Winter is fully here and I am frustrated!

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So I have yet to go running outside since the snow. I am feeling really bad about it 😦

I am running on my treadmill but since I started running outside I am not liking the treadmill anymore and I want to run outside but the honest truth is I am kind of scared too. I took the pic above of the sidewalk on my street and its all covered in ice and snow. Before I was worried about the cold but now I am worried about slipping.

Last year I fell and injured my tailbone really badly while rollerblading and my tail bone hasn’t been the same since. Sitting for long periods of time is uncomfortable. I had to sit on one of those donut cushions for months after my injury. I am just really worried that I can injure it again.

I was determined to keep running outside and I even ordered some thermal gear online but I just don’t know what to do. I was looking into those plastic things you can put on the bottom of your shoe to help you with traction in these weather conditions but I don’t know how good they are.

I have just been running on the treadmill this week and haven’t done any weights as my forearms were really painful and so I decided to give them a rest. They still have knots in them but at least now they aren’t throbbing anymore so tomorrow I will run then do some weights. I want to get in as many hours of exercise I can before the Fall Into Fitness 30 Day Challenge is up!

I have had a pretty decent week so far. Yesterday my friends  and I went to go watch Aladdin the musical and it was awesome 🙂 They had bought me the tickets way back in June for my bday. I really enjoyed the show. Tomorrow I am going to try to steer clear of malls as it is Black Friday and people go nuts!

If anyone is going shopping good luck!! And Happy Thanksgiving to the Americans 🙂

Week Wrap Up

So…. I had the longest week! Worked 5 days and volunteered 2 days… so no days off this week and I get to start Monday with no real rest. Time to move on to some lighter topics (moving away from the heavy stuff I had posted in the last 2 blogs).

The temps drastically dropped this week (specifically today). It went from being around 0-3 degrees C to -12 C (about 10 F) feels like -20 (-4 F) this morning. It was soooooo cold. And we had snow. So… yea running outside did not happen. I stuck to working out inside and running on the treadmill. I must say I was enjoying running outside much more than I was expecting too. I am really upset that the weather took such a drastic dip. I took some pics to share. We didn’t have a ton of snow but the weather was definitely freezing.

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Some food items to share. I made spaghetti with spaghetti squash finally. And I must say it was really good and really filling. I think spaghetti squash might be my new fave thing.

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And we had a girls night on Saturday and made bread pudding!! Yum. My treat of the week.

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Anyways food aside. I have been having some major aches in my forearms… Specifically on my left side. I can definitely feel that there is a major knot in one of my muscles. It is soo uncomfortable. It is a constant ache and throbbing pain. I am not sure if it is from the weight training or what… I have never had this issue before. I might need to go for a massage to release the tension.

So The Fall Into Fitness 30 Day Challenge is almost up (about a week left) and I cannot believe how quickly time has gone by. I am quite happy with what I have accomplished the past month and previous months too. This challenge has also given me the opportunity to connect with some lovely bloggers so I am happy for that 🙂

Now it is time for some much needed sleep as I woke up at 5:30 AM this morning. Tomorrow will be a run day 🙂

Part 2 of Me opening up on some of the roughest times of my life.

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So as promised here is part 2 of me opening up. Warning: it is long and not a light topic.

So fast forward just under a year from when my sister became cancer free and it seemed like life was beginning to become normal again.

My mom somehow injured her shoulder vacuuming and it wasn’t getting better. She is one of those people who always says she is fine so she avoided getting it checked out. Weeks had passed and it was getting stiffer and she had so much trouble moving it. One night my mom, sis and I were driving in the car and it seemed like my mom wasn’t very coherent. She was saying things that didn’t make much sense (my mom has never had much health issues) so we decided to take her to the emergency room. We waited for hours to be seen and my sis told me to go home and to pick them up when they were done (we live very close to the hospital). So I went home since I had school in the morning. The next day she asked me to bring some stuff for my mom as she was being admitted so they could run some tests. I just had a feeling something was off. When I dropped off the stuff at the hospital my sister was acting off and I asked her what was wrong and if there was something she was hiding from me and she said no everything was fine. I went home that night and cried because I knew they were hiding something.

