So Why?

I’m no stranger to fractured bones, but that’s the problem.

In summary, last week my orthopedist sent for me to get an MRI.  For the last month, I’ve walked normally, and I’ve felt no pain.  I’ve felt a dull ache occasionally in my foot but not often.  Nothing that ever altered my stride or even anything that was enough to cause concern.

Never the less, after two weeks of rest I still felt my ankle, so I got an X-ray.  The X-Ray came out fine, and I felt dumb and like a worry wort.

My foot had been poked, prodded, tuning forked and grastoned with no major issue.

Was my bone broken here? Maybe.
Was my bone broken here? Maybe.

Finally, my newly found orthopedist ordered an MRI.  She was looking for inflamed muscles and tendons or possibly a sprained ankle.  Due to everything else appearing normal, it made sense to look for those sorts of issues.  Then the news of the dreaded news of a rebroken fifth metatarsal happened.

The injury doesn’t make any sense.

How was I able to walk, run and live a normal life with a fifth metatarsal fracture?

How was I able to PR at Broad Street or the Newport 10k? Or run a mile on the track?

All of those must have happened a fractured foot.  My injury hasn’t presented itself normally at all.  Often fifth metatarsal fractures are from blunt force or rolling your ankle. To be honest, I can’t remember doing either.  Maybe I did and didn’t realize it.  Could I have rolled my ankle but never felt it?

If the MRI hadn’t come back with a fracture, I would have probably gone for a short run last weekend.  I’m not limping and my foot feels the same.

However, I’m not running on a broken foot.  
A fracture is a break. 
My foot is broken.

Mentally, I’ve already come to terms with not running. I haven’t run in 3 weeks, what’s couple more?  I know I’ve lost running fitness, and that’s fine. If I heal well, the end of June will mark 6 weeks of not running. I could be running again by then. Since I’ve already taken 3 weeks of being lazy, I’ve had the urge to begin working out again.

Since I’ve already taken 3 weeks of being lazy, I’ve had the urge to begin working out again.  The motivation is the easier part.

I’m more worried about how the stress fracture appeared.

I’m no stranger to broken bones.

Broken bones with no cause are a huge red flag to bone density, eating enough for high mileage and overtraining. 

I’m 5’7 and 130 pounds.  I don’t track calories daily but when I’m running, I typically consume 3000+ calories.  Is it all healthy 3000 calories?  No, but I like diner cake and whipped cream.  It’s not all sugar calories either.  Do I think undereating or being underweight is the issue? No, but it’s something that should always be thought about when dealing with this issue.

With my last bone fracture, two years ago, I received a bone density test. While the results were surprising, I was in the healthy calcium and vitamin D range.  This year the test was the same, and I’m once again in the normal healthy range.  So low bone density is not the issue.

Another hard fact is the wear pattern and my running gait. I put a lot of pressure on my metatarsals.  As you can see from my training over the last few years, I don’t get a lot of muscle injuries.  For the most part, my injuries are foot and bone related.

Last year at the Runners World, Golden, the owner of Altra running was mentioning something about injury.  He said if you run on the forefront of your foot, then you are more susceptible to metatarsal fractures and injuries.  I strike at the very front of my foot so unless I change my stride this could be something I deal with every few years (which seems to be how it goes).

I’m open to having my gait looked at and I’ve already found a great physical therapist to go too.  Since you need to run to be able to have your gait looked at, I must wait.

Finally, the last and most common cause of my fracture could be I rolled or sprained my ankle. The problem with that idea is that I never felt an ankle roll.  There was not a point during any of my runs I felt myself “roll and crack.”  The only aspect of that diagnosis is that it wouldn’t hurt to be weight bearing, and I could run right through and not realize it.

So there begins the processing of thinking about everything I’ve done in the last month.  It reminds me of the TV Show “I didn’t know I was pregnant”, only “I didn’t know I had a fractured foot”.  As I said yesterday, I do have the best case scenario.  The summer was a down time of year for me with no major races on the radar.  Since I’ve already been resting, if all goes well I could run by the end of the month.

Questions for you:

Have you ever rolled your ankle?

What type of cross training should I do next? 

 

 

So Which Came First: The Chicken or the Egg?

To summarize this post (because it’s long): in the last week I’ve been diagnosed with depression, anxiety, a fifth metatarsal stress fracture and a rare form of food poisoning.

It’s a question of which came first, the chicken or the egg?

Or did four rotten chickens just teleport from nowhere at the same time for a meetup in my life…

It’s not only raining, but it’s pouring in my life too.  Since I have all of the time in the world, I have time to write an emotional second blog post of the day right?

Let’s dive in: 

On Memorial Day, I sat on my downstairs steps, crying.

I didn’t have a reason to cry. 

I wasn’t physically hurt. 

