Saturday, May 25, 2013

fit, but not running fit

Well, two week have passed since I had the second knee injected with the hyaluronic acid. This is meant to add extra fluid into my joint and stop any crunching between the patella and joints. It seems to have worked. What I did find out was that when you don't run for a while (in my case a LONG while), you sort of lose your running stamina. All of the long walks that I have done, the tai kwon do and the CrossFit - sure, I am fit. But not running fit.

Only one way to fix that!

Monday, May 20, 2013

thought for the day

"Believe that you can run farther or faster. Believe that you're young enough, old enough, strong enough, and so on to accomplish everything you want to do. Don't let worn-out beliefs stop you from moving beyond yourself." 

-John Bingham, running speaker and writer

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

knee #2 done

Ahhh! Just when you feel like you are invincible, it is time to head back the doctors and get another injection. Thankfully this is the second and last one!

The doctor today decided to inject through the front of the knee. Last week he tried to go through the medial and it didn't work, so he ended up going through the front. It went a lot smoother today, thank goodness. Still feels strange though - it is like when you go to blow up a balloon and you get to that point of resistance where you have to blow harder to stretch it and get more air into it. Well - my knee feels like we are at that point of resistance.

So far it doesn't seem to have swollen up as much, so I am happy. Two weeks! Only two weeks and I can try it out. How exciting!

Check this photo of my knee out. The angle is sooo flattering, but hopefully you can see the difference. Slight swelling after two hours.  I can still bend it slightly - which is a good thing! I wonder if knees are like trees and you can tell my age by those gnarly lines around them?

good form

this popped up on one of my Facebook feeds. I liked it and thought I'd share it. Not sure who to credit for it though... (apologies)

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

knee #1 done

It has been one week now since the doc injected that stuff into my left knee. Today I was able to get back to the gym and try it out. They feel a bit unbalanced now, with the right giving me a bit of pain and the left still a bit stiff from the swelling resulting from the injections.

The injections last year didn't hurt as much as this one did. Nor did they take so long for me to get back full mobility. Last year I was able to take it for a test run (around 5km) on day five after the injections. It has been seven days and I am a tad bit scared as there is still a bit of pressure in the joint when I fully extend. I have no idea if this is because it is a different brand of "lubricant" they injected. Or if it is because the doc couldn't inject in through the side of the knee, so he went in from the front of the joint where one of my arthroscopy scars were?

Anyway, we will see next week when the doc shoots up my right knee what the go is... All I know right now is that my upper body is getting hammered from all the pushups and pull-ups that I am doing and I could not be happier! My biceps feel rock hard! My core is getting stronger, and will keep me in good stead when I get back to hitting the pavement.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

here we go again!

Well, if you have been reading the other entries to this blog you will note huge time differences between posts. This occurred when we moved from the US to Dubai and again from Dubai. Time gaps also occurred when I became so fed up with this and the whole running and exercise thing.

But - I love running and I love training for events and competing, so how could I get fed up I hear you ask. Well, it is not so much fun when you get injured. And, it is not that much fun when your injuries are just due to the makeup of your body and the only preventative measure that can be taken are to QUIT running and what I deem enjoyable exercise altogether.

I have been lucky so far since finding out and dealing with my patella chondromalacia stage 4. I had injections in both my knee 12 months ago and they worked fine. Pity I was off with the hate fairies and loathing everything running (understandable after training hard for 12 months for one race only for it to end before it began).  I am over my hate, ironed out the chemical / hormonal imbalance and now finally back into fitness and starting to think about, and get excited about running again. I have my eye on a few events - including toying with the Marathon des Sables.....

Before I can get too serious into it all, I have a duty of care to ensure that my knees are up to standard. This is why I am getting my knees injected again with the hyaluronic acid. Uggh! That sounds terrible - but its not. My patella has worn down and it causes pain. I think the joint fluid in my knee has lost its ability to lubricate and cushion my knee. Thus a little vicious circle has been created and the 6ml of hyaluronic acid injected into my knee joints relieves the pain caused by my patella rubbing and also helps to stop or slow down any further damage to my patella's surface. Basically this hyaluronic acid is synthetic lubrication for my knee joint!

I had the first injection into my left knee two days ago. The knee is still a bit swollen, but I can get around. I am enjoying increased mobility with each hour. From past experience, I should be able to have full mobility back within another 24 hours and get out for a run :) The follow up on the other knee is in two weeks!

So - here we go again....but this time in a positive, kick arse and have fun way!! :)

Thursday, April 18, 2013

a ninja, I am

One month before the 2012 Marathon des Sables I found out that I had patella chondromalacia grade 4. While researching the ways I could control this and the pain it was causing when I ran, I started training with the tae kwon do ladies who were involved in my kids tae kwon do club. For whatever reason that boggled the minds of myself, my physio and my ortho-specialist, tae kwon do did not cause me pain. So while I took my forced 12 months break from running I trained to become a ninja.

12 months down the track and I am looking into getting my booster hyaluronic injections in my knees so I can dust off the running shoes and start planning for the 2014 Marathon des Sables. In the meantime I have kept up my tae kwon do and tonight I am testing for my Blue Belt. This is fourth belt above the white and is pretty much half way to the black. What is super awesome is tonight I get to break a board with a front kick. I can't wait!

