Friday, July 15, 2011

Active Lifestyle

I've been trying to keep a more active lifestyle. I'm not on a diet- I'm not doing a "program". I just want to be healthy- so I eat what I think is the best fuel for my body in order for it to be its healthiest. I strive to participate in activities that encourage my body to learn and grow and be fit.

So for a date last month, Ian and I went rock climbing- the first time for both of us. After figuring out exactly what shoe size we should be, figuring out which hand holds worked best for us, and learning how to belay and spot each other- we were on our way. And it was one of our favorite dates- we're hoping to go again sometime soon!

I also ran- and completed- my marathon. Up until then I'd only ever done 5ks. And marathons are VERY different- not just because they are nearly 9 times longer. The before, during, after- the people- the run itself is all very different. I went with 2 dear sisters-in-law of mine, and I will be eternally indebted to them for even thinking of inviting me- it has completely changed my life! I didn't have a GREAT time, but I wasn't last to finish either- I wasn't aiming for a certain time, I was aiming just to finish. And I have a heavy medal to prove it!

The first 10 miles were a breeze- I felt like I could run for forever. The next 10 were a killer because of a lot of hills and my sciatica kicked in, making it difficult to run more than a 1/2 mile at a time. The last 6 miles I walked pretty much all but maybe .5 miles- I was in intense pain, I was tired, I was fatigued. Everything in my body was begging for me to quit- but my mind was made up, I was going to finish. I kept repeating my mental mantras I practiced in my marathon training- "I am a marathoner. I can do this. I'll crawl if I have to- I am going to finish. I am a marathoner!"

Upon reaching the finish line, I literally collapsed into my sister-in-law's arms and was rushed to the medics. I was freaking out because I couldn't feel my entire right leg- something that hasn't happened since I was first diagnosed with sciatica 9 years ago [and shortly after that first incident I fainted from the pain- waking up in an ambulance. So, needless to say, I didn't want a repeat of that event!] But after sitting for a few minutes I regained feeling in my leg- just had tingling in my toes. So they strapped a bag of ice to my butt [where most of my sciatic nerve was still on fire] and I limped away with the help of my sisters-in-law.

So I've learned the limits on my body- I gained some new friends along the way- I proved to myself and everyone else that I can do anything if I set my mind to it- and I've changed my entire life around! I love running and have already signed up to do a half marathon at the end of October. If you had asked me just 1 year ago if I liked running or was even willing to give it a try, I would have either laughed or glared at you [just ask Ian how much I've changed!] And I couldn't be happier!


Julie said...

So inspirational! Good job!

Michelle said...

You are dabomb! Congrats on finishing the marathon!!

Megan said...

Awesome! 1. You are happy & maintaining the new lifestyle which is awesome. 2. You look fantastic! 3. I love the last picture with the ice saranwrapped to your butt. :) I love you Kristen.

Amy said...

Ok I choked up when I read this! It feels so amazing to have completed something so difficult and something I once thought impossible for me to do. And to do it with my sisters was so incredibly rewarding and something I will never forget as long as I live. I love you Kristen! I'm so proud of you and of us and I'm so glad to have you for a sister!