Sunday, February 27, 2011

Sunday Morning Stroll

Congrats to all those Princesses who ran today!!  I'm so there next year!!  In honor of the race, I chose to listen to my Princess play list this morning.  I'm blessed that I live in an area with lots of different trails and this morning I decided to head back to what I think of as "my" original trail.  And this just seems like a good time to do a "what's going on in Emily's mind" post.

Okay, it is cold.  I guess I do need my jacket.  Probably need gloves and a hat too. 

Wow, that wind is biting.  I'm glad I got my jacket.

Ooh, I love this song!  I sing a lot more when I walk than when I run.  (Girls Aloud, Sexy!  No, No, No...)

Careful, that is a lot of snow. 

What about all of the things that you said?  (Brandy, What About Us?)

Hm, snow on pavement is way more slippery than snow on the trail.  But I can walk on the shoulder.  Much better, not as slippery.

Dude, really?  Out for your morning stroll smoking a cigarette?  Although I'm super jealous of your venti coffee that must be keeping your hands warm.  My fingers are icicles!!  So glad I wore my gloves!

What is this song?  Oh yeah, I'd forgotten about it!  (Alcazar, This Is the World We Live In)

Ooh, big dogs.  Dear Dogs, Please don't notice me.  I'm walking quickly by, you don't see me.


Gimme, gimme more.  I love Britney!  (Britney Spears, Gimme More)

Okay, they have gone.  Anyone else around?  I'm going to walk backwards!

Oh hill.  What's better than a hill?  An iced over hill.  At least it's trail and not pavement.

Spoke too soon, an iced over hill on pavement.  Wow, that is slippery.  Okay, we'll be walking off to the side on the trail.


I have not been on this trail for a long time.  When did they tear down the old school and start building the new school?

Corbin Bleu!  I love Corbin!  (Corbin Bleu, Speed of Light)

What's worse than walking uphill on an icy hill?  Walking downhill.  And no grass off to the side.  I'm going to walk on the shoulder of the road.  There haven't been any cars.

And there goes a car.  And another.  But the snow is gone, I can get back on the sidewalk. 

Oh Ashley Tisdale.  I'm going to see your straight to DVD Sharpay movie.  Sharpay was my fave.  (Ashley Tisdale, It's Alright, It's OK)

Morning.  There are a lot of people out this morning even with the cold and leftover snow.

Oh yeah, time to kick it old school!  (Backstreet Boys, Larger Than Life)

Dear Hill, remember last year when I finally was able to run up you without stopping? I will conquer you again, Hill!  Mark my words!

Sixteen, sixteen, sixteen more minutes.  Boy am I glad there aren't people around listening to me sing.  Or watch me attempt to dance as I walk.  (Now or Never, High School Musical 3)

I could really use some chap stick right now.  I think I need an emergency backup chap stick in my car. 

My fingers are warm.  Too warm.  I'm taking the gloves off.  I wish I could take my hat off.  But I think my ears would cry. 

Nobody has lapped me today.  Maybe they are all doing short routes due to the cold.

Spoke to soon.  Hi again.

Isn't it time to be back at the car?  I don't remember this trail being so long. 

Mark & Derek!  I love this song!  When does Dancing with the Stars start again?  More importantly, did I set my DVR for the Amazing Race?  (Ballas Hough Band, Devastated)

I'm really glad I have my jacket.  That wind is biting!

Morning.  Wow - he is fast!

Almost done.  Just the monster hill left.  I really need a good song to power me up.  Jonas Brothers - that'll do it.  I think this is the first Jo Bros song!  (Jonas Brothers, Paranoid)

Hm, think I can catch up to the people just ahead of me?  Yeah, no not with the ice on the hill.  Oh but maybe if I walk on the shoulder.  This shoulder is really wide.

I can see the stop sign, I can see the stop sign!  Almost there.  And then I can go home and take a hot shower.

C'mon Britney, get me up the rest of the hill.  (Britney Spears, Piece of Me)

Oh, just missed catching up with the people in front of me.  I would have had them if this hill was another block longer.  But thank goodness it isn't!!

Stupid baby hill.  Wasn't the monster hill enough?

Stairs or ramp?  Stairs.  Ouch.  Oh, knee.  You are doing good, you are almost done. 

I can almost see my car! 

I will be so glad when I can properly stretch out my left leg.  Dear Knee, I am very proud of your progress.  Keep it up.

And there you have it.  My slightly longer than 3 miles walk.  Even with the cold weather, it is nice to be walking outside.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Five Senses Friday

Whew!!  Another week done.  And a week from today I'll be boarding a plane to Hawaii!!  Granted, if I hadn't fallen off a cliff in Italy (it actually is a little bit fun to say that now) I would be in Orlando as we speak, getting ready to run the Princess Half Marathon.  Oh well - I'm so there next year!!  And good luck to all those Princesses racing this weekend!!

