Tag Archives: running with anxiety

January Miles and Goal Check In

The first month of the year has come and gone! Well, almost. I suppose there are a few hours left in the last day of the month. πŸ˜‰

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Anyway, did you have any goals for the new year? How are they holding up so far?? I hope you’re totally killing it and making them happen! As far as my goals for 2018 go, well, they really aren’t going at the moment. You can read all about what my goals for the year are here, since I probably wont get into the specifics or reasoning behind them in this post. πŸ™‚

Ever since running my third half marathon in November, I’ve been experiencing some weird anxiety (I say weird, but anxiety is basically just a normal part of my everyday life) issues when I run. Anxiety in general is absolutely no fun, but for me, running usually really helps keep it under control. But for a while there I was experiencing very panic attack-y feelings usually about a mile or two into any given run, that turned into the full blown thing by the time I would get home. Yeah, that was a really rough period of time in my life…Especially when the thing that usually helps, was causing the issue.

I’ve yet to figure outΒ whyΒ that was happening, but I have finally worked through most of it and am able to run without any issues and am definitely enjoying it again! But that’s kinda put a damper on my plans of increasing my weekly running mileage to about 50 miles per week, which is one of my running goals for 2018. I had a whole plan written out and everything, but that’s pretty much out the window at this point. In some ways I feel like I’m starting over from scratch, considering the very small amounts of running I’ve been able to accomplish since November. But at the very least I have been doing a little bit of running, and I’ve still got a couple years of decently consistent running in my legs. So I suppose even though I feel like I’m starting over, I’m really not. Right now this goal looks a bit daunting, but I know if I can pick myself up, brush myself off, and move onward and forward, I can get to where I want to be, as long as I put in the work.

Speaking of putting in the work, well, not much work was done this month. I’ve run a measly 36.87 miles in January thanks to the issues I talked about above. I guess working through that shit is a valid reason to have such a low mileage month, but honestly I’m a little disappointed with myself. I know I can do better and I should do better. But I guess I have the whole month of February (and the rest of the year) to prove that to myself! πŸ™‚

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So another one on my goals for this year is to hit my step goalΒ most of the time.Β I know that’s really vague, but I know what that means in my mind and that works for me!! Although I haven’t been doing so hot with hitting that goal either. I downloaded this app called “Habit Bull” that helps me keep track of my goals, so that’s been helping me actually see how often I’m accomplishing what it is that I want to do. As you can see in the photo below, I’m wasn’tΒ doing so great with hitting 10,000 steps initially, but I’ve finally gotten my shit together and am starting to it done! πŸ™‚

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And last but not least, I’m also keeping a training log this year! So far I’m doing really well at keeping up with that, and writing down one good thing every single day, which is another thing I want to do for the entire year. I’ve tried keeping other training logs before, but I always end up forgetting to write in them and then by the time I finally remember I can’t remember anything really useful about the workouts I’d forgotten to log. But writing my one good thing for the day keeps me coming back every day and that’s been helping so far. Now we’ll just have to wait and see if I can actually stick with it!

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Alrighty then! I feel like I’m still ending January on a pretty decent note and I’m definitely ready to kick some ass and get shit done in February!! Bring it on!!

(Side note; “Wednesday” and “February” are two words that I will literally never learn how to spell correctly. Like, I’ve heard all of the tips and tricks and whatnot that are supposed to help, but they’ve never stuck in my mind. Thank goodness for spell check hahaha!)

Happy Hump Day! Goodbye January! Bring it on February!!!

~Ashley

 

 

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Weekly Recap: January 8th-14th, 2018

This week was a tough one. I’d be lying if I said anything different. Mostly thanks to anxiety related things that I’ve still yet to figure out the cause of. Haha oh well. So I ended up focusing a lot on yoga this week. I think that ended up being really good for me. πŸ™‚

Monday:

  • Rest Day

So Luke actually ended up taking Monday off from work. We went grocery shopping, but other than that we did a whole lot of nothing. So yay for impromptu rest days, I guess. πŸ˜‰

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Tuesday:

  • 2 miles
  • 25 minutes of yoga

This month’s StrideBox showed up in my mailbox while I was attempting (and slightly failing but still managing 2 miles) to run on Tuesday. Yay! πŸ™‚ I swear it’s like Christmas morning the day that thing comes. It’s pretty freaking sweet. And after my run I did a little bit of yoga, because like I said, I was trying to focus on that this week.

