Thursday, February 11, 2016

Why I'm Returning to CrossFit Against Medical Advice

My last CrossFit workout was August 10th 2015.  That's 6 months to the day and yesterday I decided to return to the sport I love so much.  

First, my diagnosis:  I had TWO MRIs during the time I was off from CrossFit.  The long and short of it is.... I have/had bursitis in my shoulder and in my collar bone as well as a deep bone bruise.  In addition, I have degenerative disease in my shoulder.  Basically my shoulder is 20 years older than I am in age.  Not good!

But then I think of my dad who is 73 (almost) years old and he goes to CrossFit.  His shoulder is 30 years older than mine.

Because of the way my humerus healed when it broke, my shoulder isn't able to move in certain ways.  It makes equilateral movements very difficult.  My shoulders aren't equal.  You can really see how I compensate in the pic below.

So when my shoulder can't move the way it should, my collar bone tries to compensate.  That's how you wind up with bursitis in your collar bone.  I am at increased risk for really damaging or snapping my collar bone.

Yeah that all seems scary.  That coupled with the pain I was in daily while doing CrossFit and just fear of the unknown has kept me from my beloved CrossFit for 6 months.  I am now pretty much pain free day-to-day.  I have days when I use my arm more that it will get sore and I can definitely still get achy but it's a dramatic (95%) improvement.  So I started to consider returning to CrossFit even though two doctors told me my body isn't built for it.

I gave it a LOT of thought for a VERY long time (every damn day for 6 months).  I went back and forth about giving it up.  I tried to figure out where my place in my workout life would be.  I was floundering.  Then I thought back and realized I SUCCESSFULLY Crossfitted for 3 years before I had problems.  THREE years.

So I started thinking about what the differences were between CrossFit in the beginning and CrossFit at the end.  I realized in the beginning I was conservative and I didn't lift heavy weight (for me).  I took things slowly and wasn't able to do MOST things.

So I'm going back to my roots.  I'm going to focus on form over weight.  I'm going to modify every damn thing if I have to and I won't do anything that causes me pain.  I'm also not going to go four days a week.  I'll go 2.  I think moderation will be the key to my success.

I know not everyone (mom) will understand my decision, but George supports me and that's HUGE to me. He's not one to sugar coat and I know he supports me in my return.  He knows everything I've been through every day and all the doctor's advice and he still supports me.  Even if I think I'm crazy, I know he's not and I know he'll keep me in check.

Returning to CrossFit yesterday just made me generally SO happy.  I'll take care of my health I promise.  I don't recommend anyone go against medical advice.  This is the decision I made FOR ME and I NEED it.

Monday, January 25, 2016

3M Half Marathon Race Recap 2016 and Food Recap (because Austin)

My friend Julie texted me and asked if I was planning to come to Austin for 3M this year.  With plans of traveling to Arizona in March, I planned to sit 3M in Austin out this year. I immediately said no and then immediately looked up prices for flights to Austin.  Too expensive.  Then I came up with the bright idea to fly into Houston (a LOT cheaper), pick up my friend Kortni and drive to Austin and it suddenly became doable.  

Of course the first thing I wanted was food so for dinner we went to Rudy's.  

This meal made me giddy. I was so happy and it was as good (better) than I remembered.  Thanks for indulging with me Kortni and fam!  

The next day we got up super early and made the drive to Austin (about 2.5 hours).  We met up with Julie, Val, Bianca and Chrystal for packet pick up. 

Julie, Kortni, Susan, Val, Bianca, Chrystal

Val and Julie had plans for the day, but I had plans for more eating.  I couldn't wait to eat at Torchy's which is my favorite taco place in Texas.  

Once again, the food didn't disappoint.  I could eat this food every day!

After lunch we hadn't had enough so we headed to the Gourdough's trailer for a hot, fresh, topped donut.  I always wanted to try Gourdough's when I lived in Austin, but never got around to it.

