15 Feb – Strike A Pose…

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From geek.com, where more Shrek delights await. Parental Advisory: this site contains images not suitable for children, and I’m not sure they’re any better for adults.

Another day passes, and yet another day without a run (sigh). The upside is though is that Mr JCR and I are in Arnhem for a Winter Wonderland and Fairytale birthday party.

The downside is that one of the friends of our friends is threatening to turn up as a naked Shrek. Green and with dangly bits, it doesn’t bear thinking about, especially for an outdoor barbecue in February. In case your imagination doesn’t stretch that far, here is a pic, so you can enjoy the same nightmare I did last night.

To the more serious bit about running, it is now just on five weeks without a run, and in that time five sets of physio. The good news is the pain is improving, the bad is that it’s not improving anywhere near quickly enough. But I have exercises to do and they seem to help. I am giving myself a mental limit to the end of February to start back running in earnest.

My running limit is 2km per run (as advised by my Physio) I must not run again until the aching subsides – presently that’s been five or six days, most of the pain is centred around the IT band, and it’s being very stubborn in attempts to sort it out.

The exercise regime includes squats, lunges and a crab type thing with buttock squeezes – and when I am being pummelled by the Physio, I more or less have to adopt the Shrek position above.

If I don’t start running soon my buttocks will also resemble Shrek’s. That is my update – an update where nothing is happening. Although I have a feeling that if a naked Shrek does appear on Saturday night, I’ll soon find my running capability comes back very quickly.

More next week, when Mert, Victor and the unnamed lady physio, will be doing their very best to get me moving again.

 

 

 

 

29 Jan – JCR Is On The Road Again

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Strictly speaking, this is not exactly true, but the Physio has confirmed I can try a little run, no more than 25% of my usual distance and I must rest for 24 hours minimum afterwards.

This coupled with Mr JCR acting as a muscly stretching person on my unwilling legs and an introductory course of Pilates, is supposedly going to get me back to normal. Hurrah. (I’m trying to forget the squats instructions…)

As to the dodgy shoulder, that’s a longer game, Mert and Victor and Raffaella are going to continue to see me weekly for at least a couple of months to come. As I don’t run with my shoulder, that’s a little less of an issue, although the injury is more severe, but it is going to curtail any thoughts of boxing for a while.

A little ray of sunshine pierced through the injury gloom, and the blooming flowers in the park on the way home, made me feel quite optimistic.

From a Couch to 5K member, to a 2000km runner, I am now back to doing just 2kms, but it’s 2kms more than I’ve been able to do for almost four weeks now.

If the Beast from the East is returning for me, I’m ready and waiting – trainers are on standby.

 

 

 

20 May – ‘Toetally’ Shattered

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I was supposed to run yesterday and was visited by both Madame Migraine and a foot problem, which meant I was limping, even when wearing slippers – so an enforced day of rest really messed up my running plans. With both my head and foot pounding with pain, I stayed in bed for most of the day, drugged up and dopey.

When I decided upon this challenge, I had read how middle/long distance runners get many, many ailments and I thought to myself. ‘that’s not for me’, the more I read about them the more likely it is I will suffer from them. I studiously avoided reading up on them – there are many weird afflictions with peculiar names and I wanted none of them. I’m happy to Dr Google (well in truth Dr NHS) only if the need arises.

During one bout of consciousness yesterday, I thought I ought to check out my foot pain, just in case I could fix it with a plaster or something. That’s when ‘runnerchondria’ struck – there are many ‘little’ problems you can get – blisters etc and then there’s the big stuff. Naturally enough, I think I have a ‘big’ problem, I am getting stabbing pains under my big toe, it’s like having rhythmic cramp and it hurts, a lot. Suggested diagnoses include a stress fracture, bunions (no it’s not one of those), hallux rigidus (basically a knackered toe, due to age and general deterioration),  and the remaining long Latin-named problems are equally as frightening.

Most of the problems, have solutions all of which start with the recommendations ‘rest and don’t run’. So I didn’t yesterday, but I did today, and what can I say? I had to run slow, not least because it was quite warm this morning. But the upside is that the pain did subside a bit, it’s not quite as bad as yesterday, but I do still yelp when I catch myself unawares. Now I am in the horns of a dilemma – do I continue to run with the toe hurting, which can be managed by judicious use of ibuprofen, or do I rest up, and try and get into see the doctors when I go home in June, to get a physio/X-Ray referral? That could take months and I can’t sit around on my bum for that long.

There are two reasons I can’t sit around for that long – the first being that the challenge can only work if I maintain 160km a month, I have only 2 weeks in the bag, taking more than 2 weeks off, then puts me behind schedule. The second is that since I’ve been running the longer distances, I can eat more  – yay –  and not put on weight. If I’m sitting around, I have a horrid feeling I’ll still do the eating and thus develop a Kardashian Kulo. Which is fine if you are Kardashian shaped but I’m not.

