How I’m helping my body heal from shin splints

I feel like I haven’t posted much on Instagram lately because I am CRANKY about this injury—my first shin splints in probably 7 years. I’m quite bummed about it. I was in denial at first because they weren’t as bad as I remember them being 7 years ago, but my massage therapist confirmed it: shin splints (and thank GOODNESS they aren’t as bad as they were 7 years ago!). I’m pretty sure I know exactly what caused them, and I am moving forward with a plan to not only heal these shin splints (quickly, I hope), but remedy the cause of them by adjusting my training from here on out.

I’ve decided to share some of what I’m doing to help my body heal—both to reaffirm it for myself* and also in case anyone else may need a little guidance in this area.

*Reaffirming it for myself because I’ve gone a little stir crazy about this. The last few days I’ve been so frustrated with my body, and frustrated that I can’t train and move how I want to. Part of how I’m going to deal with that is to actively work on recovering, and also hopefully find some good ways to fill my time! Hobbies or what have you. Still deciding exactly what to focus on though.

Here are some things that I’m doing to heal:

  1. I’m taking Deep Blue Polyphenol Complex pills 1-2 times a day, with meals. These pills are a part of doTERRA’s Deep Blueline, though they aren’t the exact oils in the oil blend or lotion (both of which I love too, by the way). These pills are taken internally and are said to help support muscles and joints, soothe discomforts, and contains doTERRA’s “Tummy Tamer Blend.” I’ve been taking it in place on ibuprofen for about 2 months now and have been very pleased with it. While I usually take it as needed, I’ve been taking it more regularly over the past few days in the hopes that it will help in my body’s healing process.

I will say, these pills are rather expensive, which is why I haven’t tried them before now—but if you’re on a doTERRA team, placing regular wholesale orders, and doing that whole thing, a majority (if not all of) your monthly order will be free. To me, this makes these pills well worth it!

P.S. These pills contain: Frankincense, Turmeric, Ginger, Green Tea (caffeine-free), Pomegranate, Grape Seed, Resveratrol, Peppermint Leaf, and Caraway Seed.

P.P.S. As always, contact me if you want more info on anything doTERRA, or on joining my team!

  1. I bought this roller stick to help roll out my muscles, especially around my shins. I’ve used a foam roller for quite some time now, but when my massage therapist recommended I roll out my tight calves and the area around my shins regularly to help heal and prevent future shin splints, I felt that this would be an easier way to do that. So far, I like it a lot!

  2. I’ve been adding collagen peptides to smoothies! Truth be told, I ran out of collagen peptides a couple weeks back, and had been using bone broth in smoothies instead, just because I had that available at the time. But I’ve since put in another order for collagen peptides. This powder is unflavored and can easily be added to smoothies, drinks, baked goods, etc. (I add it to my green smoothies every day). It promotes healthy skin, joints, bones, hair, nails, etc. 

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Of course, those three things are only part of how I’m healing from this. A lot of it is rest, some cross training, as well as icing my shins and knees multiple times a day.

If you’re in a similar boat, perhaps check out this article for some more recovery ideas (I’ve done quite a bit of research on this, but that article got straight to the point and gave great insights, I thought!). I also really loved the second half of this post by hungryrunnergirl (I love her) about how to move forward from running injuries.

Now here’s hoping my body heals up quickly!

House of Order, Part 1: Intro + Finances

“Organize yourselves; prepare every needful thing; and establish a house, even a house of prayer, a house of fasting, a house of faith, a house of learning, a house of glory, a house of order, a house of God.” (Doctrine & Covenants, 88:119)

A couple months ago I had the impression to create “a house of order,” and I kind of brushed it off because I am a single woman, living with roommates, and while I’m organized in some ways (making lists, keeping track of stuff at work, etc.), physical organization wasn’t something I was too concerned about.

(Also, when I thought of “house of order,” I thought of it in the context of a future home, belonging to either me as an individual, or with a husband and kids (hopefully); organizing toys, schedules, meals, and keeping a spirit of light in the home—all things that are either non-applicable or that I don’t have total control over while living with 2 other women who all have very different lives, schedules, and priorities).