  • That I made Reese's list of people she loves.  (She is the one who just turned 2).  Seriously it made my day! :)
  • Lots and lots of snow
  • My new raspberry chap stick
  • I got some "all-natural" fruit strips and they were pretty good.  I brought them into work and they are my new afternoon snack.
  • Very, very cold!!  But also nice and warm with my new scarf I've been sporting.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

What the Hail?

All the dire predictions of the worst winter in years never materialized.  Our winter has been fairly mild - which isn't a bad thing.  Fairly mild until now that is.  I feel much better I got my new tires now.  Although it was a little suspect that this Winter Storm would happen.  All we heard yesterday was snow, snow, snow.  And snow in Seattle is a serious four letter word.  So last night before I left work, I packed up my laptop in anticipation of the potential snow day.  (We have gotten somewhat better the last couple of years, but with all the hills it is better safe than sorry.)  But I woke up this morning to barely a trace amount of snow on the ground.  What a gyp!  What happened to my snow day? 

Turns out the snow was just delayed.  We have had all sorts of weather today - one minute it is pouring down snow and the next the sun is out and all the snow is gone.  It started hailing earlier this evening.  I decided to leave work then and skip the gym.  Instead I got home and then the snow started.  Since I skipped the gym I popped in Leslie to get a quick mile in.  The treadmill it is not, but it is at least something.  Plus I was definitely feeling my knee today, not sure why.  The snow is still coming down now - almost 2 inches have accumulated so far.  Good thing I brought my laptop home again tonight!  Looks like I might get my snow day after all!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Black Bean & Pumpkin Burger

Happy President's Day!!  And happy day to sleep in, which I did quite happily.  Although I could have slept in a little more, except I decided to go to yoga.  Yoga at 9:30 is much better than 8:30! :)  As I signed in, the teacher (who is one of my faves) tells me that I am looking really good!  The old Emily would have felt really uncomfortable and undeserving of the compliment because I have so far to go on this weight loss journey.  But the new Emily accepted the compliment and said thank you very much.

And in honor President's Day I decided my February recipe would be a burger, because what's more American than a burger?  Oh wait, I think that's hot dogs.  Oh well.  And really I landed on this burger because when I looked at the recipe (discovered on fANNEtastic food and even better she spells her name with an "e").  I realized I had all the ingredients!  Yes!!  It was actually a quick, easy recipe and tasted pretty good.  I stuck mine on a bun with ketchup and a smidgen of mustard because a burger isn't a burger without ketchup.  Yummy!  I will be making this again.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

On the Trail Again

Oh I just can't wait to get back to the trail again!  But first, let's do a weekend wrap!  Although the weekend isn't quite over since tomorrow is a holiday!  Yay!

If I haven't mentioned it by now, I am a creature of habit.  And what I mean by that is a massive creature of habit.  I like to park in the same parking spot, or at least in the same general area.  I have favorite parking spots at work, at Target, at the mall, or pretty much anywhere I go regularly.  I usually order the same dish at restaurants.  And I usually get the same smoothie (I probably stop for a smoothie for breakfast maybe once a week).  There are two smoothie places that know my order.  Which is usually good, because again I am a creature of habit.  But what if I wanted to mix it up?  It is way easier to just let them make my usual than say I want to try something different.  Anyway, Friday started off with my normal smoothie.

Friday evening Jessica, Nilufer & I went to a comedy show.  I'm usually a little leery of comedy shows, and the first two acts confirmed my leeriness.  Is leeriness a word?  If not, it is now! :)  But the headliner was actually really good!  I laughed and laughed.  Pretty good way to start the weekend!

My weekend of fun continued with a dinner Saturday night at John Howie Steak with Jessica & Nilufer followed by a movie (The Eagle - not great, but I liked it) and then dessert.

And here we are at Sunday.  After church I went back to the trail!  First time since pre-knee injury!  And I learned a few things:
  • I felt like a fraud at first, dressed as a runner but only walking.  But I got over it rather quickly.
  • I really missed the trail!  I was glad to be back.
  • It was cold (but sunny!!) but I survived without a jacket!  I had quite a debate with myself whether or not to bring a jacket but in the end I was glad I didn't.
  • My knee did pretty good - there was a slight nagging pain (which I've sort of gotten used to) but it held up well.
  • I really wanted to run, but thought it might be too soon.  If I've learned anything, it has been to listen to my body and take it slow and easy.
  • A High School Musical song will still put me in a fantastic mood and help me pick up the pace!!  Go Wildcats!
  • I felt so good after it I signed up for the inaugural See Jane Run Seattle 5K!  Probably won't be running the whole thing by then, but as it isn't until July you never know.  Besides, a race with chocolate and champagne?  Heck yes!!
And that's that.  For now anyway.  I'm hoping for a very relaxing, low-key, chill Monday.  Happy Weekend!!

