Monday, October 22, 2012

Boo Boo's Happen

As I sit here and reflect back on my childhood, I remember something interesting. someone in my family was just about always hurt. It may have been my dad, or a cousin, or a cousins boyfriend, husband, or wife, never a mom, but you get the picture. One of them was always limping around on crutches, in a cast, or sling.

They were not a clumsy group of people, nor were their jobs all that dangerous and damaging to their bodies. My family played hard, they were a family of athletes who left all they had out on a ball field. I also remember the frustration of the injured when they didn't get to play, while they were warming the bench beside me (score keeper extraordinaire here for the men's softball league).
I couldn't find a newer one.. I know I have then just not sure where. Yes they look a bit rough here.

I am feeling the sting of that frustration today as I sit here and draft up this blog post. I have also learned a valuable lesson. "Learn the difference between injured and sore". A week ago Saturday I had a little stumble on a trail run, nothing that I thought was too bad, just a off balance little stumble, catch yourself and run on. I had a PR that day even so I mean really how bad could it have been.. right? Wrong. I laced up my shoes the next morning and ran a 10 miler.. no biggie right? Wrong. I do recall on that run telling a fellow bootcamper that I hurt differently it seemed each time I ran and in a different spot (so even my head was trying to tell me then something wasn't right) but because of the phrasing of my statement, it was deduced that it was nothing more than my brain telling me to stop, so I carried on. Sunday night was up half the night because if felt like I had a toothache in my leg. By Monday I figured out my hip was really sore.. but just sore because of my blisters that were burning on Sunday's run so I over compensated and made my hip sore.. another brilliant conclusion by Re! Wrong. Tuesday I went to bootcamp and was in enough pain that I just couldn't run very long at all.. again pain because my gait was off.. WRONG. Wednesday back to bootcamp in the evening pushed through that without making too much of a spectacle of myself and I don't think anyone figured out that, well, I wanted to cry. (guess they know now) I spoke to one of the coaches after that and just had said I don't think I am going to do track in the morning. His response was "Oh ok.. I understand, So I will see you in the morning right?" Or something really close and he DID see me in the morning because I am stubborn and hardheaded and maybe a tiny bit stupid. I actually did ok at track day and yes it hurt, badly, but as long as I kept going I wasn't wanting to cut it off, it was when I stopped and had to start again that I was wishing I had one of Jay Bowman's chain saws to just cut out whatever it was that was hurting so bad in there. Still even after that morning I was blaming everything on an out of place gait. WRONG WRONG WRONG. When I got home on Thursday work was slammed and I didn't get a chance to move around all that much I was chained to my phone, so by the time the day was over I was pretty darn stiff. Feeling a lot like I was breaking myself out of rigor mortise I got myself together and went to the grocery store as I was headed on a trip the following day. It was in the grocery store that I realized that something was way more wrong than being sore. (that was the longest paragraph in this blog's history by the way)

So you wanna know how I finally came to the conclusion there was a bit more wrong? The only way I could make it around the store was to actually hold my hand directly on where my groin muscle is and push .. hard. Now for those of you that know where your groin muscle is let me tell you that is quite a bit embarrassing.  I mean I could not even use the excuse I was "adjusting my marbles".. I AM A GIRL I DON'T HAVE THOSE.  So finally I decided Googling needed to be done cause I really couldn't wander around doing what appeared to be .. well it doesn't need to be discussed what it appeared I was doing. Google search "pain around inner thigh after running"... returned result.. groin muscle blah blah blah.. REsponse.. NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

So there ya have it, not just sore, pulled groin muscle and let me just tell you if you have never pulled this little piece of work, DON'T.  Poor Kris and Brian wanted to throw me out of the house I am sure due to every time I had to go up and down the stairs it started with OUCH, getting out of the truck, OUCH, turning to put my feet in the truck, OUCH. I think you see how aggravating this was for them. I am sorry guys, I love you both.

