Friday, February 26, 2010

Another Missing Girl

On February 13th, I posted a blog about the missing girl from my neighborhood named Amber Dubois. Many of my blogger friends expressed concerns and prayers for her safe return.

Now there is another girl missing. This girl is from a town a few miles to the south of Escondido. Her name is Chelsea King- a senior in high school and cross country team member. Her plan was to do a long run along the trails in the Lake Hodges area. She hasn't been seen since Thursday afternoon. She was out running in the middle of the day!

This has been on my heart all day. Not only is another lovely teenage girl missing, she is missing from an area I have run several times, myself. I have so many emotions brewing... sadness for her family, anger, and helplessness.

I have run those trails. I often run them alone. Not anymore. The police found her parked car at a local park, which is near the start of the trails. Her car was locked and still held her wallet, street clothes, and cell phone.

I don't know why she didn't take her cell phone on her run... perhaps because some of the area has no reception. Maybe she had nowhere to comfortably put it. Maybe she felt safe enough. It doesn't really matter, now. Personally, I don't think a cell phone would be helpful if she was abducted. I carry mine in case I fall and hurt myself, not because it makes me feel safer from predators.

I mention abduction, but I pray that isn't what happened to her.

My running group was supposed to do a trail run in the area tomorrow. It has been moved to another location out of respect to the family and in order to not interfere with searches. My group is also hoping to assist in the search, if they need volunteers. I have an appointment tomorrow but I'm hoping I will be able to join the group of volunteers later in the day.

Please, pray for Chelsea. Pray that she gets home safely.

Here is the link to the story, if you'd like to read it:

Missing Poway Teen

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Fuzzy Mummy Feet

Yes, there is hope for my heel... for a healed heel.   That's how I feel after seeing the podiatrist.

Did the massive mummy taping help?  I think so.  No, it was not a miracle cure.  My heel and ankle still hurt no matter what activity I was doing.  The fact that the tape on my left (and bad) foot felt way too tight didn't help.  I think I felt more pain from my skin pulling against adhesive than I do in my heel.  Seriously.  There were times when the skin on the bottom of my feet felt like it was on fire. 

So, why the hope?  Doctor Bland left me feeling that I could do something to fix my plantar fasciitis.  He spoke of stretching, night splints, and the possibility of orthotics.  He did not tell me to toss my running shoes and get a bike.  He did not tell me to give swimming a try.  He did not mention surgery... or giving up on running.

I was so encouraged by this!  I've been wearing my night splint... even though it's very uncomfortable.  I've been stretching and using The Stick to loosen up my calf muscle.  I endured the taped feet as long as I could.  And it has all helped.  Am I pain-free?  No.  Do I feel more mobility in that foot?  Yes.

I have hope.

Ahhhh... Sweet, Fuzzy Freedom!
I took my mummy feet off this afternoon.  I was supposed to keep the tape on for three days but I just could not do it.   My skin hurt too much.  It felt like I had shoes on that were two sizes too small.  The tape also got dirty very quickly.  Combine sticky foot tape with a long-haired cat and carpet, and what do you get?   Little kittens.  On your feet.  Furry kitten feet.  It's enough to make me wonder if I should shave my cat.  I had no idea how much she sheds!

What Next?
I have an appointment with Dr. Drained-of-all-Personality on Monday to evaluate whether or not I felt the tape helped.  I'm still unsure as to what to say.  I am so tired of spending money of "fixes" that don't work.  The last thing I want to do is spend a couple hundred bucks for a pair of orthotics that do not work.  As of right now, I'm leaning toward trying the orthotics.  We'll see how I feel about them by Monday.

To answer a few questions some of you asked on my last post...

  • Regarding the Barefoot / Vibram Five Fingers running, Dr. Blah was not impressed.  I did not expect  him to be.  He said that barefoot running was good... back when people only lived to the age of 35 (which was the most humorous thing the man said the whole time).  He makes a small point but I'm not sold either way.
  • Sorry... no picture of my mummified feet.  I didn't want to horrify all of you out in Bloggy Land.  But if you have read my blog for any length of time, you know that I don't let the lack of a photograph stop me from making a visual point.  
Behold, my latest masterpiece:

More Running to Come
I am already planning to run tomorrow. And I plan to join my running group on Saturday. I can't wait!!