It was a holiday, and I was supposed to be having an enjoyable day with my husband who also had off work. 

Yet, I was crying hysterically. My husband has always been there for me through thick and thin and it isn’t easy to be there for someone who has been as needy as I have been.  I was anxious and sad for no reason. My emotions were running wild, and I didn’t have any triggers. Anxiety is funny that way; you don’t need a reason to be upset, but if you’re upset, you are.

Anxiety and depression are demeans always sitting on your shoulder. They never leave.  Some days they are more prevalent than others, but they are always there.

You fear judgment, comparison and often like two days ago; it manifests itself into panic attacks.

But two days ago isn’t the only time I’ve had a panic attack during the two months, I’ve had more than I would like to admit. I learned at a previous job by my boss, Shelly, that you could be having the worst day of your life, but it’s easy to leave it at the door.

So I’ve done that. Like a normal person, I’ve left my house, and my emotions have stayed at home.  My body has been a shell going through the motions with my emotions at home.

I’ve gone to work and hung out with friends, but I’ve hidden a whole lot of pain that truly my husband only knows about.  Except now that you’ve made it this far into the post you know too because I’m blogging and oversharing.

Even when I’ve come home sobbing for no reason, he has been there for me. 

Part of the reason mental health has a stigma attached is because we hide those problems and feelings.  Put ten other people and myself in a lineup and I can fake a smile or witty comment with the best of them.  That doesn’t mean the pain is not there. It’s the textbook example of you never know who is suffering from a mental health issue.

When discussing with my therapist suppressing emotion has probably led to more negative thoughts than I care to admit.

I think being transparent is extremely important and I originally started my blog to be transparent about my life.  I love blogging but my life is neither perfect nor close.

I struggled with social anxiety and depression through sophomore year of college.  Eventually with talking with someone, I was able to work through it.

So what happened? 

Since about March, I’ve struggled a lot.  I’ve struggled with both mental and physical motivation.

I’ve struggled with what exactly the next chapter of my life is?

Will we move this year again?  Will we not?

The list of small things that just compiles into a long marathon.  I had been doing well and the last week was perhaps my brightest in a while until of course, today.

Like a mud run, I dug out of one hole only to be thrown into a deeper one. 

Let’s talk more about the running aspect first. I preached about taking rest, and I have.  Both mentally and physically, I’ve been burnt out since early May. I’ve had small minor aches in my foot for a couple of months, but it never seemed like anything serious.  Nothing that altered my stride and in fact I ran both a 10k and 10 mile PR in May.

Like a responsible runner with no major races, I took time off.  Honestly, it was nice not to worry about racing over the weekends and really giving no care to running.  Even with rest, my foot felt the same, so I went to see a doctor who ordered X-rays and an MRI.

I’ve been walking around with no limp, just minor aches.  Imagine my surprise when the MRI concluded I had rebroken the fifth metatarsal.

Previously, my X-rays came out clean, and I hadn’t flinched when they poked, prodded and stuck a tuning fork against my foot. They squeezed the $hit out of my feet, and I didn’t flinch. It was like a bad episode of the Maury show: Hollie, you have a fracture and the whole room gasps.  By the entire room, I mean me.  You’re silently gasping from your computer. 

Since my fracture is not from yesterday and there is no timeline, I probably ran Broad Street, the Newport 10k and that mile race on a fractured foot. Which makes even less sense because it never altered my stride at all. If it did, I wouldn’t run.

It’s actually shocking because I never felt anything of that degree of pain.

Yet, at the MRI my foot lit up like the Eiffel Tower.  Since I haven’t run in three weeks already, I’m well on my way to healing.  I’m already allowed to run at a low weight on the alterG. I can pretend to be Kenyan, but I don’t know if I’m really in the mood.  Running has broken my heart more times than old flames and why go back…

My cause for concern is more:  multiple stress fractures over the course of 5 years.  A bone density test concluded my bones were healthy two years ago but are they healthy now?

But wait, there’s more: food poisoning:

Last night I felt extremely sick. My stomach felt off, so I decided to go to the doctor. They figured out I had a rare form of food poisoning (only 200,000 cases a year!) from either undercooked fish or fish that came from brackish waters.

Since it can stay in your system for up to a month, there is no real answer of where that developed. This can last in my system for 48 hours or 2 weeks.  Hopefully, I don’t have to take these garlic pills long…its just another thing to add to the list.  After a shot and pills that reek of garlic, I was off to the foot doctor. While this only gets a paragraph in today’s post, it’s a somewhat serious issue that has me at home too. Not life threatening but life inhibiting.

This is a long-winded, pretty depressing and Debbie downer post.  It’s not the post anyone wants to write, but I think it’s beneficial to write it.

I do plan to write more about my fracture.  I’m going to get another bone density test and get my form and gait looked at.  It’s easy to rule out most summer races as well as a fall marathon.