The only thing you can do for a pulled muscle is, well, nothing. Rest. And I rest just about as well as I know the difference between injured and sore, I DON'T. I am freaked out, disappointed, annoyed, and aggravated with myself, why did this happen when it did, right in the middle of training for the half, an two weeks before a 10K that I was looking forward to getting a PR on, however, remember when I said last week that there is good in everything? It's true. My groin muscle probably saved Brian from having a full fledged heart attack because I was enjoying dangling a bit close to the edge of High Rock, and by bit close I mean full on dangling over it. Just imagine where I would have ended up if I wasn't wobbling around like a webble wobble.  And the other thing, I can now put myself right smack dab in the middle of my family of athletes. I got my first injury guys (with more to come I am sure) put a spot on the family bench for my hiney!
Every now and then I'm right up on the edge
Dangling my toes out over the ledge
I just thank God you're here

It's what happens sometimes when you lay it all on the line, when you are out there and all you can think about is the goal, sometimes we push just a little too far, but I truly believe that part of being an athlete is learning exactly where that line is. Also it is, having that longing to be out there working hard  and missing the training when you just can't.  A year ago if someone had told me to take it easy and rest for 7 days I would have been all over that and refusing to move from the sofa. Today... I am a bit different. I am sad I am going to miss a week of training and being with my bootcamp family, I am disappointed I won't be with the Blackhawks until at least Wednesday, if then, I am angry that I won't be running in the 10K on Saturday but instead walking, but I am grateful, this is only a pulled muscle, nothing requiring anything but a bit of a rest and then I will be right back out there pushing it to the line. Why? Because God gave me a gift and I am going to use it.. it's called Life, and sometimes boo boo's  happen.

Much Love,

Friday, October 19, 2012

Operation LTC 163

So I have had a couple of people ask what exactly Operation LTC 163 is, my response is the same now as it was then, you know how the CIA and DoD and FBI have names like Operation Tango or Operation Orange Yellow Bellied Scared Baboon? That is sort of like Operation LTC 163, even if I told you what exactly it was it still wouldn't make much sense to you so I will be like the CIA and keep my mouth shut.

Either way it is an Operation of healthy choices and positivity with me as it's sole member and leader. Over the last week or so I have posted a couple of status's on facebook that are worthy enough of repeating here (at least as the sole member and leader I think they are so bare with me ok)

In life allow others to inspire and encourage you along your journey, do not long to be those people. We have all faced our own battles and have our own scars, no one is any more perfect at being you than you are, and ultimately at some point in time most of those other people will end up letting you down because you have placed them on such a high pedestal. Just be you, one step at a time, and enjoy your own journey. ~Operation LTC 163
Whenever you feel like you might be on the outside looking in, look at the bright, side you have plenty of room to dance around and just be you! Operation LTC 163
 Hope everyone had a wonderful love filled day! Through our struggles and triumphs we grow and become more of the person we long to be. I am very thankful I have the freedom and health to enjoy everything this crazy thing called life throws at me. Even a bummed out hip can be a blessing, I never would have seen that beautiful shooting star this morning if I hadn't had to walk or had my friend tell me to use the time to enjoy what was around me. If someone hadn't said a couple of words i took the wrong way i may have missed the chance to clear the air with a friend. Look for the good in all things! Operation LTC 163
The purpose Operation LTC 163 is to help me keep my eye on the goal and to remember the positive things in my life. The things that I have the ability to do and change, that this morning and every morning in the past I have woken up, under a roof, with food in the fridge, and with my health. Not everyone in my life can say those things. 

I have learned so many wonderful things in the past year, all of which I wish I could share with you, but the most important thing I have learned and it applies to everything in life is this. 
"Don't give up... Don't EVER give up" ~ Jimmy V
This weekend I challenge you to look at negative situations with a new spirit, remember there are reasons for all, and that you have the ability and choice to change how you view it. 
Oh PS: this girl did TEN one arms push ups (yes they looked a bit sissy baby but I did them with my left arm) AND I am happily putting my hiney in size 12 jeans.

Much Love. 

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

I finally found myself on a boat!

Considering 99% of my posts lately have been about Outer Banks Bootcamps or some run or another, I was seriously considering changing the name of this blog again but then figured why not just incorporate the other things I do in my life back in here cause they are interesting too!

 Aren't these two little guys just the sweetest???

Not my shoes!
You got her PeeWee!
We are going that way.. then this way.. then that way!

Just a few of my favorite people.

Even Banx got in on the fun.

We weren't the only Mathews Crew.

This past weekend I did go to Mathews as you know from previous posts but what you don't know is I made a little detour on my way home and finally after all summer of not being on one, I found myself ON A BOAT! Not just any old boat I was a proud passenger, race crew, team mate (something or another) on the Jordan Lynn. When you board the Jordan Lynn you are sure to find yourself two things, a good time and surrounded by great people!

