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Making the commitment...

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Re: Making the commitment...

Post  Mark B on Mon Jan 20, 2014 5:51 pm

Sorry to hear about your dad's health problems. Hospice programs can be a wonderful aid in times like these.

As far as activity, do what feels good to you right now, and let the future sort itself out in due time. Even easy walks are good ways to keep the blood flowing and feel the sun on your face. That can help.
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Re: Making the commitment...

Post  ounce on Tue Jan 21, 2014 5:42 pm

Agree with Mark.  Hospice can be really helpful.  We went through that with my mom back in June, except it was on a floor of a hospital, not home.  In our situation, I was glad it wasn't at home because more relatives were available in Houston, than where the folks lived, and dad could go home whenever he needed a break.
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Re: Making the commitment...

Post  nkrichards on Wed Jan 29, 2014 1:44 pm

Thanks, Julie, Michele, Mark & Doug.  Dad passed away at home early last Wednesday.

Hospice was great to help us understand and be prepared as things changed.  I was very thankful to have them and a great group of home health aids to help care for Dad at home.  It took an aid, Mom and one of us kids to meet his needs so it was a tough few days.  Mom wanted to have the service quickly so we scheduled it for Saturday morning.  The support from the small community where they have lived all their lives was overwhelming.

Mom is going to need a lot of help and support as she decides what she wants to do with her life.  She spent so much time caring for Dad and helping him with his goals that she never really did much for herself.  They still have cattle and baled hay every summer.  I have two brothers that live close to her.  She's really struggling with what to do with the farm.  I don't think she wants to stay there but it's where we all grew up...they moved in 55 years ago when I was 6 months old.

We have a family weekend planned at the beach this weekend.  It's been planned for several months to celebrate my husband's and mother-in-law's birthday.  I hope we can make it a relaxing weekend while still making it fun for the grandkids.  Life has been pretty hectic and I need some quiet time.

On the fitness front...I got back on the road for an easy 3 miles on Monday and was in the pool yesterday.  We also got back to doing our core/strength workout on Monday.  I'm a bit sore but I'm going to try and get in another easy run today. 

Will try and get back into a good routine...including catching up on your blogs...as things settle down a bit here.

Thanks for listening...Nancy
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Re: Making the commitment...

Post  Michele "1L" Keane on Wed Jan 29, 2014 4:55 pm

Sorry to hear about your Dad, but it sounds like he is now at peace and the hospice really prepared the family well.  I'm sure your Mom is a strong woman and she will eventually be fine, but until then, I know you and your brothers will provide the necessary support.  I do dread the day when this happens in my family or my husbands.  Both sets of parents are alive, well, and in their 80s, so it really is only a matter of time, eventually.  Like your parents, my Mom & Dad live in the home that they moved into 52.5 yrs ago when my Mom was pregnant with me.  My inlaws have moved several times and now live back here in Ohio, but my FIL will be 88 in March.

Prayers to you and your family.  Peace.
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Re: Making the commitment...

Post  Nick Morris on Wed Jan 29, 2014 6:13 pm

Sorry to hear about your father Nancy. My condolences go out to you and your family.
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Re: Making the commitment...

Post  Mark B on Wed Jan 29, 2014 7:34 pm

So sorry to hear about your father, Nancy. I'm so glad that the folks at hospice were able to help you and your family through this difficult time. My heartfelt condolences.

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Re: Making the commitment...

Post  Jerry on Thu Jan 30, 2014 12:30 pm

Sorry, Nancy.
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Re: Making the commitment...

Post  nkrichards on Fri Feb 07, 2014 7:27 pm

Thanks all for the kind thoughts.

Things are starting to settle down a bit but I think Mom will still need some help for a while as she decides what she wants to do with the farm and her life.  Fortunate that we're all united in helping provide what she needs.

Slowly getting back to running but I've lost a lot of fitness since my marathon in November.

Will take some time to evaluate 2013 and make some new goals for 2014 in the next few days.
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Re: Making the commitment...

