Tuesday, August 23, 2011


I'm dreading writing this post but know I need to work thru what's going on.  Before getting to why I've been MIA from blogging I do want to send a HUGE thank you to my Tri supporters last weekend.  I honestly think I may have stopped after the bike without seeing them.  They even made me signs which I will post later this week. But for this post, I need to get what's bottled up out, so I can move forward instead of my stuck state that I'm in now.

After having such a high from finishing my Tri, I came crashing down.  The reality of my ankle hit me.  Progress in getting healed has been slow, while this was expected by others, it was unexpected for me.  I'm feeling fat, flabby and frustrated.  I'm unhappy with standing still in my weight loss.  I'm angry about my foot and upset that it's another roadblock to reaching my goals.  Until recently I've been trying to take it in stride and put it in perspective, but I seem to have lost it.  I'm so mad that when I started to get running now it's pushed back for months.   I know there is other things I can do, but I feel like a 2 year old having a tantrum cause I just want to run.  I want what I can't have.  I'm having a childish moment and not in a good way.   I've really tried to not be a "WHY ME" person, but I can't help but ask why this and why now?  What am I supposed to learn from this?

My PT and Ortho Dr have some different ideas of what I can and should or shouldn't be doing which is causing some uncertainty on my end.  The PT doctor wants me doing basically nothing but outside my simple PT exercises (yeah, imagine that calorie burn, nada).  My Ortho Dr is okay with me swimming and doing some biking as long as I can handle the pain in causes.  Problem being, causes alot of stupid pain.  I still can't do stairs without wincing inside.   Due to my lack of progress at PT and my pain ,I asked about taking the next step at last Ortho appt.  I'm seeing a non-surgical ortho dr and she really wants to hold off on surgery unless there are no other options.  Right now being only 6 weeks and with as bad as I hurt my foot, it's not "unexpected" for me to be where I am.  Even doing an MRI right now isn't recommended because it's best to do that 12 week after the injury due to certain things not showing up (like torn cartilage from bone) until the 12 week mark.  So I wait another 6 weeks, continue PT and then at that point if things are still looking icky, MRI and in a boot for 12 weeks, if not better then, surgery at the end of Dec.  She promised even with that timeline, I would be okay for next Tri season.  She said during this down time to keep focused on swimming and biking as I'm able.  I feel hopeless and defeated and that time is moving so slowly.  I also feel alone being injured.  It's not that I wish someone else was hurt, but I feel alone during my recovery process. 

I know this is just one setback and I want this so bad I won't let it stop me, but I just feel so stuck and mad that I'm stuck.  I'm mad that I can't seem to get over the emotions I'm feeling and focus on the great things like that I'm still down 50lb and that I'm in a better place then I was before.  I know I can use this time to focus on getting my arms stronger and blah blah blah, but I'm mad.  ARGHHHHH, I dislike mad.  I much rather like happy. 

I'll have my tantrum, I'll be mad and cry and be pissed off.  Then I'll get over and focus on the good stuff.  Like getting my plan together to get 30 amazing women to do the YWCA Tri next year.  I look at what I can do for food choices to help with my weight loss and get into lifting weights.  But for tonight, I'll be mad, angry and pissed off. 

Thanks for allowing me to be honest and open.  I'm so thankful to the blogging community and those who have supported me so unconditionally.   I will get thru this tantrum, I know the road ahead is bumpy but I think I'll just need to invest in more padding now that I'm smaller. 

