Tag Archives: Running

Distracted

Fall leaves and sunshine | happyfitmama.com

Lately I’ve been feeling very distracted.

It started about 5 weeks ago.

My mom, who is a 17 year survivor of breast cancer, was having some health issues. More testing needed to be done to be determine what was going on. The big C word was thrown out into the universe by her doctor.

For anyone who has gone through cancer treatment (yourself or as a family member), you could have been told you won a million dollars in the next breath. But all you would have heard was CANCER. Your worst fear coming back to haunt you.

When my mom told me, it just so happened that it was the same week that my Achilles and SI/L5 injuries occurred. Normally, running is one of my coping mechanisms. The feelings of ‘What ifs’ towards my mom’s health swirled in my brain like fall leaves in a wind storm.

Without being able to run, the thoughts stewed in my brain, growing, distracting me. My focus? What focus?

One Monday, I forgot to pick my kids up from school. I drove right past the exit to their school. The only thing I remember thinking was “Cool. No traffic back ups today!” It finally dawned on me that it was really, really quiet in the car about two miles from home. And did I mention that it was 5:50 p.m. and school closes at 6 p.m.? Thankfully there wasn’t any traffic back to school so I made it on time. BUT they were the last kids in their classroom. There goes my Mother of the Year award!

Another day, I received a text from Ron while I was at work.

“Are we leaving the doors wide open and unlocked now when we go to work?”

Yup. I forgot to close and lock the door when leaving for work that morning. Our house was wide open for 9 hours. Thankfully no one discovered my big whoops.

Find your strong | happyfitmama.com

Running for at least 20 minutes produces a natural chemical called Serotonin, which allows us to feel calm, centered, focused and happy.  How cool is it that we have this  built into our system to allow us to focus better? Sure I was still working out and getting the sweaty, feel good endorphins. But those endorphins have nothing on the running variety. They are seriously the best around.

There’s been a lot of talk lately about running as a therapy. I definitely don’t think it’s the cure all for every problem. But it definitely is my therapy.

I can sort through my problems while I’m out by myself on a run. The road is a good listener even if no words are spoken. Or I can sweat it out with my best running friends on a long run, leaving every thought, concern and what if on the pavement with each passing mile. I can come home from a run focused and ready for the day. I feel like my memory is enhanced. I’m not so distracted.

Late last week, my Mom got the pathology results back from all her testing.

NO CANCER!

Best two words ever. And I’m on my way back to running. I can tell a difference in my mood and focus even with a short, 3 miler. There may be chaos and stress all around me, but I’ve got my running shoes to help me out.

Running truly is so much more than running.

Six03 Great Pumpkin 10k Relay Recap

Six03 Great Pumpkin 10k Relay | happyfitmama.com

You guys, I ran a race over the weekend.

I know what you are all thinking…WHAT? Aren’t you injured?

So here’s the thing. I ran twice last week and with every run, I saw progress in my injuries. I was able to run further with less discomfort. My plan was to try for at least 3 miles on Saturday. However, I was already registered for the Six03 Great Pumpkin 10k Relay with Kailey. The way the relay was set up was Runner #1 ran 1.5 miles and then handed off the baton pumpkin to Runner #2 for their 1.5 mile loop. Then it was all repeated again for a total of 6 miles or 3 miles for each runner. I didn’t want to have another DNS, but I knew there was no way I was going to actually race. Kailey was cool with me taking it easy so it was decided – I was running!

The race was located at Flag Hill Winery on the trails behind the vineyard. It was a chilly 41 degrees and sprinkling rain at the start. As with any trail race, the atmosphere is way different than a road race. It was a smaller crowd, no bibs, no timing chips. And very chill. Since it was a Halloween themed race, there were a few costumes. The most memorable being the Baywatch inspired team with the large man wearing a blonde wig, a stuffed tank ala Pam Anderson and complete with lifeguard float. The only race requirement? A mini pumpkin that had the team number that each runner carried during their leg.

Kailey started Team Pumpkin Pushers off while I tried to stay warm. We had done a 10 minute light warm up run before the start. I actually was very surprised how well all my aches were feeling even during that. Before I knew it, I saw Kailey trucking across the field. We had decided on wearing all black as our team uniform, but thankfully she wore her bright orange Saucony shoes. I could clearly pick her out!

Thoughts from my sections of the run:

  • I’m running!
  • I’m getting passed. Speed up. No! YOU ARE NOT RACING!
  • I love running on trails! A bed of soft pine needles and dirt feels so much better than pavement. I need to run more trails.
  • AGHHHHHHHHH!!!! Creepy old doll randomly in the woods propped up against a tree!
  • Holy steep, muddy downhill. Slow. Slow. Slow.
  • That guy has a dirty butt. I guess he didn’t slow down the steep hill.
  • Watch out for that tree.
  • I’m running!
  • Why don’t I run trails more?
  • I’m so happy I’m going to cry!

Six03 Great Pumpkin Relay  happyfitmama.comPhoto courtesy of Kailey.

Such a fun race! Even though we didn’t technically race it, we still did quite well – 38/80 with a time of 50:23. I was just unbelievably happy to be back to running relatively pain free. My Achilles felt great. My SI/L5 weren’t too bad. I definitely could tell I’m still not 100%. It just felt like I didn’t have as much strength on my right side as compared to the left. I was a little sore later in the day, but overall all good.

I’m happy to be back in my running shoes again! And that is simply marvelous.

How was your weekend? Run long? Run a race?