Sunday, May 19, 2013

Harden up princess.

Literally. Seems there has been a reason this whole time for my inability to get my legs and body in running mode. Ive never know anyone - well atleast since starting in this Triathlon world who has had as many tormenting down days as me. Seems I take a few promising forward steps and then my body for whatever reason chose to make me stop dead in my tracks more times than I would like to count.

So when I decided to stupidly fracture and dislocate my toe ten days after coming out of my boot I decided it was high time that things get checked out properly, once and for all. Cant tell you how sick and tired of having bone pain Ive been. Ive had more scans than I would like to count and if I could glow radioactively, I would. So when I finally insisted on having a Bone Density Scan I think the GP was slightly put out by a 39yr requesting a scan that is normally reserved for the older population.

Well, fast forward a few days and the results came in. "Significantly low Bone Mineral Density". So much so that my spine resembles that of a wee little old lady. Good thing though that my neck of the femur was preserved due to my running - well there's a positive. It seems that all of this is whats making everything go awry. I knew there had to be a reason for all of this garbage happening, couldnt just be bad luck. Ive listened to my trainer, done everything by the book and NOW here was the answer I'd been looking for. Whilst you never want something to be wrong with your body, it was good that I finally had an answer, and now I could move forward in getting things right again.

I'm not expecting that it's going to be an easy fix. From speaking to the Sports Doc, he did say that it could take a few years to right the wrong in my spine - and it may never be equivalent to my prospective age. But if I can atleast get it to a 10yr proximity versus a 20-30yr distance which is where I'm at now - Id be stoked. So here's to Calcium rich foods (non-dairy related) and my Calcium and Vitamin D supplements to get me back on track. Im going to conquer this, just another thing in the life of Barb. And with the help of another specialist to see if it's all hormonally related - I should be right as rain - or atleast on track to getting me to my big goal.

And so here it is.

May 4th next year Im coming back to do it. I have to get this off my back and I will. When I signed up I got that flutter in my belly again of excitement and trepidation. I don't want to sign up and not compete again. And whilst I love spectating and supporting, I want next year to be my year. I really think I deserve it. I'm going to give it my best crack and be super cautious in my training using everything I have available to be to get me there in one piece. Even if it means wrapping myself in bubble wrap.

Well enough of me. Yesterday a few friends of mine competed in The Northface 100 and 50. OMG, talk about hard. I don't even think the word hard comes even remotely close to what my inspirational friends accomplished yesterday. 
photo - Lyndon Marceau

For those of you who don't know about this race - check out the website here - The North Face 100. It is without a doubt one of the hardest UltraMarathon's ever. And I have friends who are brave and strong enough to do it. You all inspire me without a doubt and make me realise that anything is possible, you just have to want it bad enough. Your mental strength is something that I admire and strive to have. And if I can have an itsy bitsy little bit of what you all have - I'd be stoked. Congratulations on accomplishing the hardest race ever and now time to rest those legs. You have earnt every bit of pampering that is coming your way.


Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Anyone got a roll?

Of bubble wrap that is. Seems I need it in surplus of late. I can't seem to keep from hurting myself and it's becoming a bit of a joke. Last Wednesday I decided to add insult to injury by fracturing and dislocating my left little toe at the vets. A stupid accident but nonetheless it has put me out for another few weeks of healing time. So those first few tentative walking steps I took a week or so ago have now come to a grinding holt - yet again. Oh well, there's nothing I can do about it, and as a close friend said to me "maybe it's life's way of making 100% sure that the leg that just came out of the boot gets a bit more rest time", thanks Mel. I think your right too.

So I'm not going to sit here and sulk - I think I have done enough of that. I'm going to just get on with it and work again on my strength - SWIMMING. If I thought I was getting stronger before - I now have renewed motivation to want to get even stronger. Maybe this is the universes way of telling me to keep my eye's on my goal "Aussi Masters Games in October". Maybe I got slightly sidetracked as soon as I was told I could walk and ride again and I needed a slight reminder of how important this was to me. So it's time to get cracking with 5 months to go.

I have a few goals I would like to meet at these games. One is to crack the sub 30 secs barrier for my 50m Freestyle. Secondly I want to hit sub 34 secs for my 50m Backstroke. I would also like to try and get a sub 1:10 for my 100m Freestyle and try for a 10:30-11 min for my 800m Freestyle. Not sure if achievable but I sure am going to give it my everything. Of that I can assure you.

Anyways, on the weekend was Ironman Australia at Port Macquarie. It was the one I was meant to be participating in before all went wrong. And whilst I was slightly hesitant to say the least about going (not sure how I feel about not being in that water for the start), I'm really quite glad I went. It just added fuel to the fire that was brewing. Second time lucky for next year. It was such a buzz watching all of my team mates compete. I not only swam with them, I rode with them and ran with them in spirit on Sunday. I yelled till I couldn't yell anymore and walked till my little toe couldn't walk anymore. But one things for sure - I didn't feel at all devastated, it was just what I needed. My club, Panthers Tri Club, has awesome competitors and fantastic family members supporting them. To those who completed yet another Ironman, completed their first or smashed it up and got PB's - you are all my INSPIRATION. I want to be like you all when I grow up. And I look forward to crossing that finish line and experiencing that HIGH next year with you all....

At the start line something completely amazing/magical happened. Out of 1602 competitors that took to the water there at Port Macquarie - I made eye contact with one sole competitor and smiled and wished her luck. I don't know why out of everyone there that I chose her to smile to but it just happened. She proceeded to stand up - lift her goggles off her eyes and say "Barbie? I've been reading your blog. Im going to do this for you today!". Needless to say I burst into tears, and my husband Stephen had tears in his eyes too. If I could have jumped into the water and given her a cuddle I would have but before I could show her just how much that meant to me - off went the siren and she was gone. All day I searched to see her face out on the course so not sure how she went but if you are reading this - please let me know how you went and know that you really did make my day. I hope you got that medal and are wearing it super proudly. You deserve it.

This weekend was also super special because IM day was also my husbands 50th. The night before we went out with a whole bunch of our close friends to celebrate and we had an AWESOME time. Thankyou to everyone for sharing in it - I know how much it meant to Stephen. And thankyou to everyone on Sunday who wished him Happy Birthday - he felt really special. I will never forget this weekend as long as I live.

I'll be back Port. Don't you forget my face.  Because when I reach that start line -
 I wont be stopping till I'm done.

Your hard work will be rewarded.

"The path to a dream is paved with sacrifices and lined with determination. And though it has many stumbling blocks along the way, and may go in more than one direction, it is travelled by belief and courage and conquered with a willingness to face challenges and take chances" Barbara Cage