Monthly Archives: March 2012

The MRI

We already know that I can not be trusted alone in a room with pictures of my feet. This time, they sent them home with me. I bet you never would have guessed I’d go to these lengths to get unique pictures of my feet.

Here are a few of my favorites:

I wish I knew how to read an MRI picture.

20120330-132451.jpg

Look at all that muscle! Yeah, barefootin’.

20120330-132544.jpg

Is there a baby growing in my foot? (It looks more realistic in the real picture)

20120330-132630.jpg

Mmmmmmm, BRAINS! Say hello to my zombie toes. They’d like to have you for dinner.

20120330-132725.jpg

Is it true that the MRI adds 10 pounds? Oh, it must just be the twins. Wait!? TWINS!?!

20120330-133203.jpg

Advertisements

7 Comments

Filed under Barefoot, injury, personality flaws

Five Star Hotel

My brother-in-law, Arni, has a rule when it comes to choosing hotels, “No colors, no numbers.” I’ve stayed in a wide variety of hotels in my life. I have even had to disregard the number and color rule. I’m looking at you, Upstate (really upstate) New York. Usually, I can avoid colors and numbers by booking a room at a Fairfield or a Hampton. These hotel chains have consistent quality and moderate price, and you don’t end up paying for extras like internet connection, breakfast, or a bottle of water.

Unfortunately, there are places in the world where the most you can hope for is clean accommodations. Now, I’m looking at you, Wisconsin. This week’s travels take me to one of those such areas where you just have to cross your fingers. I’m in Trois-Rivieres, Quebec.

Today’s hotel is old but, yes, the accommodations are clean as long as you ignore the obvious crack in the toilet bowl that produces a puddle of water on each side of the base after every flush. I’m sure it only leaks the clean water that comes in after the flush. This hotel is just about the only game in town. And, well, it doesn’t have a number or color in the name so at least I’m in the clear there.

So, if the title is correct, how can I give this hotel a five star rating after what I just reported? There are two things.

 

20120327-204253.jpg

1. Beer vending machine – I have to be honest, the beer vending machine alone catapults this hotel to five stars. I never stop being amazed at the things I experience when I travel the world.

 

2. High pressure washer- The shower is Kramer worthy. It is so strong I won’t need to exfoliate for six months. It’s strong enough for elephants.

Still, its a place I’ll be happy to leave when I do.

8 Comments

Filed under travel

The Podiatry Narritive

I have alluded to some foot issues in previous posts. I am resistant to bore you with the details of my ailments. Yet, I shall contradict that statement henceforth since you’ll need the background of my story to understand what is to come.

I set out a year ago to become a master of self-podiatry. My endeavor was mostly a success. My planter fasciitis is completely cured. I feel no pain despite having grown massive heel spurs. Then, I was shocked to discover that the PF pain was masking other foot ailments. As the PF pain receded, ankle tendonitis and top of the foot pain made themselves known but they too faded away with my treatment.

Note, regular barefoot runs and wearing shoes with minimal cushioning were included in my self-medication.

Yet, there is one last pain that has eluded the cure. No amount of messaging, icing, foot exercises or resting seems to be able to locate the source of the pain, let alone, cure it.

I decided that I really needed to see what was going on. I needed x-rays. Because I feared that last remaining ailment that couldn’t benefit from my self-medication process. I feared a stress fracture.

I made an appointment with a Podiatrist. (One with a degree in Podiatry)

Immediately, I began to wonder how this Podiatrist would handle me. Would she tell me to stop running? Would she try to fit me for orthotics?

20120323-144244.jpg
You knew I was going to do that, right?

I fretted over my impending doctor’s visit. What should I tell her? I’m a runner? I’m a barefoot runner? Or I’m a firm believer in being barefoot as much as possible and have gone as far to wear minimalist shoes every minute that I am forced to wear shoes? If she tries to put me in orthotics, she might as well save her breathe because I won’t do it AND I’ll never come back to see her again?

20120323-145014.jpg
They left me alone too long with access to my X-Rays

Diagnosis – there isn’t one yet, of course. There isn’t a visible stress fracture. Doc can’t pinpoint the source of the pain either (tendons, bones, nerves). I get to have an MRI next week. Plus, I was ordered to wear a shoe that immobilizes my foot and not run for two weeks. Like that is going to happen!

I’d like to add a final statement that my foot hurts in other joint areas from wearing this shoe! I’ll give it one week. That’s all.

20120323-152548.jpg

1 Comment

Filed under Barefoot, injury, minimalist shoes, running

Views and Comments

WordPress tries to comfort me by telling me that my views of my own blog are not counted in my stats.

Just a note: we don’t count your own visits to your blog

Which is really a shame because my stats would be tremendously better.

20120314-154530.jpg

They’d probably be the best stats in all of WordPress because, honestly, I am obsessed with reading my published blog posts.