Later I found out that the on call doctor said he felt a mass on her shoulder and “he would be surprised if it wasn’t cancer”. After doing tests he was wrong it was not cancer. She had some kind of bacterial infection in her shoulder where she injured it. They said they have no idea how she got that infection and that it is a very very rare case. They ended up keeping her in the hospital for a while and they had to drain all the fluid from her shoulder.

Fast forward a few months later. I was coming up on exam times and I am sure you understand how stressful those times are. My parents were working overseas (1 days plane ride away) and I got a call from my dad saying my mom seemed to have some kind of stomach bug and they had taken her to the hospital. I again felt like something was off. I remember sitting in Starbucks with my friends studying and not being able to hold back tears thinking about the distance between us and me not being able to be there. I brushed it off and carried on.

A few days later my dad came clean to us. He said my mom was really sick and was in the hospital for a week in the ICU. They didn’t know what was wrong but her belly was swollen and she was incoherent. They said she was not acting like herself and saying and doing things that were out of her character. They said that they didn’t think she was going to make it but by the time my dad had told us all this she had fought it and was getting taken out of the ICU. He said he was torn on whether he should have told us. If my mom had died overseas and he hadn’t told us her condition I don’t know if I would have been able to forgive him.

She was recovering and she was going to come home to continue her treatment here. They found out that that same bacteria that she had in her shoulder had traveled elsewhere in her body and that was causing the issue. Her flight was booked and I was so eager to see her. I knew she was going to be weak and that she had lost a lot of weight but I wanted her home.

The day before she was set to get on the plane I had the worst day of my life.

I was home alone with my cat and my sister’s dog and I was getting ready to head out to study for exams (I had an exam the day after and another the day after that). I had put a load of laundry in the dryer and was getting ready to leave when I noticed smoke in the house. I saw it was coming from the basement. I ran to the basement and saw the dryer had smoke coming from it. I unplugged it and called 911. They told me to get out of the house. The smoke was starting to get quite strong. I came upstairs and grabbed the dog and took her outside. I tried to get my cat but he was scared and ran away from me. He ran into the basement but I couldn’t follow him. There was too much smoke.

I had no choice but to leave the house. I stood outside my house as smoke consumed the house. As I listened to my cat meow and cry. I tried to call him hoping he would come out… I could still hear him cry. I remember it was raining and the neighbours had started to gather. The firemen came and I told them my cat was still in there. My sister had just gotten home and I told her what happened. She promised me we would take him to the vet as soon as they got him.

I waited and waited outside as the firefighters and police were rushing around. I kept asking them if they had found him. Finally one police man said “I am sorry they found him and he didn’t make it”. I remember thinking this was a dream and I was waiting for him to say “haha I am kidding” but that never happened.

My neighbour had invited my sister inside to their place to keep out of the rain. I ran inside and told her what happened and I collapsed onto the floor. I was crying but no tears were coming. I remember yelling “I don’t want anything anymore!” Meaning I didn’t want to get attached to anything and to feel this loss ever again. I called my boyfriend (he was at work) and told him what happened. He loved my cat so much and he left work right away and came over. He was there for me and I know he was crumbling inside.

They managed to stop the fire but it had destroyed pretty much our whole house. We were allowed to go in and take a few things. The house was a mess. Everything burnt and everything smelled. The smell stayed with me forever. I can still smell it and that smell makes me sick. I told my friends what happened and they found a company to cremate my cat. The fireman had asked me if I wanted to see him and I refused. I didn’t want to remember him that way. But I had to ask if he was ok…. Like was he burnt or in once piece. He told me he was not burnt and he just looked like he was sleeping but his body was going stiff and they had put him in his bed. The company came to take him for cremation. They asked me which urn and I couldn’t answer. My bf had to pick one in the end.

