We’re back! And with a spontaneous selfie:
Just kidding. Definitely not a spontaneous selfie where we all happen to look okay. In fact I did my hair and makeup just to take this selfie:) Luckily I had leftover hair from Sunday so that didn’t take as long. Also styled both boys hair for this “spontaneous” selfie. And I am not naming names, but someone had a poopie diaper during this selfie. Man it takes a lot of work to take a picture to put on the internet for thousands of people to see.
Last week I ran five miles. They were the slowest five miles I have ever done. They were the hardest five miles mentally, emotionally, and physically. But I am more proud of those five miles than any of the thousands of miles I have run throughout my life. They were an accomplishment that I thought would never be possible again for me.
PS my husband pushed the double stroller, my back isn’t ready for that yet.
Rewind to four years ago. I decided it would be a good idea to put my family’s dining room table together on my own. While lifting the tabletop from the ground to the pedestal and twisting my torso while doing so I hurt my back. (If you take anything from this post take this: DO NOT DO THIS!!! Or anything similar to this! One of the dumber decisions I have made in life:)) Anyway, I knew I had hurt my back but not not bad enough to change my daily activities. I could still run and play with my kids. It was just a little more painful now. So life went on.
A little over a year later I got pregnant. I was so excited!
As the pregnancy progressed and my stomach got bigger, my back was struggling more and more. After delivery it got really bad. My back problem was now affecting my sciatic nerve on my right side. I no longer had use of my right leg. It drug along the ground while walking. I tried everything short of surgery. Nothing worked or brought any relief from the pain. After an MRI, I learned that the only option I really had was surgery. As crazy as this sounds, I was actually excited for surgery. To be put under for a few hours and not be in pain sounded amazing. When I woke up from the surgery all of the sciatic nerve pain was gone. I felt great! To the point that I did not have to take any pain medicine post surgery. The pain of back surgery was nothing compared to the constant nerve pain I had been dealing with. So the road to recovery began. It has been a long hard road with so many ups and downs. Throwing in a surprise pregnancy two months after surgery did not make it any easier, but I wouldn’t change that for the world.
Walking was the only form of exercise approved by my doctor post surgery. So I walked and walked and walked. I was not allowed to lift anything heavy which made taking care of one and then two babies pretty tricky. But somehow we have made it through. A few months ago after another MRI and approval from my doctor I was given the go ahead to try running again! Each run since has been a little scary. I worry that I will hurt my back again. I don’t trust my body like I used too. My muscles have atrophied in my right leg, so my form is off. And it hurts! Not my back, but all of the other muscles in my body scream at me every step during my run. But I know it will get easier. My body will get stronger. So I am running, very slowly and very cautiously, but I am running!!! And that is something I am so very grateful to be able to say.
Sidenote: I saw this on the inside of my shirt hem after typing this and thought that’s funny because I run slow and with a little bit of fear:)
My tips for recovery:
1. Patience is everything! Listening to your doctor and not pushing your body before it is ready is really hard for those of us that want to get back to our workouts right away. It is so important to take the time to let your body heal before starting up again. So Be Patient!
2. Don’t compare yourself to your former self. (The time that Janae and I ran a 1/2 marathon dressed up like piñatas, we spent a lot of hours creating these costumes.)
This has been a really hard one for me. The strength and endurance I have now are nothing compared to what I used to have. My body looks and feels different. Most of the muscle lines are gone. But comparing myself to my former self only brings sadness and depression. My body now has been through things that my previous body had not. So it’s not fair to compare the two. This is my new body and I am so grateful to have one that can move again.
3. While recovering, don’t watch your pace. Do what feels right for your body. I am always tempted to up my speed when I see my pace, even if it starts to hurt my back a little. I am way too competitive with myself. So for now, I run not knowing how fast I am running.
Who runs with a jogging stroller often? Have any tips?
What are your tips on recovery? Anyone else experience back problems?
What would you like me to post about over here?