Author Archives: Running Ragged

About Running Ragged

Happily married with 4 children and 3 stepchildren. Running keeps me sane!

It could have been worse!

Diagnosis: Yep, I think I got off fairly light. The MRI revealed that I do not have a stress fracture (modified happy dance), but instead a grade II strain (partial tear) in the flexor hallucis longus tendon. It is the tendon that moves the big toe. As previously mentioned, I also have achilles tendonitis. The MRI also showed a small cyst (5mm), which could have formed at the time of the injury.

Game plan: No running for the next two weeks, but cross training is allowed. Physical therapy for the next two weeks, twice a week. Then back to the doctor and continued physical therapy for another three weeks, once a week. She hopes to have me start easing back into running in about two to three weeks.

I have already received some stretching exercises from the physical therapist…how convenient they are right next to the sports doctor…and started working on getting better. I am glad that besides the treadmill we also own a stationary bike. Over the last week I have increased my seat time quite a bit, managing about one hour (approx 18 miles) per day, and two hours on Sunday. It helps. I’d prefer an elliptical rider over the bike and have placed that on my wish list. lol

The good news is that I have been diligently tracking my food intake since not running and actually have lost some weight (not muscle though; I track that info as well). I have five more pounds to go to get to my desired weight.

On another matter, I am getting ready to sign myself and my sister up for the Cleveland Marathon (half), which is being held May 20th. My sister, who resides in Germany is coming for a visit to watch her daughter (who lives in the US with her dad) graduate from high school. My sister is staying at our house for a little bit during her trip to the US, and being that we both enjoy running and track each other’s progress from afar, it will be great to actually run a race with her. I am super excited about this and I am sure will blabber more as the time draws closer! Sisters by chance, friends by choice.


Have you seen my walker?

Let me tell you straight out: I am very annoyed with my body and there is not much I can do, because it’s self inflicted. *sigh*

Went to the doctor this morning and she diagnosed me with Runner’s AND Jumper’s knee (right one). I knew I have achilles tendonitis in my left foot, but the doctor is not sure if I have posterior tibial tendonitis or a stress fracture in my left foot as well; the X-rays didn’t show anything…I’ll be going for my MRI tomorrow and a follow up visit on Monday. (Insert here that I am VERY grateful to have good insurance!)

The doctor did mention that she has no problem with me running as long as my gait doesn’t change. I am sure that the knee pain will influence how my feet strike, so I’ll wait until I go back on Monday.

She said the bum knee is more than likely due to the hilly half marathon that I ran 3 weeks ago in Mississippi. Honestly I thought it had gone away until I ran 3 miles on the treadmill yesterday. Yep…got on the treadmill and ran *rolls eyes* I am glutting for punishment, but the run really wasn’t bad and the pain in my foot didn’t cause me to change my gait (or so I think). And the occasional sharp pains under my kneecap didn’t make me stop either. But they were evident enough to mention to the doctor this morning.

I tell you what though, hearing my body breathe in rhythm with the pounding of my feet is such a great thing and it brings me much joy. I can’t wait to get back out there! In the mean time, I’ll be walking like someone who is not sure if her legs or knees will give out. lol

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Posted by on January 26, 2012 in Knee Pain, Pain, Stupid


Can you feel it?

So, I have been resting my ankle for the last few, what feels like 10,000, days and I THINK it’s better. I am able to go up and down the stairs without pain. I have been on the stationary bike and elliptical rider more than I care for over the last week. I did pull out the sport doctor’s number this morning, Just.In.Case! It’s like I feel something is there, but then I don’t (phantom pains?). I don’t plan on running until tomorrow and then will decide what to do…gosh I miss running!

We (the hubmeister and I) are currently signed up for the Arnold’s Classic Pump and Run. It will be held in about 5 weeks. Over the course of the last 3 months, we have steadily -with some ups and downs- worked towards our goals. The hubmeister, who over the last 2 years has suffered from adult onset asthma, is working on being able to run 3 miles again without keeling over; he’s got the pump (bench press) part down. I on the other hand need to work on it. If I am able to maintain my current weight, I will have to bench press 100 lbs. As of today I can do 4 reps but would like to get to 15 (30 is the max allowed).

Today we spoke with someone who has been lifting weights for years and he gave us some tips, form wise and what to lift to get to where we want to go. I am looking forward to our weight lifting workout Thursday to incorporate his suggestions.

Signed up for the RunCbus 10 miler, April 15th.

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Posted by on January 24, 2012 in Blogroll, Hubby


No running

Yep, you read that right….no running…until next at least Wednesday. *sigh*

Let me explain: After finishing last Monday’s speed work, a tendon in my left ankle became really sore. I have had soreness in my achilles over the last few months, but this was not the same. I took Tuesday off, thinking that it would go away and it did. During Wednesday’s five miler it became evident that it hadn’t.

Reluctantly I took Thursday and Friday off from running, hoping that it would get better. Nope, come Friday evening, the pain had become less frequent, but my ankle was still tight every time I rested it for a while. Urgh!

