Friday, April 15, 2011

Runner's Knee

Last Sunday, Tanner dropped my off at the trail head in Weatherford. I was nervous. First of all, because I had decided to wear only a sports bra -- no tank top or T-shirt -- and was worried about my hate love handles bouncin' around and acting a fool. And they did. I watched them as my shadow ran in front of me.

The second reason I was nervous was because I had eaten chicken wings and drank a beer the night before with Andrew and Jenna at Buffalo Wild Wings. My stomach does not like chicken wings and beer. My love handles, however, they need them to survive.

The third reason was because after Tanner dropped me off, I was committed to the task before me: running 10.6 miles of wooded trail from Weatherford to Garner. Get a chicken-wing-induced, three alarm stomach flip flop? Too bad. Get attacked by a wild turkey? So sad. Break both your legs, fracture your arms, get a nosebleed and pop your eyeballs out? Oh well. No cell phone. Deal with it. Finish strong!

Well, I did finish. The first four miles of the trail were fairly busy, much to my chagrin. My overly excited love handles, just happy to be out and about, were wigglin' and jigglin' and waving "Hi, y'all!" to everyone they passed. After Mile 4, the crowd started to thin out.

I had my earphones in and my audiobook playing. It was a beautiful, sunny day. (I have the sports bra tan to prove it!) Reaching Mile 5 was a little bit of a bonk moment, only because it hit me that I was less than half way to my destination. But I knew in reality I could make it at least 8 miles, so I got over it.

At about mile 8, I was lectured by a cute, old cyclist man that Tanner and I have seen frequently on the trail about how I should have brought water with me. He pretty much insisted/forced me to drink some of his water, which ended up really being a nice treat for me because I was super thirsty. He then raced off to Garner and gave Tanner, who was waiting for me at the trail head there, the same lecture.

By Mile 10 my knees were killing me, but I still felt cardiovascularly great. When I saw Tanner waiting for me at the trail head in Garner, I even found a reserve to sprint gloriously to finish. When I was done showing off, I sat down and couldn't get up. Just kidding. Sort of.

I felt great, but I haven't run since then. The pain in my left knee lingered through out the week, and after some research, I'm almost 100 percent positive that I've developed runner's knee. No, this is not a cool, sexy, svelt knee that only the elite running crowd develop. Grossly oversimplified, it's chronic pain resulting from the knee cap not tracking correctly in its groove. There are lots of potential causes listed online that could weaken support around the knee cap or cause it to travel an irregular path, and they read like a checklist of all the reasons I should not be a runner: over-pronation (my feet roll in because they have no arch), wide hips (thanks, German heritage), and poor conformation of the groove the knee cap moves in (should look like a "V", mine looks like an "L" and my kneecap has dislocated three times).

So I took this week off, and hit the trail again this evening for a 6-miler. The knee started out creeky, but didn't give me too much trouble. I'm looking into options to manage/prevent the pain as I go back up in my mileage. Because I'd like run far. Far, far away. From my love handles.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Around the Dinner Table

I am a perfectionist, a neat freak, and control freak.

I know, I know. You're thinking, "Maaaaann, I wish I'd married her. Sounds like a charming, pleasant, laid back kind of gal."

Too bad. You missed your chance.

The upside is I get all our bills paid on time, my editor doesn't have to correct much when I turn in my stories, and you could eat dinner off our kitchen floor.

The downsides, oh, they are like numbering the stars. Or like numbering the June bugs Happy has eaten in the last two day: a lot.


Just one of the downsides is I haven't wanted to have people over to our house until it's finished, just so, perfect. Like, after I scrape all the popcorn off the ceiling, repaint, tear up the 1980's carpet and lay down wood floors, replace the rotting trim, install crown molding, pull up all the weeds outside, hang stuff on the walls and replace all the generic pictures that came in the frames with pictures of our own, fabulous selves.

A week or so ago, our friends Andrew and Jenna invited us over to their house for dinner. It was so sweet, so thoughtful and so old-fashioned hospitable of them! We had such a great time. Jenna made tacos and smores bars, we sat around and chatted and looked at the adorable wardrobe accumulating for soon-to-be-born Baby Borne, and the boys went outside and made fires.

I left thinking, "We have to do this again!" You know, at their cute house. The one with decorations and pictures of people who actually live there in the frames. How many times could we eat there before they would start to wonder if we lived in a van or had 18 cats or really were the couple they thought they recognized on Hoarders.

Then I got to thinking. What we loved about that night with the Bornes was the fellowship, the sharing stories, the laughter, working together, whether in the kitchen or out in the shop. Jenna's home is precious, and she should be proud of it. The comfy surroundings added to the joy of the night, but it wasn't what made it. What truly made it was just being able to be loved on by our friends and enjoy time together. It was the act of Jenna and Andrew welcoming us into their home that warmed our hearts, the fact that the home was adorned so nicely and kept so well by Jenna was just a bonus. Besides, there are probably imperfections Jenna sees in her home that her guests would never notice. (Or, it just makes me feel better to think that.)

So I decided funky carpet, popcorn, junk room and all, I wanted to welcome the Bornes to our home and hopefully give them the same joy they gave us.
So, last night, they joined us at the Haynes house for dinner.

Don't get me wrong, I went into manic mode and cleaned the house from top to bottom the day before they came. Tanner caught a dose of my crazy too. But it was nice to know I was cleaning it not so I could get a gold star on my OCD chart, but to make it welcoming for our friends. Life is to be shared after all! Faults and all, we're proud of our home. I'm proud of how hard Tanner has worked and how fiscally wise he's been so that we could afford this home. Mostly, I'm grateful for God blessing us with this house and such wonderful friends to welcome to it.

We made cheesy tortellini casserole (Tanner's favorite), Jenna brought a delicious spinach salad, and the boys grilled up some monster steaks. Butterscotch cookies warm out of the oven were enjoyed with fresh roasted coffee - Jenna roasted the raw beans that day! Us girls chatted around the dining room table and the boys played outside with Andrew's potato gun. From what I could tell, everyone was comfortable and happy, and no one noticed the creaky floorboard where we hide our collection of embalmed medical specimens.


© 2010. All Rights Reserved. | Custom Blog Design By Penny Lane Designs