Post  nkrichards on Wed Feb 12, 2014 1:21 pm

I've been a bit more consistent over the last few days.  Trying to get back to my regular schedule of 3 runs per week.  I've had to hit the treadmill to do that and I hate the treadmill but I'm pleased that I was able to talk myself into doing it.  I turned the music up loud and tried a bit of faster running instead of just plodding along on Monday and it wasn't to bad.

I'm still struggling to find the motivation to get back into a healthy routine.  Even when I do my workouts I don't have the enthusiasm that I did when I was training for my marathon.  I'm not sure what I want to do this year and I'm not sure how much time I'm going to need to set aside to help Mom now that Dad is gone.  I did dig out the calendar and I'm looking at races and trying to set some goals.  I was hoping that the hamstring issues would clear up with the time off but it's starting to bother me again so I may need to do something more proactive there.

Life goes on...
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Re: Making the commitment...

Post  nkrichards on Mon Mar 03, 2014 8:39 pm

I've been really struggling the last few weeks and just didn't feel my efforts were worthy of posting.  I have still been plodding along at least a couple times per week.  Good news is that the last couple runs...Friday and today...felt a bit better.  They weren't long and they weren't fast but at least I didn't feel quite so awkward while I was running and wasn't quite as stiff and sore afterwards.  Maybe I can get back to a reasonable level of fitness...
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Re: Making the commitment...

Post  Michele "1L" Keane on Tue Mar 04, 2014 10:19 am

I saw your other post, Nancy, and it is indeed a chicken and egg proposition.  Keep at it and the runs do get better.  I so remember being there not so long ago in January of last year.  You have/had a lot going on - just go with the flow.
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Re: Making the commitment...

Post  Nick Morris on Thu Mar 06, 2014 12:51 pm

Michele \"1L" Keane wrote:I saw your other post, Nancy, and it is indeed a chicken and egg proposition.  Keep at it and the runs do get better.  I so remember being there not so long ago in January of last year.  You have/had a lot going on - just go with the flow.

Dido, the same thing happens for me around this time. It's the time when I am not training for anything, but just running to maintain fitness and set a base. Just keep at it...it will get better.
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Re: Making the commitment...

Post  nkrichards on Fri Mar 07, 2014 12:19 pm

Thanks Michele and Nick...

I've been keeping things pretty slow but did tack on an extra mile on Wednesday.  Feeling a bit more comfortable but it's going to be a long process.

My hamstring is definitely an issue...I have an appointment with the therapist this afternoon.  He's a certified Onsen Techniques Therapist...not sure what that means but he comes very highly recommended by a couple local athletes who are close to my age and much more competitive than I am.  I'm anxious to hear what he recommends and will hold off on planning to far into the future until I talk to him.
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Re: Making the commitment...

Post  Julie on Sun Mar 09, 2014 6:50 pm

Sorry to be getting to this so late but I am so sorry for the loss of your father. I know grief is a long process but I hope you're able to have a good support system and take the time and whatever you need to grieve and heal. I hope your mom and the rest of your family are doing as well as they can.
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Re: Making the commitment...

Post  Nick Morris on Sun Mar 09, 2014 9:14 pm

Hope that he has a good plan for you to get you back healthy. Keep us posted...
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Re: Making the commitment...

Post  nkrichards on Mon Mar 10, 2014 11:11 am

@Julie wrote:Sorry to be getting to this so late but I am so sorry for the loss of your father. I know grief is a long process but I hope you're able to have a good support system and take the time and whatever you need to grieve and heal. I hope your mom and the rest of your family are doing as well as they can.

Thanks Julie...Mom is doing well but she has a lot of decisions to make.  She's still on the farm.  My brothers and I have all been helping as much as we can.  Emotionally we're all doing well...it's just a very time consuming, emotionally draining process.  We'll get through it...thank goodness I have such a supportive family.  I can't imagine dealing with this and dealing with the family arguments that so often occur at times like this.
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Re: Making the commitment...