Unstoppable "tantrum throwing" Mariah

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Reality Check

It all started with a dream I had last night, I was jogging during my Triathlon.  I’ve missed the wonderful and amazing feeling of my feet hitting the pavement, my fat jiggling, my lungs hurting and my body sweating like nuts.  Yes, I actually miss that.  I woke up deciding it was a sign that I’m supposed to explore jogging Sunday.   I know, I’ve never claimed to be sane, rather I’m quite comfortable with my little bit of crazy.  In my mind, I was confident since I got the green light to do my Tri that for some reason it would be okay to jog some. 
I had physical therapy this afternoon and decided it would be best to test the waters on what my PT guy Ralph would think.  I’ll never forget the look on his face when I asked him if he saw any issues with me jogging Sunday, I assured him it would just be a little bit of jogging.  He looked at me as if I told him the sky was purple with pink polka dots.  His immediate answer was absolutely not.  For some reason I thought I could compromise with him on this answer.  My question back “what if it’s just a really really slow jogging, like fat girl bay watch jogging?”.  Can you guess the answer . . . of course, NO.   He had to give me some tough love.  If I would jog Sunday, I would most likely re-sprain my ankle causing extreme damage to my foot.  He told me that my foot is just too unstable at this point to even think about jogging for a few months.  Ralph also reminded me that I need to look at the big picture and how lucky I am that I’m even able to participate.  One more bad sprain and my ankle would very likely need to be fully reconstructed and quite possibly have permanent damage with the result of not running ever again.  I’ve already been told that I may need surgery on my ankle if conservative treatment doesn’t work.   However, knowing that jogging at this point, even a little bit could end it all forever, it really got me to re-evaluate where I’m at. 
I have to be honest, I’ve been hiding myself from the truth of how bad I hurt my foot.    I have it in my head that if I just decided it’s not bad, then it won’t be bad and I can just go back to normal.   This is the same behaviour I had when we kept loosing pregnancies.  I kept just ignoring what happened and the feelings associated with it, bottling it up thinking it would go away and everything would magically be better.  Yeah, that didn’t work so well now did it?!  Normally the new Mariah would do something healthy like run, bike etc to deal with these feelings, but now I’m so limited on what I can do until my foot heals.  I refuse to go back to the Old Stoppable Mariah.  I will learn new and additional ways to cope. 
I will take one step at a time and figure this out.  I will do my Tri Sunday and I’ll let go of being worried about my time and how fast or slow I’ll be.  I WILL ENJOY the fact I get to be out there and that I’m so blessed that so many people took me up on my invitation to come out.  I can’t wait to see you and I can’t wait for YOU to see what YOU can accomplish.  My foot may slow me down, but I will continue to get stronger and stronger and more unstoppable. 

Unstoppable “reality checked” Mariah

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Clippy Mariah

I love love love REI.  Not just the little bit of love, but the whole bunch, I want to by a bunch of stuff in there, I love going there and playing, let’s go more often LOVE.  This weekend the Bautch family headed over there after our swim at the Maple Grove Community Center.  Some of you may shake your head as you read this, after all I am the girl who sprained her ankle doing a happy shuffle dance on the driveway.  We purchased foot cage thingies for our bikes.  They are those things that you put on your pedals that hold your foot in and give you more power when you are on the upside of your stroke.  Technically they are called Strapless Toe Clips and only $5.  I was nervous to try them out given my past history of being a klutz.  I even wore my helmet just in case I took a spill.   I practiced getting in and out of them a few times making sure to always put my left foot down first.  I’d call my first time out with them a success.  I look forward to trying them out again tonight to ensure I’m comfortable with using them this Sunday.  I’m really hoping they give me some of the extra power I’m missing with my foot.  Cross your fingers for another successful no falling bike ride J

Unstoppable “clippy cage bike” Mariah

Monday, August 8, 2011

You (yes, I'm talking to you) are invited . . .

How many of you out there have ever considered trying a Tri?  What's holding you back?   One of the biggest concerns  I had, was what I thought I triathlete looked like.  Ever seen one of those runners magazines . . . that was the image that I had in my head when I thought Triathlete.   Do you have that image too?  Guess what, it's wrong.

You are invited to see firsthand with your own eyes what a Triathlete looks like.  Come watch the YWCA Triathlon this Sunday in Minneapolis (click the link or contact me for more info).  You'll be AMAZED at what you see, woman of all shapes, sizes and ages participating in a magnificent sport of endurance.  It will change the way you think about Triathlons.  I encourage anyone that has ever dreamed of being a triathlete to come see this event.  Get a glimpse at what your future can be and what you are capable of.  By cheering the athletes on, you provide motivation for them to keep moving forward, stay strong and cross the finish line. At Trek some of those voices were what kept me from quiting.  It still bring tears to my eyes.   For those of you coming out, I want you to look at yourself in the mirror and you’ll seem something familiar and similar to what you see on the course, I see it in you already, it’s the Triathlete hiding inside of you.

