When Rena can’t run . . .

She crossfits? Is that a word? Well, it is now. 

Since last time I updated, I had a disastrous half marathon attempt in which I stupidly tried to run with sharp IT band pain that I acquired from running a marathon undertrained. After limping around for a while, I finally sucked it up, paid the copay, and saw an orthopedist. He diagnosed with IT band syndrome and requested that I take 6 to 8 weeks off from running. Well, it’s been more than 8 weeks and still the IT band hates me. 

So  now I’m apparently a cross fitter? 

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I thought channeling a creamsicle might scream touch cross fit chick. I was wrong.

 

Even though weightlifting (especially big barbell lifts) scare me, I’m having a lot of fun with cross fit. It’s nice to think that maybe someday I will look toned all over instead of just having strong runner legs. 

I am hoping that cross fit will strengthen parts of my legs that are weak so that my IT band doesn’t have to work overtime. Also, my trainer has a banging bod. It’s fun to hope that I might be able to lift as much as she does and also have her butt. 

Now, it’s off to bed to rest up for work. I have been having meetings all day at work, which means just tons of sitting and lots of caffeine. 

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Yay caffeine!

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Spring Cleaning

Thanks to my work schedule of four tens (I work 10 hours for 4 days), I got to sleep in this morning until 6 30AM. Since I wake up between 4AM and 4:20AM for work, 6:30 felt like sleeping in. Also, it helped that I fell asleep at the very late time of 9:00PM. Yeah, I have the sleeping schedule of a 60 year old. 

But waking up so early gave me plenty of time to watch TV and make myself a huge breakfast before the spin class at 9AM. (I might have eaten a two person serving of udon noodles, but my apt is a judgement free zone.) Normally I dislike spinning, but since running wasn’t an option, I opted for a spin bike. 

I think I’d like spinning more if I had more mental strength. It’s hard to push myself when there are no numbers to motivate me. I’m an engineer, numbers are everything in my world. But it was a 45 minutes filled with sweat, which I’ll take. 

After spinning, I used my gym’s awesome rumble roller. It’s probably one of the most painful things I’ve ever done, but it hurts so good. If it didn’t cost more than 40 bucks, I’d totally buy one of my own, but for now my lacrosse ball causes enough pain. 

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Foam roller pain is addicting pain . . . or I might have some masochistic tendencies.

Then for a good part of the day, I cleaned out my closet and generally tried to declutter my apartment. Putting things back in their right place after using it seems like such a simple idea in concept, but I still have not mastered it. It’s just way too easy to throw things down after working for 10.5 ish hours and being in commute for an hour and a half. But in celebration of my new year, I’m going to try to nest and make my apartment feel homey. That means printing out pictures and actually hanging things up on the walls. No more empty, mental institution walls for me. 

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I actually drew the crab myself at a wine and paint event at a networking event. We all decided that we probably shouldn’t quit our day jobs as engineers.

Now I’m off to relax with some chocolate covered sunflower seeds and glee until the fun night I have planned tonight. See you guys later!

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Nothing like some Rena time on my Fridays off.

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New Year Plans

Another year has passed by and it seems like everyone in blogland (Is that a word? According to the evil red squiggly, it is not.) is contemplating their past year and making plans for a new one.

Maybe my new year's resolution should be to lose more weight, or maybe I should take up sumo wrestling.

Maybe my new year’s resolution should be to lose more weight, or maybe I should take up sumo wrestling.

Some very exciting things happened in the past year:

  • I ran a marathon in December.
  • I set my half marathon PR of 1:56:01

    One of the worst run races I've ever run, but on the bright side, a marathon is still a marathon

    One of the worst race execution plan ever, but a marathon is still a marathon?

I had some big lofty goals for the upcoming year. For example, I was supposed to run another marathon on my birthday weekend, Jan 19th. But unfortunately I’m battling a nagging pain on the side of my knee. . . maybe in the ligament? I don’t know. I haven’t been to the doctor yet, but that derailed my sub 5 hour plan for the marathon to kick off the new year. Womp, womp.

If it stays painful for another week, I might actually fork over my hard earned money to a doctor to tell me what’s wrong. It’s hard to motivate myself to go to a doctor when I have no actual pain while walking, only after I’ve ran about a mile or so. Also I swim in a river called DeNile.

Today, I scrapped my plans to run until things hurt. Instead, I played it safe and got on the treadmill filled with random sprints. Note to self, reading Runner’s World while stuck on an elliptical due to an injury is torture. Must . . . Not . . . Do . . . Again. 

Tomorrow, I’m looking forward to sleeping in since I don’t have to go into work. Hopefully I can hit up a spin class and get a good workout in.

Here’s to the new year and being a smarter runner! 

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Pumpkin Spice Lattes are back!

I know this is old news for a lot of Starbucks fanatics . . . ahem, myself included, but I’m going to proclaim it on my blog, because Louisiana doesn’t seem to get that fall is here. Pumpkin Spice Latte=Fall

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Since we are talking about old news, there’s an old captioned picture that still makes me laugh. I might have this as the lock screen on my phone.

