Hey guys. Realized today that yes I am human, have human feelings, do things that humans do, and can easily get overwhelmed when life feels turned upside down.
In a lot of ways I feel I am watching a movie where I am watching my life, goals, and dreams, slipping away and yet I am powerless in many ways and have zero control.
I am sleeping throughout the day, have taken off from work per Dr. requirement, am not even close to training at the level I once was, and feel pretty shitty and tired more days than not. Yet I try my hardest each day to be optimistic.
Today I just broke down. On top of an already starting migraine, I realized just how much pain was in the heart. I after many years of fighting back pain and the results of the cycling accident I felt life was turning and goals were within reach. I after many tough years found happiness when I moved to AZ in July. I found happiness in my new job, a beautiful place to live, amazing friendships, family close by, a great church with amazing pastors, and more.
The last 6 mos. starting in Oct. with 20 days in the hospitals, then batteries of tests and Dr.’s, then a fractured ankle, followed by meningitis as a reaction to medicine I supposedly needed, and this Feb/March another 13 days in the hospital. I won’t lie, it’s been tough and at times more than I can handle. Where I always put up a smile, it’s a facade at times as I hide the pain.
What I am searching for is me. My life as a runner. When you run as a pastime or feel forced to for better health, “you run”. When you run because it is your passion, fills your heart, and helps you see your true self, “you are a runner”. Some may disagree. But I stand strong on my opinion. I AM A RUNNER. It is who I am along with other things. I live to run, to feel the challenge, take on the goals, and find myself accomplishing much more than one thought possible. Shit, at one point I was told I might not walk again. So YES I am a runner, it is what I do, and I will return to it with great passion and determination.
I am also a goal orientated individual. It is how I was brought up. You make goals and you accomplish them not matter what it takes.
So I move forward each day. Staying below the threshold of set-back yet pushing my body to become stronger and fitter. While some see my actions as frustrating, little do they know or understand the journey it has been to get to where I am today. It’s beyond words, it at time causes tears, but without my amazing support team and Faith it would have been impossible. Thanks to all that stand behind me. You mean the world to me.
With strength, courage, patience (I lack this), and determination…. great things are going to occur.
Well I have now been out of the hospital for about 48 hours. 13 long days at Barrows/ St. Joe’s and I am feeling somewhat human (only somewhat though).
I started back at Endurance Rehab. this AM with my PT Dave and it went well. I was totally amazed how I had very little strength and felt overall weak (legs felt a bit like jello) but we took it easy and it ended as a great session. We will build on that and I will be there 3 x week regaining strength and stamina. So grateful for everyone at Endurance Rehab. and it was great to see everyone today.
Outside of PT this week is going to be quiet. I am still dealing with a headache (tolerable with meds but that isn’t the goal). When not at PT I have so far just been relaxing on the couch, sleeping a bit, watching some mindless television, and hopefully will be able to get to some quiet computer/paperwork later in the week. I am to follow-up with the Neurologist and the NeuroMuscular Specialist at Barrow in the next 1-2 weeks.
For the first time in memory I am completely OK taking a week or so as down time, just to build the body back up, to try to get these headaches under control and to regain a “normal” active life.
I am super excited to be honored at the Sun’s game on Wed. night with my Neurosurgeon Dr. Porter … I am so eternally grateful for all the amazing care I have received and the support of everyone.
This was so well written that it needed a re-post and more eyes to read. Taken from http://www.lululemon.com/community/blog/a-sweat-guide-to-the-meatpacking-district/
To introduce our newest store in NYC to the world, we asked Kate, New York local and assistant manager at our East 66th store, to tell us how to get our sweat on in the Meatpacking District. Using our manifesto as inspiration, she’s created a list of the 7 best places you need to know about the next time you visit New York.
a 7-step guide to elevate the world
Have you ever sat down and written out those specific axioms that get you out of bed in the morning to help you elevate the world from mediocrity to greatness?
I tried on a few of my favourite manifesto lines and applied them to a day spent in one of my favourite communities in the world, the Meatpacking District in New York City. A neighbourhood known for its transformation from meatpacking warehouses, to a host for underground nightlife, to its current post as a hub for high-end fashion shops and exclusive nightclubs, Meatpacking will also become home to a new lululemon athletica store, set to open March 8, 2013.
