Conquer Columbus – Week 3

Well, this a training dream week for me! Some might think that training on vacation would be a royal pain, but for me it is amazing – especially being at the beach!!! We were on Hilton Head this week so I was loving being outside, active and enjoying the mornings!!

Mon – Ran 40 minutes and watched the sunrise!

Tues – Did 45 minutes of yoga at the pool in the morning

Wed – Ran 45 minutes on the beach in the morning and made another runner friend!

Thurs – Did 30 minutes of yoga at the pool before being chased away by mosquitoes (no pics of them!)

Fri – Ran 30 minutes on the beach and watched the sunrise – most beautiful morning of vacation. Do we really have to leave?!

Sat – Long run (5 miles) on the treadmill at the hotel in Charlotte. I was supposed to run 7 on my plan, but 5 was a better choice since I hadn’t done a long run the week before. I feel back on track in terms of running now. I will just adjust my plan accordingly, but it should work out just fine.

Rest day today and back to reality. Actually, traveling again this week, to a conference in Michigan, for work. Are there beaches in Ann Arbor??!!

Conquer Columbus – Week 2

Conquer Columbus – Week 2
June 15, 2014
Well, this week started off VERY rough. My first run on Monday with the girls was awful. It wasn’t that it was so humid, but my body was sore everywhere. Well, really my legs. I began to get panicky. I felt great during my last half and immediately after – so much so that I wanted more and signed up for the full Columbus. Almost immediately after I signed up my legs felt tight. I posted my dilemma to my fellow runners on my facebook group and got tons of great advice. Coach Jenny confirmed that I should crosstrain for this week and that I had plenty of time to train. Nuff said! Oh, and I already knew that I had to get into see Shana, the best trigger point massage therapist ever! She can work miracles.
So here is a summary of my week:
Mon – Ran 3 miles at lunch with the girls
Tues – Yoga at lunch; Got my massage tonight – so awesome! She said my legs were the tightest she ever felt and she said that felt different than before – like inflamed. We talked about wheat and how cutting it out of the diet can have a positive effect for lots of people. I decided to get the book, Wheat Belly and do some of my own research about this, but this could be a good change for my family, especially with Zach’s arthritis. More to come on this…
Wed – Rest (shopped for vacation!)
Thurs – Yoga
Fri – Rest and drive 8 hours!
Sat – Cross –trained 45 minutes on recumbent at hotel and did some ab work
Sun – Rest – walked on beach for about 45 minutes

Why I’ll Never be a Fishing Boat Captain

June 16, 2014

I should have known better. Well, I did kinda know better, but such is life. You know how you know how something is going to turn out a certain way (badly), but you do it again hoping for a different result this time? Like the shoes I keep wearing to work because they are so cute, but they are God awful uncomfortable. I keep thinking that it will change – that today they will fit fine, but alas they still suck. It’s the damnedest thing.

Well, I had one of those experiences today. We signed up to take a 5 ½ hour deep sea fishing tour at Hilton Head. Those of you who know me at all are probably already shaking your head and know full well where this story is leading. Please continue…

Well, Mike really wanted to try this on vacation this year so after looking into it, we booked a trip. I had offered because of cost to bow out and let the boys just go, but Mike found one that was pretty reasonable so we could all go together.
Now, a couple things you should know about me before going further. First, I get motion sick. I cannot read in the car, go on spinning rides and at times cannot even look at my phone in the car in the passenger seat. Second, I love boats. On a lake. Above the water. I love going fast and riding into “big waves”. And lastly, I love my husband and family and enjoy doing new things together. All of these things came together today in a perfect storm!

I mean how bad could it be? I took a half of a motion sickness pill in the morning that we made a special trip to CVS on the island to get. I had a great run that morning and I was ready to go fishing!

Our boat – Captain Hook

I should have paid attention to the signs that morning…like this little goody conveniently placed right outside the ticket booth.

And the story from a local, grandpa-type, fellow passenger waiting in line to get on the boat, about how his wife was “sick as a dog” on their last trip. Gulp –not reassuring. All that being said though I was determined that I would be fine. Just because I have gotten motion sick before doesn’t mean it would happen again (yes, that is really what I thought). Forget about that time I threw up in a little 2-seater plane while on a date with the pilot! That is another story for another day. Plus, that was kid stuff, I thought! This was different – this was a boat. I LOVE boats!!!

