Sunday, October 27, 2013


Thursday: felt a bit better. The 30 min on the elliptical didn't hurt as much.

Friday: elliptical + biked to work for total of 45 min cardio. I felt surprisingly good.

Saturday: 45 min elliptical. Still felt surprisingly good.

Sunday: Woke up more sore than I'd like, probably from Friday's bicycling. Hiked with my mom for 45 min (2.75 miles) and that felt pretty good and loosened things up. The fall weather here has been amazing and the leaves are SO lovely (see pic at left)...wish this weather could stay a bit longer. Later, I biked to book club and then up to work, then biked to a friend's home and then home. Feeling pretty decent right now. Hoping I don't pay for all this tomorrow, but I suspect I will. Off to bed soon so that I can get up early for some elliptical tomorrow.

Been eating much better yesterday & today. Right now my #1 priority is to eat right and get in as much exercise as possible. No racewalking for now - I just need to keep my weight under control and feel better if possible. Racewalking was making things worse and so I just have to take a bit of a break from it. I should probably swim, but I'm just not feeling the love right now. I'm reserving the swim card for later, if it needs to be played.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

more of the same

Elliptical Monday-Wednesday, 30 min/day.

Legs very sore :(. Took some naprosyn today and it didn't seem to make a dent in the soreness.

Thinking about what course of action to pursue next to try and get some help.

Monday, October 21, 2013


I'm pretty sore today. Just 5K yesterday was enough to do it. ARRRGH! SO FRUSTRATED!

Did 30 min elliptical this morning. Spent the rest of the day annoyed at my sore muscles. Mostly ate pretty well, at least. That's something anyway.

I haven't been feeling depressed again, thankfully. Just frustrated, angry, irritated, pent-up, wanting-to-racewalk-but-dreading-the-aftermath. Annoyed that my boss and his wife did a half marathon last weekend and both did really well...happy for them, yes, but just so annoyed that I couldn't do it too. Irritated that my Facebook friends are all having lots of fun at the races. Stressed that I am still not feeling better. Angry at myself for being such a schmuck when others I see walking through the hospital on my way to work every day have much worse problems.

That's pretty much it in a nutshell. Just getting it out there.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

cross-training; hiking; 5K

Thursday, despite fighting off a cold, I did 30 min elliptical and then 15 min stationary bike before going on vacation with my family to Southern Utah. We enjoyed an awesome hike in Dead Horse Point State Park on Friday, and then a hike in the Fiery Furnace in Arches National Park on Saturday before returning home to celebrate my mom's 70th birthday. Whew!

My legs actually hurt a lot from the car ride on Thursday, but they felt fine hiking - no problems whatsoever. We hiked about 6K (3.7 miles) on Friday, and then a bit more (2-3K?) Friday night on a night hike with the park ranger. Then Saturday we hiked 2 miles (3.2K) in the Fiery Furnace, with lots of scrambling and some beginning rock-climbing moves. I wasn't sore at all from that either.

Today I decided to do 5K, because I could, and my legs felt recovered. I was pretty slow, doing 5K at 6:20/km with ave HR 146. I felt OK - legs weren't sore much during the walk. However, now after a few hours, my legs are starting to hurt, mostly in the glutes. It feels like I've done a hard weight training workout - too many lunges or something. It feels much worse when sitting, so standing is better, though not terribly convenient when you want to edit photos, watch football, etc.

My diet hasn't been the best as you might guess, between camping and birthday cake. My weight is a bit out-of-control at the moment. Time to re-strategize and figure this out.

I just wish I knew what was wrong. I wish I knew what to do to make my legs feel better. My fatigue level has improved a significant amount over the last week, so maybe my legs will follow? But I have to assume that might not happen and plan accordingly. I am not exercising like an athlete now, so it's time to stop eating like I am. That will be more difficult than it sounds, but I have a few ideas to tackle the problem. I need to start acting on my alternate plans for when I feel like eating - other things I can do instead. I have been saying this for a time to DO something, before it gets worse.

On the bright side, some photos from our trip:

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

cross-training, 6K

Yesterday: 30 min elliptical

Today: 6K. My legs didn't feel as recovered as they did on Monday, but they didn't feel horrible either. It was a crisp fall morning, clear and 40F (4C), and it felt good to be out. My legs were OK until the 5K mark, when they started to really hurt. At least I only had 1K left at that point. I was pretty fast through 5K, too - yeah, it's a net downhill, but not really steep or anything, but I still got to 5K at 6:03/km pace (about 30:15 --- gee that's only 20 sec slower than my race a couple wk ago...sigh.........). Then I slowed a lot on the last uphill, finishing in 37:00 for 6:10/km with ave HR 152.

