Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Music and training...

Here I sit with music piping throughout the new digs. We have a new system called "Sonos" which, is magic as far as I am concerned. They could have told me little green elves are in our walls making stupendous sounds throughout the house and I would understand as much. This new invention (well it is new to me) allows us to listen to different music in almost every room of the house. We get to choose from any music on our computers or any radio station, throughout the world. There are so many choices of songs to listen to, it is almost overwhelming. The good news is I am listening to WAY more music than I ever have. Alot less TV and my psyche must be jumping up and down..Less "Survivor", more soothing tones and Debi is a happier camper. I am hoping my newly rekindled love of music will stick with me..The "Sonos" is magic...

Training: If one reads my last post and then reads this, one would think I was two different people. As poopy as I feel when bedtime comes, during the day my running has gotten better. Don't know why, maybe the less weight is less to drag around. The running path is 2.5 minutes from our house. We have to hop a fence but then thousands of acres of beautiful mountain foothills are our new backyard. I will try and get pictures of that soon. We run up and down these rolling hills and I can finally, finally understand, after all these years, why folks like to run. I never have had that real "love" for running as I hear pray tell can happen to one..These past few months, I have only been running. I went out on my bike a big total of twice, maybe three times since the summer...Swimming..well, I will leave it at that. Let's just say I do not miss the smell of chlorine, at all..

We are training for several running races. First off is the Sedona Half Marathon in February. Damn, that is soon! A bunch of our crazy tri/running friends are going. I anticipate much fun as well as good weather (I can hope for the weather). The following weekend, I signed up for the "Austin Half Marathon". Oh just because I can, I suppose. It seemed like a good idea at the time..Really though I am doing that race to see 2 of my kids, who are racing too..It is a girls' weekend in the big city of Austin. My youngest lives there and from what I can tell, it is a pretty cool place, even if it is in Texas! (no offense to my Texas people..:))

The big event seems to be in April. H and I are going to do a 50k running trail race in Oklahoma-"Hog's Hunt"... I am pretty sure there are no pigs involved..That is 31.07 miles. I know because I just looked it up..say what?? I know, I is insanity but believe it or not, this is childs' play in the gang I run with. It is considered an "ultra" running race, but just barely! Most of my people are getting into running 50 and 100 mile know normal stuff like that..I somehow got a hold of the Koolaid and drank a bit, but not too much. I have NO DESIRE to run 50 miles, AT ALL. I am doing the 50k to see if I really like it at all. I know how to hurt, Ironman taught me that but this is a whole new level of pain so "they say". Not sure I am that much of a masochist but we shall see. I will admit I have gotten the whole "trail running" bug for sure. It takes the boredom out of running for me big time. I also downloaded a bunch of music that is 180 beats per/minute. I try and keep my pace at that when I run. I read somewhere this improves your running..It sure makes it more interesting!

Am I done with triathlon? No, I don't think so. H is talking about doing Ironman Florida in 2012. Some crazy talk like that. Again, I reiterate, I do NOT want to do another Ironman. Can resist come this November when we are in Florida cheering on the athletes and watching H sign up? Hmmm..we'll see..

Off to the doctor tomorrow where he will tell me exactly what is wrong with me at night..oh, wait-that was my crazy dream last night!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Health issues..

Some strange, somewhat concerning health issues have arisen in my little world..

