would help me when I returned to running (and really, things I should’ve been doing anyway).

After I was cleared, I took on spinning, something I’d always been curious about but never did because, well, running.

I took classes at my gym, again, something I would never do because I’d always choose running over anything else. But the core classes, the spinning classes, the stretching classes all were helping me stay in shape and helping me become a better runner–for when I was ready.

Keeping busy really helped make the time go by faster. I wrote down on my calendar the classes I’d take, what days I would elliptical/bike/swim, and before I knew it, my weeks were full of activities. I was pretty much working out 5 days a week!

3.) Shop!

Retail therapy. Best.

I definitely used some of my injury time to scour through running websites, lol! I found a really neat new (local!) running/clothing company on Instagram called Senita Athletics and fell in love with their stuff. I decided to splurge on myself with some new purple pants. I had them visible for me in my closet to remind myself the day would soon come when I could wear them 🙂

12557827_10105818879555621_864995453_o

purple pants ❤

4.) Find A Way To Use Race Entries

At the end of the day, I was only out 1 race (of four). I was able to move down from the Hot Chocolate 15k to the 5k and walked it with friends, and I downgraded from Phoenix Marathon to the 1/2.

I transferred my Fiesta Bowl 1/2 Marathon bib to a friend and she ended up using it to help pace Runner Jenny to a PR!

Rock and Roll Arizona 1/2 Marathon was my only loss.

Walking the Hot Chocolate 5k ended up being so much fun as I had friends who were walking anyway (even if I hadn’t been injured) so I didn’t feel like I was slowing them down. We chatted the entire way and before I knew it, it was over–and I was sad! 🙂

12314195_10105703766108891_8690653962371826830_o

I think we had fun.

Fiesta Bowl 1/2 Marathon was supposed to be my goal 1/2 and I was a little sad to not be able to run it–BUT, I knew that I was not in PR shape and I probably would’ve been more devastated not meeting my goal.

It certainly helped that my husband snagged a PR  and that my bib was used to help my BRF snag one as well 🙂

12376721_10105716209936361_5833674757134056896_n

My champ.

It’s tough for us to see expensive races go to waste so finding a way to still make it work for you–or for a friend–really helps alleviate the loss.

5.) Know That The Day WILL Come

I had it marked on my calendar with balloons and confetti.

It’s important to know that that day will happen IF you follow doctor’s orders. Do not do things to prolong that date.

Every time I went for check-ups I’d ask how everything was progressing and my doctor would say the magic words, “You’re right on track!”

And the day DID come! Exactly 6 weeks from when I was told no running.

12545769_10105823325296321_981599079_o

November 28th to Jan 11th=6 weeks.

Of course, now it’s crucial I respect the return process as much as I did the recovery. That’s  #6 and I’ll report on how well that works out another time 😉

Hope these tips help! Happy, healthy recovery! ❤ , helly

–What tips would you give runners coping with injuries?

Thanks for hosting the Friday Five Mar, Cynthia, and Courtney!! ❤ (P.S you guys, I get to meet Mar this weekend!!!!!)

DC-Trifecta-Friday-Five-linkup