Now (at lunch time), my legs feel quite sore and very tired. Grrrrrr. I WANT TO FEEL BETTER! I want to walk 10K without muscle pain. That apparently is too much to ask right now. I will have to adjust expectations and be patient, two things I'm obviously not very good at. At least there's no pressure of an impending race.

Garmin data here.

Monday, October 14, 2013

rest day, 6K

Yesterday I took a rest day. My legs felt pretty good, so I thought about swimming or other x-training, but was busy working for 90 min or so and also helping a friend paint, so I opted to skip it.

This morning I woke up and my legs didn't feel too sore! They were a bit sore, but it wasn't painful to bend over and tie my shoes like it has been. My glutes weren't screaming at me from the stretch needed to tie shoes (with bent knee). I figured that was good. So I went for a walk with Adriana; we planned on 5-8km depending on how we felt. I thought I'd make 5km but doubted I'd go farther than that. I was pleasantly surprised that my legs felt OK at 2.5km, so I suggested we turn around at 3km and if we felt like more then we could do more when we got back to our cars. By 5km my legs were tired and somewhat sore, but nothing like how sore they have been on some other days. I was ready to stop at 6km, but I could have done more if I'd had to. My legs have felt decent so far today (it's lunch time), though I will cop to taking a couple naprosyn prophylactically.

We did the 6km slow and easy, finishing in 38:25 for 6:24/km (though my watch was off badly for the first 500m (3:46???!??? - know it was not more than 3:10 or so), so it was probably more like 37:45 for the 6K?). Anyway, regardless, my ave HR was 145, so it was a nice easy day and felt OK. I need more days like this. I'm going to allow myself to have a little hope that maybe things are done getting worse? OK, it's only been a couple days of feeling better.

I'm still eating the higher-protein diet, averaging probably 80g protein per day. I wonder if that is helping? It will be 2 weeks of that tomorrow.

Garmin data here.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Can't leave the blog alone...

I guess I need the therapy of writing this, of getting my thoughts on "paper".

Not surprisingly, it's been a tough week. I rested Sunday after the race, and was extremely sore. Glutes, hamstrings, right shin, obliques. Monday I was even more sore, but felt I needed to work the kinks out of my muscles, so I opted for 30 min elliptical. Tuesday, I did 30 min elliptical and I biked to work. That was rough on me - I hurt badly on Wednesday-Friday, but still managed elliptical at least 25 min each day.

Last night I was feeling better. I got a text from Stevie's dad, suggesting I join Stevie for 10K. Well, I thought 10K rather unlikely, but figured a little company for 5K would be lovely, and so I went. Stevie took off like a shot, and I stayed with him, though we did slow a good amount on the way back. There was a lot of frost on the section of the parkway that has the wooden walkway over the swampy area, and we had zero toe push there, so that was slow too. Yes...I said frost. It was 43F (6C) this morning, but near the river it was a bit cooler and there was some frost.

Enjoyed the walk a lot, though the last 2km hurt a good amount. Did the 5K in 31:14 with a high ave HR of 150. Afterward, I took an ice bath. Yes, an ice bath for 5km. Sad but true. Coach thinks it might help, and hey, can't hurt. OK, yes it can hurt! It was freeeeezing cold and I have Reynaud's phenomenon, which was acting up for a couple hours afterward. A mug of hot tea and cranking the heat in the car on the way to Calvin's soccer game eased things up a bit. Despite all that, I think the ice bath helped. My legs are sore but not as bad as it has been sometimes.

I miss racewalking SO much. It felt so good for the first 2.5K, and I wanted so much to keep walking. My boss is doing a half marathon in southern Utah next weekend, and I expressed jealousy. He said, "You can still sign up!" and I had to explain that I could not do it - no way. I know I'd never get through the race. He said, "You could walk". Hahahahaha. I doubt I could even walk casually for 13.1 miles right now. I would love nothing more than to do that race. It made me want to cry. Finally he said, "Oh. I'll shut up now." Thanks...

I admit that last night I felt depressed. I allowed myself to wallow in it a bit. I haven't done that much at all (yet) and have been impressed that though moody, I've managed to keep my head up. But I'm worried that I can't take much more of this. The muscle pain, the sadness from missing my sport, the weight gain due to comfort eating (duh) are getting to be too much. I have avoided the nasty pit of depression, but with winter coming on and being prone to seasonal affective disorder, I will admit to being afraid.