A few weeks later I received the same impression but suddenly my view on “house of order” shifted. This time it became very applicable to the present—encompassing finances, nutrition, my daily/weekly schedule, cleanliness and organization, learning, and working toward goals. I tracked numbers, I kept written records. I didn’t do it all at once (so take a deep breath if you’re feeling overwhelmed, because I was starting to while writing it all out), but I started researching and implementing a new system once every few days. There was no timeline to this. I simply started working on a new thing, became familiar and comfortable with it, and usually within a few days felt like I could expand to more.

I want to share about this, because it matters to me, and because I feel like it contributes to me living an active lifestyle. I’m going to start with the area that I’ve probably been working on longest.

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Financially

I made some poor decisions when I left a very stable (though emotionally draining) full time job in 2016 to pursue being a yoga instructor (with a very lacking business plan). I essentially lived off of savings for over a year and racked up debt quickly during the second half of that period of time. It could be much worse—I’m still surprised that I am not in more debt considering what I was working with—but debt is still stressful. Cutting back and feeling guilt for purchases is also stressful. Truth be told, I’ve held a lot of shame around finances for a long time.

My first step in a better direction came when I was invited to participate in the LDS Church’s Self Reliance Program, which was being piloted in the United States after having been used successfully in some poorer countries for a time. The program is 12-weeks long and consists of weekly small group classes. While there are four different classes I could choose from, I chose the Personal Finance class.

I loved the spiritual aspect of the class, and I learned that we can work with God to build up savings (an emergency fund), get out of debt, and be more able to lift up those around us through this—and that God wants all of those things for us! He doesn’t want us to feel burdened by this, and He also wants us to build the skills that come with being wise stewards over our finances.

I also started using the EveryDollar app to track my finances. I highly recommend this app, as it helped me to really see where my money was going and where I could cut back.

Getting spiritual again for a moment—I truly believe that when we do our part, God lifts us up higher than we could have on our own. When I began the self reliance program, I was working a part time job that I felt unfulfilled in and was not providing me what I needed financially. Over the past 6+ months since that first self reliance class, my role at work has grown and shifted into a position I love, with responsibilities I feel fulfilled with, and with greater hours and pay. It is a huge blessing, and I honestly believe it is as good as it is because I worked with God to make it happen, and I did what I could do on my end. Truly, truly.

My second step came a couple months after the self reliance class when I met Elisa, a financial planner. She offered to meet with me to review my finances. It was nice having this one-on-one time with someone who knew her stuff, had seen a lot of different situations already, and could give me insight and concrete ideas on how to continue to work toward my financial goals.

This is all still a work in progress, and I think it always will be in some way or another. But those are the tools I’ve used to become a better steward of my earnings.

Check back for more posts on how I’m creating a “house of order” soon!

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To find more information about and resources from the LDS Self Reliance Program, click here.

Utah folk! To contact Elisa and schedule an appointment with her, click here.

 

Image from @YogiApproved.

Transformation/Throwback Tuesday

I was searching my old-old blog tonight, trying to find old pics of me running to see how long I’ve had my running shorts, haha! (Turns out the oldest picture I can find with them is only 4 years old, but it feels like I’ve had them for longer! But I guess thank goodness I haven’t). But I ended up finding something FAR better.

On October 9, 2009 I wrote the following intentions:

For the past several months, I have had intentions building in my mind.
These are two of the ones that have stuck around.

  • Become a certified yoga instructor. Look for chances to offer the blessings of this practice to those who normally would not be able to afford going to an expensive studio.
  • Run a 10k, half marathon, or a relay race. Any of those will do. I just really like running.

So, basically, I’m thinking that if I publicly announce these things on this blog, I’ll actually get them done. And by the time I save up enough money to enroll in a yoga instructor training course, I’ll be about ready to do that! 🙂

crow pose, probably held for .2 seconds, october 2009. header photo, crow pose 2017.

I don’t remember writing these. I remember having thoughts that I’d like to become a yoga instructor someday, but at that time I only casually practiced, and mostly at home. I remember thinking it’d be cool to do a half marathon someday, but at that time, I only casually ran/walked some 5k races, probably just casually run/walking a couple miles some evenings to be ready to just finish that distance come race day.