I’m going to just run even more glacially slowly than I have been, and watch my foot for any deterioration and see if it’s possible to get a physio appointment in Italy instead. they have a mixture of public/private medicine here and there’s a lot of ‘sports’ clinics around – that is my default if the pain becomes unmanageable.

Anyway, despite the ‘toetally’ crap Saturday, I did manage to get out today, it was sunny, and my dear friend G saw me in the cafe for my pitstop and very generously bought me my breakfast. And I tried out my new Boy Band playlist (very recently completed) to keep me going, when things got tough.

This time last year, we were in Japan chasing the sakura (cherry blossom). Sometimes you forget that you don’t necessarily need to travel far to see wonderful things, and my pic shows the rather lovely and abundant cherries we have in our garden. Cherries for breakfast – tree to mouth – zero food miles, in fact we are talking food centimetres only.

Playlist

Sugar Baby Love – The Rubettes

Bye Bye Baby – Bay City Rollers

 

Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go – Wham

Forever and Ever – Slik

A Little Bit More – 911

ABC – The Jackson 5

You Raise Me Up – Westlife

Stand And Deliver – Adam & The Ants

 

When Will I Be Famous – Bros

When You Say Nothing At All – Boyzone

I’ll Make Love To You – Boyz ll Men

 

A Million Love Songs – Take That

Mandy – Westlife

Seasons In The Sun – Westlife

Shang A Lang – Bay City Rollers

Boxerbeat – Jo Boxers

Everybody – Backstreet Boys

Quit Playing Games With My Heart – Backstreet Boys

Bye Bye Bye – NSYNC

Story Of My Life – One Direction

Step By Step – New Kids On The Block

It Only Takes A Minute – Take That

The Chauffeur – Duran Duran

Rockin’ Robin – Michael Jackson

The Call – Backstreet Boys

Mama Do The Hump – Rizzle Kicks

Love and Pride – King

Stats

Distance 11.85km

Time 1:35:09

Average Pace 8:01

Elevation Gain 223 metres

Alzheimer’s Challenge

Kms Run 867.29

Kms to do 1150.71

 

 

 

 

 

 

30 Mar – Another Day In Paradise

It’s a UK Bank Holiday, Good Friday – or more to the point, Grey Friday and London seems empty, except for the locals and brave tourists who may have hoped for a pleasant Easter break in the capital.

No such luck for them, but the upside for me is the streets are empty, so no swerving, swearing or switching routes to avoid people traffic. During the holiday breaks in the capital, a lot of construction work continues – hence all the train line closures. I was just out of my door when I saw the Crossrail monster crane being manoeuvred towards the Moorgate site. From all the hi-vis men taking pics of this too, I am guessing this is not a usual occurrence.

I do however have an unusual occurrence of my own – I have a twinge –  not the usual WMAS , but I think it may be a proper problem. I’ve  Dr Googled which is always a bad thing, as invariably the worst possible diagnosis and prognosis  comes up. Sore leg = instant death, that kind of thing. Then I found a site that promised to diagnose more accurately your knee pain – but out of the 5 conditions they mention, mine doesn’t seem to fit any of them.

Using Idris Elba’s recent advert strap-line ‘carry on’, I gave it a go and ran this morning. Upshot just over 6km done – bizarrely the twinge doesn’t seem to happen as often when I’m running, but it does when I’m walking. I am still yelping/swearing from time to time, but not as much as last night. Therefore I am a bit perplexed, The NHS site says something along the lines of – don’t go to a GP, don’t go to hospital, don’t take painkillers, just wait and see.

So that is what I am going to do, I am going to wait and see what happens and not put in such long runs. My own strap-line is Carry On Running, But Not Yelping. Not awfully catchy – I sincerely doubt Elstree Studios will be re-launching the famous comedy series any day soon.

Playlist

Darling Nikki – His Purple Highness and The Revolution

Chelsea Dagger – The Fratellis

Born In The USA – The Boss

Enola Gay – OMD

Somebody Told Me – The Killers

Maid Of Orleans – OMD

This Girl – Kungs

Mercy – Duffy

Live and Die – OMD

Two Tribes – Frankie Goes To Hollywood

Girls On Film – Duran Duran

Planet Earth – Ditto

Boombastic – Shaggy

Statistics

Distance 6.65km

Time 43:51

Average Pace 6:35

Elevation Gain 18 metres

Alzheimer’s Challenge

Kms Run to Date 547.6

Kms to Run 1470.4

When Shopping Doesn’t Replace Running – 19 October

A week on the injury couch, after having suffered Stupid Tart Syndrome and I am decidedly antsy at not being able to run, which I suppose is a good thing…

Am in London on a flying visit for a body MOT, and I have a mini shopping list for running stuff, it’s not a huge list, but I reckon buying running stuff is almost as good as running, except buying isn’t that straightforward either.

