Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Wednesday Workout Update

I've been running a lot over the last two months, thanks to a crazy training schedule.  I will be the first to admit that in the beginning, I wasn't happy about this - our mileage was increasing by much more than the recommended 10% per week, and with my history of dumb injuries, I was worried that something would happen and I'd be hurting, or even worse, sidelined from running completely.  Let's face it, I don't have the best track record when it comes to random running injuries.

Well, I'm happy to report that I'm feeling pretty good, all things considered.  Sure, I'm still a little stiff the day after a long run, but this is the least hurty I've been in years.  And it's no mystery to me as to why this is happening - I've been using my BFF Buffer often, and it's made a world of difference.  Before I run, I use it on the sides of my heels, my Achilles, and my calves, and the tightness that I usually feel when I start running has almost completely dissipated.  My calves used to be really knotted up and very tight, which pulled my Achilles tendon, which then pulled my plantar fascia ligament...it was a vicious circle, and while I'm still not completely free of it, I'm feeling much, MUCH better.

I used to take Motrin on a daily basis to try and reduce the inflammation and pain, but I haven't needed to do that in months.  After years of trying everything, from foam rolling to using The Stick, from massages to chiropractor visits, I'm very pleasantly surprised that our somewhat spur-of-the-moment purchase last April has not only lived up to its hype, it's surpassed my expectations.  I wish I could have an Oprah moment and bestow one to each of you, but sadly, I don't have Oprah money.  You can order one here and use the code "JOURNEY15" for a 15% discount - it's still expensive, but out of all the things I've tried, I'm still sold on this product and cannot recommend it enough if you're hurting like I was.

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So, speaking of running, we had another seven miler on Saturday.  This is the fourth time I've run seven miles since July, and I am surprised to realize that this distance barely registers anymore.  Now, I'm not saying that seven miles is a piece of cake to run, because it's still SEVEN FREAKING MILES, but it's not horrible...despite the fact that our weather continues to be hot and humid, which makes running extra challenging.  Loretta was still on the mend, so it was just CC and I doing this run together.  We were renegades and did the route opposite from everyone else - it's not that we didn't want to run with everyone, but if you go one direction, it's almost all uphill - well, not always hills, but just a continual rising of elevation.  So we chose to go the other way, and while we had several hills, it wasn't as bad as it could have been.  I was the one who created this particular route two years ago for our running club, and I'm not ashamed to admit that it works better one direction over the other, so it was a no-brainer for us.  And we still got to see our running club peeps as we passed by them going the opposite direction, which is always fun.

It was a little weird to see quite a few unknown-to-us runners out as we were running - unusual, really - but I finally realized that people were in town for the Aggie football game, and they were getting their run in beforehand.   The miles went by fairly quickly and before long we were at mile three, where we each had some fuel (Salted Caramel GU for me, yum).  We turned into the fancy neighborhood just as the sun was rising, and right around mile five, stopped to take a couple of pictures:
Sunrise through the trees...
It was a little foggy here (hot fog, yay) - we liked the look of the lacy tree on the right with the fog and sunrise.

I will say, I've seen more sunrises in the last few years than I have in my entire life, all thanks to running.  Anyway, we finished strong and felt good, which is all one can hope for when it's 72 degrees and 94% humidity.  Afterward, we went to Blue Baker, where we were spoiled once again:
Buttery pecan bar on the left, fudge brownie on the right!

They are so nice to us, especially in light of how sweaty we are when we come in.  We try to sit away from the other customers, at least - hey, we're considerate!  CC brought Loretta to breakfast so we got a chance to catch up...hopefully she'll be back to running with us very soon.

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Early Monday morning, Jeff and I were out for our usual run through the neighborhood behind ours, when a big angry dog came out from behind a house, barking and charging at us.  In all my years of running, I've never had this happen.  We stopped, and he kept coming at us, which was scary.  Jeff was yelling at him to get back, while I was trying to calm both of them down, but that dog wasn't giving up.  We obviously couldn't keep running, as it would have taken that as a sign to keep chasing us, so we were stuck; we were less than half a mile away from our house, but the dog was between us and the street that we needed to turn down in order to get to there.  

Luckily, a college student came out of another house to get into her truck, so I called over to her, asking if she could give us a ride back to our house - turns out she was a nursing student.  I joked with her that she had a head start on the day, with saving two lives already.  Thankfully this ended without getting attacked, but it has made me wonder if I shouldn't be carrying pepper spray with me.  I was given some last year, but I've never taken it out of the package:
I hate to think about having to use this...but I also don't want to be hurt.

The dog incident unnerved me enough that ended up running with Julia at the park yesterday - just in case that dog was still loose, I didn't want to have another encounter with him so soon.  I'll bring the pepper spray with me on Monday, which will be the next time I run through that neighborhood...but I sure hope I won't have to use it.

20 comments:

  1. Congrats on another successful 7 mile run!

    Considering the world we live in you really should carry some pepper spray for protection.
    Glad you and Jeff were not hurt by that dog. I know that must of been really scary to go through I had that happen to myself once too and a neighbor rescued me. Hopefully by next Monday that dog will be back where it belongs or picked up by animal control!