I felt pretty good for the first hour into the trip. It took us that long to get from where we boarded to the open water. It was fun to look at the big houses and just enjoy the ride.

However, my uneasiness increased in direct proportion to how far into the open water we were getting. But the worst was yet to come. The first mate gave us an orientation on how to fish. I half-listened, but my ears really perked up when he said that sometimes people get sick and there is no shame in that. He told us that if that happened, just keep it outside the boat…and that it is actually good for fishing! Everyone chuckled, but I just felt a greater sense of doom encroaching on me.

Me, realizing this was a bad idea…

The boat finally stopped and the boys started fishing. The boat was rocking gently side to side. I mean, I guess it was gentle, but the fact that it was moving at all and constantly was starting to make me feel dizzy and queasy. I thought I might feel better if I went up to the sundeck to read so I told Mike that I was heading up above. But as I made my way to the sundeck I quickly realized that it was 5 times worse up there. And reading? Yeah, right. I then realized that I needed to find a spot on the boat, heady down and just hope for the best. I sat on a bench in the shade, leaned on the rail and closed my eyes and tried to find my happy place. All the while I felt so nauseous that I thought at any moment I would contribute positively to the fishing with the contents of my stomach. I was kicking myself for going on this trip and wishing I would have just let the boys go and I stayed on the beach! But that was a fleeting thought. Here I was, stuck on this boat, for the next 2 hours and I just had to get through it. I was determined not to make a big stink of it and I didn’t want to ruin it for the boys. There was nothing anyone could do at this point anyways. But most of all, I did not want to throw up. I have never been so sick without being actually being sick in my entire life. I managed to pull it together to take a few quick pics of Zach as he caught fish, but other than that I was heady down.

We moved fishing spots 2 different times and each time I was literally praying that we were heading back. Nope. At one point the first mate came along and offered me a frozen washcloth to put on the back of my neck. He could have offered me a snakeskin to wear on my neck and I wouldn’t have fought him. I was that out of it. Finally, we headed back and I breathed a sigh of relief. Once we got back into calmer waters I made my way to the front of the boat and tried to enjoy the ride. The nausea had mostly passed and I was proud that I retained my stomach contents, and my dignity! All that was left was a headache and a desire to be very still for a while.

So, lesson learned. No, I will not be a fishing boat captain, nor will I ever go on a cruise that people keep telling me I would just love (you can wear these bracelets or take this great medicine!). No thanks. I think I’ll keep both feet on the ground.

Conquer Columbus – Week 1

Sun, June 8

Well, here starts my next journey – Conquer Columbus!! I ran the half in Columbus last year (October) and decided to kick it up a notch this year since I felt pretty good after the Cleveland half in May. So, here goes! I finished my first week of my 20 weeks of training for the race today. I’ve been a little sore – hard to really pinpoint where – in my calves – sort of. I do need to make an appointment with my trigger point massage to get a “tune-up” and then I think I’ll be good to go. That’s way I was okay to take an additional rest day this week. This week’s lessons are to remember to listen to my body and to take one run at a time rather than get too ahead of myself. Easier said than done for many things in life! Here is how the week came together:

Mon – Ran 40 minutes outside at lunch (3.7 miles)
Tues – 60 minutes of yoga at lunch
Wed – 4.6 miles in the morning before work to celebrate National Running Day!!

National Running Day Selfie!!