20120314-155108.jpg

Let’s face it. I’m doing all this for me so it only makes sense that I view it the most. Then, after I tire of reading my most recent blog post, I just pretend I’m Julie and read it through her eyes for the first time. I repeat the process for Olga, Mike, Susan, Herman, Ivars, Maria… etc. Really, by the time I’ve reread the blog through the eyes of all the imaginary people in my life, it’s like my blog has been read by THE WHOLE WORLD! Which really gets me excited. Until I see the stats that don’t show any of these views. Hrmpf.

Look, I’ve even posted the most comments on my blog and I’m 50% more likely to comment than my top commenter, Tikk Tok. Although, at only 15 comments, I really should convince Julie or Herman, or Ivars to comment more often. Tikk Tok is a real person, just check the link

20120314-150126.jpg

10 Comments

Filed under personality flaws

Open Letter to The Fat Cyclist

Dear Fatty,

As any good fan would do, I must start out by telling you that I love your blog and I have been reading it for years. Today’s post, is, of course, brilliant, and the format is strangely familiar. I am sure as a beloved celebrity ultra-megastar hall-of-fame, social media, and lifetime-achievement, award-winning, cycling comedy, blogging sensation all while being incredibly handsome (Stanley Tucci has nothing on you), you tire of being hounded by the press and in the endless spot light but you’re always generous to your fans and never tire of their adoration or fan mail, right? I agree that you believe you may be the best cyclist in the world. I have learned that not only are you all these things that I (you) said, you are also wise, nay, a genius, or better a wise genius which is significantly better than being a wise guy, such as Stanley Tucci has been.

The point is that I am a Cub Scout leader. I have a responsibilty to teach my cub scouts the proper way to do things so that they can move on to Boy Scouts where they will put in practice their motto “Be Prepared.” Thank you, by the way, for teaching me the true secret motto which explains why my oldest son, who will graduate to a Boy Scout at the end of the month, went to school today sporting singed eyebrows. At first, I thought it was a new fashion trend and then I remembered your post, realizing it must be the result of the secret test to join the Boy Scout troop.

Back to my point, in a couple of weeks, I will be taking my Cub Scouts on a bike hike. But, before we go, I need teach them a few things about preparing for the trip, such as, bicycle maintenance and packing provisions. Although I competed in your 2010 100 Miles of Nowhere and won the Category for Recreational cyclist with 7 year old tag along on a 2 blocks course, I am, unfortunately, a novice cyclist with nary a clue what to do with a bicycle besides pedal.

Would you, please, help me?

I was so delighted to easily recall your post discussing the most important provisions for a bike hike. I understand the need for several of the items such as duct tape (sometimes it is hard to control those boys) and aersol cheese (yum) but why would I need to take a bike tube? My bike already has a tube, in the wheel, all blown up already. What would I do with an extra bike tube with no air on the trail?

Another great lesson for my Cub Scouts stems from the follow up post on proper cycling etiquette. I’m not sure what you mean by letting them catch up. Isn’t it better to get back to the car with enough time to eat that roasted chicken and have a nap?

With all the information you have provided already, it seems ungrateful to ask for more, but, I just couldn’t locate a good post on bicycle maintenance. You do do maintenance, don’t you?

I look forward to learning from you. Again.

Thank you,
Stephanie

edit: if you like this post you really need to read The Fat Cyclist. Fatty perfected the form.

2 Comments

Filed under cycling

Comments

When I get depressed about the lack of comments or views on my blog, I just go through my spam comments. There’s even hater spam! I mean, you really haven’t made it as a blogger until you receive hater comments. Thanks Spam for making it pseudo-reality!

20120309-161651.jpg

4 Comments

Filed under personality flaws

Disengaged To Engaged

Finally, I schlepped myself out from the coccoon of warmth at a respectable 5:35 am. The white-fur-dropping-flea-bag might have encouraged my timely exit. As much as that diva drives me crazy, I don’t ignore her when she meows because I’ll pay the price later.

My mind was engrossed in a million responsibilities leaving scarcely a heed to the goings on around or in me. Even walking across a frigid concrete floor enacted minimal reaction. The first sixteen minutes on the treadmill passed like traveling through a small town on a country road when you blink.

The window caught my eye shortly after 6 am.

Yes, I saw it. It was sunlight.

I thought as much about my next moves as I did that first sixteen minutes on the treadmill. I jumped off, closed up the treadmill, slid it into place, put on my Merrell pace gloves and took off outside.

It was the early morning daylight run I had promised myself.

The outdoor setting refused to let me continue in mindless routine. The wild winds whipped through my sweat soaked hair transmitting an icy current across my skull, down my neck, and dissipating into my shoulders. At the same time, I captured frigid breezes inside my lungs. The shocking coldness awakened my nerves from the inside out.

It felt so fantastically good to be running outside in the morning again.

1 Comment

Filed under Barefoot, minimalist shoes, running