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  2. YAY! I love that you are feeling so well and are not "hurty" (hee hee, fun word!). And that 7 miles is turning in to not such a big thing! No shame in running the easier way on the route - sometimes that is what the day calls for! I have a few routes like that, too! :)

    That scares me about the dog :( Thank heavens that girl could give you a ride! I'd avoid that area for awhile, too. Funny thing about the pepper spray - I was also gifted some that has been in the package for a year! I am pretty sure if I ever use it, it will hurt me more... lol.

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  3. I wish you could have figured out where the dog came from so you could have reported it to animal control. Unfortunately it doesn't even surprise me any longer how many people just let their dogs out of the house thinking that it's early morning and it won't matter. I have no patience for that sort of thing.

    Isn't it fun to find a running tool that works? Glad you're doing better than usual and yes, feeling stiff after a long run should be expected!

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  4. I think it's a good idea to bring along the pepper spray. You never know when you might use it on an animal or human. You can never be to sure especially us women :) I'm with you tho, I'm not sure if I could use it, but you never know.

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  5. Pepper spray is a good idea. You handled it perfectly. I had a neighbor who was deathly scared of dogs (even calm ones, puppies, ALL DOGS) and she would immediately panic and start running and of course the dogs would think she's playing and it was just a terrible sitch. You are rocking the running...7 miles like it's nothing!

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    1. Jeff was bitten by a loose dog as a child and he's very leery of stray dogs to this day - I guess that fear never really goes away.

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  6. Congrats on a great 7 miler!! I can't imagine 7 miles, but maybe by next year I will be in that state of mind and body. My route that I take is a constant incline as well and I just hate it but it is the most level ground besides the school running track in my town.

    You should carry pepper spray especially how early in the morning you run. Have a great week!!

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  7. I've never had a dog chase me, but that had to be so scary! Sadly, I think you need to carry pepper spray with you - when Hannah worked downtown and took the L to work, I had her carry it with her all the time - made me feel better :D

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  8. That dog thing bugs the daylights out of me. Couldn't the owners hear him carrying on? I am on the opposite end of the spectrum. I always worry about my big dogs getting out. I feel like they could end up dead (NWG--neighbors with guns.)

    Anyway, so glad you are having such a great season. I hope you get some nice cooler weather for running before it turns to unpleasantly frigid!

    Oh, and SWOON over the buttery pecan bar :)

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    1. Yeah, I was surprised that the owners didn't wake up or come outside to call their dog in...which makes me wonder if he belonged to that house, or was just lost and lurking there?

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  9. If you have the address of the home and believe the dog belonged to the home (it sounds like he/she does and is territorial) please call your local animal control. Even if you are not certain of the address or ownership please report to animal control. They can patrol the neighborhood. I am a dog lover but dangerous dogs and/or dogs that are not properly contained endanger the community. Others, in particular children, may not have the ability to deal with the situation. If you have already done this please disregard my busy body comment :) Stay safe and enjoy the run!

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    1. Your comment is valid and a few hours later, I wished we'd called animal control and/or gotten in our car and driven back to find the dog. I guess the shock of what had happened affected my thinking...

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  10. I must have missed that review of the Buffer! That thing sounds amazing!! I'm intrigued ...

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  11. Now you have me looking at all the info and videos!! LOL --- Do you have the Turbo or 2.0?

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    1. I have the 2.0 and it has plenty of power. I also use it on my hands - my thumb joints get sore from knitting and this has helped me to keep knitting without having to break for a few days.

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    2. Well, you convinced me. Got the 2.0 in white (the other colors are $300 now!) using your code -- thanks!! At-home workouts have made my left hamstring wonky ... looking forward to trying this out!!!

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    3. Go you! I think you are not only really going to like this, but will find more uses for it than you originally thought...I get a weird tension pain just below my shoulder blade on one side and the buffer has been amazing for that. I'll email you in a bit with how I work my hamstring with the buffer. :)

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  12. Seriously - the dogs! On a bike dogs are scary because a dog could look normal with its owner and then you go by and the dog lunges, catching the owner by surprise. I guess it's like chasing cars, only they can catch a cyclist.

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  13. You know I love dogs but I don't like it when people let their dogs run free. You never know what it will do. When I'm walking Bella and I see someone with a large dog that's not on a leash I'm always extra careful. Bella often barks at dogs and some dogs will see this as agression. Personally I hardly ever let her of her leash, only in the forest and only if R. is with us too.

    A couple of weeks ago I was running outside the village and I saw in the distance 2 large dogs on the road. Usually those dogs are in a kennel but now they were free. It was early, around 6 am and I didn't risk it to pass them and just turned around.

    I'm glad that nice nurse drove you home and hopefully this was your only "meeting" with this dog.

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  14. Congrats on the 7 miles!

    I have pepper spray to carry with me....but typically forget it at home. (duh!)

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