Thurs – 45 minutes of yoga at lunch
Fri – Rest day – all day conference in Columbus
Sat – Rest day
Sun – First long run! 5 miles at about 7am (64 degrees with 67% humidity)

Total miles: 13.3
Cross training: 105 minutes
Rest days: 2

“Zero Days Since the Last Accident Flare”

June 4, 2014

Well, it is time for another arthritis update! It has been awhile since I updated about Zach’s symptoms, etc, probably because there hasn’t been a change in awhile. Since March 2013 when Zach was prescribed the Humira shot, things have been going along rather smoothly. Until last week that is…

Zach has been doing a lot of running with lacrosse this season and he has been doing okay with the running. Then he had field day last Thursday and he was wiped out. Then Thursday night he had lacrosse practice. He had told me on the phone after school and before practice that his right ankle was really hurting, but I pushed him to go to practice anyways since it was the last one of the season. I mean ALL the kids complain that they are so tired right? Ugh. Mike was out of town so my mom picked him up and took him to practice for me. Well, when I picked him up from practice that night he was holding back tears from the pain saying “I shouldn’t have let him go to practice!” Yep, I sure felt like mother-of-the-year at that moment. On the way home we talked about how he has to learn to listen to his own body and realize when he can push himself and when he needs to say “no”. All I could think about next was the huge weekend of lacrosse that we had ahead of us: one game on Saturday and then a tournament of 3 games on Sunday. After he took a long, hot shower I told him that we would probably bag the LAX game on Saturday so he could rest up and be ready for his last tournament of the season on Sunday (3 games).

His ankle continued to hurt and he limped around the house with a friend over on Friday night. On Saturday he was asking if he could just get crutches so he could at least walk. At this point Mike and I thought we had better get his ankle checked out at the ER. I was already 90% convinced that it was an arthritis flare, but we wanted to be sure. So we got it checked out and the x-ray was normal. It was a good thing that it was not broken or fractured, but that could only mean one thing: arthritis. See, ever since he was diagnosed in Oct 2012 he had only had one joint affected by arthritis – his right wrist and thumb, so this was all new to us. While Zach was out of the room I had my little cry about the reality of the situation. I was so worried about what this would mean. My son was now getting crutches – not for a broken bone, but for something that nobody could see. He definitely wouldn’t be able to play in the lacrosse tournament the next day. I was really upset. Zach was excited to have the crutches, but the novelty wore off soon enough as we went shopping a bit that evening.

I was really proud of Zach when realizing that he would not be able to play in the LAX games, still wanted to go and support his team and be in the huddle. So, off we went to North Canton to cheer on the silver team for about 6 hours. It was a nice, sunny day and fun to cheer on the team, but I was sad that Zach could not be on the field. There was another team member there on crutches also, but he had a broken bone in a boot. I found myself thinking about how that kid was lucky because (1) his injury was obvious – he had a good story to tell about “what happened”, and (2) his foot would heal in time and he would be good as new. But what about my son? What was he supposed to tell everyone? And would he heal and get to be good as new again? These are things that a mother thinks about. Thankfully, we had talked with him that morning and coached him about what he could say to his teammates. He could simply say, “I have arthritis and I had a flare-up in my ankle,” and leave it at that. I found myself having to answer that question too during the day, and people are well-meaning, but they just either kind of look at you like what? or like it is some sort of bullshit or the opposite extreme, like oh, poor Zach. I don’t blame people for their reaction, I mean, you just don’t expect to hear that a kid has arthritis and again, it looks invisible. It is just hard sometimes because people don’t understand and I feel for Zach having to go to school with crutches and having to explain an “invisible” injury.

Thankfully, we were able to get into see Zach’s rheumatologist today. Long story short, she confirmed that it was a flare and she increased his dosage of methotrexate back to 8 tablets a week instead of 6. He originally was prescribed 8 tablets per week, but then it was dropped back down to 6 when he she added the Humira shot every other week over a year ago. She explained that some kids can get by with just the 6, but he obviously needs the 8. We will see her again the end of July to check to see how he his doing and monitor his blood tests, etc. The one other thing that was kind of bad news is that the clock is “reset” again to this date. In other words, you have to be on the medicine for two years without a flare before the doctor will consider taking you off the meds. He has been on medication since he was diagnosed in Oct 2012 so we were getting close to 2 years, but no cigar!! So as I said to the doctor, “0 days since the last flare!!” just like the safety count at a factory or something. Hey, you have to laugh, right? So definitely 2 more years on the medicine. But, all in all, a good visit. I felt much better after talking with the doctor. Plus Zach’s pain in his ankle was back down to a 1 today so that is great! Just one more step in our journey and more lessons learned.