I Am Still Alive...Sorta!

I forgot how training for a new distance is painful, both physically and mentally. If I recall, I was barely able to scale the stairs after running 13.1 miles for the first time.Yet, here I am, frustrated that my ankles hurt after a 4 hour run through trails that I've never traveled before. I feel weak when my knee keeps hurting or my feet keep throbbing after doing marathon distances every weekend. I am stressed when I can't meet a certain time goal because I am exhausted from the 24 mile long run the day before.

I have set unrealistic expectations for myself when in just a matter of weeks, I will be attempting to run double the distance I have maxed at. Why can't I just pat myself on the back and say "Lindsey, look at all you are doing? This is AMAZING! So many people would have given up at the first sign of discomfort, but you are pushing through!"

I need to appreciate what I can do rather than what I can't. I need to acknowledge the pain as something which is reshaping both my body and mind. I mean, if running 50 miles were easy, everyone would be doing the JFK 50 miler, right?

So as much as I have been back and forth on the thought, I know today that I will be in the square of Boonsboro, MD at 5:00 am on November 21st. I may not finish with a great time, but my goal is simply to finish. I don't care if I am crawling across the finish line at the 14 hour cutoff, I just want to finish. I want to hang that medal and remember that the blood, sweat, and tears was worth that experience.

Then...I am taking a well-deserved month long break.

My 1st Chiropractic Appointment

As some of you have known from previous posts, I have been suffering from pain while running (sometimes while walking). I went to two different doctors, both of which have told me two different things.

For the first doctor, I was diagnosed with Sesamoiditis. The second doctor said it was Turf Toe. I followed all instruction, used crutches, rested, and took my anti-inflammatories. But did it work? Not really.

On Saturday, I ran for 5 miles and it went well, so I decided to run again on Sunday. Though my foot was...ehh...okay...my knee got jacked. My gait obviously changed and it was what caused the knee problems. The pain was almost unbearable, so I stayed off of it for the remainder of the day and all day Monday. Chilled with the pup for the most part (more on her later!!!).

Out of desperation, I decided to try something new: Chiropractic Therapy. I figured what the hell...nothing else worked nor did anyone seem to know exactly what was going on with me.

The office got me in super quick and did 3 different treatments.

  1. Electrotherapy - I got hooked up to some sticky pads at the knee, foot, and ankle which sent electric currents into the surrounding muscles. There was a buzzing/pulsing sensation that occurred and I got a feeling of warmth through out that area. It was a nice start, but the next treatment was my favorite!
  2. Deep Tissue Massage - The doc used a warm oil and rubbed deeply into the muscles of my foot and leg. She focused on the areas of pain and also paid close attention to the peroneal muscles as she suspected that was what was causing my knee issues. She definitely pressed hard, but it felt yummy!
  3. Crack-a-lack! Spinal Manipulation - Finally she ended it with a solid crack. She had me lay on my stomach as she took note of the tension in my body. She said that I hold the left side of my body tighter than the right. So she laid me in a way where she could crack the left side of my spine. It was so loud and scary, but it didn't hurt at all. 

She didn't want to do more than what was listed above because she wanted to make sure my body didn't get too sore from everything.  Honestly, I was little disappointed because I wanted more, but it was what it was.

On the way home, I felt tingling sensations through my left side and my spine just felt...different. I worried a little, but the more I thought of it, the more I realized how my left side felt relaxed. It made me laugh actually because I didn't know if it was all in my head.

Later that evening, I felt like I was extremely energetic and the endorphins in my body where flowing like crazy. Then I took notice to how I walked. It was different...the pain was dissipating. I was able to walk up and down the stairs as normal (this has been the most difficult thing in all of this).

I went for a run later that evening. I wanted to see if this truly helped. I went for 4 miles...no issues. I ran 5 miles tonight. Again, no problems. I took it slow and steady in both sessions. I didn't time it and focused on comfort.