1. drink as much fresh water as you can. water flushes unwanted toxins from your body and keeps your brain sharp.
Ever tried alkaline water? Alkaline water is loaded with antioxidants that help hydrate cells. By supplying a greater amount of oxygen to your body, this water supports your organ and muscles function. Organic Avenueprovides this purified beverage on tap and uses it in the majority of its juices.
2. practice yoga so you can remain active in physical sports as you age.
Yoga 216 is where you’ll find owner, instructor, and Meatpacking ambassador Nicole Katz. This white crystal chandelier lit studio, nestled beneath the High Line, caps classes to 6 mats, enabling Nicole (and the studios other amazing instructors) the ability to focus on the goal of neutral alignment and a pain-free practice for students.
3. what you do to the earth you do to yourself
The High Line is an elevated greenway that transports you into a natural paradise juxtaposed with amazing views of the downtown skyline and Hudson River. This recycled railway is a great inspiration for seeking sustainability in daily life.
4. breathe deeply and appreciate the moment. living in the moment could be the meaning of life
Meditation has many inward and outward benefits. Taking time for quiet and still meditation supplies one with a greater ability to live in the present. My first step in setting a meditation practice is finding a meditation station. I found mine at the Dream Downtown, in the hotel’s secluded outdoor courtyard.
5. creativity is maximized when you are living in the moment
Being in the midst of art inspires creativity and brings gratitude and wonder. Street art and the many galleries in Meatpacking host many sources of inspiration, be it for your next artistic endeavor or wardrobe of choice for your next workout.
6. a daily dose of athletic-induced endorphins gives you the power to make better decisions, helps you be at peace with yourself, and offsets stress
Layla Luciano can be found at Barry’s Bootcamp in NYC. A sassy instructor and Meatpacking ambassador, Layla knows how to motivate her classes. Layla’s continuously changing workouts send my body into “shock”. Her workouts short and intense segments of strength training and interval cardiovascular routines challenge me to exceed my perceived limits.
7. friends are more important than money
After a long day of sweating, soaking up inspiration, and appreciating life, I’m ready to share my experiences with those that matter most to me, especially over expensive fancy cocktails. At the Top of the Standard at the Standard Hotel drinks at sunset offer stunning views of the city.
To learn more about manifestos to live by, join us in welcoming lululemon Meatpacking to New York’s most fashionable neighbourhood on March 8, 2013.
A little update:
I have been in the hospital at Barrow Neuro / St. Joseph’s since Monday of this week. A case of meningitis about 2 weeks ago lead into a central nervous system issue that landed me here on Monday with bad headaches and leg weakness. I say I am scared is a bit of an understatement but I am getting amazing care from everyone and have had tons of visitors and thoughts/prayers.
Currently they are doing a procedure called plasmapheresis (kinda like cleaning of the blood) where I have a central line in and 2 lines hooked up. Blood goes out of my body from one line, is stripped of the plasma, and then back in through the other line. I am on day 4 of this and not sure how many more days. Also have some chest tightness issues and low heart rate (30′s and low 40″s) so they did an EKG today and we are waiting for cardiologist to consult. It’s very scarey how much can change in just a week as I was active, working, and playing last week and now in a hospital stuck in bed. Gotta keep the faith in the Dr.’s but it’s hard when there are no def. answers yet (more tests will be back the first of the week). I’m def. learning patience.
They have me on a “cocktail” of headache meds, morphine, high dose anti inflammatories, and a few other things. Nothing seems to be working great but taking the edge off a little.
I am for sure catching up on home design ideas watching HGTV a lot and watching occasional SurfNetwork and Netflix .They did bring a commercial quality recumbent bike up to my room for me to use a couple times a day since I can’t do much walking at this point. Hopefully to maintain some level of strength.
The hospital food is horrible (seriously, how can you mess up frozen GF waffles, they can) BUT so many have brought me all my favorite goodies… even fruit puree baby food to make me feel like I am home and in my surroundings (yes, I eat that stuff while training, works great!) Thanks to EVERYONE.
I will keep you all posted. I am praying for the best and praying to get out of here as soon as I can. I so love my life here in AZ; working, playing, training, all my crazy cool friends, etc. To many exciting things to be part of and being in the hospital is so NOT one of them.
