Sunday, January 17, 2010

Confessions of a Control Freak

It's been almost a week since my last post! Where did the days go? Mostly, my days were consumed with my preschool job, trying to figure out what I want to be when I grow up, planning my youngest son's fifth birthday party, and not running.

I'm finding that I really like working with preschool-aged kids.  The problem is, I'm not educated enough to teach my own preschool class.  I am only qualified to be an assistant.  Never mind that I'm educated and certified to teach a class of 34+ students... as long as they are in kindergarten through eighth grade.

Which leads me to...

What Do I want to be When I grow Up?
I have to be honest and admit it's difficult to take a back seat in the classroom and let someone else be the up-front person.  I love being the one who holds the kids' attention, who reads the stories, who teaches the letter sounds, who manages the the behavior, and so on.

Let's all say this together:  "Control Freak"

On the other hand, I like being the one who doesn't make lesson plans, who doesn't report directly to concerned parents, and who doesn't spend the weekend preparing for the next week.

As a result of these conflicting desires, I'm trying to figure out if I should pursue earning enough units in Early Childhood Education to become a lead preschool teacher or concentrate on eventually finding another job at the elementary school level.

Hmmm... no need to rush but I do like to have all my ducks in a row.     OK Bloggers... once again, can you say "Control Freak"?

My Baby's Fifth Birthday Party
My sweet baby boy turns five tomorrow.  Today we had his family birthday party.  I don't know why I bothered trying to plan the party... turns out my independent little man had his own plans.  Mr. Big Stuff picked out the decorations, the party favors, the colors, the theme, and the food.  He even picked out and   wrapped his own presents.

It was hard to back off and let his five year old mind make his plans, but Mr. Big Stuff is a "big guy" in a small package (which is why I call him Mr. Big Stuff).  I have to say, with a little guidance and a little help wrapping, he did a great job!  He even cleaned up most of the trash after the party.  Yes, you read that right... he cleaned up!

I'm seeing a theme here:  This control freak is learning how to not be in control of everything.

And this lack of control freakyness has played its part in my running...

Not Running
I spent the last couple weeks taking a break from running.  I've been riding my bike, doing the elliptical, strength training, and reading about running.  I'm trying to be wise.  I'm trying to follow the example of some of my fellow bloggers.  I've been trying to get my heel/foot in better shape so I can start out fresh with my running group.  It was a test of my will-power to not run but I managed.

Finally, on Saturday, I ran.  My group had a three miler scheduled and I decided to do it.  It went well and I really, really enjoyed it!  My heel/foot didn't bother me much during the run.  As usual, I feel it now- post run.  It's not as bad as it has been at its worst.  It's also not as good as it's been at its best.  It's the type of pain that is annoying and somewhat a hindrance but not unbearable.

So, do I live with "annoying" and ""somewhat hindering"?  Or do I strive for pain-free, running bliss?  Do I take the time to see if barefoot and/or minimalist running is going to solve my foot problems?  Or do I get fitted for custom orthotics and hope for a quicker fix?

I don't know.  The control freak in me wants a solution now. The sensible side of me would like to fix the source of the problem and not just the symptom.

Your Opinions Regarding Orthotics
Do you or have you ever worn custom orthotics?  Do/did they help?

If you live in the San Diego area and have had success with orthotics, who do you recommend in terms of podiatrists or other doctors?

Your Opinions Regarding Recovery Socks
I've been looking into getting a pair of compression/recovery socks.  Do you use them?  What kind do you use and why?

Good night my Running Blogger Friends!  I look forward to reading your thoughts.  Meanwhile, it looks like I'll be running in the rain this week.  We are supposed to get a few big storms sweeping through the area.  Woo-hoo!!


Michelle said...

Welcome back! I've missed you this week!

Sorry to hear that your heel/foot is still giving you trouble after resting. Glad you had a good week at work - I'm a control freak as well - my little guy is even turning this way! :)

Happy Birthday to Mr. Big Stuff!

Teamarcia said...

Wow you are full of question after your blogging sabbatical! Sorry I have no experience with orthotics or recovery socks. Sometimes, aggravating as they are, I think injuries appear as a way of teaching us something. exactly what, I'm not sure. Maybe it's to be flexible and adapt, which I think you're doing beautifully by finding nonrunning activities.
Wow 5 for your little guy! Happy Birthday to him! They are so stinking cute at 5!

MCM Mama said...