Gordough's is a fried donut topped with your choice of toppings.  There's all kinds of different combinations, but I chose the black out which was brownies, chocolate chips and chocolate sauce.  Good lord it was good.  I ate half and shared the other half with Chrystal's daughter.

We then stopped by the Austin sign.  It was the touristy thing to do.  Glad to do it.

I think we went a whole 2 hours without eating before we headed out to carb load.  Julie hooked back up with us for an Italian feast.

I had 2 glasses of wine and I was so tired.  I was in bed and asleep by probably 9:15.  It made the 5:30 wake up call seem so much better.  In fact, I woke up before my alarm.

We stayed at a great hotel just steps from the start line.  It was definitely chilly at the start (about 35 degrees) and I really wasn't prepared for it.  I had throw away clothes, but wound up borrowing a long sleeve from Kortni to wear during the race.  I was afraid I'd be too cold.

I planned to run with Val for this race.  I wanted to run a 10:00 pace.  I thought it would be easy.  Um yeah.  It quickly became apparent that a 10:00 pace wasn't going to happen. 

Mile 1 through 3 were hard.  I kept thinking I would warm up to the pace but I never did and I saw myself getting slower.  

Mile 1: 10:05
Mile 2: 10:15
Mile 3: 10:15

I planned to take my Gu at mile 4, but the water stop was earlier than I had anticipated so I waited until mile 5, which wasn't ideal because I was starving and I needed the fuel.  

Mile 4: 10:22 
Mile 5: 10:18 ----> Gu 

We also saw our cheerleaders (Tony and Val at mile 5ish) 

After my Gu I did start to feel better, but by then I realized it was too little too late.  I had been "slow" and I wasn't going to make up the time.  I kept telling myself I didn't care, but deep down I know I did.  I wanted to be faster, but honestly I didn't want to do the work.  I wanted to enjoy it.  

Mile 6: 10:25
Mile 7: 10:11

We saw Tony and Julie again at around mile 8.  At that time I think I was more ok with the idea of just having fun.  

Mile 8: 10:15
Mile 9: 10:27
Mile 10:  10:38 ----> Gu

By mile 10 I was ready to be done.  I hadn't trained past 10 miles and I think I was just ready for it to be over with. By then I also realized I had a LOT let in the tank.  I decided to pick up the pace and immediately hated myself for dogging it the whole damn race.  Why can't I just be happy with being happy? hahaha

Mile 11: 10:02
Mile 12: 10:00
Mile 13: 10:08 

The race finishes with a slight up hill and you round the bend and have literally .1 to go to the finish line.  Val and I started sprinting to the finish.  I could see the clock and thought maybe if I sprinted we could come in just under 2:15.  I gave it everything I had.  

Mile 13.2:  1:53 
Garmin Time:  2:15:13 13.2 miles 
Average:  10:15 pace 

Official Time:  2:15:10 
Official Average:  10:19 pace 

I wasn't happy and I wasn't sad at the end.  I was just indifferent.  I was kind of mad at myself for not giving it my best effort.  I have good races and bad races, but most times I can say I gave it my best effort.  I didn't this time and that makes me disappointed in myself.  Regardless I had a great time and am so glad I got to spend it with GREAT friends.  


Kortni PR this race!!! 

Julie the awesome cheerleader (didn't run b/c she's injured) 

I can't thank Val enough for running with me.  She and I chatted the whole entire time.  It's nice to run and talk to a friend, but especially nice when you haven't seen said friend in a year.  Running with Val again this year was quite different than last year, but fun in a whole other way.  Love you Val!  

Congrats to all my amazing friends.  Everyone had a great race! Kortni PR this race finishing in 1:45. Val and Bianca (who is also injured) finished under 2:00 (1:57).  You ladies inspire and amaze me as always!  

After a shower, Kortni, Val and I had some brunch after which Kortni and I said goodbye and headed back to Houston.  

 Goodbye Austin.  Until next time!

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Glamping 2015

These pics are from my family photo shoot for our Christmas card.  The photographer said it was a "Glamping Session."  I was over the moon with my pictures.  Putting them here to remember.