I also got to leave work early to go to another company for a meeting, which meant a quick stop by Starbucks to pick up a cup of coffee, which was a life saver in a four hour meeting looking at spreadsheets. Death by spreadsheets, but I got to have some pumpkin spice latte, so it all worked out. Also, since I’ve now mentioned Starbucks several times, I expect them to hire me as their PR in exchange for life time’s supply of free coffee. Starbucks execs, you can email me any time now

I seriously debated going for a run after work, because the sky looked questionably dark. But another day of running on the treadmill seemed worse than potential death by electrocution, so I headed out on a “leisurely” five miles, which turned into panicked first three miles at a faster pace (9:20/mile ish, which is way faster than I normally run in the heat). 

For the last two, I was able to relax enough to run a bit slower, which translated into a 9:30/mile overall pace. 

I was so happy that nothing catastrophic happened on my run that I stopped by the apartment gym to work out my arms. I thought I would use the assisted pull up machine and set the counter weight to 30lbs lighter than my body weight, thinking I’d blast through ten pull ups and dips for the first set. False: I got through six and there were no other sets. I was just done. After that sad performance, I think I should do more upper body things. If there’s ever an intruder in my apartment and I can’t run away, I need more upper body strength to swing my foam roller or the stick at the scary robber. 

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This picture is a lie. I am not as strong as I appear.

Now I’m just icing my legs to ward off injury and spending some quality time with my foam roller and Grey’s Anatomy. Don’t judge, you know you liked it at one point. 

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I would like to say that my apartment is a judgement free zone and that nobody notices when I use icing as an excuse to watch Grey’s, but that’s a lie. My cat is very judgy.

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I’m back from Boston

And I’m not happy about it. (Rest of the title was too depressing and long to put in the title box).

Boston was great. It was more than great. It was a lot of eating good food, drinking good drinks (can anyone say bubble tea?), and catching up with old friends. 

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Yay good friends! Yay dance parties! This was taken somewhere between attending a dance party.

Notice I didn’t say anything about running along the Charles River? As much as I would have liked to say that I woke up early to go on runs along the beautiful river (I might be on the Southwest website looking at tickets back up to Boston), I didn’t. I just ate and shopped until I felt like puking.

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Sorry but I am not sorry. I will never give up delicious hot chocolate at Harvard Square in favor of a run. Does that make me a bad runner?

But really I had a great time. If you haven’t been up there yet, buy tickets immediately, people. And then email me. I will hook you up with the best places to get hot chocolate and bubble tea.

Yesterday, I attempted to get my Jabba the Hutt self (a week of continuous eating will do that to you) out of my apartment for a leisurely 4 mile run. That was a disaster. Apparently, if you hear distant rumblings of what may be thunder, you should probably stay home.

I’m not very smart. I headed out for a run.

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But not before taking a selfie. Who has her priorities straight? This girl!

A mile out from my apartment, not only did it start pouring, it started lightning. Not just the flash and the sound, but actual lightning strikes that I can see coming from the sky to the ground. Not knowing what to do, I just kept on running in the general direction of the apt until I couldn’t anymore, because the rain was strong and stabbing my eyes.

I thought I was going to die. I kept on debating on running near trees or away in the open roads. I figured it’s easier to dodge a falling (lightning struck) tree and chose a route close to the trees. I tried to remember everything I can about lightning that I learned from science, but I couldn’t science. Scared Rena is not a rational Rena. 

After the longest and the scariest one mile of my life, I got back to my apartment and collapsed onto my couch very wet. 

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That is not a happy sweaty face. That is scared out of mind, drowned rat face.

Today, I just ran on the treadmill for 3 miles. I probably could have ran outside, but I seemed to have developed a slight PTSD with outdoor running. But it gave me a reason to do crunches and sad little planks. 30second is the most I can hold a plank now, but you have to start somewhere, right? 

Now you tell me: What was the scariest run you ever had? Did I science right? Open field where I’m the tallest is bad in a storm, right? Tell me I’m right!

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Traveling in style

Today I woke up at the ass crack of dawn in an attempt to catch a flight to training.

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Attempting a smile at the mirror. Smiling is hard at 5AM.

I was technically supposed to wake up at 4:30AM to meet a coworker at the park next to my apt at 5:15AM. Fun facts:

  • I don’t hear my alarm when I’m really tired. (Rushing out the door because I woke up fifteen minutes prior to plans= not fun)
  • Park is scary, dark and empty at 5:15AM.

Luckily, I did not get murdered in the park and also made the flight. One cool perk about my job is that my company has a corporate plane between major sites, which meant free snacks and leg room!

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Happier and double chinned, thanks to all the free snacks. Smiling is easier after a cup of coffee and chips. My coworker looks pretty though.

The class was unfortunately pretty boring. I was distracted by the pain in my foot and my constant need to pee. Once I got to class, I could feel the onset of a dehydration headache, but all that water made me had to go to the bathroom every thirty minutes. (How rude.) I had to choose between a headache and being the only person who left every thirty minutes to the bathroom. I opted for a light headache and less frequent trips.

I also tried to massage the arch of my foot on my chair to ease the discomfort in the arches. I’m sure I looked very odd if anyone looked down at my feet.

Fortunately, my class ended earlier than anticipated so my coworkers and I had a little extra time before returning to the airport.

Yay gulf of Mexico!

Yay gulf of Mexico!

Now I’m back in Louisiana and back to icing my arch. Two more days until the Charles River!

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