Three things on my list:-

  1. Socks X three pairs
  2. Kettlebell (don’t ask)
  3. Lightweight wicking running top with hood

First stop a combined cycling/running sports chain in the City, first observation is it’s really a cycling shop with a bit put to one side for runners, let’s be honest actually more aimed at male runners – females about 3 racks worth. No customers except me and apparently the trainer display warrants more attention….aaarrrggghhh, why work in Retail if you don’t want to talk to customers.

Second stop, Gap as they often have decent sports kit, but it’s all summer stuff on sale and no hooded tops to be seen, nor socks and I don’t think I’ve ever seen a Gap branded kettlebell.

Third stop M&S, as they’ve branched out into sportswear, but it is a bit dreary, quite nice running tights, only they’re not on my list. Only fleecy type jackets, no hooded tops.

Somewhat disheartened go home.

Thursday morning, I had promised myself a little runette/jogette to see if my Stupid Tart Syndrome injury had righted itself after a week of rest. Alarm goes and I am up and out of the door in minutes. I am a woman with a mission as am returning to Italy mid-afternoon, I have to buy piggy treats from The Ginger Pig at Borough Market which is a couple of miles away. Warm up walk is fine, then a few ginger steps into a run and yippee no twinges, twangs or alarming snapping feelings. I am running through the City, through hordes of worker ants, all dressed in varying shades of grey, charcoal, black, silver, grey, navy blue, grey, black, grey, pinstripe, white, grey. Grey seems to predominate regardless of gender, so to play my part I am wearing a grey top, but just to add a little colour to a grey day I am wearing rather fetching harlequin pink and blue leggings.

I run past charity collectors on the street, who are getting rather a lot of donations in their buckets, running towards Borough Market over London Bridge and the 2km warning comes up. I feel fine so continue past Borough and towards Blackfriars, where I note with some sadness that there are anti-terrorist bollards across the pavement, causing all the worker ants to be funnelled through little openings. Londoners truly have the patience of saints to cope with this. There’s little room anyway and now your access routes are constrained even more. Shame. A quick loop round the back of Blackfriars and I re-cross the river on the wobbly bridge, alongside Bankside and just at Clink Street the 5km warning came on. I feel fine, but am not going to tempt fate so keep my run to that. Shaggy and Boombastic comes on my playlist – to be back running feels boombastic.

I arrive at The Ginger Pig spot on opening time, buy my piggy treats and walk home, back along Bankside an oncoming commuter sees me and smiles. I think it was either the combination of incongruous face, grey top and multicoloured leggings that did it, or maybe the fact that I was very red (monarch red in fact) and carrying a serious haul of Ginger Pig sausage rolls that perhaps didn’t look the height of healthy eating and living.

Either way I am happy so I don’t care, run done, no recurrence of Stupid Tart Syndrome, oh and I ran the 5k quite quickly too…. On the way back I spot another runner specialist store – it has publicity blurb saying something like ‘understanding everything runners need’, so in I pop with red face, warm sausage rolls and my credit card. I go through my list of running needs, and as they understand it all!!!, I am not in the least bit surprised when all I manage to buy is some socks, because apparently kettlebells are only available at their other store and lightweight hooded running tops definitely fine for men and children, just not for women. You can’t win them all.

Playlist

(cocked up on the music front… Map My Run doesn’t record the list from Spotify)

I Ran – A Flock of Seagulls

Talk Talk – Talk Talk

Runnin’ Down a Dream – Tom Petty

Tainted Love – Soft Cell

I Ran – A Flock of Seagulls

Boombastic – Shaggy

Stats

Distance 5.09km

Time 32.44

Average Pace 6.25 mins/km

Elevation gain 35m

Best km split 5.57min/km – this is a personal best, this year!

And which look better – the leggings or the sausage rolls???

My bum is numb and I wonder…

exactly  how  many of the people in this airport are runners?

Some are dressed like runners, but could that just be a case of ‘all the gear, no idea’?

There are some molto chic ladies and men, with their heels and briefcases. Families, old uns, young uns, suits, tracksuits, no suits.

In fact if I took a photo maybe they all would look like runners? I’m a runner and don’t look anything like Usain or Mo. But then they’re guys, so maybe not surprising.

Maybe I will find out the answer when we disembark? But if there are lots of runners, I can’t keep up because of injury. Curses….

 

I Don’t Like Sundays … 15 Oct

I do really, but today I still can’t run after having twanged my right leg on Thursday night, when going out.

Worse still I twanged it before having had a drink, so I cannot blame anyone or anything other than myself, for being not fully on the injury couch, but not quite able to run.

I have been amusing myself updating new 80s playlists on Spotify, and have succumbed to a free subscription so I can do some downloads to my phone. Will have to see how the Spotify thing goes… Not usually a fan of these services, but who knows I could become a convert.

In the meantime back to London tomorrow, leaving Mr JCR with the olive harvest to do and organise (cunning timing on my part).

For injuries you are supposed to follow the RICE method to recuperate, but icing and elevating my right leg is not really on the cards, so am adopting purely some rest to get me in better shape. But I am taking my trainers to London, just in case I can get a run or two in. Wish me luck.