A. Unintentional Weight Loss-Now who knew this would ever be a problem for me. I spent years as a teenager and adult, trying to lose that "last 5-10 lbs". Through all my Ironman training, I only lost weight during my first one and it was very quickly packed back on after race day. When I was 40 years old, I participated in a body building competition and my body fat percentage got to an all time low. I dieted like a maniac for that show, it was torture.  After my divorce in the 1980s, I got down to a frightening low weight-well it was a divorce-'nuf said, it was very temporary. So when I recently dropped 15 lbs in 2 months without even trying, I had mixed feelings. For one thing, happy that I finally reached the ever elusive weight goal I had when I was a teenager. All sorts of fad diets, wishing and praying for the almighty flat stomach seemed to evade my young life. Fast forward 40 years and here I am, goal reached! Now I get 2 kinds of reaction to this. "Wow you have lost alot of weight. Are you OK?" and "Wow you have lost alot of weight-you look great!" To which I reply to both "Thank you"? Weight is in the eye of the beholder, I suppose. My family does not think it is all that cool. H wants me to GAIN WEIGHT. Something I never thought I would hear him say..I have lost weight in well..some important body parts..I have had to buy smaller clothes, bras, etc. I finally, after all these years, have a "skinny closet". I have mixed feelings about all of this. I am happy to not have to worry about my weight or food for once. I am a bit alarmed because "sudden weight loss" which is "not voluntary" can be cause for alarm. I go to the doctor's office and mention it in passing and no one there seems alarmed, at all. As a matter of fact the last time I said something to the medical assistant, she got kind of snippy with me and said Your BMI is within normal limits! I have had my thyroid checked, and have normal routine blood work. So I am somewhat enjoying my current body with some reservations. I miss the muscle mass, which I need to work on...I am not continuing to lose, I have plateaued for the time being..

B. Numbness and tingling in extremities-This has been WAY more of a pain in the ass than the weight loss. At the beginning of December I woke up one day with my hand asleep-you know like everyone does at times. No big deal, except the next day it happened again, and daily again until both hands were now asleep upon awakening and hurt until I stood up and got blood to my hands. As time has gone on this has gotten worse and worse to the point I can't sleep some nights because my hands hurt so much lying down..And since I have not mastered the art of sleeping standing up..this has become a REAL annoyance. I have seen the doctor twice. First time, he just did not seem alarmed at all but thought it might be nice to see a neurologist. I got an appointment for the end of January. After 2 weeks I could not stand it so I went back and this time saw my regular doc, who took me more seriously and ordered an MRI and blood work. In the meantime I am getting more pissed off by the day that I can't get in to see a neurologist until this week. After the MRI, my doctor called me himself, which was amazing and scary. I thought for sure I had cancer of the hands if he were calling me. NO, he just wanted to tell me my MRI showed some changes in my cervical spine from 3 years ago, degenerative changes, etc..He is not sure that is what is causing my symptoms. He asked me how I was doing-I was floored-isn't that sad? Well besides the fact that I dread each night's bedtime and am barely sleeping normally and am scared out of my mind when I wake up from a dead sleep not being able to feel my hands, I'm great! Not only that, it was starting to come during the day just walking around now..He said he would try and get me into the Neuro guy sooner but I have not heard a word. So I see this Neurology guy on Thursday and if nothing is found there, my P. doc said something about a Neurosurgeon-holy crap-don't even want to think about that yet. I am appropriately scared for many reasons. First of all I am a hypochondriac of the highest order-I google symptoms to death and convince myself I have all kinds of ailments and am practically polishing up my will by the time I see a real medical person. Cyberchondria is my middle name. Secondly, women in my family tend to die young of auto-immune diseases. My doc checked my blood for a couple of them..normal..but the worry is constantly there for me. I just have to be patient and have learned to somewhat live with this condition and go with the flow as much as I can. I wake up often crying out from the pain in my hands and jump out of bed wringing them until blood flow gets to my extremities..It really, really sucks! I am having horrible nightmares and H says my whole body shakes like crazy when I sleep. It does not take a brain surgeon to figure out that I have something obviously going on in my nervous system. I have tried the wrist braces used for Carpel Tunnel Syndrome and it makes everything a hundred times worse so back to the store they went. I have tried sleeping on my back, with different pillows (this was the first doctor's suggestion-really?) I HATE it when doctors talk to you like you are 12 years old and do not know a thing about medicine. At least my PCP gets me and is aware that I know some stuff and he does not have to spell out much medically for me..

I am afraid that if this Neuro guy is an idiot, or tries to treat me like one, I may go screaming out of the doctors office at this point, my frustration is so bad. I am taking H with me to testify to my woes and hopefully bring that "male energy" that seems to sadly, but truly bring some answers in the male dominated medical world.

