Monday, August 23, 2010

The 3 Day: Weeks 18-26 Progress Report

So, I pretty much fell off the face of the internet for a while there. I have no excuse except that work again got the better of me for a while. I was also feeling very overwhelmed balancing everything going on in my life with all of the training that I'm doing for the 3 Day. I'm learning that I can't necessarily do everything when I want to do it or necessarily when it should be done and that I really need to pace myself and be patient. Easier said than done sometimes. Anyhoo, I'll try to give you an update for the past few weeks without turning this post into a novel.

My feet have gotten so much better!! I graduated from physical therapy (celebrated with ice cream at Cold Stone Creamery with Scott) but continue to do all of my foot stretching and strengthening exercises (especially before & after training walks!). They do get sore & stiff from time to time, but I suspect that's perfectly normal for the mileages I've been doing.

I finally found a pair of shoes that seem to fit comfortably. Thing is, after I finally felt like they were broken in is around the same time that I was up to walking around 10 miles. I was told that at around the 9-12 mile mark is when you'll start to notice your problem spots. Well, I started getting bad blisters around my heels. I didn't know if it was the shoes or the mileage for a while; ultimately, I think the problem may be the shoes. I'm going shoe shopping again this week in the hopes that I can find something. As you all know though, I'm terribly wary about getting fit for shoes since that's how I got hurt to begin with but I don't think I have a choice. I also don't have much time left to figure this out: 10 weeks will probably be just enough time to find another pair of shoes & then get two pairs broken in in time for the event.

I did fall in love with my toe socks, though! I was having problems with my toes rubbing and these socks by injinji have individual little toes, so they solved that problem!

I am truly not a morning person, but it's looking like I'm going to have to get over that. The longer weekend back to back walks are kind of lonely and boring to do all alone & since I graduated physical therapy, I started going out walking with a couple of different groups. They all start between 6-7am which has me waking up as early as 4:30am!! The one good thing about it is that we will finish up around noon time when the sun is getting extreme instead of having to walk through that. The bad thing is that I've been pretty much useless for the rest of the day. I'll get home, stretch & ice my feet, have some lunch, take a shower, then pass out for a couple of hours before waking up to have some dinner and then go back to bed. It's nuts.

That said, I met a really great group of women with BRA Patrol (aka: Bikers Raising Awareness) and joined the team at the Preview Expo! More about those fabulous ladies and the Preview Expo in a separate post....

There have been a few morning walks where the humidity has been insane and I've had a really hard time breathing. I don't think there's really anything I can do about it, except be aware of it. The first time it happened, though, I did freak out a little: really shallow breathing and chills despite sweating like crazy. I stopped in the shade for a little while & drank my Gatorade while I just concentrated on breathing. I managed to get through my last mile taking little breaks like that. Luckily, it hasn't been that bad again.

I got myself a waist pack! I really like the Mountainsmith packs that I've seen online, but couldn't find anyone locally that carries them so I could try one on. Plus, they were a little more than I wanted to spend so I wound up picking one up from Target. It's not perfect, but it seems to be working out just fine for me. It only a little 4L pack, but from what I understand, the 3 Day really is like a 60 mile buffet between all of the grab & go's, pit stops, and people on the side of the route so it doesn't sound like I need to burden myself with something too big. So far, so good.

I've seen a ton of wildlife on my training walks: armadillos, snakes, bunny rabbits, cats, turtles, some baby ducks, and countless dogs. =)

There was a time just a few months ago when I came home from walking only 1/2 a mile and crying because my feet hurt so much. Yesterday, I walked for four miles and considered it simply a fun walk. Those few months ago, I never thought I'd get this far. It simply felt impossible. I've gone as far as 16 miles already at a time. I don't think of this often because I feel like my feet are still giving me challenges (albeit new ones with blisters) but I am proud of how far I've come.

I've made a few new Pink Warrior pieces over the last few weeks (some inspired by the 3 Day's bubble logo design) and actually had the time to take some pictures of them; just haven't had the time to get them listed yet. I still have lots of supplies (so generously donated by Blue Buddha Boutique) so there will be more coming!

I did one more big fundraising event with the Safety Harbor 3rd Friday Music Series. It's a street fair where I set up my tent and put my Pink Ribbon goods and Pink Warrior chain maille out for donations. I also made Pink Ribbon sugar cookies. Lots of them: 77 bags, 3 cookies in a bag, plus about a dozen for me & Scott to munch on... around 240 some odd cookies made! And I could barely give them away! It was crazy. Nobody wanted cookies! What was really amazing to me that night, though, were the little girls that donated. They didn't want to buy anything, just to donate. They were the absolute best. So heartwarming to see them give so freely to the cause. Those donations really meant something to me. In the end, I raised $181 that night!

All I had left to raise after the street fair was $35 to meet my minimum goal of $2,300. I figured, I'd bring some of the Pink Ribbon sugar cookies I made to work for donations. I met my minimum that day by $.35!

I received a motivational donation of $25 bringing me up to $2,326!!

Mileage to date on training walks: 254
Goal: $2,300
Achieved: $2,326 or over 100%
Remaining: $0
Countdown: 68 days until the event!

If you're enjoying keeping track of my progress, please consider supporting me in my effort to eradicate breast cancer. No amount is too little or too much. Thank you!!

Hey Pink Warriors! Come get some armor (really chain maille jewelry).
All proceeds to benefit my fundraising for The 3 Day!