December 26, 2011

Long Run and Christmas

18 milers scheduled for the long run for this week.  Sunday is usually the day for my long runs, but I didn't really want to  spend 3-4 hours Christmas morning out running.  So, I planned to run on Saturday (Christmas Eve) instead.  Because of a wild personal schedule, rain, weather, and shopping, I only had about a day and a half rest between what I thought was a brutal 5 mile speed workout and my long run.

Last week it was my hip that was bothering me.  Well, after a wonderful massage session where Rachel stretched out all my hip muscles (she said I was very tight), my hip hardly hurts at all.   Now, because of what I diagnose as "not enough rest time between runs", I am having knee pain.

I have iced, motrined, and elevated - but still is a little tender.  I will see what the easy 2 miler feels like tomorrow morning.  When my hip was hurting - I was debating with myself about dropping back and only doing the half marathon in 3 weeks.  Now - it is probably even more likely.  It is hurting just to walk right now.

Christmas morning was spent at my daughter Jennifer's house.   Her husband and 2 children were there as well as son Scott, his girlfriend, and extended family members.  We did the traditional present opening followed by big breakfast.  Only one other Christmas, when Steve was deployed during Desert Storm, were we not all together.  This Christmas was hard not having him with us.


Me (Fran), my son Scott, and Girlfriend Alanna.
Scott has just received his shirt for the Disney Princess Half Marathon

Baby Cole's 1st Christmas - healthy now
Nothing quite says Christmas in the South as
getting a new weapon.


December 18, 2011

Weekend in Florida

In my attempt to blog regularly, I will try to post something every few days. 

My mother lives in Florida, outside of Orlando.  She is by herself, without any family nearby.  So, I try to visit her as often as possible.  I flew in Thursday night and will leave tomorrow morning.

While I am here, I try to help her with some errands and shopping.  We were even able to get in an eye doctor appointment while I was here.

The weather was a little cool.  I didn't bring any cold weather clothes with me or my running gloves.  It was 50 degrees this morning when I woke up - I would not have been dressed properly - so, I waited until about 0930 to run.  It was about 54 degrees - but very windy.  But the sun was out so warmed up more as I ran.

My hip is still hurting a little bit - so, I slowed down and walked a little more than planned.  Doctor appointment this week - maybe I might be able to get an X-ray or MRI scheduled so I can see if there is something really wrong - or just wear & tear.

4 week until the Louisiana  Marathon.  I still have an 18 & 20 mile training run.  If something is really wrong - I would hate to aggravate it worse with the long training runs.  So - I will just go a little slower - that's the plan.

December 14, 2011

Crying at the Grocery Store

Grocery shopping should not be a traumatic event.  I just had to pick up a few things - So ran to the Commissary.  But today wasn't one of my better days.

It started near the bakery, when I saw the kind of bread that Steve liked so much. Then in the meat department, I picked out some real good looking boneless pork chops.  Steve liked pork and I couldn't always find nice pork chops to cook - but today there was a big selection.  Then the final straw was when I went in the back and couldn't even go down the pretzel aisle. 

I always made sure that we had plenty of pretzels.  It was Steve's favorite snack.   But, I have plenty of pretzels at my house.  There isn't anyone to eat them.  When my son, Scott, comes over (now only about once a month since he lives in Shreveport) he eats a few.

It was hard enough transitioning from cooking for a family of 5 down to just Steve and I.  Now cooking for only 1 is so hard.  Just something else to get used to.

December 13, 2011

Hip Pain

On Sunday, Lee and I had our 16 mile long run.  Only 33 Days until The Louisiana Marathon in Baton Rouge.  Heidi joined us for about 10 miles.  My right hip just want to stop hurting.  It isn't the kind of pain that will make me stop running - it is just the nagging pain to let me know something is just not quite right.

Well, you can't fix something if you don't know exactly what is wrong.  Do I need to strength train more on the hip?  Well, if something is partially torn or partially broken (tendon, ligament, muscle, or stress fracture), I am worried that certain kinds of training might make it worse.

So, I decided to go to the doctor to see what is wrong.  But.... with the military system, I just can't go see an orthopedic doctor.  No, I have to see an internal medicine doc first who will refer me to an orthopod.  First available appointment is December 21st.  Right after I do my 20 mile run.

In the mean time, Fran's plan is just to take is easy - I am sticking with Runner's World Smart Coach plan - but just might not run quite so fast.

This morning Rosalyn and I ran 5 easy miles and the hip didn't hurt during or after the run.

My plan might work.

December 12, 2011

Happy Anniversary Steve

30 years ago, you and I drove from Fort Lewis, WA to Reno, NV to get married.  You had recently re-enlisted and we used part of your bonus for the trip. The MGM grand was having a special for Active Duty military - $32.00 a night.  So, we took advantage of the low rate.

We drove my Fiat Spider convertable down Interstate 5 for Sacramento then went over the pass to Reno.   When we got into the mountains, it was snowing.  My little convertable wastn't used to cold weather and it was freezing in the car.  Then we got to the pass and had to have snow chains to go any further.  You had anticipated this and bought tire chains before we left Washington.  I remember you laying in the snow putting the chains on.

We had a good time in Reno.  This was the first time that I had ever gambled.  We played craps and won money the first night - then lost it all the next night.

You always used to complain that I spent your re-enlistment bonus when we got married.  I am sorry - I tried to make it up to you and built you a shop.  I hope we ended up even.

Dates and anniversaries never mattered to me much.  It was just a date on the calendar.  I always said - "let's go out on a Friday or Saturday".  It didn't have to be the exact date.  There were years when I even forgot our anniversary.  I always felt so bad when you gave me a gift or card and I forgot the date.  I think that it made you feel a little superior.  You bought me gifts when I told you not to.  And you bought me flowers when I asked you not to.

I have this card from our 20th Anniversary... I bet you would have done something very special for the 30th Anniversary.



Thanks for asking me to marry you.  I miss you so much.  I would really like to take a "marriage enrichment" motorcycle ride with you.  We could go out to dinner and I could try and figure out something to get you as a gift.  Well, maybe in my dreams.

December 8, 2011

The Well Pump Drama

I live in the country and have a well pump.  There is access to "City Water" but Steve and I loved  the taste of the good water that came from the well.  Steve was in charge of keeping the well pump up and running - He did all the maintenance and repairs as needed.

Whenever, he would leave for a few days, I would ask him to check out the well pump and make sure everything was working properly.  It always seemed like when he left - something would break and I would have to call in a repair person.

Just last January, Steve and I were both gone, the weather dropped into the 20's and several pipes burst.  I came home to water everywhere and a screeching noise from the pump.  The repairs were well beyond my capability - So, I was just without water for 2 days until Steve got home.

He would be out in the wet and cold - and never complained.

So....my biggest fear is that the well pump and pipes would break.  I spent several nights insullating the pipes, walls, making sure the heat lamp worked, and whatever else I could to keep thngs working for at least another year.  I even had a service done on the pump itself and changed the air filter.

This morning, I woke up to no water.  I went out in the cold - yes 28 degrees in Louisiana - and found 3 inches of water in the pump house and the pump making a noise like the motor had been running way too long.

I didn't cry - I just figured that this was Steve's way of remindng me how much I needed him.  I really didn't need a reminder.  It probably wasn't even the cold that caused the pipe to break, it just had a small crack that gave way - the water didn't freeze - I guess my insulation worked.

So the wonderful repair man is here - fixing the broke pipe.  Hopefully, this will be my one an only repair job this winter.

Miss you Steve and wish that you were the one doing the repairs.