I have a few strategies left to combat this. I have to work harder to get more sleep and to eat right. That makes everything feel better. Eating right has proven to be quite a challenge, though eating more protein the last couple weeks has helped somewhat. I need to have a bit more time to myself, so maybe I will ask Loren to do a bit more around the house, if he can. At the moment he's furloughed from work because of the gov't shutdown, so theoretically he can help; however, he's had a nasty cold which has messed with everything.

Well, seeing this on "paper" has helped me realize I need to do a little more planning and strategizing. I have a bit of time this weekend and hopefully can get an hour to myself to think.

Monday, October 07, 2013

National Masters 5K

The weekend was lovely, except for the race. It was great to see everyone (photo with my friend Lis below), Tennessee was beautiful, and I enjoyed myself. The redeye flight out there wasn't so great, and I didn't sleep enough, so I'm tired now, but that didn't diminish my pleasure in the weekend in general.

The race? Yeah, worse than expected. I hoped for low 29s. Barely squeezed under 30 min, and my heart rate was ridiculously high, averaging 167. My legs hurt from end of the first km on, and now (2 days later) they are very painful --- like I'm recovering from a hard half marathon, not a 5K race.

I did come in 2nd place, but that's not saying so much when I was the youngest in the race except for two teenagers (age 14). I was first in my age group...but then again, I was the ONLY one in my age group. Hey, I didn't get DQ'd!

The course was slightly hilly - slight downhill for 1st 500, slight uphill for 2nd 500 in each lap (1k/lap). It also had a complex turn at one end, so I'd say most people were slowed 30 sec-1 min by the course (vs. a fast, flat course). So maybe I would have done low 29s? No matter. The weather was perfect - 13C (55F) and very humid, which was no biggie since it wasn't hot that early. It was warmer for the men's race.

Garmin data here.

I'm frustrated but I'm doing OK. Mostly.

I'm going to take a break from racewalking, and therefore probably from my blog as well, for a little while. I will walk some for exercise, as I'm able, but will not train. I'll try to update if there is any good news or even bad news or something about my condition changes. I know I could blog about trying to lose the weight I've gained or something potentially useful, but honestly, I'm too tired and too afraid I'd be too negative. It takes a lot of energy right now to just try and stay positive in real life, and adding in the blog makes it harder.

Hopefully I'll be back soon.

Thursday, October 03, 2013

mixed feelings

I head to Tennessee this weekend with mixed feelings. On one hand, I love racewalking and love my racewalking friends, and I look forward to being part of all things racewalking at the National Masters 5K. On the other hand, I know I won't race as well as I'd like to. Of course, I also feel lucky that I get to race. It's confusing and perplexing, this mess of feelings.


This week in review...

Monday - 3K fartlek in 17:13, and my legs felt stronger than they have in a while, probably because last Thursday & Friday I only did 30 min elliptical each day, and I rested Saturday & Sunday. Way to taper! Hahaha...

Tuesday - rest day.

Wednesday - elliptical plus biking to work = 45 min cardio.

Today - 20 min racewalking. 3.2 km in 19:35 for 6:07/km w/ave HR 139. I felt pretty good while I was out walking, and felt smooth and in control. My muscles felt stronger than they have overall. I'm a bit sore now, but not too bad. 20 min shouldn't make me sore, though...sigh. At least I feel optimistic that I can do 5K and finish at the race on Saturday. Goals? To race as well as I can and be happy with that, whatever it is.


New thoughts on what might be wrong with me.

1) Protein deficiency. I eat a fairly carb-heavy diet, when I've tracked it in the past. I read that for a sedentary woman my size, 46g/day is the minimum. Some recommend as much as 125g/day for an active female athlete my size! I would guess I've been eating around 40g normally...that's not much. A small deficiency like that over time could lead to fatigue and muscle soreness and poor recovery. This seems likely, and hey, it won't hurt to eat a bit more protein and fewer carbs. It's something I know hasn't been quite right about my diet anyhow.

2) My friend Sarah (an M.D.) suggested possibly a food allergy/sensitivity causing inflammation. She suggested dairy and gluten as two possibilities, but didn't limit it to that. I think this is definitely possible, though I'd expect I would have more GI symptoms if this were the case. Still, it's not hard to try dairy free or gluten free for a few weeks to see if it helps.

I'm going to try 1) first and eat more protein for a few weeks and see if I feel better. I started on Tuesday and this week has been better than last for sure; however, I've done less exercise and also have ditched the cold that was dogging me, so it's not a perfect comparison. I have to give it a good try - several weeks - and then evaluate again.