I stayed at my bf’s that night. I cried all night. I spent some the night on the phone with my sis that was in USA. I kept asking “why?” “why did this happen?”. I couldn’t understand it. My sister decided that she was going to come see us and help us through this time.

We went to the airport to pick up my mom and my sis. My mom was so weak and she was in a wheelchair. She had no idea what had happened here the day before. We took her out to dinner and had to break the news to her. I remember just feeling numb. We took her to the hospital after dinner.

The next week was full of looking for a place to rent while our house was being rebuilt, seeing my mom in the hospital, filing paperwork to defer my exams and dealing with the emotional aspect of it all. I cried multiple times a day. I cried once at least everyday for about 2 months. In the end they just said the dryer had malfunctioned somehow and overheated and that is what caused the fire. It took them 6-8 months to finish our house.

My mom was being treated for her infection and she was doing well. She came home after being in the hospital for almost 2 months. She still had to have a nurse come in everyday to administer the IV meds. I spent 2 months seeing a therapist to help me handle my grief but I dont know how much it helped really.

I had so much anger and guilt. I kept thinking about what if I was able to get him and save him. He was there for me through so much. I had him for 8 years. He was with me when I felt alone when my family was taking care of my sister when she had to do her cancer treatment. He was all I had at home. He was like a best friend. I was thinking what if I want to the basement to get him… but my bf told me that maybe if I went into the basement I might have never come back out. I was so angry I wasn;t able to be there for him when he needed me the most… especially since he had been with me through so much.

About 2 months after the fire our neighbour at the place we were renting had found a kitten on the side of the highway. She was young and needed a home. We decided to take her in. She was only 1.7 lbs and we have no idea how she ended up in the side of the highway. She helped me heal. I thought I never wanted another pet because I didnt want to open my heart up but I did thankfully. She was able to bring some joy into my life. She will never replace him but she helped me.

It has now been about 2 years since the fire and I still have not been able to take out his urn. It is in a drawer tucked away. I cannot bear to look at it. I even got a display case to put it in along with pictures in my room but it still sits empty in my room. I have not had the courage to take it out. One day I will honour him and take it out when I am ready. There are days I still feel sad and I cry (like now) but I know I will get through it.

Jovi you mean so much to me and I miss you every day. I wish I could go back and change things but I can’t. You will always and forever be in my hear. I love you. RIP

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Part 1 of Me opening up on some of the roughest times of my life.

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So a while ago I told myself I would open up a bit on here and let you guys know a bit more about me. There is quite a bit to cover so I think this will be a two part thing. I still haven’t revealed my real name or posted a pic where you can see my face. I just thought it would be easier for me to be honest and comfortable this way… for now.

So like I wrote about on my first post ever: https://couchtorunning.wordpress.com/2013/09/05/about-me-where-i-am-and-where-i-want-to-be/

I have been struggling with my self image for a long time and my weight has been an actual real concern the past 3-4 years. So I wanted to open up about what happened in those 3-4 years.

During my 2nd year at university school got tough. I had a very hard course load and was struggling to keep up with it all. That year something big happened. I come from a family of 3 girls (I am the youngest). My oldest sister lives in USA with her husband and kids. My family means the world to me and so that is why this event was particularly hard. I remember being at work (at this time I was working in the same clinic as my middle sister) and one of my coworkers called me to the lunch room as my sister apparently wanted to talk to me. I walked in the room to find my sister in tears and she says “She (my oldest sis) has cancer”. I don’t remember the exact thoughts in my head but I was in shock. My sister had told me that they found a mass and they were doing a biopsy but I remember thinking “she is going to be fine” and nothing bad could happen. I still remember talking to her on the phone and saying “Don’t freak yourself out and worry until you have to”. Never did I think it was going to end up like that.