You guys.

In 2014 I ran my first 10k, and then my first relay.

In 2016 I completed my 200-hour yoga teaching certification.

In 2017 I ran my first half marathon, then my second.

(Uh, also, p.s. Thank you to my parents for funding my yoga teacher training. That whole bit about “saving up enough money to enroll” didn’t actually come to pass. Whoops. Gratefully, practicing better money management is already an intention I’ve set and am actively working on, haha!)

You guys, I did these things. These dreams and intentions that seemed so far off, so unlikely, especially considering how little I was working toward them at the time. It makes me think, what other someday-thoughts have I had in my life (I can already think of some), and what would happen if I focused even a little bit more on working toward them? Writing them down? Being more intentional about my time and efforts in those particular areas of life?

Same questions for you. What intentions can you set today? What are those quiet someday-thoughts you’ve had? Then start making them happen.

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Header photo by Tiffani Berthold at The Station Fitness Studio in Orem, Utah!

What I’m Learning About My Body

   Monday to Saturday!

This week I bumped up my training quite a bit. I did double workouts on three days. I took one rest day. Work was also busier than usual this week, and so by the time I finished teaching yoga on Saturday morning, I was SPENT. I got some gluten/dairy/soy free donut holes from Sprouts, grabbed a Diet Hansen’s Cola, and turned on Netflix. And now I’m here, and feeling pretty pleased with my day so far. Haha!

So, how did I survive (and feel pretty dang good and just a bit tired) this week?

  1. On my second double-workout day, I went straight to Seven Serenity in Orem to use their bemer mat and infrared sauna. You’ve heard me talk about using the infrared sauna before (still love it!), but I’ve started using the bemer mat occasionally as well. According to the bemer website, “BEMER applications boost the blood flow, thus benefiting the body’s cardiac system, regenerative abilities and even mental acuity.”

  2. doTERRA Deep Blue Polyphenol Complex®. I’ve always ignored this because it’s pretty expensive, but I had to add more to my doTERRA order last month and I decided to throw it in my order out of curiosity. AND I LOVE IT. I don’t use it every day, but I’ve been using it after particularly hard workouts (or the next morning) and I really think it’s helped in my recovery. Truly. It’s the one thing I’ve changed/added to my recovery tools, and I’m really so surprised that I’m doing so well this week.

    I haven’t done a ton of research on what this softgel does, so I’m just going to paste exactly what the doTERRA website says about it: “Deep Blue Polyphenol Complex delivers polyphenol extracts of frankincense, turmeric, green tea, ginger, pomegranate, and grape seed, and is designed to provide soothing support to aching muscles and to other occasional discomfort. Frankincense extract shown to help support muscle and joint comfort and function. Includes proprietary, standardized extracts of ginger, curcumin, resveratrol, and other polyphenols to soothe occasional aches and discomfort. Contains the doTERRA Tummy Tamer blend of Peppermint, Ginger, and Caraway Seed.” (And then their standard disclaimer: “*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.”)

    At the wholesale cost, it’s about $1/softgel. But dang. Since I’m not using it every day (and since I technically got it for free this month), I’m converted and it’s something I’m going to keep using for a while.

And now, what I’m learning about my body through all of this.

  1. I’m adapting my training plans/goals to fit what feels right for me. It’s a pretty cool process. Even the disappointing workouts (like the run that I wasn’t able to finish this morning) are helping me learn what I PERSONALLY want to do, and how I want to train. It’s helping me learn my limits, and where I can push a little harder. I’m loving this process!

  2. I’m really enjoying moving in different ways by doing more cross training. This includes adding cycling to my running training. This allows me to work different muscles on different days (and letting muscles rest when needed).

  3. Hydrating and fueling is so important. Which I knew, but it’s still fun to continue to fine tune all of that according to my own individual body. Most importantly, I know I feel best when I avoid things that I’m sensitive to (duh, hello).

Above all—work (play?) hard, rest hard!

Finally, some words of inspiration for you:

 

 

 

(All from Instagram. Last one from Runners World!)