Hugs to you all.
This is a question I am asking myself a lot lately. With our health care system better known as “broken” and the recent medical issues I have faced, I am both frustrated and extremely confused on whom to listen to and believe.
To make a super long and scary story short… I contracted a virus in Oct that attacked my peripheral nervous system and brain. Temporary paralysis of arm, then numbness and lack of sensation in feet and legs, bad headaches, etc. I spent most of Oct. in the hospital where it was also discovered I had some immune and adrenal system issues. We discovered via blood tests that my body doesn’t make the needed antibodies to fight infections and my adrenal system doesn’t work to well.
Dr.’s told me I would need immunoglobulin antibody infusions every 21 days to give my body the antibodies it doesn’t make to fight infections and strengthen my immune system. Since then every 21 days I go and get an IV put in and antibodies … every time I feel like shit for 2-3 days. They say a common reaction.
The third time (a week ago yesterday) I had an infusion. I felt sick all week and by Fri, a friend took me to the ER. I had tests run, a spinal tap done, a CT scan on my brain, etc. The spinal tap revealed aseptic meningitis (a reaction from the antibody infusion). And an explanation for the insane headache, nauseousness, stiff neck, and tiredness. I spent Fri. through Sunday at the hospital (Mayo Clinic) on IV anti-virals and antibiotics (just to play it safe according to the Dr.’s) plus morphine and IV fluids. I come to find out from the Neuro at Mayo, that it might not have been necessary after all to have the antibody infusions and those infusions in particular are extremely hard on the body especially someone who has adrenal system issues. To say I am frustrated is an understatement. Here we are paying close to a grand for each infusion and come to find out that there might have been an easier less invasive and less expensive way. What was suppose to make me healthier gave me meningitis. And let me tell you aseptic meningitis is brutal and painful.
So what to do? Well I am taking some charge with advice from those I TRUST in the medical field. I am going to attempt to deal with the immune system and adrenal issues through nutrition and non pharmaceuticals … I will take a multi-vitamin and other vitamins with no potential side effects, I will get more sleep, work on staying properly hydrated and hope to be able to add some super food smoothies and juices into my daily nutrition.
It is when ultimate frustration occurs that you have to take charge, trust your Higher Power, believe that you know yourself better than anyone, and live each day trying to better yourself and inspire others. So here’s to moving forward with fast feet and ultimate stamina.
Cristin Van Driel, American College of Sports Medicine Certified Trainer and USA Track & Field Certified Coach is now offering personalized online training plans from 5K to Marathon for all levels of runners; beginners to elite.
All athletes and clients will fill out a detailed athlete profile prior to training plan development to ensure the plan is tailored and appropriate for the established goals and individual.
$ 19.95 for a 10-week 5K training plan
$ 24.95 for a 12-week 10K training plan
$ 24.95 for a 12-week half marathon training plan
$ 29.95 for a 18-week marathon training plan
All training plans come:
- Functional runner specific strength and core training plan
- Pre and post run drills and stretches
- Personalized recommendations on proper pace guidelines for workouts
- Unlimited e-mail communication with Coach Cristin
For more information contact Cristin at firstname.lastname@example.org or (623)266-2485
CEP Compression Socks
You see compression socks much more now than you did a few years ago and I can honestly say from personal experience that they work. So what do they do?
“CEP compression sportsocks are the first truly functional compression sport socks with a patented pressure flow technology that provide a scientifically proven increase in blood circulation and a consequent increase in performance. In addition to blister prevention, CEP socks provide more oxygen, more energy, an improved metabolization of lactic acid, and faster recovery so you can return to training quicker than ever.”
CEP O2 Running compression socks features 18-25 mmHg compression. These socks have been scientifically proven to maximize muscle oxygenation which will increase energy, allowing you to run with less effort, decrease recovery time, and reduce fatigue to optimize performance.
Before, during, after:
• Before training use for muscle activation and muscle warmth
• During training use for increased oxygenation, decreased chance of muscle strain, and optimal performance
• After training use to speed up and shorten the recovery process
Some other benefits to these socks I find helpful include the Achilles heel support which provides added support and stability of the Achilles tendon and provides some protection to irritable areas around the Achilles. CEP socks also come with anatomically shaped inline seams. Yes, that means a right and a left model. No worries they have on them “R” and “L” so not to get confused. This allows the socks to adjust to the anatomy of the foot.