As far as my anxiety, that will be a constant battle.  At the end of the day, there are far worse things in life and I’m not comparing my issues to anyone else.  But being honest with myself, I have a lot of issues going on. If you need me today, I’ll be sitting at home watching Americas Next Top Model, and anyone is welcome to join if you can hang with a garlic lady.

Random Thoughts…

I had a different post for today and then I got sick and didn’t write it. Oh well, I guess…

So it’s a completely random, thinking out loud post.

On Monday around 6:30 pm, I felt extremely fatigued and tired.  The fatigue came on within 30 minutes and by 7:30, I found myself laying in bed.  I slept through the night until 5:30 am on Tuesday.  I thought I would sleep away my migraine. However, that wasn’t the case, and I felt worse on Tuesday.

On Tuesday and Wednesday, I slept for a total of 30 hours.  Today, Thursday, I am feeling better but not great.  No I haven’t run, and I’m okay with that…I’ve pretty much sat on my bed or slept for the last two days.

For obvious reasons, this week I haven’t been running at all, and I’m okay with it.  I planned to take a short break this summer, and it happened to be sooner versus later.  There is no shame in that.

Speaking of running, what are my plans this Summer and Fall?

I’m currently tossing around different ideas of half marathons in the Fall.  I had thought about committing to a full marathon this fall, but I’m not entirely sure I want too.  I’m happy where I currently am and don’t have any complaints.  Half marathons seem to be my “sweet spot” right now. I have plenty of years to try a marathon again…if I even want too…

This summer, I’ll be running local races.  The only major race I’ll be doing is the Boilermaker 15k in Utica on July 10th.  Knock on wood of course, because everytime I sign up for the Boilermaker I get injured.  There are a lot of local 5-10ks around here this summer so I’ll be running those.  Do I think the hot and humid summer will bring PRs?  No, probably not but I’ll enjoy getting out there and racing.

So what else have I been up too in the last two weeks?

As most people have figured out, my Instagram and Twitter have been more of my daily life updates.  Blogging about life is pretty boring for the most part…go for a run…go to work…go to a diner…something along the lines.  One line social media posts are a bit easier for that.

lauren and I

I went to a wedding last weekend down in Maryland.  Despite the rain, the Bride and Groom had a beautiful day. I didn’t let the rain affect my attitude either.

me umbrella rainy day

Finally here are A Few Recent Posts incase you missed them:

Quick Core Ideas for Runners

Track Meet Mile (5:40)

Training: Track Miles, XC Races and 78 Miles

Last week, I did a lot of unique training that I don’t normally do.  I raced on the track, ran a cross country style race and even did my long run on the trail (side note: I don’t normally even do 2 hour long runs!).  Since I’m not actively training for anything now, I’m enjoying doing other things with no major focus.

Monday: Easy Run
Tuesday: Easy Run
Wednesday: 6.5 Tempo Run
Thursday: Rest
Friday: AM: 11 Mile Easy Run
PM: 1 Mile Race (5:40)
Saturday: Cross Country 5k (19:20)
Sunday: Trail Run 13.6 mile run
 Total:  78 miles

Thoughts:

My easy runs were just that, easy.  I don’t have any complaints, and they were all uneventful.

Workout Wednesday: 6.5-mile tempo run (6:42 pace)

On Tuesday I received ART, so I knew I would be sore.  My goal was to run the tempo faster than the week after Broad Street and I did.  While it’s not my fastest tempo, I’m pleased with how it went.

Friday Mile: 5:40

Long story short, I didn’t know I would run this until later in the day. If I did, I wouldn’t have run 11 miles that morning.  After running and then working, my coworker asked if I wanted to race a mile with her.  I thought: “why not”?  5:40 isn’t my fastest time but after my week of training, plus running earlier, I’m happy with that time.

road mile running

Cross Country 5k: 19:20

The next morning, I ran a 5k with my husband.  I was operating on minimal sleep. Once again, I had no time goal for the race.  I could feel the effect of the mile, and I was both sore and tired.  There was a section of the course that was an “out and back” on a giant muddy field.   It reminded me of collegiate cross country running. I could have worn spikes and been better off.

I attended a wedding in Frederick that evening.  I was exhausted from racing and lack of sleep as well as driving.  We stayed the night in Chambersburg and ran at Caledonia state park.  Even though it was pouring rain, I had a beautiful run.  Plus, I beat my Fitbit “steps” high score from the elevation change.  138 flights in a single run HAHA.

me running 1 trail

Next week I don’t have a lot of plans.  This month I’m taking my training week by week.  As the summer approaches, I’ll make some training goals, but right now I don’t have a lot.  I’m jumping into races most weekends and just running for the beauty of the sport. 