LOL at your control freakyness. I'm also trying to figure out what I want to be when I grow up, but I'm way behind you on the process.

No help on the orthotics or recovery socks.

Happy birthday to your little guy!

On The Road... said...

I've never personally tried orthotics, but I've seen athletic patients use custom orthotics (one practice I used to work in made them for patients) and rave about them.

I can feel your excitement about getting the chance to run through the blog. Im glad you got that chance.

Lisa said...

as a fellow control freak, let me warn you in advance...the teen years are gonna be TOUGH

LandMine said...

Just found your blog - I'm enjoying it!! I haven't tried custom orthotics, but I've used the Sole moldable inserts with great success. Also, for foot/heel pain, I've had a lot of luck with filling a bottle of water close to the top, squeezing a little air out of the bottle, then tightening the lid and throwing it into the freezer. The water will expand as it freezes, bringing the bottle back to round shape. I pull that bottle out and roll my bare feet on the ice for about 15 minutes after running. It cuts down the pain significantly. Just my $.02. GOOD LUCK AND KEEP RUNNING!!

* Tyly * said...


Hello, my name is Tyly (tie-lee, in case you were wondering), and I am a total control freak. Haha! Being a teacher, I totally understand what you are saying. I think that's part of the reason teaching is so perfect for me -- it caters to my control freak, because it's MY classroom and I get to handle things MY way. Bless you for wanting to teach the tiny ones! I wouldn't touch them with a ten foot pole! LOL! It takes a special person, that that person isn't me. I teach second grade, and that's the perfect age for me.

Happy birthday to your lovely Mr. Big Stuff! A kid that manages his own party? Awesome.

Sorry I don't have any running advice... I am definitely NOT well versed enough to dole it out, but I wish you luck figuring everything out!

Meg said...

Hi Sara, I'm glad you're not sick, I was wondering!
I like ZOOT recovery socks, some say the compression socks from CVS or other cheaper varieties for older people are the same but WAY cheaper; we bought some last summer and there is no comparison. The ZOOT socks rock. Very supportive. Regarding the orthotics: I think I mentioned the guy next to Rico's Tacos in Encinitas. He is better than an a podiatrist, I've tried three around here and this guy has solved all of my problems through his orthotics. Lots of triathletes and runners around here know him and use him and orthopedic surgeons recommend him. I''ll email you with his store name when I talk to my friend. Be a teacher, by the way! It's not easy getting there but working with the families and planning is part of the fun. I think you'd love it! Sorry for the long post, good luck!

shellyrm aka jogging stroller mama said...

Glad you are back. Nice to read that you were not absent due to an illness.

I am of little help. I have luckily been injury free.

As for your continued education, I think it is always good to be learning. But you have to make that call. Maybe you can continue to get your credits while you are working?

I hope someone has so great advice for you on all your questions.

Have a great week.

Julie said...

Hey, welcome back! Don't feel bad about the control freak are not alone:) Happy 5th Birthday to your little boy! They sure do grow up so fast!

Anonymous said...

You only need 5 class at the most . Do preshool teacher.
Read this look at
Child Development Master Teacher Permit

Child Development Site Supervisor Permit

Anne said...

I wore custom orthodics for several years and never had an injury. Then I left them in a pair of running shoes that were stolen and never bothered to replace them. No doubt the lack of that balance in biomechanics has played a role in recent injuries.

I've heard many good things about the recovery socks. I first saw them on Olympian Michellie Jones during a local race, about three years ago. Now they are the rage!

Amanda Brooks said...

barefoot to orthotics...quite a difference as barefoot running says orthotics will make your pain worse.

I have compression pants which are similar to the socks ands swear by them for my long runs

Denise said...

Your comment just cracked me up!! Thanks, I needed it. Been a bad wknd!

As for recovery socks...I swear by mine. I got them from Recovery Sock. They are hot! ;-)

Tricia said...

Happy birthday to your little one!

The Happy Runner said...

I have custom orthotics. They've been great. I say give them a try!

Lorian said...

Sounds like you have a "little me" control freak on your hands ;) Happy Birthday to your 5 year old!

Glenn Jones said...

Sara - enjoy your baby. Mine is seventeen. I'm already missing him and he doesn't leave home for college until September!

I with Meg on the compression socks. The difference between the Zoots and surgical socks is if you look at a pair of running socks, you will see that they are made of panels of material that press at different angles. That makes the *whole* difference. I have a pair of long compressio pats and they make a *huge* difference - especially on longer runs.