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

One Fund Boston

Courtesy from RRCA website:
Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick and Boston Mayor Menino today announced the formation of The One Fund Boston, the purpose of which is to raise money to help those families most affected by the tragic events that unfolded during Monday’s Boston Marathon.
“I am humbled by the outpouring of support by the business community and individuals who are united in their desire to help; The One Fund Boston will act as a central fund to receive much needed financial support,” Governor Patrick said. “At moments like this, we are one state, one city, and one people.”
According to Mayor Menino, support from the business community was immediate. “Within an hour, I had calls from business leaders and local philanthropists who, like me, were heartbroken by the impact this hideous tragedy has had on individuals, their families, and friends. And they want to do everything they can to help these people physically and psychologically in the future.”
The cornerstone donation to The One Fund Boston is a $1 million commitment from John Hancock. “John Hancock is honored to contribute to The One Fund Boston, aiding those who were affected by this terrible event,” said Craig Bromley, President. “The Boston Marathon is about courage and resilience and community. John Hancock, which has been headquartered in Boston for more than 150 years, will continue to stand by our city, the people of Boston, our community partners, the runners, and the Boston Athletic Association as we unite in recovery and in renewal of our commitment to the Boston Marathon.”
Other individuals and corporations making commitments to The One Fund Boston include Jack Connors, John Fish, CEO of Suffolk Construction, Brian Moynihan, President and CEO of Bank of America, Paul Grogan, President of The Boston Foundation, Steve Pagliuca, Managing Director of Bain Capital and co-owner of the Boston Celtics, Larry Lucchino, CEO of the Boston Red Sox, and Mike Sheehan, CEO, and Karen Kaplan, President of Hill Holliday.
Boston law firm Goodwin Procter has volunteered to organize The One Fund Boston and has applied for 501(c)(3) status. One Fund Boston, Inc. will apply for 501(c)(3) tax exempt status with the Internal Revenue Service. Although the Fund cannot guarantee that the IRS will make a determination that the organization qualifies as a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt entity, if approval is received within the expected time frame, the determination will be retroactive to the date of the Fund’s formation, which is April 16, 2013.
“We are one Boston. We are one community. As always, we will come together to help those most in need. And in the end, we will all be better for it,” Mayor Menino said. To contribute to The One Fund Boston, click on

just believe

"Believe that you can run farther or faster. Believe that you're young enough, old enough, strong enough, and so on to accomplish everything you want to do. Don't let worn-out beliefs stop you from moving beyond yourself." 

 - John Bingham, running speaker and writer

I have recently volunteered to be the Administrator for our local community Fun Run. The really cool thing about the fun run is not only the course - 10km and 3km along the pristine foreshore area of the Sunshine Coast, but the fact that is run by one of the smaller schools in the area as its main fundraiser. It is organised and run by moms and dads from the school. .... as I said, pretty cool!

One of my duties as the administrator is to make sure there is some sort of an announcement in the weekly school newsletter. There are only so many ways you can put a reminder in for the date and that registration is open before it gets boring and people stop paying attention. So, I decided to put in weekly inspirational running quotes or training tips. It was a lot of fun trawling the internet looking for inspirational quotes and I came across far more than I will need. The quote above is the one I put in earlier this week (pre-Boston).

What I love about this quote is that it can be applied to anything. Running, cycling, rock climbing, surfing, skateboarding - anything. It doesn't really even have to be sport related. I think this message is one that needs to get out there to more people - we need to really believe in ourselves and that with the right tools and within the right environment, we are capable of doing anything we set our mind to.

A perfect example of this for me was a few days ago when I achieved something that I didn't think I could, and something that I was scared to try because I feel old and broken. In my CrossFit class I did my first solo, unassisted handstand against the wall and was able to hold it for 30secs. This may seem like nothing to some of you - but for me, it was a mental issue of me thinking that I could not do it. That if both my legs were airborne at the same time I would crumble to ground. The more I thought about it the more my anxiety kicked in and a huge mental block wall was erected whenever this exercise came up. But I did it! Finally! The first few were assisted with a 'spotter' - but now I can do them! I am still a bit hesitant, but I have confidence in myself and the strength of my shoulders to hold me up and not let me fall.

My other big achievement was something that I have spent a month working towards. I did know I was going to get there, but when I did I ran around like the gym like a giddy little giggling girl. This was the toes to bar exercise - where you hang from a pull up bar and swing your feet up to allow the toes to touch the bar between your hands. Slowly, slowly I worked on this starting with knees to chest and found that I could get a nice rhythm happening, and then the other day BAM I did it!

So - believe that you are young enough. That you are old enough. Strong enough. Be confident. Surround yourselves with supportive people of like minds and never give up. You can achieve anything you set your mind to if you allow yourself to BELIEVE.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

We stand together...

Russ is the owner of Endurance and Marathon Sports in Akron New York and is also a fellow RRCA Coach.  He made the following comment to his clients and I thought I would share them here for your comments:

"All my life I have viewed sports as a sanctuary. A place to find yourself, a place to challenge yourself, a place of growth.

"Whatever the intentions of the attackers today, or those of the Munich Olympics and Atlanta Games, they pick the wrong arena in which to make their statement. Their actions are seen, but the message is lost. The message today is about the community, love, support and aide offered by those nearby. I hear that 1 million times louder than the motives of the attackers.

"See, in sports, we rally. We rise to the occasion. We break through barriers and hatred. We support out brethren regardless of ideology, beliefs or origin. One cannot rob our innocence. An army cannot bring us to our knees.

"We are strong. We stand together. We protect our own.

"Here's to swift justice.

"Athlete Nation."

Runners United to Remember