Sometime around 1990, almost immediately after my love affair for the New Kids on the Block waned, I became obsessed with a band most of you have probably never heard of called "The Party". They were a little spin off from the Mickey Mouse Club, and I was infatuated. I had the t-shirts, I wrote to the Mickey Mouse Club frequently hoping they'd fly me out there to meet the band (totally seemed feasible in my 8 year old brain), I went to their concert, and most obnoxiously, I called the local radio station requesting this song multiple times a day . (I know my sisters are totally getting a kick out of this post already)
At the time I thought the girls in the band had *the BEST* taste in fashion. I had a huge crush on the red head. But most of all, I wanted to dance just like them. I loved to dance when I was growing up. I may or may not have spent hours in front of the TV practicing the final dance scene from dirty dancing, sans dancing partner for the lift, while my little sister rolled her eyes in the background. Who am I kidding, I'll still bust out the running man and roger rabbit, and I don't even need any alcohol to do so. I still worship the ground Janet Jackson dances on. Hence the reason I didn't even flinch when it was suggested to me that I get my zumba certification prior to starting an internship next spring. Bring it! I may not have Beyonce's moves, but I can certainly give Vanilla Ice a run for his money.
But now I am straying so very, very far from the topic at hand you all came to read about. Running. Sort of.
Friday I jumped in the pool for my very first bout of pool running, or aqua jogging if you will. My ankle is still on the mend, and I've got to do something to stay in some sort of shape (other than round) and maintain my sanity. I got to the pool on campus, and was the first one there...at 11:00 am. The pool was silent, the lifeguard looked hungover and not particularly thrilled that someone showed up. There was no music, no noise, nothing. I clipped the jogging belt on and the noise of the buckle echoed. Awesome, this would be the perfectly awkward atmosphere to look like a complete ass trying to figure out exactly how to pool jog.
I went to the complete opposite end of the pool, as if it made any difference at all, and got to work. It instantly began to hurt my ankle. So I flexed my foot and kept it taut, to prevent any flopping movement, and thus pain. And then I proceeded to run up and down the deep end at a snails pace. In complete silence.
Which brings us full circle. Out of the depths of the randomness in my brain came the above song by the Party. I hadn't heard it in years, but there it was, over and over and over. I couldn't get it out of my head as I bobbed back and forth up and down the pool. Doing the underwater running man to the 90's music in my head. I can't imagine what the lifeguard must have thought watching me, haha. I tried to make the best out of my solo-dance/jog party, I was so, painfully bored. So uh, if anyone at Finis is reading this and wants to send me a swimp3 to test and review, I'd be forever thankful. I'm just saying, you know, just in case. haha. H2OAudio... swimMan...anyone?? No? Well never hurts to ask ;)
Somewhere around 25 minutes my ankle started to throb and burn all at the same time. One of those feelings that I'm used to pushing through. It took another good 5 minutes before I realized "uhhh you are doing this to REHAB, not further hurt yourself" and so I stopped. And I left.
Today, two days later, my ankle is once again swollen, red-ish and I'm back in the awesome ankle air cast given to me by the doctor who told me nothing more than "well, you didn't break anything, probably tore some ligament in there." Really, you don't say?
This sucks. Pool running sucks. Having a torn ankle ligament sucks. It seems to me that 2010 is not the year of running for me. I started off with what was probably a stress fracture in my metatarsals (still hurts from time to time). Then my half marathon was snowed out. Then I downgraded from marathon to half marathon at Vermont City, only to bust my ankle at warrior dash and back out of the half marathon as well. Now, we are about to start week #3 of Chicago marathon training, and I can't even pool run. I'm officially on the injury list.
I think it's a sign. Lately, I've been thinking it's sort of odd that I'm about to enter as a career as a professional in the fitness industry, and all I do is run, sort of swim, and bike occasionally. I mean, yes, I will have the education and knowledge to tell you what you should be doing and why. But I want to work hands on with people, and I can't tell you the last time I sat my butt down on a nautilus weight machine or went to an fitness class. Heck, I hardly strength train ever, which I realize is totally cheating my running times, but I've been lazy. I've been wanting to switch it up for a while now, add a little variety to my routine, but there was just too much going on. A full marathon training schedule, a full course load in school, and those crazy little people that run around my house referring to me as "mommy". But now, faced with an ankle that's probably going to take another few weeks to rehab before I can even think of running, never mind running distance, I'm forced to make a change.
So I'm joining a gym on Tuesday. A real gym. With machines as far as the eye can see, cross fit classes and a smoothie bar. I love my runners and triathletes with all of my heart, but it is time to submerse myself amongst the others in the fitness field. And to be honest, I'm actually excited about it. I think I've gotten a bit burned out on training lately, simply because I've had bad luck. Bad luck and a little bit of a lack of willpower. Working out has lost some of it's fun lately, and become more of a chore. So I'm changing it up. I'm going swing some kettlebells, play on the elliptical, and when the ankle is feeling a little stronger, shake my booty in a Zumba class. And I know that this will only make me a stronger runner.
And as I already mentioned, getting back into the gym scene is something that will ultimately help my career. Though I am thoroughly convinced running could save the world (seriously, would there be war, crime, or drug abuse if we were all living life on a runner's high?) I realize not everyone feels that way. Some of my oldest, dearest friends reminded me of that this past weekend on my visit to Vermont. I genuinely want to help people realize the power of fitness and healthy lifestyles, and I don't think I will be 100% successful with that dream by telling everyone to go out and train for a 5k (though they have no idea what they will be missing!). I'm sure I'm about to hear hundreds of declarations of "I HATE RUNNING" in my future, so I need to start exploring the options.
So my friends, I'm off to become a gym rat once again. I'll update you from the smoothie bar (and not the tanning beds)...all while rockin a little C&C music factory from my ipod.
Wow, how was that for some rambling? Happy running my friends, put in a few miles for me.