As always, thank you Running Blogger Friends, for the encouraging words and well-wishes!!  I appreciate you all so much!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Mummy Feet and the Case of the Missing Personality

No... you didn't stumble upon Nancy Drew's personal blog.  I'm sure her blog would be much more interesting than mine.  After all, when you have a hunky boyfriend like Ned Nickerson and far-out, flippy hair, you've got to have a great blog!

On Monday I went to my podiatrist.  If I had to base my final impression solely on the office, the staff, and the doctor's personality I would warn you to run far, far away from Dr. Hutchinson and don't look back.  Fortunately, the blandness of the office, the less-than-friendly office staff, and the doctor's (lack of) personality was not all there was to my visit.

Let me get this out of the way because it just has to be told... I have had pet-rocks with way more personality than Dr. Hutchinson.  I'm not exaggerating... pet-rocks at least have facial expressions.  Sure, their expressions never change (unless you are prone to hallucinations) but they have them.  Dr. H. did not  smile the whole time I was with him.  He was as bland as white rice boiled too long in tap water.

 See?  Pet rocks have personality!

Even his two office staff assistants had no personality.  The receptionist/assistant almost broke a smile when my sweet, little five year old flashed his sparkly, baby blues her way.  Most people melt when he grins.  The receptionist was young and had gorgeous long hair.  If I had hair like that, I would smile all the time... especially when an adorable five year old boy flirted with me.

 It was as if a creature from outer space came down and sucked out all the personality from the office.  It was almost surreal. I tried to keep an open mind, though.  I was already there and I wasn't going to walk out of the office at that point.  I kept telling myself that having a winning personality is not a requirement to being a good doctor.

For all his blandness, I have to say that Dr. H. was very thorough.  He spent a lot of time asking questions, checking out my feet, watching me walk up and down the hallway, and taking notes of everything.  In all, he spent about an hour with me.  I've never had that experience with a doctor before.  After his non-smiling interview and examination, Dr. H. informed me that I have plantar fasciitis (I knew that), that I have high arches (suspected that), and explained how I roll my feet when I run (not good) .

He explained that my pain may be relieved with the use of orthotics... but not necessarily.  He wanted to tape my feet to see if the additional support would be beneficial.  If it is, there would be a good chance that orthotics would help.  And tape my feet, he did!  As I write this, both of my feet are bound with some serious tapeage.  He wants me to wear the tape for three days.  He told me to keep it on while I work and while doing my normal activities.  He also told me to... ready for this?  He told me to...


That's right!  He told me to run!  That way I would know if the tape helped during my running.   Being one to follow the doctor's orders (mmm-hmmm), I ran two miles today.  It was so nice to be back on the street.  With my feet.  My taped feet.  My stiff, mummified, aching from too much adhesive, taped feet.  And it was so much fun!  Was it pain-free?  Well, you'll have to wait for that.  I really have to get my butt to bed.

Good night, everyone!  Have an amazingly wonderful Wednesday!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Sunshine and Three Things Thursday

I received a Sunshine Blog Award from Irene over at Magazine Smiles. Now, I get to pass it on to someone else! If you get tagged, here are the rules:
Put the logo on your blog or within your post (right click and save). Pass the award onto 12 bloggers, then link the nominees within your post. Finally, let the nominees know they have received this award by commenting on their blog.

So, here we go... I tag:
  1. Laura at My Reason to Run: Check out Laura's blog... you will see why she runs and understand the reason why I admire this mom's strength and drive!
  2. Jen at Setting You Free:  I love how real and down-to-earth Jen is!  She has made incredible changes in her lifestyle and lost lots of weight.  She is a runner and an inspiration!  Take a look... I'm sure you'll agree. 
  3. Jaime at Jaime learns to Run:  Do you ever feel like you would hit it off when someone... even though you've never met?  Well, I think Jaime would be one of those people!  I appreciate her openness on her blog.   
  4. April at Mommy's Fit for the King:  I just like her!  Her smile reminds me of sunshine.  She also scored a Running Skirt for $11 on eBay... obviously, she is smart, too. :)
And now, I'm breaking the rules and I'm stopping at four bloggers instead of 12.  Why?  Because I'm rebellious like that.   I mean, are the Sunshine Award cops going to come knock on my door and arrest me for only tagging four people?  I don't think so.

