I drove all the way to Florida to start running again! ;)

Sometimes it truly takes the right time and place, nothing more.

I have been trying to get motivated to start running again for two months. Over the couple of years, after a lot of challenging circumstances I’d begun to feel as if every time I started on my plan it would be interrupted. I was hesitating big time, with this nagging at the back of my brain. However, I also realized that running has been my saving grace, a therapy so-to-speak, and do I need a saviour right now!

My pain is beginning to improve marginally, but I know that I need to become active again to feel my best, it’s a difficult situation to find yourself in when chronic pain prevents you from doing what makes you feel best.

I often find that embarking on new routines in life are the best time to implement new activities that I want to become routine. This is a time of big change for me, as I move into working-from-home-business-owner, from part-time employee.

While on a semi (mostly) vacation in the sunshine state, I decided to try to bringing running back into my life. I love to run and I hoped that the relaxed (non-existent) schedule and the weather would help to alleviate the stress and the chronic pain. And with this in mind I would cautiously re-introduce an activity I love!

I have also reintroduced some other activities but they contribute to the relaxed state more than anything: a daily swim in the park’s bathwater warm pool, and a soak in the hot-tub.

On my first full day in Florida, after a very long and eventful (read: frustrated with car problems and 2.5 days in delays) road-trip from Nova Scotia, I was stiff and sore, but determined to get out for a run anyway. I set a very relaxed goal of 20-30 minutes at whatever pace felt comfortable, with the caveat that increased pain would shorten the run without guilt.

I managed a very respectable 25 minutes before a sharp pain in my neck/shoulder (my biggest problem area) indicated it was time to stop.

From Feb 27, 2012

I know I need to be very conservative with my goals so I decided I would run every second day IF I felt like I was up to it. Day 2 in Florida, I woke up thinking how incredibly easy it was to run for the first time after 6 months, and how incredibly sore I could feel as a result! I went for a long walk with dad and his dog.

Today was day 3. I managed to get out the door a fair bit earlier (I did have this ambitious idea before arriving at our destination that I’d roll out of bed as soon as I awoke and head straight out the door – that so far has not come to fruition). I ran for 30 mins (which was my goal) without pain! This is huge. I know it doesn’t sound huge, but This Is HUGE!

I’m not sure exactly what needs to happen to keep this up, so I’m going to be cautious. A run every other day for 30 mins, or until pain increases. With an extra rest day once/week (whenever my body tells me that needs to be)… UNTIL I feel confident I am ready to bump things up. Then? We’ll see what comes next – when the time comes.

What works for you when trying to get back into an activity that you love but has been presenting you with challenges?


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Dedicated supporter & My fitness/training plan

I am so fortunate to have tremendous support when it comes to bettering my life, in almost any way. If I want to become more learned, he’s behind me. If I need to follow a crazy strict sleep schedule to combat insomnia, he’s behind me. If I want to make more time for my children, he’s behind me. If I want to spend more time with family or friends, he’s behind me. Lately, his support has been focused on helping me get into a regular daily morning exercise routine. So much that he thought he’d rally the troops, by asking my mom for a favour… for her to push my butt out the door on Thursday while I’m at their place… little did he know, it’s a scheduled rest day. 😉

Tomorrow after work I’m heading to my parents (some other big supporters) where my children have been visiting since Sunday. I haven’t seen my girlies, except for a three hour visit on Sunday afternoon. In three weeks (less two days). I miss them, so I’m taking the first chance I’ve got to get to them. I’ll stay overnight and have a nice relaxing visit with mom & dad, then return to the big city (& home) on Thursday morning.

Part of my planning involved the consideration of my fitness routine. And I’ll admit I wasn’t at all disappointed that it would work out that Thursday is a rest day. Of course, I haven’t fully briefed himself on my plan, as it is a work in progress. Since I am prone to fibromyalgia flare-ups, and often overdo it (what seems reasonable for everyone else, often feels fine in the moment, but is a killer for me in the immediate aftermath) I want to be extra careful. I also have a nagging ankle injury that will never entirely be back to normal.

So, I started off a couple of weeks ago with a plan to run 30 minutes (my limit from my physio/osteopath) every morning before work (and the same time every day that I’m not working – to establish a sustainable routine), I didn’t want to give myself an easy out (but in the back of mind mind I was thinking 1-2 rest days/week would be reasonable). However, I don’t want to allow myself to just skip a workout because I found an excuse not to go.

After a few days, my ankle started hurting – so the plan was altered to include rest days when my body tells me I need them. Then I decided to try substituting some cross training once in a while to help prevent the problem while still maintaining the routine. What seems to be working for my body right now, is no more than 2 days in a row of running. And one rest day/week to rest & repair longer than the 24 hrs. It’s all experimental, so I’ve been working through most of this in my head.

The current “training plan”: run 2 days, ride 1, run 2 days, rest 1, run 2 days, ride 1, run 2 days, rest 1, etc. Most weeks I will workout 6 out of 7 days, occasionally the cycle will allow 2 rest days in a week – which allows for a cut-back week.

I know eventually I will need to change things up a bit to make it interesting, but for now the current challenge is to establish the consistent routine of early morning workouts. Since 30 mins seems to be a reasonable limit for me, I thought rather than attempt to increase the length of time I would gradually increase the intensity, as my fitness level improves. When I’m ready to attempt long runs again, I will have a good solid base of weekly mileage to start with.

I won’t run if it hurts me, but I have a plan now that I am going to stick with.

To get back to himself. I am so thankful that he’s thinking about me and that he’s got my back. Hopefully we’re both on the same page of the training plan again. 🙂