We were at the Poquoson Boat Races at Messick Point and spent most of the time just hanging out in the river and enjoying the wonderful weather and making some silly memories that none of us will forget anytime soon. Thank you Jimmy John for once again getting us all together and sharing your boat with us.

If I die suddenly posting this may be why.
It's funny when you think about it, my family history on my daddy's side is boats, water, fish, boats, water, fish, boats, and water. I think it is something that gets in your blood by birth, and can in fact skip a generation or two, my daddy for example has NO desire to be on a boat or in the water, he will however eat any fish you may have. I, on the other hand, would really rather be no where else, if I could be on a boat or close to the water you are going to find me no where else. There is something so calming about the sound of a diesel engine, unless of course you happen to be racing and then well it is just exciting.

I got word this weekend that my Great Grandfathers boat the Ellen Marie has once again sold, I unfortunately have not won the lottery yet and it was not me that bought her even though I would have liked nothing more. I also heard that she is more than likely headed up north .. it breaks my heart to think about it so I am just going to say that I am glad she has a new home and hopefully the new owners will find many hours of enjoyment on her.

Good times!
I am going to close with a final thought today, through out your life you change, you are met with new opportunities and challenges, face them all with pride and dignity, but never let something new completely erase who you are. 

Happy Wednesday!
Much Love

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Running for a Reason

On your Mark.
I know some of you that know me from here on our little sandbar were probably wondering why I traveled 3 hours to run a 5K run that I could have run anywhere, heck I think there was one here on the Outer Banks Saturday. The reason for running Saturday's Wesley Ashberry Twilight 5K wasn't about the what, it was about the why.
Daddy, Me and Deanna

This particular run was in support of the Denbigh House, which is an innovative vocational rehabilitation program for individuals with brain injury who live on the Virginia Peninsula. The program seeks to help survivors of brain injury achieve greater levels of independence and productivity. If you would like to read more about them and their history you can find it here.
My best friend Mark, Wes and Sandra

Mark, Julie, Wes
Daddy, Julie, Me, Ed, and Deanna (I need a new sweatshirt.. it makes me look huge and I am not any longer)
You know how you go out and run a race for say the Food Pantry, but yet your family has never been hungry, you can say you did a good thing for a good cause, but it isn't quite .. it isn't quite.. I am not even sure of the words I am looking for, as meaningful maybe?  I can't say that about this particular run.
Promise and Shannon, my girl has some lungs on her! She's running this thing next year.

Steve.. yea he beat me darn it, he met his goal though. 
Our family, oddly enough, has been no stranger to automotive tragedies, sitting back looking at our extended family and the history it seems we have more than most, maybe it is because we are such a large family or maybe because we are actually close to even our second, third, and twentieth cousin six times removed. On October 18th in 1997 at 10:15 pm our family came incredibly close to losing my second cousin (or maybe it is First Cousin Once Removed... I cant keep all that straight), Wesley, he was involved in an accident which sent him to the hospital in Richmond to fight for his life. I remember the first time seeing Wes after the accident, there aren't words for me even to put here to describe what exactly I felt and thought at that moment, at the time I was living in North Carolina so it was days later that I saw him, I don't even want to think of the night of.  We all prayed, prayed, and prayed some more that he would pull through, that our Wes wasn't going to leave us. God answered our prayers and Wesley is still a HUGE part of our family today. Wesley has a personality that is larger than life, always has and always will, to know him is to love him and I am so grateful to have him in my life.

Angie and Sandra
Carrie and Justice
When all was said and done, Wesley had a brain injury that affected his speech and mobility, this is where the Denbigh House comes in. The way I look at it is this, if we as a family can potentially help just one more brain injury patient through our running and volunteering at this race then we have succeeded. There was no other place I would have rather been on this Earth on Saturday than with my family and friends giving it all we had for Wesley and the Denbigh House, and quite honestly, finishing the race, being there with Ed, Mark, my Daddy,  the rest of my family and friends, coming in second in my age bracket, or getting a Personal Record was no where near close to the best part of the evening, hearing Wesley over the crowd when the announcer asked if anyone was there for Lynn's restaurant holler "Mama!" was.

Jill, Aidan, JJ, and Isabella
Deanna, Daddy and Me coming into the finish
TT, JJ, and Wes, I can't tell each of you how much I love and admire you all, thank you for being such a inspiring part of my life.
Wes and Promise

If you have a chance in your life to give back to a cause or charity that you truly believe in or have vested interest in I suggest you take it, the feeling is amazing. Me, I will be right back in Virginia running the 4th annual Wesley Ashberry Twilight 5k in May with my friends and family, I mean after all I need to beat the Doc! :)

Much love to you all,

 Photos of the day by Theresa Ashberry, posting with permission.