Friday, February 18, 2011

Five Sense Friday

I am soooo ready for Friday!!  And a Friday before a Three Day Weekend!  Even better. 

  • A beautiful full moon
  • This isn’t technically hearing, but we’ll go with it – that I won Running in Pink Project's Chocolate Calcium giveaway. Yay!!
  • Excited for the three day weekend! Thank you Presidents!
  • Wheat thins & blueberries – odd choice I know, but that was my dinner last night when I ended up staying later than anticipated at work.
  • Valentine’s Day goodies & flowers

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

If it's Wednesday

If it's Wednesday, it must raining in Seattle!  Okay, that isn't true.  It just seems like it with all the rain lately.  But in less than three weeks I will be in sunny (hopefully) Hawaii!!  Woohoo!!  Holy cow!  Where has the time gone?  Time to start the packing list.  And I *think* it is time to get a new camera.  An underwater camera.  I like cameras.  I like cameras a lot.  Almost as much as I like bags.  I've been debating about an underwater camera for awhile and this seems like the perfect time.  After all, if I don't get a camera, I'll spend lots of money on fake underwater cameras and developing the film.  So really, I need an underwater camera!  Ha!  I crack myself up!

On the packing list is my brand new bag from Hot Mama Handbags.  I'm super excited to use it.  Just like I love cameras, I love bags.  I do, I really do.  I don't know when that started.  But I now have quite a collection of bags.  And in the background of the picture you can sort of see my collection of medals.  I have a coat rack thing that I need to put up to display all my medals but I haven't done it yet.  So they are hanging on the corner of one of my bookcases.  What I'm not looking forward to is swim suit shopping.  Ugh. 

I didn't have the greatest hot yoga class last night (didn't drink enough water) but I was finally able to do the wind removing pose!  Which is just the funniest name, but the move is supposed to help with your colon.  I haven't been able to do that since pre-knee injury!  Yay!  My knee keeps improving in tiny, tiny steps.  I can bend it up a lot better, but I'm still having problems bending it back.  But soon, I will be able to!

I got an email telling me my bib number for the Princess Half (which is just a little over a week away).  And I let out a big sigh.  Next year.  I'm so there next year!  But with the improvement in my knee, I'm starting to think my entire race season may not be over.  I think I might be able to salvage a race here and there.  Not at my old speed (which wasn't that fast to begin with) but there is a glimmer of hope that I will soon be out on a race course.

There was a couple of other thoughts I had but they are gone.  So goodnight!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Houston Weekend

Well that was a quick weekend!  It was my "niece's" second birthday and what better excuse to fly down to Houston?  Especially since I hadn't been there in almost a year.  It was a fun weekend, seeing some of my besties and catching up, meeting baby Travis (who at almost a year is not that much of a baby anymore), eating chips & queso and some yummy birthday cake, and celebrating Reese's second birthday.  I also got my first exposure to Kinect.  Wow, that is fun!  I'm not a big video game person, but the dance game was super fun.  All in all, a fun, if quick, weekend.  And now, time for bed.  Plane flights tire me out...

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

Moment of Truth

Two months of hobbling around on my knee summed up in two days.  First up, time for my MRI.  Going into it, I wasn't sure what I wanted.  Obviously surgery was not high on my list, but if it fixed my knee and I was able to get back to "normal" (whatever that is), maybe it wasn't such a bad thing.  In either case (surgery or no surgery) from what I had heard it seemed like I was in for a year of recovery before I was back to my old self.

Tuesday afternoon I went in for the MRI.  I put on the lovely hospital pants and got up on the table.  As I was moved into the machine, the nurse kept saying "Remember to stay still" and of course as soon as I heard that I felt the need to move.  Staying still is a lot harder than it sounds!  First my toe felt like it had to move and then it started creeping up my leg.  And the harder I tried to resist, the harder it was to stay still.  Breathe.  Zone out.  Take a nap.  Finally I was done!  I changed and they handed me a CD with all my pictures on it.  Wow!!  That was fast.