 

Race Recap: BYU’s Rex Lee Run 5k

I had an expected goal pace for this race, and I had a hopeful goal pace for this race—as I usually do. And then I got a little stressed the morning-of, scrapped all of that, and simply remembered that I was running for my Grandma Judy, who had died of pancreatic cancer in 2016. I decided I simply wanted to race smart and remember her.

And then two miles into the race, I scrapped all of that again and thought, “My legs are heavy, it’s really sunny, and I wish I hadn’t worn pants.”

All in all, this race felt like a crappy training run more than a wisely run race. Ha! Darn it. It happens, for various reasons. That said, as I’ve been processing the race today, there are some really positive things to note about it:

Pros:

  1. The race itself, the Rex Lee Run. All of the money from entry fees goes directly to cancer research, which I am SO in favor of. Like I said, this disease took my grandma, and took her quickly. I saw the state she was in when she passed—she was one tough lady, but this took so much out of her. Anything in this area of research, I am very much in support of, which is why I’ve run with my grandma’s name on my bib in 4 races now (two Temple to Temple 5k’s in 2016 and 2017, the AF Canyon Half Marathon to benefit local cancer patients in 2017, and now this race).
    The race was well organized. Also, all of the staff, volunteers (including LDS missionaries, which I LOVE!), and participants were so happy and excited to be there. The energy at this race was one of my favorites, and I can see why people keep doing it year after year.
    And, the shirts are cozy. Haha! I was one of the few who didn’t wear their shirt during the actual run because I wanted to come home afterward and cozy up in it.
  2. The race starts with a hill. I had a goal to run it at about a 9 min/mile pace. I ended up with an 8:55 min/mile pace, and I felt pretty good running the hill at that pace.
  3. After that hill, the second mile of downhill sure felt nice!
  4. One of my FAVORITE parts of the race was seeing Sam and my cousin Mikey at the end. They came to cheer me on. It meant so much to me.
  5. While I didn’t hit my race goals (any of them, really—time goals or racing wisely goals), I did do a very similar race route for the BYU Women’s Services Voices of Courage 5k in October 2016 where my time was 31:46 (so a 9:59 min/mile average pace). Part of that was surely because the race started in a more congested area so I was forced to start slow. But also, I’ve improved a LOT since then. It was an almost identical route, and this time I finished in 28:43 (9:05 min/mile pace). So while this wasn’t my best 5k, it wasn’t my worst, and I could see an immediate improvement on the course itself (at least with the numbers—I definitely think going slower in that 2016 race FELT a lot better than today did as a whole, haha).

Things I could have done better on:

  1. That starting hill was great, but the second mile, which was downhill, I did it at an 8:53 min/mile pace, which felt great. But also, should my easy downhill pace be the same as my difficult uphill pace? Hmm…
  2. I swear I checked the temperature in Provo last night and it said it would be in the 40’s (it was), and partly cloudy (it wasn’t). I debated between capris and long pants this morning, and ultimately decided on the pants (partly cloudy could also mean chilly), and oh man, did I regret that pretty quickly. I’m just grateful that I left my running gloves in my car. By mile 3 I was so hot, and even rolling up my sleeves just to get some more air on my body.
  3. I stopped briefly multiple times in that 3rd mile. Whereas my first two miles were about an 8:55 min/mile pace, my third was 9:33 min/mile. I’m glad that I listened to my body to pause and walk (I guess I raced smart in that regard), but also, poop. That was not my plan. On a similar note, there were some photographers along the course, and the first couple I could smile and feel pretty good. By the last photographer, I tried putting on a smile and distinctly remember thinking, “smiling is taking up a LOT of energy right now.”

So, this wasn’t my best 5k race, and it wasn’t my worst. I ran it, and I’m glad I did. The money —and awareness—went toward a great cause, and this race will help my body grow stronger as I work toward my upcoming goals.

Thank you to my dad and Bridget for texting me good luck the night before! Thank you to my roommate Katie for taping my shoulder this morning! And thank you so much to Sam and Mikey for coming out to hug my sweaty self at the finish line. Your support means so much to me!

Another 5k in the books, friends. Onto the next thing!