Saturday, October 29, 2016

from bunion boot --> long distance runner = THE RETURN OF THE #MRG! :D

so once upon a time, I RAN SIX MILES, PAIN-FREE, in LESS THAN AN HOUR (just barely, but still!!) POST-BUNIONECTOMY.

& here's the proof, thanks to my trusty garmin:

if you were following the #mrg over the summer, you might recall that i had a bunionectomy and was in a "cast" for a few weeks, & then moved onto my lovely BB-2 (big black bunion boot, aka bb-squared) for another few weeks. #howispentmysummervacation, in a nutshell, = not walking for a lot of the time on my left foot. (ps if you want the full surgery/bunion story recap, you can see my recap post here.)

i got pretty used to clunking around in this little guy, especially once i was allowed to start driving again (#BESTDAYEVER). i was also given a handicap parking tag that lasts me through december, better believe i have been taking (for better or worse) full advantage of that as i've been healing.

but lo & behold, way back in early july, i had my personal independence day - about six weeks post-surgery. my pretty little yellow pin was taken out (needed it there due to the hammer toe i had/arthroplasty that was done to fix it during the bunionectomy surgery), and i was as shocked as you are to see just how long that little pin was!

i snapped a few shots of my new hardware (two little screws permanently in my big toe, for life)

& on july 7th, 2016, my official independence (from being unable to walk) day became official! 

i was only "allowed" to fast-walk for the next month or so, so i don't think i got in my first real "run" until i made it back out to utah in late august. but needless to say: after that first run, i was STOKED. considering the fact that i had spent months being unable to run more than 2ish miles without pain in my foot...and now i could run THREE with ZERO pain!??! #unreal #SOhappy!!!

the proof is in the garmin!
(editor's note: my first run was just 1.5 miles, as pictured above. the second run i think was the one where i ran 3 miles...pictured below :):

my lungs hurt, my legs hurt, & i remembered how difficult it is running with utah's altitude (#MOUNTAINS) - - but I DID IT. with ZERO pain! after that run, three could easily have been my new favorite number.

since that glorious first run back, i was happy to log more & more miles. even as much as FIVE. FIVE. WHOLE. MILES. with ZERO PAIN. it am pretty sure that it had been YEARS since i had been able to do that (since i never ran more than maybe a mile during exercise time on my mission)!!! #notracknoproblem

more and more bliss-filled miles just kept on becoming a part of my life. just me & my running shoes & the open road ahead of me. 3 miles. treadmill miles. more & more & more RUNNING miles. pain-FREE. i can't say that enough. what a huge difference that surgery made!!!

& then the beauty of an early-morning run came back into my life...HOW i have MISSED those! ah! cold-weather running gear (aka just adding in a long-sleeved tech t-shirt for now, but still) is my favorite. (:

"lettuce run. go bananas." ;)

MORE cold-weather running. love love love love running as it gets cooler outside! 

& i love my complex's little fitness center/treadmill to keep me in shape when i wait until much too late at night to get in my run for the day ;)

& just to prove to any remaining doubters about my rekindled love for running - i actually went running WITH SOMEONE ELSE. that is like, the biggest rarity in the world. (i don't like running with other people because our paces are generally different - aka i don't want to run slowly or push myself too hard to match their pace) actually come to think of it, it's probably just more proof of the fact that i really, really like this hanging out with my squid (aka sydney aka bff from the mtc!), enough to join forces for an afternoon run, at least. (;

& a few days following that lovely run, came along this little gem that i started off this little post commemorating -- my first SIX-miler, in who knows HOW long, totally & completely PAIN-FREE.

bah. i know i keep saying it but honestly, this still boggles my mind. the entire reason i love love love running so much is because it is one thing that i feel like my body was made for - that i can keep doing forever & ever. i love long distance running because i can go for miles & miles and just be perfectly content, listening to music or a church talk/podcast or looking at the beautiful scenery all around me & just thinking about life in general. the fact that i wasn't able to run long-distance (with or without pain) pretty much from august 2013-august 2016 has been difficult. but in all honesty, i'm so so grateful for:

1. the mission i served (100% worth sacrificing a year & a half of long-distance running), &
2. the learning & growing time that i had (struggling through the pain, getting surgery, learning a TON about patience, & going through the entire recovery process).

i've learned a TON about myself, developed a whole new love for my parents (thank you again SO. MUCH. for paying for the surgery & taking care of me & loving me & so so much more), and i have an entirely new appreciation for my body and the incredible blessing that it is to have two feet, two legs, & the ability to run again, for miles & miles (& miles & miles & miles...:).

ah. so there you have it. it is now late october & although the half marathon i initially wanted to be ready to run (today - the provo halloween half) didn't happen (due to a few minor setbacks that i might get into in a later post)...the good news is that the #MRG is now officially back in action - - (hopefully!) for good. :)

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