This morning I went to see my orthopedic doctor.  She put the CD in and went through the pictures, explaining to me what we were looking at.  To quote my doctor my meniscus was gorgeous.  That's right, my meniscus is gorgeous!  No problems with it at all.  Absolutely none.  What the MRI did show was that my MCL is irritated.  As in still irritated.  And depending on who you talk to, I either have a Grade I or a Grade II MCL sprain.  The MRI peeps think Grade II, the doctor thinks Grade I.  Me?  All I know is that it hurts.  Well, okay it doesn't hurt all the time.  The pain has finally lessened to an annoying ache for the most part.  If I move to fast though, my knee will let me know.

Okay, a sprain.  A sprain that is taking its sweet time to heal.  Where do I go from here?  The doctor said to continue with physical therapy if it is helping (which I think it is), ice, topical ointments, and rest.  She also said I could run, as long as I could handle the pain.  Basically, I'm not restricted at the moment, except based on my pain levels.  But I won't be going back to kickboxing any time soon.  And to be perfectly honest, I don't know that I'll be running any time soon either. 

So this is good news, right?  It is, it really is.  But....  Don't you hate the word "but"?  But there is a itty bitty teeny tiny part of me that almost wishes it was the meniscus, because then we could do surgery and move on.  This whole just let it heal has me a little out of sorts.  Isn't this what I have been doing?  Apparently the other moral of the story (other than don't hike on closed hiking trails, and listen to your inner voice that says scoot across the washed out trail if you didn't pay attention to the closed hiking trail sign) is patience.  And listen to your body.

So good news.  No surgery!  Yay!  I am on the path to healing and full recovery!!

Friday, February 04, 2011

Five Senses Friday

  • Maryland & Missouri license plates - I don't know why that struck me as odd, but it did.
  • Diane!!  We used to meet once a month but that fell apart but we are trying to start it back up again.
  • My physical therapist tell me it is time to get an MRI.  It is scheduled for Tuesday.  Hopefully I'll finally know what is wrong with my knee.
  • Donuts!!  I tried to resist.  I really, really, really did.  But they were calling my name.  Emily, eat me!  And so I did.  Oh well.  A donut every once in awhile isn't that bad, right?
  • Super excited I finally have some trips planned!!  Hawaii in early March and Disneyland in late March!  I really have been feeling the need for some magic so I'm super excited about Disneyland!  And yeah, I'm also excited about Hawaii. :)
  • Popcorn - seriously, I walked into the hall the other day and it could have passed for a movie theater the popcorn smell was so strong.

Happy Weekend!!

Tuesday, February 01, 2011

A Tale of Two Yogas

Isn't it funny how you can do the same thing and it can turn out so completely different?  Take my yoga class on Saturday.  I woke up bright and early, before my alarm even!  What, before my alarm?  I could have slept in longer.  But yes, woke up before my alarm, got up, got dressed, had some water and was off to yoga.  I was not able to get my most favorite spot in the world, but I was able to get a spot in the general vicinity.  I'm going in to class thinking this should be good.  And then class starts and I realize with the first posture that this is not going to be the class I wanted.  My shoulders are on fire.  The humidity is ridiculous (or at least I think so).  My back feels all tense.  I try to shake it off and loosen up but I just barely make it through the posture.  The rest of class is a struggle.  Me vs my mat, or really me vs myself.  I stick with it and gut it out until the end.  As soon as class ends, I am up and outside gulping fresh, cool air.  Not my best class by a long shot.  I'm reminded by what my sister (a yoga teacher) says - they call it yoga practice, not yoga perfect.  Because I was as far from perfect as you can get.

And then you take last night.  I was coming off a day at work where I was literally going from meeting to meeting most of the day.  I didn't drink nearly enough water (for me).  I left work, making it to class right before it started.  I didn't get my favorite spot this time either, but it was still in the area.  The teacher is one of my favorites though.  We go through the first posture and I realize this is going to be a completely different class.  I feel much more loose and ready to go.  Sure enough, I rock this class.  I don't do all the postures, but the only postures I skip out on are those that I still can't do with my knee.  The room is much less humid.  And at the end of class, I lay on the floor "soaking in the benefits" as the instructors will say, before leaving the class.

Two classes, two very different experiences.  Was the good and bad definition of class all in my head?  A lot of it definitely.  Although I am putting some of the blame on the humidity!

Sort of a random change of subject, but sort of not, we (as in me and my physical therapist) have decided it is time for me to get an MRI to see what's really going on with my knee.  While I have definitely been improving (I can even do little squats now!), I am by no means back to normal.  And the pain seems to be residing around the joint line, which indicates a meniscus tear.  The MRI should hopefully show what is wrong with my knee and then we can figure out what we need to do to get me back to normal.  I am much more at peace with the prospect of surgery.  Although I would be kidding if I said I wasn't scared.  So a non-update type of update.  No news really except stay tuned...