Now it’s Saturday evening and it’s gotten better, but I can still feel it and occasionally it still gets tight and there is pain. So…with that said, I will restrict my training to the stationary bike and elliptical rider until Wednesday. I REALLY want to this to go away!,…but *sigh* I have gotten wiser over the years and hopefully this short term restriction means I won’t be out for the long term.


Posted by on January 22, 2012 in Pain


Updated Long Term Goal

“Shoot for the moon and even if you miss you will land among the stars.” – Les Brown 

Well, we all know that I am slower than snail’s pace and more than likely will never be able to run Boston. But, after running the half in Mississippi two weeks ago, the idea of running a half marathon in all 50 states plus DC started to form. I realize that it will take me roughly 20 years to get all the states done, with only having run in three (Ohio, Indiana, and Mississippi), but I think that would be a great 60’s birthday present to myself to get that completed. 

With that said, we have friends that live in and near Boston, and my search for a half marathon in the states of Massachusetts shows that the Boston Athletic Association also puts on a half marathon in October. My schedule for this October is already booked, running and training for the Columbus Marathon on the 21st, but next year is wide open. In the mean time, I’d like to get at least one more state added to my “completed” list and then to throw myself into this adventure head first next year. 

Created new Page tab: “50 States & DC Quest” to keep track of my goal.


Posted by on January 17, 2012 in 1/2 Marathon, Goals



Mississippi Blues Marathon (Half)

A friend of mine lives near Jackson Mississippi and after plans fell through to run the 1/2 marathon out there 2 years ago, this year we finally managed the trip. Driving just under 800 miles one way was actually a lot of fun. It helped that my husband and I get a long and we listened to the book “The Hunger Games”.

I did not know what to expect course wise, and was a little taken aback when a coworker said, “You know, it’s pretty hilly out there!” two days before we were leaving. With that said, I mentally prepped for a pretty slow race. I should mention that I have been doing heart rate training and intended to run the 1/2 at 75% of my heart rate, which would put me at or around a 2:30 finish. Eventually the goal with the training is to be able to run a half marathon at 85% of my heart rate. Now knowing that is was a hilly course, I resigned myself to coming in around 2:45. I was fine with that.

The weather on race day was almost perfect. 53 degrees at 7am was almost a little too warm, but a nice breeze was flowing, cooling the air a bit more. The field was only 2500 people strong (with about 800 of them running the full), letting me cross the starting line only about a minute and a half after the gun went off.

The first hill was not far off, and it seemed that the course either went up or down, even though I think there were occasional straight stretches. It took us past businesses, through residental neighborhoods, and along the freeway. I believe we also passed at least 2 schools along the way. Around mile 7 the pavement got really bad with pot holes and bad patch jobs, but a sign prior to that warned us of the upcoming trouble.

My heart rate after the first few hills stayed pretty steady at 80%. I tried to slow it down the first three miles but then decided because of the hills that I would go by feeling and keep it under 80%, but not fret it if I went over 75%.

I was looking for my husband and my two friends at mile 8, but didn’t see them until about 8.5. That was nice and broke up the run. Usually the monotony of it all hits me between mile 7 and 9, so it was great to look forward to them.

I think around mile 9, we joined back up with the marathon course. At mile 11 the first two marathoners passed me; they were at mile 24 on their journey. Must be a lot of work to be able to run that fast!

The finish line was uphill! But I managed to kick it into gear the last hill and finished in 2:31:08! Not bad for such an up and down course and feeling as strong as I did. Not one time during the race did I feel like walking or even quitting. In all my previous races I seemed to have struggled at one point or another; this 1/2 marathon just seemed to have flown by.

I am still training for the Cap City Half marathon in May, which is held in Columbus, Ohio. That one I plan to race and not just run. My half marathon PR currently is 2:17, I am hoping to break that…fingers crossed!

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Posted by on January 13, 2012 in 1/2 Marathon, 13.1, Heart Rate Training, Hills, Race Report, Running


1,000 + miles & looking back at 2011

As of today I have managed to run over 1,000 miles this year! That is about 300 miles more than I have ever run before (2009). I am very happy with that accomplishment. It rounds out a very great year for me:

* Bachelors degree * New job * Ran/finished a marathon * Lost 40 lbs * Ran over 1k miles *

Not bad for a year’s worth of work. But, there is no rest for the wicket, is there? I have set my sights on a few goals, including running a marathon PR in the fall. Hopefully the heart rate training will help with that. It is going well, and I see some improvements in my speed and endurance.

Next week the hubby and I will travel to Jackson, Mississippi, so I can run in the Mississippi Blues Marathon, but I will only run the 1/2. We are going to visit with friends and I want to have enough energy to celebrate my husband’s birthday with them (same day as race day).

Should be a lot of fun. Until then!

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Posted by on December 30, 2011 in Running


After the marathon & heart rate training

Since the marathon two and a half weeks ago, I have run approximately 45 miles. I started with speed and hill training in the hopes that it will make me faster for my next 1/2 marathon. I am hoping to run the Mississippi Blues Marathon (half) in January.