CellTex® Fiber Finishing – use of non chemical additives which means pure comfort, climate regulation, no chafing, and absolutely NO blisters.
iPS Integrated Power System – defined compression with scientifically patented pressure profile improves blood circulation.
Sizing – measure the circumference of the fullest part of the calf
Material – 85% polyamid, 15% elasthan
CEP Compression Socks are an important tool to my recovery box. I have used these for months for recovery, sometimes sleeping in them and other times just putting them on after hard days of training. I feel the benefits while running and training in them especially on those days when the legs are tired and sore or during intense workouts. I highly recommend this product to any serious athlete or any individual that deals with cramping or leg soreness.
You can find multiple colors and get fitted for the CEP socks and sleeves at any Sole Sports Running Store … Come in to get yours today.
Another re-post. I get daily inspiration from Jeff and all the lessons he taught me. I miss you Jeff and know you are the reason I find the strength to keep fighting forward.
10/10/2010 – A Poem for Jeff — (written by me)
Bright yellow shoes
Greeting with smiles
Kitten to tiger tattoos
Legs that can take the miles
Rock on my friend
Ride into the wind
Your strength my guiding light
You are now watching from greater heights
Race for the stars
Don’t stop in the clouds
Lungs screaming, legs burning
It’s Jeffy here, the wind is now turning
The wind is your friend
I’m now on the mend
Toward your dreams I will send
From now every journey I will attend
Rock on dear friend
and time to go for the win.
10/6/2010 – R.I.P. Jeffy
While out training this AM, I couldn’t help to see the movie in my mind of all the ways Jeff touched my life.
14 years ago I walked into his club in Grafton. I was just a horseback rider, burned out of competition and struggling to find myself. As I walked in the doors I saw Jeff. Huge smile, tight spandex skin suit, and neon yellow shoes. Yes, I had a moment of second thoughts, but I took the chance.
I told Jeff I was lost. Burned out of horses, struggling to maintain my health, and unsure of what direction I wanted to go. He smiled and said, “no worries”. I joined as a member, Jeff was my trainer, and before long I was on a spin bike taking one of his classes. Every time I worked with Jeff, I felt like someone special. He was patient, motivating, had a way of making me feel important.
Weeks later I started to work for Jeff. He taught me what being a personal trainer was all about; making people feel important. Jeff became my coach, I became his student. He guided my every step and I listened and absorbed his knowledge. Jeff’s smile was contagious even when I was working so hard and/or so frustrated I couldn’t speak. He would just smile and that smile gave me the strength and determination to get the job done.
Soon I was teaching the spin classes he once taught. Helping members better their health and motivating them in the same way Jeff motivated and inspired me. Jeff would frequently tell me, “stay with it, you are good at this”. I worked for Jeff for close to 6 years. Jeff introduced me to what I am today, a personal trainer but on top of that. I strive to be the person he was to me; a motivator, an inspiration, and someone with compassion beyond words.
As time progressed Jeff introduced me to endurance training (cycling). Jeff built my first bike and was possibly just as excited about it as I was. It was red and white. Jeff encouraged every mile that I covered, he would work with me weekly on strength, and answered every question I asked. Jeff’s AM phone calls at the club’s each morning made my day. Hearing his voice and encouragement for a successful day reminded me of his determination and dedication to his lifestyle. No person worked with more determination.
In 2000 when I was hit by a car cycling, Jeff was there to visit. I will never forget him telling me, standing next to the hospital bed, “you gotta get back on the bike”. Jeff never let adversity dictate his dreams. He taught me perseverance! A lesson I have used and helped others utilize because of what Jeff taught me.
Because of Jeff, I found what I was created to do; motivate, inspire, educate, and help others enhance their health and fitness. All that starting at a place called Wisconsin Health and Fitness Center during a time in life where I was a lost individual but found by a special person.
Jeff now rides his bike among the clouds with skin suit and bright yellow shoes, and the “Jeff smile” that was always there to greet and inspire me is seen just beyond the sun! Jeff is now in the hands of the Lord, forever safe riding his bike. Love you and miss you Jeff!