I do NOT fear the Sunshine Cops.

Three Things Thursday
  • I have an appointment to see a podiatrist on Monday.   I chose my doctor based on three things... 1) He is a former endurance runner; 2) He had an opening relatively soon; and 3) He is under my insurance plan.  I like that he will be able to relate to the runner's need to run.  I don't like that he used to be a runner.  Why did he stop?  Does he still run short distances?  Or did he give up on running due to injuries and now he considers it his calling to stop people from running?  I'll let you know how it goes.
  • I spent the afternoon helping my 2nd grade son put together a family tree for a class project.  It's the first time I've ever had to explain divorce to my kids (my parents are divorced and my kids don't know my real mom).   It was sort of bittersweet explaining the concept of divorce to my boys.  Sweet in that they are so innocent when it comes to the realities of the world.  Bitter in that I had to break some of that innocence by explaining the realities of the world.
  • I'm thinking about getting another tattoo... yes, I already have one of a hummingbird and some flowers between my shoulder blades.  Now, I think I want one on my foot.  I want this one to symbolize my life and my running.  I'm thinking a pretty compass would be nice.  It would symbolize having direction and a purpose (from God), that I'll never get lost in this life because of His guidance, and of all possibilities one can find in life.    As an added bonus, having a compass would mean I would never get lost on my runs again!  
 Do you have any tattoos?  If so, what are they?  What do they mean to you?

*The meaning of my current tattoo:  Hummingbirds are small and beautiful but very brave and very tough.  They will take on much bigger birds in order to protect themselves and their babies.  The flowers on my back are done in the colors of my boys' birthstones.  There is a third flower... a bud.  That was put there to balance out the tattoo and I left the color up to the artist.  I consider it my flower for the third child I wish I could have had.

And with that, I'm signing off!  Happy Friday, everyone!  I'm going to spend the weekend at a scrapbooking getaway (a.k.a. time with the girls having fun... and maybe getting some scrapbooking done in the process).  I will try to get caught up on the blogs I haven't read in a while, too!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Short, Little Post

I have decided to see a podiatrist.  I don't want to... but I think it's time.  My foot actually feels worse the past few days and I haven't been running in over a week.  

San Diego bloggers, do you have any recommendations?   If you know someone good, maybe I'll get lucky and the name will be on my insurance's pre-approved list.

I made it to the gym tonight, after about a week of no exercise & eating poorly.  It felt great to go work out my muscles.  It also felt great to put good, healthy food into my body today.  I'm going to get back on track with my diet.  I went grocery shopping and got lots of organic fruits and veggies.  Yay!

Well, that's all!  Short, little post... just like the title says.

Have a wonderful day & take care!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Missing Amber

I see her face everyday... and yet, no one has seen her in a year.  
I look for her when I'm driving through town. 
I search and wonder about her while I'm running. 
I pray for her daily.  
I've never met her but I miss her.  
My heart breaks for her family.
I'm talking about Amber Dubois. 
You may have seen her story on
 America's Most Wanted,
the National News,
or in People Magazine.
A year ago today, somebody took someone's little girl
right off the street.
A year ago today, somebody took one of our neighborhood girls
right off of the same street where I often run.
I didn't run that morning
but I sometimes wonder if I would have seen something
if I had.
So close to home.
Her missing fliers are posted on almost every pole in the neighborhood,
keeping her in our mind's eye
and in our hearts.
Dear God, please perform a miracle and bring Amber home safely 
to her parents, family, and friends.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Feeling Good!

I feel good!  My foot doesn't seem any worse off from my half marathon last weekend.  It's not necessarily better... it's just not worse.