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Wednesday:Β 

  • 30 minutes of yoga
  • 10 minutes on the stationary bike

Tuesday’s run was kind of a fail. I mean,Β  I did still make it 2 miles and 2 miles is better than no miles, but still….So I decided thatΒ  I was going to skip running on Wednesday and just do yoga instead. That was a good decision! Haha but that night I did hop on my stationary bike for a few minutes because I was bored. πŸ˜‰

And unrelated, but it’s super muddy outside so all 3 of my dogs (but mostly Finn and Dean) are gross mud monsters and I’ve given up on ever having clean floors ever again. Fun fun fun.

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Thursday:

  • 10 minutes on the stationary bike to warm up
  • 3.89 miles of “running”
  • 30 minutes of yoga
  • 30 minutes on the stationary bike

Thursday morning brought lots of rain. Which eventually turned to ice, and then later in the day snow. I got my “run” done during the ice portion of the day. Run is in quotes because it was more slipping, sliding, walking over really bad patches of ice, and stopping for cars, that it was actual running (I talk a little more about all of that here. πŸ˜‰ ). So normally I’m a little more neurotic about hitting my daily mileage, so not gonna lie, it kinda hurts me to type “3.89” instead of “4” miles. But the roads were getting increasingly worse the longer I was out, so the second I got to my driveway I called it quits instead of going a little further to actually hit 4 miles. Haha but I mean, it honestly is close enough and really isn’t that big of a deal. Plus running on ice is freaking hard! This has to count for at least 6 or 7 miles. πŸ˜‰ I kid, but it is hard. And pretty fun too!!

Oh and all of the mud in my backyard is frozen for now. So that’s kinda nice! Hahaha well, until it melts I guess.

 

 

Friday:

  • Rest day

I woke up tired, sore, and unmotivated to do pretty much anything. Initially I was super frustrated with myself because I’m supposed to be working towards all of these big goals I have and these small amounts of running that I’ve been doing just aren’t going to get me there. And then I remembered that I actually did kinda do a lot yesterday. I mean, running on ice is freaking hard! Plus I was sick last week and the week before that was Christmas, so once I took a minute to step back and remember all of that, I realized that I’m not doing too bad and that I can’t just jump right back into where I was months before this just because I want to. I’ve got to slowly get back to the mileage that I was at and then start building up from there (which is my main goal for the year), and attempting to do too much too soon is going to do nothing but cause problems. So I did not do the easy 20 minute run I had planned for Friday.

I’m trying very hard not to compare myself and my running to others and to where I’ve been before. This is where I am now and that’s 100% ok. Not running on Friday was a win for me. πŸ™‚

Saturday:

  • 3.2 miles
  • 20 minutes of yoga

That was hard….Running in general is hard. But that’s one of the things that makes it so special, right? πŸ™‚ Just trying to slowly work back into a more normal running routine. So far, I’m making a tiny bit of progress.

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Sunday:

  • Rest Day

We got some more snow today! Yay!!! I spent a lot of time playing outside with the dogs in it. Snow makes everything more exciting! πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

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Total Weekly Mileage: 10.21

That’s better than last week and that’s all that matters. πŸ™‚ Plus my goal was to focus more on yoga and I definitely succeeded at that!

 

 

 

Last Long Run

This training cycle has been a weird one. Started off pretty good, then I got hurt, had to take almost two month off from running, and spent most of this month slowly building back up to ensure that I’m fit enough to cross the finish line of what will be my third half marathon, but not running too much or too hard, to ensure that I make it to the starting line healthy and injury free. Like I said. Weird.