Post  nkrichards on Mon Mar 10, 2014 11:25 am

@Nick Morris wrote:Hope that he has a good plan for you to get you back healthy.  Keep us posted...

 So I survived my first deep tissue massage.  It was pretty intense at times.  He thinks I have good mechanics and very good range of motion especially considering my age.  He worked on the hamstring quite a bit.  The pain is right on the sit bone and bothers me most when I'm sitting not when I'm running although I do feel it a bit when running.  He found a few other pretty tight spots and worked on those as well.  He gave me some stretches to do and some instruction on using the foam roller correctly.  It was a good session.  I have another session scheduled this week but he indicated it might be best to wait a bit longer.  He thinks my injury is more of a chronic thing that needs some long term maintenance not an acute injury that needs short term intense treatment.  I'm going to talk to him later today about scheduling of the 2nd appointment.

Not much going on training wise as he indicated I should stay active but not put to much stress on the hamstring as it was recovering from the treatment.  It does feel better but is not 100% yet.  Sitting at the desk in the office is going to be an issue.  Tractor driving is going to be even more of an issue as the vibration aggravates it.

I did most of my core/strength workout this morning but cut down on a couple things that aggravate the hamstring.  He suggested an easy run this afternoon.  Will be interesting to see how it feels.

I think it's about time to take the time to evaluate my last training cycle...I kind of missed out on the year-end evaluation and goal setting...
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Re: Making the commitment...

Post  Michele "1L" Keane on Mon Mar 10, 2014 11:49 am

I wouldn't be surprised if the real culprit is weak(ened) glute medius and minimus muscles.  They have always manifested their ugliness in my hamstrings and once I started strengthening the glute meds, the hamstring issues seemed to clear themselves right up.  If you have access to weights, I woudl suggest doing straight and bent leg dead lifts as they will strengthen the area and they also seem to really stretch out the hamstrings.  For a basic start, clamshells, glute bridges, and even single leg lunges will work the area.  Hope it will all clear up soon.
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Re: Making the commitment...

Post  nkrichards on Tue Mar 11, 2014 11:51 am

Michele \"1L" Keane wrote:I wouldn't be surprised if the real culprit is weak(ened) glute medius and minimus muscles.  They have always manifested their ugliness in my hamstrings and once I started strengthening the glute meds, the hamstring issues seemed to clear themselves right up.  If you have access to weights, I woudl suggest doing straight and bent leg dead lifts as they will strengthen the area and they also seem to really stretch out the hamstrings.  For a basic start, clamshells, glute bridges, and even single leg lunges will work the area.  Hope it will all clear up soon.


Good call Michele!  We talked about weak glutes.  He had me do a glute bridge and he showed me that I was using my hamstrings rather then my glutes.  He told me to practice and concentrate on using my glutes but I'm not making much progress. 

My core/strength workout includes glute bridges and I had progressed to single leg but I think I need to back up and work on doing them right.  It also includes back slide lunges but that is one of the things that irritates the hamstring so I think that indicates I'm using the hamstring and not the glute. 

I think I need to work on doing them correctly and add the clamshells...
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Re: Making the commitment...

Post  nkrichards on Thu Mar 13, 2014 5:41 pm

Hey...I'm actually starting to feel like a human again...a slow human but much normal.  Very Happy 

Second session with the therapist went well.  We've come to the conclusion that my hamstring pain is related more to sitting than to an actual hamstring injury.  He did find a bit of scar tissue but we both think that sitting is the big problem.  It flared up when I was doing those drives over the mountain every day to help Mom.  Sitting in the office aggravates it...I need to get a cushion for my office chair or sit on the ball.  Anyway it is improving. I'll continue to work on stretching and strengthening.

I was very encouraged by some range of motion testing he did.  He said the range of motion in my hips is slightly above average and more than adequate for a runner.  He was really impressed with the range of motion in my ankles...apparently all the calf stretches I've been doing since I battled Planter Fasciitis paid off.