Monday, October 1, 2012

I came in first!

You heard me, but just in case you didn't I will repeat, I CAME IN FIRST!

Here is a photo of the medal I got for coming in FIRST.

Yes I did in fact pass Math in school, I know the difference in first and second,  and I know what I am talking about.

On Saturday I had the great pleasure of running in the 3rd Annual Wesley Ashberry Twilight 5k for the benefit of the Denbeigh House which supports brain injuries. As I stood there Saturday waiting to start I all of a sudden had a massive case of the nerves, something that hasn't happened to me for a 5k in a while now. I mean seriously, for Pete's sake, I just ran 10 miles last week and I am worried about this measly 3 miles on a relatively cool day?? Why yes, yes I was! It dawned on me at that exact moment, that I was running my first race with my family and friends actually present and watching or participating, add in one boyfriend who thinks I am going to fall over dead every time I run anywhere and well.. it was a nerve wracking thought. I had the thoughts of, what if they all beat me, what if I fall down, what if I lose my pants 100 yards in, what if I die? None of those things happen.... ok FINE one of those things actually did happen but I don't think we need to discuss which one.

The point is they were all silly thoughts, and in the end I still finished and I came in first. Yes I am still maintaining I came in first because I did. I beat the only person out there I was out there to beat, myself. My fastest 5k to date was run on my birthday with a time of 33:20, Saturday night I finished with a time of 32:32, even better yet I beat my time in this same race last year by 12 minutes, that is 4 minutes a mile shaved of. If that doesn't make me a winner I don't know what does.

There was one lady that came in before me in my age bracket, she was a doctor, my Daddy's doctor to be exact, and I never did catch her name but coming out of the start, due to one of the things above I said I was worried about, she managed to pass me. (How many commas is one allowed in a sentence?) As I ran along down the road towards the mile marker Doc slowed down and started walking, there it was, my chance to regain the lead in my bracket. I knew it would have been the lead because everyone else in front of us were either men or MUCH younger, all I had to do was maintain the pace I was at and I had her. It was that exact moment something happened that I never anticipated, I did what my brain initially said and held my pace but out of my mouth came the words "Come on Doc! Don't give in now, you got this!" WAIT A MINUTE HERE, MY OWN BIG MOUTH HAS BETRAYED ME!!! I thought "oh don't worry about it, if she is walking already she will surely walk again", and I was correct. What I wasn't correct about was the not worrying about it part. Each time Doc slowed down the betrayal happened again and again words of encouragement flew out faster than my feet could run to catch up to her, we held the same distance apart pretty much the whole race.  As we came in to the finish I did my normal "Jay Bowman/ Adam Swansen hollered at me to sprint so I am going to sprint" sprint, yes I do hear them in my head even when they are not there, and I finished ten seconds after the Doc. Some part of me figured I could have beaten her in that last stretch if I had started a bit sooner or if I had waited a second or two with words of encouragement for her along the path, but that didn't seem to matter much to me. I was happy with my second place (first loser, as Daddy says) medal and even happier with my FIRST place against myself, and who knows maybe Doc went home and said for the first time in a really long time that she ran the whole 5k because of some crazy loon behind her screaming at her to RUN!

I am not sure what exactly the point of this is, but it is what happened and I feel good about it, being an encourager is a pretty neat little role. Maybe the point is a play on my friends Jimmy John's boat racing policy which is "Doesn't matter what place we come in as long as we look good doing it" maybe my run policy needs to be "Doesn't matter what place I come in as long as I feel good about it".   After I went through the finish line I turned right around (after catching my breath for a second) and headed back out to fetch my Daddy and daughter, they weren't all that far behind but running back in with them was pretty darn cool too.

This is one of those posts that I could keep writing about for hours but will refrain from doing so to ensure you don't get to incredibly bored with me, but before I close, I want to say a HUGE thank you to Mark, Julie and Ed who all waited at the finish line for me,  Shannon who I have to say screamed the loudest when I got my medal, Steve who didn't beat me as bad I think he could have. And to Theresa Ashberry I LOVE your spirit, you are an incredibly inspiration to me, and don't you forget it! Love each one of you!

Much Love