But finally winding down. I did my last and longest run of this training cycle this morning and not gonna lie, it did not go well. And neither did my long run last weekend, and that’s slightly terrifying, but I keep telling myself that now that I’ve had two really shitty long runs in a row the race itself shouldn’t be that bad! And oh man do I hope I’m right! But I mean, I probably am. Even if this half marathon is the most painful and emotionally tough race I’ve done up until this point (and I have a feeling that it’s going to be) at least I wont be alone. I’ll have plenty of aid station volunteers and police officers to thank, there will be some spectators out on the course cheering me on, signs to read, kids to high five, and of course other runners to talk to. So even if it is hard, at least I’ll have all of that to keep me going. πŸ™‚

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Can we just take a moment to appreciate how awesome spectators at races are?! This guy was standing at the top of the biggest hill on this particular course, dressed as a guy riding a duck, with a sign that says “duck this hill”. This was at first half marathon and very first race ever. πŸ™‚

Anyways, enough about worrying about the future and looking back fondly at past races, lets talk about my run today! In a word, it was shit. Like, I’m pretty sure this run caused me to have a mental breakdown hahaha. And I mean, I can laugh about it now that it’s done and over with, but at the time it was absolutely awful. When I woke up this morning I just had a feeling that it wasn’t going to go well, and I was right…but I was initially pretty excited because it was cold enough to break out my winter running gear, and if you’ve been reading this blog for any amount of time, you know that I love me some cold weather running!

So the first 2 miles went pretty well. I was super stoked about the cold and having lots of fun! Miles 3-5 went ok as well, I ran through the town cemetery (because tis the season, right? πŸ˜‰ ) and then down to pasture which usually contains cows. Haha the last few times I’ve run down that particular street they weren’t there, but they were today which was super exciting! πŸ™‚ Stopped at my back at my house around miles 2 and 5, to get sips of water and eat half of a Honey Stinger waffle and at that point everything was going pretty well.

then at around mile 6 this just started going awry. I’m not entirely sure what happened, but my legs started feeling really tight and heavy (probably because of the cold) and my mind just decided it was going to go to some dark places. First about running and all of the worries I have about this upcoming half marathon, but then about all sorts of life stuff that I’ve been dealing with/worried about. Fun fun fun stuff…ended up walking most of mile 7 trying to re-gather myself and just hoping that would make my legs feel a little bit better, but nope, that didn’t work. So ok, stopped by my house again around mile 8, drank some more water/Gatorade, ate another half of a Honey Stinger waffle, texted Luke, and then I started to feel a little bit better. I set out again on the loop around my neighborhood that would have taken me back through the cemetery, to the cow pasture, and that would have brought me all the way back home and to 12 miles run, which was my goal.

That unfortunately did not happen, because yet again, I ran into a couple of fucking dogs who were running loose. I swear, my town has a loose dog epidemic and animal control does not care. Trust me, I’ve called them several times to report loose dogs and they always seem super pissed about me calling and I have no idea if anything actually comes of it, so I’ve given up on calling them and I just try to make friends with the neighborhood dogs (and I mean, I am friends with a lot of them haha), but that doesn’t exactly mean much when the dogs is running loose and probably scared. Anyway, the dogs I ran into today were running together and had on what looked like to be those invisible fence collars. So I assume they live together and that they’re invisible fence deal failed today. At first I tried to call them to me because they were acting friendly. One of them even got close enough to sniff my shoes, but just as I was about to try petting him, his little friend decided that he didn’t like me and started growling at me and baring his teeth. And once he did that the brave one who was almost ok with me decided that he was scared of me at that point. Great. So now I’ve got two dogs ganging up on me, growling at me, baring their teeth, and not letting me walk past them. At that point I decided to cut my losses and slowly backed away and then turned onto another street that took me into a 2 mile loop back to my house, instead of the 3 I needed to hit my goal.

After my little run in with those dogs, I went back into that not so great place mentally, and by the time I got back to my driveway I knew there was no way I was going to be able to leave again and get that last mile done. So, I figured 11 miles was close enough to 12, and I called it quits.

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So yeah, it sucks that I didn’t get the full 12 in to meet my goal, but like I said, 11 was still pretty darn close! And I did push through some pretty hardcore mental stuff, along with the typical physical discomfort as well, so although this run sucked terribly, I’m still calling it a win! πŸ™‚

Once I was done, I took an ice bath which was equally as awful, but also important. Then I ate a little bit and drank some chocolate milk, checked my social media, took a nice, long, super hot shower, ate some leftover pizza, and have been pretty much been lazing around the house ever since.

