Friday, August 21, 2015

What I did on my summer vacation

This is what I've been up to the past few days. Not much of anything - just hanging out at the beach, walking, swimming, napping and reading. I've done a fair bit of thinking too - about aging gracefully (hard to do), the state of Canadian politics (abysmal), a short story I've been working on (still needs work) and the future of the planet (very worrying). I've also been thinking a lot about running - trying to work out what the heck's the matter with my right leg/hip and how to fix it.

I've only done three runs in the past week and none of them felt great. On the upside, this morning's was the best by far - I think because I'm finally managing to work my hip loose. I had to stop a few times to stretch but my right leg felt more normal than it has in awhile and, when I was stretching afterwards, my lower back/hip made a very satisfying clunk that I hope meant whatever was out of whack is in whack again. My right hip's certainly feeling better now.

While I was poking at my legs this morning trying to figure out what was tight and wasn't, I discovered a nasty knot about 6 inches above my kneecap that likely isn't helping, so took time to foam roller my quads. The knot's not completely gone yet but I'll work on it some more over the next couple of days and see if I can get rid of it. 

The issue with my hip and leg has been building for some time now. I noticed last fall that they sometimes got very tight when I walked, and all the ice and snow last winter made things worse. I hoped they'd start feeling better once spring arrived but the problem seemed to get worse - maybe because I increased my mileage a bit too quickly preparing for CTR, then Barrington. In any case, I only noticed it interfering with my runs a few weeks ago, which is when I started to get more serious about dealing with it.

On the advice of my chiro, I've been doing hip-opening exercises more consistently and trying to send less time sitting when I'm at the office. However, it wasn't until the past few days that I noticed real improvement. I hope I may be on the mend at last, but I've booked an appointment with an active release therapist just in case. It's a little over a month before we leave for Scotland and I'm determined to get it sorted out so I can hike/walk as much as I like while we're there.

Of course, this hip thing is a perfect example of how willfully blind we humans can be, I've known for almost a year that my hip was acting up but ignored the problem hoping it would go away by itself. I should have known that wouldn't happen. At 53, my body takes much more maintenance than it used to and minor issues quickly escalate into major ones.

Speaking of willful blindness, I find myself fascinated by the fallout from the Ashley Madison hack. From what I've read, it seems the company did a relatively poor job of protecting customer information - which is ironic given the business it's in - so perhaps I should feel some sympathy for its customers. On the other hand, in this day and age, I would have expected those customers to understand that most information shared on-line is at risk of disclosure. Given that, communicating with someone they don't know - who may or may not be telling them the truth about who they are - for purposes of arranging a "discrete" affair seems ill-advised, at best. It strikes me at least some of them must have been willfully blind to the risks they were taking. Or perhaps they just didn't care about getting caught. In any case, I'm finding it hard to have much sympathy.

Today was overcast so we opted to stay home and tackle a few chores. Or at least Husband did.I mostly lazed around while he kept busy investigating the issues we've been having with our well, repairing the brakes on our car, cutting a stair riser for my folks. and making supper. Did I mention he also installed a new power window motor on the car and dealt with a plumbing issue this week? Being married to such a handy (not to mention handsome) guy certainly has its benefits!

Note that I added two more titles to my reading list on the right. I picked up a third book tonight but only read a chapter before I put it aside. It looked like it might be a good one - a murder mystery set in 2060 - but the opening pages described the murderer thinking about how much enjoyed torturing a young woman for four days before killing her. I don't need that kind of darkness in my head. There's quite enough there already.

Only two more vacation days before I have to go back to work. Depending on the weather and how we feel in the morning, we may head to the Annapolis Valley to visit an elderly friend and check on a couple of wineries tomorrow. Or not. We'll see how we feel. On Sunday, I'd like to tackle a longish run if my body's up to it. Fingers crossed.

Happy running and writing, friends!


  1. What a lovely vacation! I suspect the relaxing on vacation has something to do with the hip issues. Just saying. I think most people would say you are doing very well on the aging gracefully front. I sure hear you on the maintenance thing. And recovery, lots longer for that too. Hope you enjoy the rest of your vacation! Keep those beach photos coming. We had snow here yesterday, and a frost last night. Sigh.

    1. I'm sure you're right that laying around so much hasn't helped - though I've tried to change positions and stretch as often as I can. I can't believe you guys had snow yesterday! I know Calgary weather is crazy but that seems totally over the top. Hope the week ahead is more like summer.