I am not going to lie though...my knee and foot are sore from both runs, but I am not in agonizing pain. I can still walk without pain and go up and down the stairs with little issue. It is the most relief I have had in weeks and I am hopeful again that the JFK 50 is in my future!

I have another appointment with my chiropractor on Friday, then every week or two thereafter until the JFK. I am very much looking forward to them! If one session did this much for me, I wonder what 2 can do!?

Have you ever been to a chiropractor? Did you think it was successful?

Our Second Honeymoon

So we are home now after a week of the cabin life in the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee. It was a week filled of adventure, food, alcohol, relaxation, and maybe just a little bit of running.

We arrived Saturday evening after a 8+ hour driving trip.

We did divide up the trip with a quick visit to my cousin Kara's who lived about halfway between our house and our TN destination.

We arrived later in the evening and didn't get the chance to see what an amazing view we had, but what we saw in the morning made up for it!

But first, let me take a selfie...

One of the things the Smoky Mountains is known for is their moonshine. So we went to the Ole Smoky Distillery in Gatlinburg for a free tasting. It was also the only place that was selling alcohol on Sunday and we needed something to drink that evening.

We bought 7 jars because we are alcoholics wanted trinkets from our trip. Also, that was the day of our one year anniversary and we had to celebrate!

We then had dinner a the Smoky Mountain Brewery (we are alcoholics were hungry) and came back to the cabin just in time for the sunset.

We also enjoyed a replica of the top tier from our wedding made by Sugar Whipped out of Charles Town, WV. It was carrot cake with buttercream icing. YUM!!!

After filling up on moonshine and cake, we decided to sleep on the foldout couch. We had a better view of the cabin and a better TV to watch our movies off of. We watched Cars until we passed out.

The next day, I decided to take full advantage of the Whirlpool bath. Some people know that I am not a bath person (there was an incident which I will not explain here). I figured that since I didn't bring a bathing suite for the outdoor hot tub, I was going to do this instead. I also still had the best view ever.

And Peter was still around so we could talk, but he was busy playing video games while I relaxed. :)

Later that afternoon, we went to the Smoky Mountain National Park and hiked. I was getting restless since I hadn't run for over a week.

We also went to the North Carolina/Tennessee border. It was 5,000 ft in elevation. Amazing!

That's also where we found the Appalachian Trail.

We contemplated on hiking it home, but then decided the cabin life was far more desirable.

In the mornings, I decided to do restart the 30 Days of Yoga with Adriene and do some meditation on the deck.  I had to keep my mind at ease since I was stressing about my foot injury.

On Tuesday though, I decided to do some running intervals on the road outside our cabin. I spotted this turtle and used it as my turn around spot.

We also went on a biking adventure that day, which I don't have any pics of...thank God! It was an embarrassment of my ability to do anything remotely close to actual mountain biking. So we pretty much called it a fail, but laughed about it nonetheless.

The next day, Peter and I went on a 1.5 mile trail run. I was officially out of the 10 day resting period. My foot still didn't feel perfect, but I was able to do pretty well. I felt really out of shape though.

That evening, we ventured out to Margaritaville since neither of us has never been and ordered the biggest/strongest margaritas they had.

They came in these blenders that we could keep!

We were completely hammered for the greater part of the evening.

On Thursday, our final day, we went to Gatlinburg to try their Alpine Slide. I did one in Killington, VT years ago, so I was a bit nervous how this one would compare.

It was fun, but not as scary as Killington!

We didn't get into much more after that evening and just chilled at the cabin and enjoyed our last sunset.

I vowed that evening that I will have a cabin and a view like this in my future. My NEAR future.

Any who, now that we are home, I am running again, but I will have to get to that later...that's a whole separate post! Same with the news of our new family member! Stay tuned, friends! More to come!!!

Tennessee Lovin'

I will not be able to have a detailed update until coming back from our second honeymoon (1st anniversary trip!). For now, here is a taste of our trip!

Later today, we hit the biking trails!
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