Running Related Posts from Last Week: 
Quick Strength Tips for Runners
Saucony Ride 9 Review

Questions for you:
Have you ever run a mile on the track?
What was your best workout last week?

A Little Bit of This…and That

This post is typical of how I feel by Friday, all over the place.  I feel like I blink and days, weeks and months go by…This week has been a doozy, and I’m not sure why it went by so slowly. The weather was finally nice!

This weekend is the base air show.  If anyone local is looking for something to do, it’s open to the public.  There are going to be several flight demonstrations with both fighter planes as well as tanker aircraft.  It should be a lot of fun. It’s open to anyone military or not.

While we will be attending part of the Air Show, my husband and I are making the trek up tomorrow morning to Jersey City to run the Newport 10k.  To be honest, my legs don’t feel that great to race but what can you do.  We are going to have a great time seeing friendly faces like Danielle, Amelia, Ashley and Erica Sara.  The field is fast, and if I can make the top 10 in my age group, I’ll be ecstatic. Is there anyone else going?

I’ve also been cooking a lot more.  LOLZ blog will probably never be a foodie blog, but I’ve been learning to cook more easy and quick recipes.  We are both out of the house a lot, so the last thing either my husband and I want to do is cook when we get home.

Bacon egg quiche
My first attempt at the Mini Bacon Quiche

I recently ordered The Athletes Fix on Velopress and tried my hand at some of the recipes.  My favorite recipe so far has been the bacon tart. It’s quick, healthy and easy.  My husband was also shocked at how good they are.

The Athlete's Fix by Pip Taylor
The Athlete’s Fix by Pip Taylor

The book itself is great for any athlete.  It dissects different diets and food intolerances.  I’m fortunate not to have any food intolerances, but my husband recently discovered he might be lactose intolerant.  It’s an easy read, and there are a lot of runner-friendly recipes.

Posts:

Training Log

4 Surprises I learned from FitBit

Gear to  Stay drier in the Rain

4 Ways to Make Running More Fun

My apologies because this post is all over the place.  If you know me in real life, then you know that is how I operate.  Speaking of random, Happy Friday the 13th.  Hope it’s uneventful for you.

Questions for you:
What are your thoughts with all of the drug allegations?
What are you up to this weekend?

Totally Awesome 80s Run 5k (19:10)

I was looking forward to this race for a while.  As I mentioned yesterday, I’ve been having a few on/off issues lately.

By Thursday, I knew I had the decision to make: 

  • Get tension relieved out of my legs and plantar fascia and be sore for the race.  Swallow my pride and take whatever time I was capable of the day.
  • Not get a deep tissue massage and maybe sore or maybe feel great.

And if course, the choice of not racing.

Ultimately I chose to get a deep tissue massage on Thursday and play the rest by ear.  I knew getting a deep tissue massage was the smartest thing to do.  Running is just a hobby for me so if I run an 18:15, great….or I run a 19:10…great, my life (and paychecks) don’t ride on it.

My husband and I drove down to Sommers Point, NJ.  It’s an area of the state I’ve never been.  We warmed up together and barely made it to the start.  The race director, Ken, of Good Day for a Run greeted us and gave race directions.

80s Attire
80s Attire

By the time we knew it, we were off.  I found myself in a pack of four other racers.  My husband blew by us like were standing still and I found myself second overall behind Tim for the entire race.

My goal was to run under 20:00.  Due to my tight legs and calves, it was a reasonable goal for the day.  It was smart and thus wasn’t a goal race.  I hit the first mile in 6:27, which was right on pace.  There wasn’t much to note minus the gorgeous view if Atlantic City in the background.  I was running alone and when I crossed the main road and I asked the volunteers to make Tim wait on the way back.  They were personal friends.

We went onto a nice path during the second mile.  We were dodging a few people outside of the race but nothing crazy.  It was an out and back and I hit the halfway point in 9:48.

I thought, oh man this might work out and I could be under 20:00. 

I thought back to the one moment I did get a deep tissue massage that close to any race.  During the Santa Run in 2012, my calves felt a tightness they had not felt before.  They were tight at the 80s run but nothing too crazy.  I hit the second mile in 6:12 and was shocked.

totally awesome 80s run

The race flew by and by the time I knew it; it was 5k crunch time.  I was catching my husband but not fast enough.  I gave the last mile everything I had. By some miracle, I ran a 5:59 final mile and crossed in 19:10.

To be honest, I did not feel good in the slightest.  My legs were sore from the massage but that was the choice I made.

I had a great time; the race was a lot of fun and well put together.  Good Day for a Run does a great job with their themed runs and if you are local I would check out the Run the Vineyards, this Spring, Summer, and Fall.

While it wasn’t a great time for me, it was an enjoyable time and especially neat to go 1-2 with my husband.

Questions for you:
What is your favorite 80s song?
Have you run a race not feeling 100%?