I have also decided to try to do some heart rate training under the guidance of our running coach. She, 5 others, and I are her guinea pigs to see if this is something that really works. My max heart rate is 189, my minimum 57. I obtained the max HR by running 3 miles easy, doing two wind sprints, and then running a hill 5 times, each time (trying) to increase the intensity of the effort. Tomorrow I’ll be running my first run at a 65-70% effort. When I get the chance, I’ll report how it went.

We are going camping and quadding this upcoming weekend. We won’t be far from home though and I’ll run 11 miles on my own turf on Saturday. At least that’s my game plan for now.

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Posted by on November 3, 2011 in Blogroll


2011 Columbus Marathon

So many memories of the race flood to my fingertips, but the one I want to put down is the feeling of not wanting to give up at mile 25 when I felt like crap. The contents of my stomach wanted to exit, but not in the usual way. The nausea I felt was unreal. Many bends at the waist, sitting down twice, and the encouragement of friends and my husband got me to the finish line.

All my friends that I had asked to support me during the race, had shown up. Kathy & Jess and mile 9 & 12, Annaliesa and her two off springs at mile 14 and 25, Ericka and the hubby at mile 16, the hubby again at mile 18, 20, 22.5, 24 and the rest of the way (he was traveling on bike), the in-laws and Brandon at mile 20, Tom and Melissa at mile 22.5, Laurel and her oh so awesome sign at mile 24. I could not have asked for better support from all of them. They all helped me get from one to the next.

My legs were good and the training throughout the last 18 weeks had been solid (except for the one week I had to take off to let a shin splint make an exit). I did have some issues with my stomach throughout the two months of training.

Mile 12...feelin' good!

The first 14 miles went well. I was on a PR pace. Seeing the half marathons head towards the finish line at mile 13 did make me wonder what the heck was wrong with me and why I couldn’t just be happy with running a half. I trucked on though. The crowd support diminished quite a bit after the half marathon took its leave. The haul on High street towards the OSU stadium is a long one. Once passed the stadium, at mile 16 it became really windy. And the wind was not in the back, but rather head on. This continued for 2 miles. Not fun. I tried to make myself as small as possible, which is difficult when you are 5’9″.

I can’t remember for sure, but I think my troubles really started just before mile 20. I had to use the restroom because my stomach was starting to act up. In hopes of this being a one time thing, I used the bathroom and as hoped was good to go after that. This was only to last for a while though and shortly after mile 23, my stomach made itself known again. *sigh*

At mile 24, I had to walk. The hubby pushed his bike next to me and the urge to get on it and be pushed to the finish line was great. But, I wanted to earn my medal the right way. Mile 24 and 25 took approximately 30 minutes each!

As I came closer to the finish line the hubby and Annaliesa urged me to run the last .2 miles, which I did. Maybe the excitement or whatever, made my stomach pains seem less dominant. As I ran towards the finish line, I hollered to my sister-in law and a friend, that this was my last full.

Talking with friends after the race.

Overall the race was a great experience. Of course I could have done without my stomach getting really upset, but I loved the fact that my friends showed up and that the hubby was so supportive. I enjoyed the first 14 miles very much. Within 24 hours after the race I decided to run the Columbus Marathon again next year, to get that PR. My game plan is to figure out why my tummy doesn’t like the long distances and to become an overall stronger runner.

After receiving my medal and blanket.

Only 350some days to go!

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Posted by on October 22, 2011 in Marathon, Running


4 days to go! I am ready!

4 more days until the marathon, 3 more nights of rest, 2 more short runs, 1 stop at the expo…I am ready! On Sunday, we will see if I am able. 
Thanks to some willing friends and family members, I will have someone cheering for me just about every two miles starting around mile 9!!! I could not ask for any better support than that.
The weather is suppose to be great temperature wise. I just hope that the 30% chance of rain, is just that; a chance. I have no control over that one, so I’ll just leave it at that.
It has been a long journey, that included some really great runs and some really bad ones. I have made new running friends and reconnected with some others. Overall this has been my best season training wise. If you are in the Columbus area and are looking for a group to train with, I’d recommend looking into the Columbus Eastside Running Club. They are a great bunch of people to run and train with.
Thank you’s:
I want to take this opportunity to thank my husband Brian for being there during most of my long runs. I know at one point he wanted to throw in the towel, because it was really cold (and when you are moving on a bike you are colder than when you are running), but he stuck it out. I love the fact that he’s so supportive of my running and I am truly appreciative of everything he does for me. Without his help I would never have quit smoking and become the runner that I am today. I love you!
I am also thankful for my parents in law, who would occasionally watch our youngest daughter so I could run or would make us breakfast when my long run took us to their house. It is a great feeling when you are surrounded by people that are glad to help out without asking or expecting anything in return.
Another ‘thank you’ goes out to my son Brandon, who would ‘watch’ our youngest whenever I needed him to, so I could get my short, medium, or long runs in. It is great to have him in our lives, even though we sometime butt head (ever so gently).
Get read, get set, go!
Once I cross the starting line, I’ll just have to hope that all the training over the last 18 weeks is going to pay off. I am certain my body is ready, I have never been fitter (I have been thinner, but never fitter) and mentally stronger. All I can say is: “BRING IT ON!”
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Posted by on October 13, 2011 in Pre-race jabber, Reflection