The Path I Plan on Walking in 2014

As I look ahead to 2014, I’m approaching it with a surprising amount of ease. Being more or less benched these last 5 months has forced me to slow down and re-evaluate what it is I want to accomplish in 2014. A lot of thought, prayer and even a few tears were shed but I think the path I’ll be walking this coming year is going to be drastically different from the one I started on just one year ago. The biggest realization is that just because I won’t be running many miles, it doesn’t mean that my year is going to suck. There are still so many other things out there that I can (and will) do. I’m looking forward to seeing what 2014 will bring. It may be more full of surprises than I realize :)

2014 Goals

1. Accepting that some goals will have to be put on hold: This is the toughest “goal” of them all. In the Summer, I had decided that I would run less races in 2014 but that I would run my first marathon in May and compete in my first Sprint Triathlon in the Summer. In between, I wanted to focus on my 5k and 10k times and shaving off some seconds. I really had it all planned out nicely, until I got injured and barely ran more than a few miles here and there for the next 4, going on 5 months (and counting). Rather than dwell on what I’m not able to do, I’m not setting a single running goal for 2014. I honestly don’t know when I’ll be back to running again. It may be in a month, it may not ever happen. Chronic tendonitis is no joke and it’s something that may prevent me from ever running 26.2 or my ultimate dream of finishing a 70.3. It’s tough but I’ve resolved not to push myself or to dwell on what may not be. I know that what I need right now is to heal and to focus on other things that don’t involve running more than my body will allow me. This is the only way I can find my happy place again (and I will).

2. More Yoga, better Yoga: I have truly enjoyed rediscovering Yoga. I hadn’t done it in a good 7-8 years but decided to take a chance and go to one of the two weekly classes offered at our work gym. It was supposed to be a temporary thing to help my leg loosen up and take pressure off my already angry tendon. It only took a week or two for me to remember why I used to do this. I love it. I love how it centers me, I love how it’s a mental and physical time out for my often over-run (slight pun intended), over-stressed, over-thinking self. I will be continuing on with this and looking for other ways/classes to get my bendy going. (if anyone has a good online class they can recommend, share it in the comments. Studio fees here are beyond what I can financially commit to on a regular basis).

3. Triathlon. Yep. Still a goal. For several reasons. The first being that I know I can run 5k. I do enough cross-training that I could handle it with little to no run prep, so long as I’m well prepped on the bike and swim to cover me. The other reason, I credit entirely to my swim coach, Wanda. I mentioned to her a month or so ago that running was not going well and that I didn’t think I’d be able to compete in anything more than possibly one sprint next summer. I half expected her to say “well, there’s always 2015, keep swimming with us and see how it goes”. I need to learn that Wanda does not think in defeating terms. Without batting an eye, she said “well, you’ll do a relay then and someone can run for you”. Done. So I will soldier on, brave the outdoor swims (mental note…need a wetsuit) starting in June–>when there is sometimes still ice patches on the water and move ahead with a “do what you can, as you can” attitude. Bam!

4. Continue my eating habits, cook from scratch, food prep in advance. Maybe it was the injury giving me too much extra time but the last few months, I’ve been really focusing on eating better and even more so, prepping my food in advance and cooking from scratch. Not to toot my horn too loudly but I’ve actually done pretty amazingly with it. For real! I still burn a lot of food and there are several occasions in recent memory where even I couldn’t choke down what I attempted to create, BUT I’m getting better and I have come up with a few items that have been praised by more than just me. Onward and upward! I’m also hoping to shave a bit more off our overall grocery bill because holy crapballs, we eat/spend a lot on food. It’s well worth every penny spent and I won’t compromise but if I can eat well and budget down a bit, so help me, I’m gonna try!

5. Heart Rate Training: I’ve owned my lovely Polar FT40 for a little while know and I love it but I’ve yet to learn to really use it properly and take full advantage of all it has to offer me and my training. This will be changing in 2014 as I embark on a learning journey towards more efficient training and how it can make me better and healthier. Any tips or resources that have helped you? Link up in the comments!

6. Try at least one new class at the gym: I’m not much of a class-taker but there are a host of them offered at the gym at work. They’re part of the membership and taught by some very good instructors. I need to take advantage of what’s right in front of me and try a few new things. Who knows, maybe I’ll find a new love to fill my running void.

7. Close my Diastasis Recti…for good!: I’ve written a few times about DR and how I live, cope and am still able to be active. The truth is that I function just fine but I know that I need to spend some time loving on my core and rebuilding the strength that’s been lost because of this condition. I’m going to start a program and do my absolute best to follow it diligently so that I can stop sucking in my bulging belly and start building the core strength that I need to repair my diastisis. I’m not sharing the program I’m doing just yet because I want to do it for a few weeks to see if it’s working before I go into detail about what I’m trying. I get a lot of questions and views on my diastasis recti posts so I know there are a lot of you out there and I don’t want to recommend any program that will end up not working. And yes…I am even paying money for this program. I must mean business!

Stephanie

Stephanie is a working mom of 2 boys, a veteran of 4 half marathons, 1 Ragnar Relay and countless miles with or without her kids in tow. Vegetarian, Christ-follower and all around reeker of awesomeness, Stephanie chronicles her not-so-average life as an average runner and a Fit Mom...in Training.

4 Responses to The Path I Plan on Walking in 2014

  1. All great goals & wishing you the happiest of a new year & lots to look forward to!!!!

  2. […] this injury and will continue to carry me through 2014 as I slowly start running again. I have no running goals for this year, so no pressure and when things are stable enough, I will be starting back doing a […]

  3. Make sure you put in some brick workouts (even if it’s only 1 km worth of running…) Running off the bike is an entirely different beast, and you don’t want that strange heavy sensation in your legs to be new to you on race day.

    A fried of mine wants to fix her diastasis recti… she says she can’t do crunches, so I suggested planks and she said that was worse… I was stumped. How can you fix your core strength then?

    • Stephanie says:

      Very good advice! I’ve heard the horror stories of lead legs. What about transitioning to elliptical? Is this of any benefit or is running really the best thing?

      As for the Diastasis Recti, I’m in the first week of my treatment and though it’s way to soon to tell if it will be the cure, I’m very drawn to the science of it and that you have to strengthen your inner core (obviously) but you also need to strengthen all around it as well to help the connective muscle tighten up and pull the outter abs back together. I’m doing squats, stretches and deep core work. I can definitely feel the weakness.

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