I've decided to take a couple weeks off and try to give all ol' lefty a break.  On my last post, some of you asked what is wrong with my foot.  Well, basically it's plantar fasciitis but the pain seems to have traveled up to the outside and back of my ankle.   I like when pain travels... it gives me hope that no one spot is injured too badly.

It's funny because during my half marathon, I was practically swearing off of racing and running ever again.  This week, I'm already missing it and wondering which race I should do next.  There is a 7K trail race in March that looks fun.  I'm going to check it out.

Anyway, enough about me.  I'm off to try to catch up on some of your blogs!  I've been skimming them but haven't been able to comment and follow-up as much as I'd like. 

Happy Valentine's Day, everyone!

Monday, February 8, 2010

My Apologies to Miley Cyrus

Here it is.  This is a Mile-by-Mile race report of my first half marathon.  I figured it would be best to share the thoughts I had along the way... that way you get to see the real me.  The real me that comes out while I run.

Mile 0-1:  Ugh!  My legs are tired.  Don't think about it... they'll perk up soon.
Mile 1-3:  OK... my legs feel pretty good.  My foot feels pretty good.  I'm feeling pretty good.  I can do this!  No problem.
Mile 3-4:  I'm maintaining  pretty good pace (about 13:30/mile... which for me is a nice, easy, long-term pace).  I kind of have to use the restroom.  I'll stop at the next port 'a potty.
Mile 4:  There are the port 'a potties.  Good timing since they are right at the bottom of the hill.  That will give me a chance to breathe before I head up the hill.
Port 'a Potty Break:  Don't touch anything... don't touch anything...
Mile 4-5:  Oh, man!  My legs feel like lead going up this hill.  I'll walk it and run down the other side.
The Other Side:  OK... I'm going down hill.  Literally and figuratively.  Why isn't this getting easier?
Mile 5-6:  Ouch.  Now my foot is starting to hurt. 
Mile 6-7:  Is that the turn-around?  I think it is.  Now my feet feel sort of numb.  What is up with that?!  And look how swollen my hands are!  Man hands!  I think I see the turn-around.  I'll start running again at the turn-around.  Dang!  Where is that turn around?  Why does it seem to move away from me?  I just want to get to that turn-around so I can really pick up my pace again.  It's pretty much all down-hill from there.  It'll be easy!
The Turn-Around:  FINALLY!  I'm going to take a quick stretching break and then I'm flying to the finish!  And I'm off!  Wait a minute.  This isn't easy.  Maybe I need a little inspiration... let me click back to that Melissa Etheridge song, "I Run for Life".  There it is... that will do it.  Or not.
Mile 8:  I'm going to run one song and walk the next.  Then I'll blog about how fun and helpful that was.  Ahhh... "Say, Hey" by Michael Franti.  Perfect song for running!  Say hey, this song is longer than I remember.  Oh, good.  It's over.  Time to walk.
Mile 9:  New song-- time to run.  "The Climb"... how appropriate.  I can do this.  Ain't about how fast I get there... well, that's good 'cause I ain't getting there any time soon!  Ain't about what's waiting on the other side... but I really want my surfboard medal.  It's the climb... shut up you little &%$@$!  What do you know about climbing?  I don't care how Achy-Breaky Heart-ed your daddy was... you know nothing!
Mile 9-13:  That's it.  I'm done.  I am walking the rest of the way or I am going to end up in the ER tonight getting X-rays on my foot.  Why am I so disappointed?  I knew in my head it was going to be like this.  After all, I haven't been able to train for this race.  The longest I've run since last May was 5 miles... and I did pretty well up until about four miles.  But, I  *SO* want to do a race where I can really feel like I did well.  This is like the Rock 'n' Roll Marathon... I'll finish but barely.  At least my next half will (hopefully) be a certain personal best.  What if it's not?  I may never run again.   Why do I do this?  Maybe I should give up on running.  OK, Sara, don't think like that. 
Mile 13:  I'll start running now.  Nobody walks across the finish line.  Hmmmm... that's interesting.  Nobody walks across the finish line... there's got to be some deeper life meaning hidden in there somewhere.  I'll have to figure it out later,  I see the finish.  And look there's Guitar Hero... and he's taking pictures.  Dear God, please don't let him take a picture of my butt.  I hate looking at myself from behind.  Just smile and wave, Sara, smile and wave.
The Finish:  FINALLY!  Shut up announcer dude.  Smile for the camera... look happy.  Good, now I can stop running.  I feel like I'm going to puke.  Thanks for the medal, volunteer girl.  No, please, NO MORE Vitalyte!  If I drink another drop  of Vitalyte, I'm going to see all the Vitalyte consumed along the route again.  What ARE those metallic covers for, anyway?  I'm hot!  I don't want anything on me!  What would happen if I pass out right now?  I guess that would mean no beer garden for me!  Eh, beer doesn't sound good right now, anyway. 
Post Finish:  Ahhhh.. there's Guitar Hero.  He found me and he is congratulating me.  For what?  I just want a big, juicy hamburger.  Smile for the post-race medal pictures.  Hamburger.  I want a hamburger.  Somebody get me a hamburger!

mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm,.......................,,,,  Oops.  Feel asleep.

I am so tired today!  And sore.  I need to get to bed.

I got my hamburger, by the way.

Thanks for reading!  I hope you didn't fall asleep, too!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Dear Naproxin, You are my Best Friend

I want to post a detailed, interesting Surf City Half Marathon report.  I want to post about how I kicked butt- how I didn't even break a sweat and felt like I was flying the entire 13.1 miles.

If I had time, I would post the detailed and hopefully interesting race report but I need to get to bed.  If I could, I would be able to tell you all the other stuff.  But I'm not only sleepy, I'm a horrible liar!

I just wanted to drop a quick note letting you know that I finished.  And I want to thank you all for the encouragement and kind words, wishing me the best for the race.  I just read the comments and your words made my evening!

Anyway, just to prove that I did finish, here is a picture of me with my cool surfboard Finisher's Medal.  I will work on posting a report and more pictures tomorrow. 


Happy Monday to you all!!

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Surf City Pre-Race Report

Well, we made it to Huntington Beach.  My husband and I left our quiet, kid-free house later than we had planned.  After getting lost a couple times and dealing with Orange County rainy-day traffic, it seemed like we may have hit the Expo at its peak hours.  It was crowded.  Very, very crowded. Thankfully, the race seems to be well-organized and I was able to pick up my race bib, race bag, and long-sleeve shirt very quickly.

The race bags didn't have any goodies in them... but that's OK because the race bag is a "goodie" in and of itself.  Very cool race bag!


I wish I had taken a picture of the race bag... but hopefully you get the idea from this picture.  That's me holding my race number.  

We didn't spend much time at the Expo because of the crowds.  I can usually tolerate crowds pretty well, but this was too much, even for me!  My husband hates crowds of any size so I think he was very happy to get out of there.  I have to give him credit, though... he didn't complain once about the crowds or about the time I took to look at stuff. 

Even though the Expo was in a tented area, it was decorated very well!  There were surfboard-signs everywhere.  These signs, like the one behind me in the picture, pointed out where to go.  There were plants set up, and lots of trash/recycling bins. 

After we checked into our hotel, we went to dinner at the Rain Forest Cafe.  Fun place & yummy food!  Then we went to Sports Authority to find a new running cap.  I lost my favorite running cap and was hoping to find a replacement at the Expo.  If they had my hat at the Expo, I didn't see it.  I was successful at Sports Authority, though, so that made me very happy!

Now, I'm in our hotel room,  using a high-jacked internet service and waiting for my dinner to digest a little more before I try on my race outfit.  I know what shirt I want to wear but I haven't decided yet if I'm going to wear my running skirt or shorts.  Right now my stomach feels so bloated from food, water, and hormones  that I know I'll look fat in either option.  Blech!

My next blog post will be my race report!  I'm not expecting to report some fabulously fast time.  I'm just looking forward to reporting that I finished it.  I figure if I can run/walk/limp 26.2 miles, I can run/walk/limp 13.1.   

No matter what, I plan on having a FUN time!  I've been looking forward to this race for months.  I can't believe tomorrow is the day!!

I'll let you know how it goes!