On a brighter note, my running has never been better..Go figure! More about that later...

I wait patiently and continue my daily stuff until Thursday, when I pray I will get some answers!

Heeellllooo 2011!

Maybe peeps will still read this, maybe not..I don't care really..I am back to the blog world. I think I felt better when I blogged. Facebook has taken over most of my energy..and most of my bloggy friends..I am going to try and write more often. My life has expanded since IMWA, Australia and New Zealand. I find myself referring to old posts just to remember what the hell I have done the last few years. Isn't that sad? My brain cells are just not firing like they use to..unfortunately..So documentation is really necessary if I expect to leave any legacy at all, which more and more seems to be the goal in middle-aged life! My grandchilren can read about me or at least see a little bit into my world, when I am long gone and they become I did in recent years. I wish my mom had kept a diary or something just so I could imagine more  what she was like, how she thought, felt..I am filling in some of the blanks. My kids can fill them in on the rest!

The past year has been pretty rough. My mother in law became pretty sick in May. She was one tough older lady, had fought some pretty courageous physical battles over the last few years. But alas in August, she lost the battle and she departed this world. It is very strange to think loved ones are not here anymore. Many times I have wanted to pick up the phone and call her..just to check in like always..I believe on some level she is still around. When she appears in my dreams, this is when I feel like she is present, helping us out, laughing at our latest escapades, wagging her finger and giving us her opinion (she liked to do that sometimes!).. Following dear Bea's death, I went to a dark place emotionally, probably the darkest since I lost my own mom in 1994. After about 3 months I emerged to find the world had gone on without me and if I wanted to still ride, I would have to jump back on the merry-go-round! So I did, maybe slowly at first-eventually running up to speed and jumping on..

We did what most normal grieving people do-we bought a house! Not that we were really looking..just checking out lots to maybe buy, etc. And just "by chance" a friend told us of a lovely home on the  market just behind them. We checked it out and it was love at first sight for both H & I. We scurried and made an offer which finally worked out and the keys were ours! Should we move before or after Christmas became the big question. One of our friends told us they moved before Christmas and it basically ruined their holidays. Oh, that was a no brainer after hearing that! All of our clan was coming home for Christmas so we stayed in the old house until after Christmas. Half our house was gone to the new house but it was fun nonetheless. We even managed a family picture session, in which the 3 little ones cooperated so much, I watched in amazement. We are all hams, it seems!

This makes me smile.. Our bunch are quite the crew..I have so much love for my family-I can hardly stand it! 

Two days after Christmas, we made the move. Granted it was only a 2 mile move but it still took mega energy. This was met with vigorous enthusiasm as we took dozens of loads of "stuff" even though the movers took the bulk of it; we still had bunches to get over here. It was a fine time to purge all our old s^&*t! I love purging organizing. You can ask H-this is one of my favorite things ever. I can organize for hours, days and never tire of it. The new house is almost as perfectly organized as I could imagine. Old stuff, new stuff, different stuff. It is all here. The one difference in this move was the partnership of  H & I planning and decorating the new digs. H is really good at decorating it seems, so between my compulsive organizing and his brilliant decorating skills, we make quite the team! There were minimal "discussions" about where to put things, how to fill the rooms, etc. I was able to be as flexible as my little Virgo brain could be and had to walk away a few times to keep from acting like a 2 year old. It was remarkable how much we both have the same tastes after all these years. I love my hubby and moving to our new home was one of the most fun experiences we have had together!

So as I am settling into our new abode, I am walking into the wrong room less and less. We have a whole new kitchen and appliances. The new GE Advantium oven is a-m-a-z-i-n-g! It is, as one friend described a " triple threat microwave, convection and ultra-violet oven  cooks and browns and does it quickly and better than an actual oven." 

I have actually COOKED 3 times since we moved in. Two successes, one failure. Not bad for a rusty I like cooking? Well, I guess when it is a new toy, yes!

More about training, health issues in future posts. And since I can't figure out how to change the damn font, I will stop for now!