I am re-posting this blog that I wrote in August of 2010. It was very meaningful and brought back a very important lesson tonight as I am editing journals from the past to be inserted into my book. It it sometimes your response that characterizes your take on life and it’s challenges.
8/27/2010 – Life Doesn’t Happen, It Responds
Life isn’t happening to you; life is responding to you. It is your call. Every area of your life and every part of your day is really up to you. You are the creator of your life. You are the writer of your life story. We can be given obstacles but it is how we view them that ultimately affects our success. You are the director of your life movie. You decide what your life will be, by what you give to life.
This all dawned on me today. as some of you know I have been faced with a few obstacles, a couple times a week (including today) I have to go get IV fluids and iron for a pancreas condition. Not a huge deal, not life threatening, but certainly not fun. The nurses love to chat with me and frequently they say “you poor kid, you have gone through so much.” Today that really hit a nerve. What I have gone through is nothing compared to so many others. Where I go to get these injections and treatment they are given in the oncology department. I witness those battling cancer, many too sick to walk without help. A lot of the time they strike up a conversation with me and we chat. Not about disease, not about medicine, but about what life has to offer. Some ask my story, why am I there, and what do I do. I just simply say, well, I help people. I help people to become healthier by incorporating fitness in there lives, I help people deal with setbacks and help people overcome obstacles. The nurses just smile, knowing that I have a long run the next day or a race. I rarely talk about that to these amazing people. Really what I have overcome is nothing compared to what these and others face. Some of these amazing people will battle to the end and then will head up heaven to a wonderful life without any pain. Others will battle and beat the demons affecting them and live on to inspire those around them.
But life is really how you feel and how you react to what you are dealt. Sure I am human, I despise needles and hate having iron and fluids pumped into me each week, I wish I could eat normal foods and meals without taking digestive enzymes, wish I had never broken my back BUT I really have been blessed with the ability to help inspire others and the strength from God to help me through some pretty tough times. So when the nurse said to me, “you poor kid”. I thought no I am pretty blessed.
You can take any situation in your life, and every possible outcome can occur. Any outcome can happen based on the feelings you have about the situation. So next time you are faced with a tough situation, think about the outcome you want to occur and most likely that will drive your actions to accomplishing your goal.
“It’s not what happens to you, but how you react to it that matters.” – unknown
Make each day GREAT!
Well, after many hours scrutinizing over the blog and the design (I am not the most decisive individual) I have come up with what I think is a simple yet concise and clean look to the blog. There will be additions and more graphics which will make it more intuitive and fun, but the ground plans have been laid.
In addition I am nearing the end of developing training plans from 5K to marathon for different levels of athletes that will be available on the web site in the future, a small price to pay for a semi-customized and personalized training plan that comes with a functional and core strength plan and a pre/post run drills, to enhance your running mechanics and lower injury risk. All this has taken much more time than anticipated but I refuse to put out anything but my very best to offer athletes of all levels striving to accomplish their goals.
My ankle injury continues to get better daily. MANY thanks to Dave and the crew at Endurance Rehab., . I continue to get therapy several days a week and have downsized out of the boot to an ASO brace. I am able to use the elliptical (my most HATED piece of equipment “pure torture”), the bike, the pool, and have been in the AlterG anti-gravity treadmill a few times this week.
I have learned more so lately the preciousness of being able to run and just how hard it is when it is taken. That lesson in turn has taught me to re-evaluate my future plans and journeys with the sport of running. I need not to take risks and need to stay focused on my goals and dreams. That means it’s the roads and staying off the technical trails, it means cross-training a bit more to decrease impact, it means listening more and giving up some control and allowing others to educate and direct me. Success takes teamwork and I have the best team anyone can ask for!
It’s about having the Faith to trust the Higher Powers. Lately I have called upon Jeff, Grandpa Don, Grandma, and others who now guide, direct, and give me courage from above. I couldn’t feel more loved by so many even at times when I am feeling both frustrated and overwhelmed.
We are not given more than we can handle, we paddle out to the surf, and face adversity head on…. and then rise up and let the surf bring us back to the shore with grace and dignity.
I move forward in life, work, running, and sport knowing that I have both the strength and courage to face what lies ahead and the same strength and courage to leave the past behind.
Much love and hugs. Never give up on your dreams, for they will provide you with confidence and strength!