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But now that the miles are done, the ice bath is over, and I had a chance to nap, I’m feeling much better! As I type this I’m sipping on water, eating a big bowl of mac and cheese (because I earned it, damn it! πŸ˜‰ ), and watching Attack on Titan on Hulu. πŸ™‚ But now that I’m fully recovered mentally and feeling pretty good physically, I think I’m going to go do some stretching and foam rolling!

I hope you’ve had a wonderful Saturday!

~Ashley

 

Friday Fives: Things I’m Super Into Right Now

1. Zensah FeatherWeight Compression Leg Sleeves

Ok so not gonna lie, I’ve only worn these things a few times now, but I already love them! Zensah sure wasn’t kidding, they really are feather light! They also provide a good amount of compression without feeling too tight or uncomfortable like other pairs of compression socks (this is my first pair of sleeves haha) have made me feel. Oh and the bra is pretty nice too. πŸ™‚

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2. Sleepy Time Tea

This stuff is a life saver! I am very bad at falling asleep, and I’ve experimented with a few things over the years, but this stuff works the best for me! The herbs in this tea calm me down, make me relax, and help me fall asleep a little bit faster. πŸ™‚


3. Steel PantherΒ 

Oh my gosh I’m so in love with this band! Haha Luke have just been recently getting into them, but we saw them play before Stone Sour on Tuesday and it was amazing! Seriously, go check them out. They are fucking great.

4. Bob’s BurgersΒ 

Luke and I recently started using Hulu because Netfilx alone just wasn’t cutting it hahaha (we don’t have cable). So yeah, I’ve been watching a lot of Bob’s Burgers since we started using it and it’s been great. I don’t care what anyone says, this show is great and I’ve been very much enjoying watching an episode while drinking my coffee every morning. πŸ˜‰

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5. Oatmeal

Oatmeal used to be one of my all time favorite foods. Like, it was one of my go to foods and I could eat it for every meal of the day. But then I kinda fell off of the healthy eating bandwagon for a while, but now that I’m getting back into it I’m really loving oatmeal again. Right now my favorite it oatmeal topped with bananas and walnuts. Yum! So good!! πŸ™‚

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Running Keeps Me Sane

And it’s only when my klutzy, accident/injury prone ass gets hurt and can’t run that I really, truly understand that.

That’s currently where I’m at. I’m hurt, can’t run, and driving myself insane with things that are probably just a result of my having anxiety, but you know, also just regular life stuff. Haha I probably need to see a doctor about both of those things, but I’m a very stubborn person who does not like, and has had several bad experiences with doctors. One day I’ll tell the story of how my high pain tolerance and a team of equally as stubborn as me doctors almost killed me when I was 13 and suffering from a ruptured appendix (although initially the doctors couldn’t figure that out). That’s a super long story though, and I don’t think I still have any photos from that time in my life. Eventually I want to talk to my mom, dad, sisters, brother, and grandma about it though, and type it all out. But for now, wanna see my scar? Too bad if you don’t, because I’m gonna show you anyway. πŸ˜‰

 

 

 

So yeah, every doctor I’ve ever seen since I was 13 likes to touch it and say “you had an old fashioned appendectomy!” Yes, I did! Because it was ruptured and they couldn’t get all the nastiness out the newfangled way they do it now with like, lasers and shit. And I absolutely hate when people touch it, but doctors always freaking do it without asking… I’ve also got a bunch of scar tissue in my abdomen that can uncomfortable if I sit/lay in certain ways for too long, and apparently that could potentially cause issues if I were to ever get pregnant. I don’t plan on doing that anytime soon though. πŸ˜‰

Anyways, I’ve rambled on enough about that.

So ever since the Green Day concert last month (which I don’t regret going to at all before anyone asks πŸ˜‰ ) I haven’t been able to do much running. I think I must have hurt something in my left knee/calf (I’m honestly still unsure as to where the pain is originating from, all I know is that it hurts every time I try to run on it) with all of the standing/dancing that I did. Oh man, that was so much fun and I really wish we could go see them again…

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But anyway, the week of the 14th-20th of August I ran a total of one whole mile. But I thought, hey, maybe a week pretty much complete off from running would help. And it really seemed to! The next week I managed to pretty much get all of my training runs done with minimal to no pain. And my 9 mile long run for the week went totally great and my leg felt almost back to 100%! It was all down hill from there unfortunately. The week of August 28th-September 3rd I attempted to do 2 runs and neither of them went well. I ended up running about 1.5 miles for both of them but I just ended up with pain in my knee, shooting down into my calf both times. And then after those two failed attempts at running I ended up limping around for the rest of the day. That’s when I decided that running was making it worse and that I needed to stop. Sad face.