And the best news........I ran on the trail around the farm last night! cheers I always run on the roads and have never ventured off onto trails.  It was short and slow on a mix of soft gravel, dirt...and a bit of mud, and even a bit on the edges of the grass fields.  No huge hills or anything but a few up and downs and lots of uneven ground.  It was fun!
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Re: Making the commitment...

Post  Mark B on Thu Mar 13, 2014 10:15 pm

Ooo! A trail outing! Fun! I think you'd have many opportunities to go off-road around where you live.

Your pain-while-sitting problem sounds like something I experienced a few years ago. Running was okay, but sitting was really uncomfortable. It turned out that I had gluteus medius weakness that led to a nasty -- and pretty much continuous -- spasm in a small interior hip stabilizer muscle called the gemellus. My PT was able to shut down the spasm using a "passive release technique" (as opposed to ART) and gave me a bunch of hip exercises to bring everything in balance. It hasn't bothered me in years.

Here's where it is.

It took a number of visits to figure out (a sports medicine doc was sure it was piriformis syndrome), but the PT was persistent and figured it out once I told her about sitting -- and after she peeled me off the ceiling when she found the spot.

That may or may not be the case for you, but it might be worth mentioning to your therapist.
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Re: Making the commitment...

Post  nkrichards on Sat Mar 15, 2014 4:26 pm

@Mark B wrote:Ooo! A trail outing! Fun! I think you'd have many opportunities to go off-road around where you live.

Your pain-while-sitting problem sounds like something I experienced a few years ago. Running was okay, but sitting was really uncomfortable. It turned out that I had gluteus medius weakness that led to a nasty -- and pretty much continuous -- spasm in a small interior hip stabilizer muscle called the gemellus. My PT was able to shut down the spasm using a "passive release technique" (as opposed to ART) and gave me a bunch of hip exercises to bring everything in balance. It hasn't bothered me in years.

Here's where it is.

It took a number of visits to figure out (a sports medicine doc was sure it was piriformis syndrome), but the PT was persistent and figured it out once I told her about sitting -- and after she peeled me off the ceiling when she found the spot.

That may or may not be the case for you, but it might be worth mentioning to your therapist.

Thanks for the input Mark.  Yes, it was fun to get out on the trail and I do hope to do it on a regular basis this year.  There are tons of great trails in Central Oregon but most of them are a bit of a drive for me and I struggle to find time to run let alone drive to a trail and then run.  I'll probably stick with the dirt roads and cow trails near the house for training but I'm thinking a trail race maybe...

I'll pass on your experience to the therapist.  Never hurts to ask.  We are working on trying to get my glutes firing and stronger.

I was back on the roads today and did add a bit of distance which included a couple small hills.  I kept it pretty easy and it felt OK but boy do I have some work to do to get back in racing shape!
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Re: Making the commitment...

Post  fostever on Sun Mar 16, 2014 6:34 pm

Would love to have trails close by. Keep up the good work!
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Re: Making the commitment...

Post  Alex Kubacki on Mon Mar 17, 2014 9:53 am

Great job getting some running done on the trails. A little less pounding. Like Steve I wish I had some near me.
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Re: Making the commitment...

Post  nkrichards on Tue Mar 18, 2014 8:16 pm

Thanks for dropping in Alex and Steve.  Yes, it's nice to have the option to head out on the trails and I hope to take advantage of it more this year but for convenience I'm sure I'll end up on the road more often than not.

Slowly going a bit farther from home and getting into a couple hills as I do.  Keeping the runs slow for the most part but I did mix in a few strides yesterday.  It was amazing how awkward I felt when I tried to run fast and I was a bit sore afterwards but nothing that a bit of walking and a vigorous swim this morning couldn't fix.

One of my scheduled races this year is a July 4th 10K.  I do it every year with several members of my family.  It's a great community event!  I downloaded Hanson's 10K Intermediate training plan.  It's a 12 week plan so I have 3 1/2 weeks to finish building base and getting back up to speed.  I'll ease into it and as usual replace some of the easy running with cross training.  I'll stick to 3 days of running per week...it works for me.

Nothing motivates me better than a goal and a plan.  Running
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