On a side note, I’ve had some self doubt going on about how long it will take me during the Tri.  Notice I’m not worried about finishing, just my time, I call that progress J  My ankle has been really painful causing me to be quite slow.  It’s so darn FRUSTRATING.  I already started to feel like I was going to fail.  When I say self doubt, I guess you could actually maybe call it really emotional.  I’ve been in tears thinking of how SLOW I am going to be.  It’s not that I think poorly of being slow, it’s that I know I can go faster.  Then I remind myself, nope, with my ankle, it’s really not an option.  It’s not about pushing my body harder, it’s accepting that I do have limits and respecting them for what they are.  My ankle is outside of my control.  I looked in the mirror at myself and realized something really really cool.  There is a different woman looking back then there used to be.  The woman I was not so long ago, came up with every excuse (seriously, I had creative ones) on why I couldn’t or shouldn’t work out.  The woman I see in the mirror today is accountable for herself and her choices.  While I don’t always make the best choices, I take full responsibility for them.  Doing this Tri shows how far I’ve come.  While my ankle is painful, I’ve gotten the okay from both the ortho dr and the PT about doing the Tri, I won’t injure it further, I’ll just be in a lot of pain for a few days later.  I’m making the choice to do this because this is who I am now.  Everytime I start to worry about my time, I’m going to change the tape playing in my head.  My new tape will remind me how far I’ve come not only physical (no concerns about finishing the race) and how far I’ve come mentally (not giving up).  I truly love the person I continue to become.  Next year, I’ll be able to focus on time, this year, I’ll just keep focusing on being “Unstoppable”.

Unstoppable”hoping to SPY more Triathletes” Mariah   

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Skeeters love me

I’m still a little bit in shock that I’m able to do the Tri on Aug 14th.  We did a family bike ride last night and had a great time.  The skeeters just love me.  I have a bite that is bigger than a silver dollar right above my knee, darn skeeters.   I think I counted about 15 bites total, just from a short bike ride.  Guess next time I’ll be bug spaying myself.

Belle is still pretty new at the whole biking things, she did great last night even though she had a few spills and skinned up her knee.  When she hurt her knee we were more than ½ through the ride and there was only one way to get home, biking.  She was flustered and cried some, but we reminded her that when she falls, she’s just gotta get back up and try again.  I was really proud because Paul and I show this in everyday life.  We talked about specific examples like me doing the Tri after I got hurt last time.  We talked about how it’s normal to be scared and then I remembered Michelle’s words to her son David that Heather commented on.  In order to be brave, you have to be a little scared.  Brave Hannah kept going and did great, I’m so darn proud of her and love the “active” things we do as a family.

Tonight, I’m headed back to the pool.  Paul is wonderful about letting me get back into working out and taking care of the home front.  I’m going to time myself and swim ½ mile without stopping to get a good idea of what my time is looking like.  I seriously love what an attitude difference my foot injury has given me.  I’m not even worried or nervous about it, I’m just excited and happy! 

Unstoppable “skeeter loved” Mariah

Monday, August 1, 2011

Foot Update

I headed back to TRIA this morning due to increased pain in my foot.  I was really nervous, worried and scared.  I wasn’t sure what I would find out and because of the increased pain if I would still be able to do the Tri on the 14th.  I’ve been torn if participating was the right choice and if it would delay healing or cause further injury to my foot.   On my way, I had a heart to heart with God.  I told him that I was lost and looking for his guidance.  I asked him to guide the doctor in giving me advice on what was best for me long term.  I promised to both listen and trust God’s plan for me.  With that, I was much more relaxed as I met with Dr Michelle Gorman. 

The bruising has healed and swelling has decreased significantly however the pain has also increased at times.  It's also in very specific areas of my foot.  We did new x-rays just to double check my ankle bone as that’s where much of the burning and swelling bothers me at night.  My tendons are very inflamed and irritated.  My x-rays look FANTASTIC, the Dr said that while the sprain is healing nicely,  it was a significant enough of a sprain that it has aggravated my existing issues with peroneal tendinapathy (Tendinitis).    That’s what is causing the burning and shooting pains.  She said that since I was now an “Athlete” (yup, she called me an athlete, still giggling and smiling, made me feel so good) that I needed to get into a good rehabilitation program that focused on runners core strengths.  This will help me build important muscles and stability.  I will then be strong and less likely to have future issues.  If we don’t see improvement in my pain after rehab and a few more weeks of recovery, they will look at booting me for awhile.  If that doesn’t work, worst case scenario they would need to do surgery where they wrap the tendons to provide extra strength. 

The good news is, I can start working out and being more active again.  Being active WON’T further injure my foot as long as I’m being careful and wear my ankle brace.  She also gave me the great news that I’ll be able to participate in the YWCA Tri on Aug 14th.  I won’t be able to run, I may look goofy with my brace, I’ll be slow, but I CAN DO IT!  No more happy dances before hand for me :)  I asked Dr Gorman if I could hug her because I loved her and I was so happy.  She was thrilled to be able to help me in my journey with healthiness.  She understood how much being active means to me and how much I wanted to be back in the “game”.  I’m confident that I’m getting back on track even if I may still find a few bumps on my way back into being active.   I trust the path laid in front of me and look forward to jumping in with both feet!

Unstoppable “ready to TRI again” Mariah