And that brings us to this week, in which I’ve done absolutely no running at all. I’ve actually just been sitting around feeling sorry for myself, which definitely hasn’t helped with the whole anxiety thing…But yesterday it finally clicked in my head that just because I can’t run, it doesn’t mean that I can’t do other things, so I did a Jillian Michaels’ DVD workout that I haven’t done in forever! It was pretty tough considering that I haven’t done it in a while, and it’s not like I strength train enough anyway haha, but it definitely wasn’t as tough as I thought it was gonna be! I had to modify a few things to keep my leg happy, but I made it through without dying! I actually felt pretty strong while I was doing it. I was glad to find that I’m actually not in as bad of shape as I thought I might be. πŸ™‚

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So yeah, I felt pretty great after that! I Β woke up feeling crazy sore this morning, and while that’s slightly annoying it also makes me feel like I actually accomplished something with this workout, ya know?

Haha you’d think with how obnoxiously injury prone I am, that I’d be consistently cross training and working on strengthening my muscles in order to keep my body as injury free as possible, so that I can keep running, not take a piss ton of time off, and then drive myself completely insane because I just can’t turn my brain off when it latches onto something to worry about. *Insert world’s most dramatic eye roll here* Β But you know, I just don’t do that stuff as often as I should. It’s just not as fun as running dammit! And who wants to do something that’s not fun?!?! Not me, that’s for damn sure. But at this point I am promising myself and anyone who reads this that I’m going to dedicate the time to straight trainΒ at least twice a week. I think that’s a good goal to work on for now. πŸ™‚

Surprisingly enough though, I’ve actually been pretty good about stretching/doing gentle yoga and yoga for flexibility. That’s definitely a step in the right direction as far as rehabbing injuries and preventing new ones from happening. I was also icing my knee and calf for a while, but at this point I don’t think that’s really doing much. I’ve also been wearing a lot of compression gear and that has actually felt like it’s been helping! Luke bough me this crazy compression knee brace thingy, but my knee has felt a lot better since I’ve been wearing it! Not good enough to run on yet, but at least it’s a step in the right direction! And as far as compression socks go, well I think I might need new ones. Both pairs that I have just don’t seem as compression-y as they once were. They are still providing some compression though, so I figure that’s better than nothing for now. Haha I’m actually going to get calf sleeves instead of the whole sock, because as you can see, I cut the toes off of my compression socks because they make my toes super uncomfortable.

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So yeah, that’s where I am right now. At this point I’ve pretty much given up on the 10k that I’m registered for. That’s exactly one month from today and since I’m still not running at all I just don’t think I’m going to be able to make it happen. And I was soooo looking forward to it! This was going to be my first 10k race and it’s supposed to be a super scenic, evening race with a free glass of hard cider at the end…Oh well, there’s always next year I suppose. Haha I’m just upset that I spent $35 on a race I’m not going to do.

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As for the Longview half, well, I haven’t completely given up on that. I have however, given up on any time goals I had for it. That’s not for a little over 2 months so I feel like there’s still some hope for that one. At this point I know I can cover the distance, even on minimal training, so as long as my leg heals I’ll still be able to do it. You know how some runners have a race that they do every. single. year? That they’ve done for 5, 10, 20 years in a row? Yeah, I want the Longview half to be that race for me and I really don’t want to have to end that streak this early into it. I mean, I’ve only done it two years in a row and this is gonna be the third. Well hopefully. But like I said, if I Β can get my leg healed I should be able to do it.

Whew, alrighty then. That is all I’ve got for today. It’s been super nice outside in the mornings. In the low/high 50’s so we’re starting to get our first tastes of fall here in Kansas, and that’s just making not running even more suck-y but I can still walk my dogs! So I’m gonna go do that and then do some yoga.

Happy almost fall! πŸπŸ‚

~Ashley

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