My sis and I immediately went home to be with my parents. We decided we needed to all go see her as a family. We made arrangements and were on the first flight out the next morning. I stayed for about a week and had to come back home because of school. My mom and sister decided they were going to stay there to help her through her treatment and to be there for my nieces through this time. They were still very young (about 7 and 9) but enough to understand some of what was going on. My mom was able to take care of the kids and keep them busy while my sister was by my oldest sister’s side throughout her treatment. Because of the distance and school I had to be alone. My dad was there for some time and with me a bit but he also had things he had to manage overseas. He had to dig up finances to allow my mom and sister to not work and be there.

I felt so hopeless being so far away from my family. School was overwhelming and dealing with the emotional state of what was going on didn’t help. I stopped working out and was eating poorly. It was hard taking care of myself, the house, and all the responsibilities. I was 19 or 20 and although I wasn’t very young I don’t think I was ready for all that. Cooking, cleaning, studying, working and trying to maintain a life was challenging and on top of that I was not in a good place.

My sister did her chemo and radiation and the treatment worked. She has now been cancer free for a couple years. I am always still so scared it is going to come back. My family came home near the end of my 2nd year.  The impact that event had on my life has changed me forever. Honestly the rest is a bit of a blur until about a year after that where another event shook my life once more.

I have rambled on a bit and I know this was long so thank you for reading. I will post part 2 of this tomorrow or the day after. I feel a bit better getting this off my chest.

 

Chilly Run Outside

Seconds run outside and first official run without the couch 25k program. So today I got to test out my new hydration belt, headband and nuun.

I left my house and then realized how cold it really was and went back for my gloves. It was really quite chilly and windy! But I pushed through. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to measure the stats of my run. I just got my phone back from having it repaired and I didn’t have time to update and download all my apps and stuff. So I ended up doing the same route as last time and more. If I had to estimate the distance I would say about 3.5k and I ran for maybe 20-25 mins or so. I ran further this time without walking. I jogged for the most part and had a couple 30 second walking intervals. I am feeling pretty good. I didn’t feel like I was dying haha that is how I use to feel running outside.

I think I am going to have to get some real thermal running gear if I am going to continue running outside in the winter. It was about 1 degree today and in the winter it can go to -10 plus the wind chill makes it feel like -20 or so. So ….. we will see. Honestly I don’t know if I am going to run outside in the winter. I have issues breathing in the cold but for now I am enjoying the runs outside.

As for the new gear… The belt was great. It stayed in place and getting the bottles in and out weren’t too bad. I will just need some time to get use to them. But I didn’t feel awkward running with it at all. The headband was also great and stayed in place because of the pony tail hole. I used half a tab of the nuun for one of my little bottles and it was a nice to have something other than water.

Overall I am feeling good and happy. I will slowly slowly work myself up to running the 5k non stop. I was also thinking of trying to find an indoor track or something then maybe in the winter I can do that sometimes instead of the treadmill all the time.

I am going to do some yoga today to add my time up for the Fall into Fitness 30 Day Challenge so that I do my 1 hour of exercise for the day.

New Running Gear Purchased!! Yay

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So I wanted thank you guys for your input on my earlier post regarding the hydration options.

I went by the store today and tried out the different options and settled on the belt with the 3 bottles. I don’t think I would need 3 bottles but the one with 2 bottles was only $5 cheaper so I figured I would get the 3 instead and just take out the extra one until I need it.

I also got a cute headband that has a pony tail hole and it is a breast cancer product. I also picked up nuuns which I heard a lot of other runners talk about so I figured I would try them out. I just wanted something to add a bit of flavour to my water. I got the strawberry lemonade flavour and it is also another breast cancer pink ribbon product.

Overall I spent quite a bit of money but I am happy I got these and I am excited to test them out tomorrow. Tomorrow will be quite chilly so lets see how it goes! It is going to be between 0 and 3 degrees Celsius or 32 and 27 Fahrenheit for the Americans 😛

Also the girl at the running store told me that 2x a week they have a running meet where you meet at the store and then there are several groups based on distance that break up and all run together. That sounds pretty awesome. I think I will check it out down the road when I am more comfortable and confident.