Warning: This post starts off fun, but goes quickly downhill after that…
Yesterday, I rested. It was rainy here and I felt like cooking something in the crockpot. I made Chicken Parmesan, but did not adjust the cooking time for my crockpot’s size. I think ours is a 5 or 6-quart and lots of recipes are made for 3-quart crocks.
Crockpot Chicken Parmesan fail.
When I took the lid off at dinner time, here’s what I saw: dried up spaghetti sauce with a black-crust edge. That doesn’t look good. I got a serving spoon and tried to scoop out the chicken, but it wouldn’t budge. I scraped at it and it fell apart, but not in a good way. It was dry and almost looked like it would disintigrate like that greedy Donovan dude does when he drinks the holy water from the wrong cup in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. “He chose poorly.”
I’m such a bad cook that I can’t even make dinner in a crockpot. I unplugged the pot and announced, “We’re going out.”
It worked out, though, because we decided to make it T Junior’s birthday dinner (his real birthday dinner at home with family will be Thursday), but when I was growing up, we always got to go out for our birthday, too. I wasn’t thrilled about where we ended up, though.
We went to Shari’s (if you’re from around here, we call it Scary’s, it’s sort of like a Denny’s). Mr. T wanted to take T Junior there so we could get him (and us, of course), a piece of pie.
Once we were there, though, it turned out to be great. Nobody cared that T Junior wanted to race his Matchbox car on the table or that he didn’t always use his “inside voice.” And, he got his favorite food: pancakes. It was one large pancake with a whipped cream smile, a scoop-of-yellow-butter nose, two mounds of mini chocolate chips for eyes and two mini pancakes for ears. He got a piece of bacon and a sausage with it. It did not need syrup. I quickly took that away and scooped the nose off.
But we let him eat the rest, and he loved it. He ate 98% of it; there were only a couple bites of pancake and sausage left. You only turn two once, right?
Then we ordered two pieces of pie to share (although, we probably would’ve been fine with one). He was taking bites of banana cream faster than I could push it away. In the end, me and Mr. T were shoveling pie so there wouldn’t be any left because he’d had enough sweet stuff.
We went out to the car and he was shivering with sugar, and way too enthusiastic about the crow on the roof and the dog in the back of the minivan parked next to us. “A dog in a back a car!” he squealed for 5 minutes after we left the parking lot. Actually, he was being pretty funny. “I goofin’ awound,” he told us.
We didn’t go home right away because he needed to work off some of that sugar. We went to Petco and he got super excited about the rodents and the amphibians there. By the time we were back in the minivan, he was crashing hard. Poor kid.
He doesn’t normally get a lot of sugar, though, so we didn’t feel like too bad of parents or anything.
I wanted Mr. T to set my alarm clock for 5:30 this morning, but somehow he forgot. Luckily, enough drool to fill Lake Michigan was gushing out of the corner of my mouth and creating quite a large a pool on my pillow, so I woke up at 5:45. Later, when I scolded Mr. T about the clock, he said, “But you were only running 3 miles. Seriously, how long can it take?”
I explained to him that I can’t just run and be done now. Nope. In addition to getting dressed, eating and putting on all my gadgets, I now have a warm up, pre-run stretching, walking, then the run, then post-run stretching and, finally, icing.
That whole routine took an hour and 15 minutes this morning. I warmed up with 50 jumping jacks and 50 jump ropes as part of Inperspire’s Virtual Boot Camp Challenge. Then I stretched my calves.
Since it was pouring outside and 45-degrees (F) and all I had for running bottoms was a skirt or shorts, I tried to think positive instead of negative. I channeled Penny and some of the other bloggy guys and gals who like running in the rain.
They inched up as I ran, though, which was annoying.
I do like them for biking at the gym.
I was cold as I did a warm-up walk. I stopped to stretch my calves again on a curb and the rain soaked my back.
Finally, I was running.
The run itself felt okay. It wasn’t as good as Friday. In fact, I could feel soreness in my shins while going up and down the stairs on Saturday. And I felt it right away on my run today.
I did my 1.5-mile Town Loop twice, focusing on my gait, trying to use my thigh muscles to propel each leg forward instead of the calf muscles. I thought about running from my core and paid attention to my arms, swinging them back and forth, not side to side like I sometimes do when I’m running lazy.
Those things made me faster, but it didn’t change the fact that I could feel soreness in my shins and calves. Again, my right one especially. At home, I stretched and then iced my right leg with my peas and green beans.
Then I went about my day, which didn’t really consist of much. We just sort of lazed around. I colored my hair (darker, in case you are wondering). Later, we went to our friends’ house. And that’s where I felt it.
I was sitting down, even. But I used my legs to shift my body in the chair or something and my shins and calves protested. Severe tightness and soreness. Not quite pain. But it felt like before.
So, I don’t know that I’ll be running a half marathon in two weeks. Walking maybe. Bloggy buddy Alma over at The Average Woman’s Running Blog offered to let me speed-walk it with her and some friends, and I might take her up on that. It would be fun.
(I just have to figure out the logistics because we never got a hotel over there — it’s about three hours from our house. The plan was to stay in our new RV, which we never purchased, and then I got hurt, so I didn’t bother to secure a place to stay. We could drive it, but that’s an early morning for T Junior and I also need to figure out packet pick-up.)
Here’s what I’m really sad about: I hadn’t announced it yet, but I really, really wanted to try for the Bellingham Bay Marathon on September 26. It would’ve been 26.2 on my 33rd birthday. Training would start next week. So I guess that’s out.
How long does calf strain and shin splints take to go away? Could I do
the first half of the training on the bike maybe? Should I go to physical therapy sooner than later? Is it going to get better on its own? This is all so annoying. I’m impatient. I want to be a marathoner now, not next year or the year after or whenever.
Maybe this is God’s way of keeping me healthy since I need to stay in shape if I’m training to train for a marathon. Know what I mean? I’m pretty sure if I didn’t have a race to prep for, that I could do some serious slacking and fall back into my old ways of just sitting around staring at Facebook all day (I still do that of course, but just a half-day now).
Jill and Mel are trying to get a group together for a half or 10K that’s also on my birthday. Maybe I should shoot for the 10K. Maybe I should just be happy with 5 and 10Ks for this year and plan for a full next year.
Either way, I have to end this post because it’s getting late and I have to get up to bike in the morning. Maybe I’ll figure it out while I’m sweating buckets at 6 a.m.