Weights and tears

When I started this blog, I was wearing a boot on my left foot for Achilles Tendinitis. It was the second time this year I’d worn the boot.

Last summer I was running a lot and then noticed – I don’t remember exactly when – a pain in my ankle. Like all stubborn runners I thought: I’ll just run through it and take it easy tomorrow. I did this for the following 3 months, realizing that no matter how much “down time” I gave myself  my ankle wasn’t getting better. Some days I could run just fine and not have any issues. Some days it would start out hurting, but then I’d push through it and be fine at the end of my run. Some days I’d have an excellent pain-free start of the run only to have to stop short due to the pain deciding to stab my leg and threaten to cripple me. So I stopped running around Thanksgiving. I “took it easy” and only did my usual weight training every other day.

In January of this year I went on a couple long walks to test the water with my ankle. I’d looked it up and thought: yep, I have tendinitis, but I’m mostly ok. I don’t hurt too much and if I don’t walk much it’s no biggie. Plus, I don’t get too much pain at all with weight training. I could tell after one walk my ankle still wasn’t happy. I finally went to a specialist around March and he said: yep, you have tendinitis, but it’s actually healing since you’ve been off it a bit. He gave me a script for steroids to help with the inflammation (there was a noticeable, small bump on the back of my ankle) and then another script for the boot. He said to wear it for three weeks, wean off it on 4th and I’d be totally fine. Why, he himself had had the exact same thing happen to him! I had a total of 3 visits to him over the course of treatment and the last one he said I was ok. Only walk 1 mile for a bit and no weights for another couple weeks.

One month later I attempted to run, which I was allowed to do – on a flat surface – and only managed a half mile before my ankle fell apart again. Bump back, ALL the pain back.

I didn’t put the boot back on until June after a trip to Scotland. I didn’t want to be hobbling about doing touristy stuff. I didn’t go back to the doctor because I thought he was full of shit, but also maybe I did something wrong with the rehab as well. I wore the boot for 6 solid weeks and very slowly weaned off it this time.  It felt great. There was no bump. I started taking little walks in the neighborhood. Nothing long and not at a fast pace. No pain. I was so incredibly happy and hopeful. I missed talking my long walks, but what I longed for the most was my runs. I’d gotten up to 7 miles before stopping last Thanksgiving.

Then this past Saturday I went to a friend’s house for a BBQ and we all walked into town for a car show. We walked very slowly among the crowds, but it was a lot of walking. Sunday morning I felt fine, but then crossing my legs while sitting at the dining room table I felt a stab of pain. By midday I had a bump again on my ankle. I iced my leg twice that day, but the bump didn’t go away. It was still there Monday and all the old pains started coming back. I’d read enough about Achilles Tendinitis to know that in some cases, it can turn into a chronic condition. I may not have a tear bad enough for surgery, but the usual lighter treatments like what I’d been doing may not ever entirely work. There is the option of surgery in case there’s lots of scar tissue or if bursitis sets in….. I did the worst thing possible by reading so much about it online and collapsed into a blob of angry tears on Monday.

I love running. I ran cross-country in high school as a means of getting out of the house when I was younger. I took it for granted then. Years later I picked it up again and realized it was the only “sport” of sorts that I like  – competing against myself and trying to get better. I love having runner highs. It’s addicting, but in a good way. Running also helps me sleep and regulates my mood swings by relieving stress. I zone out when I run – sometimes to the extent of not even remembering the run itself when I’m done. It’s my way of meditating. It also helped me lose 20 pounds when I made more of an effort to get into shape. I weight lift also, which has greatly helped me and I love feeling stronger and don’t mind the sort of muscle pains one feels when lifting. They’re growing pains – growing to be stronger. But no matter how much I lift, I always look forward to my runs.

Now, due to my own stubborn stupidity I may not be able to run again. I might’ve given myself this chronic condition due to how long I refused to accept it for what it was last autumn and should’ve stopped much sooner. That realization made me so utterly miserable I couldn’t do much of anything other than hold back tears all day Monday until I got home. My husband let me cry on him and said I should take it easy and not despair just yet. We did a lot of walking on Saturday so maybe my ankle was being cranky about it and I just needed to rest again. I was comforted by his kindness in being optimistic for me, but part of me knew I may need to face the reality of not being able to run again – let alone taking my long 4-5 mile walks in the neighborhood, or hikes in my favorite parks.

The bump went down a lot on Tuesday and Wednesday and today it’s sorta back, but that might be due to the shoes I’m wearing, which are new and the heel is digging a bit into my ankle, but it’s looking like that on both ankles. My calf has felt tight, so I did some stretching yesterday and did some light weight training (body weight mostly) because I can’t give up all exercise. Even when I had the boot on I was still doing exercising – mostly upper body and core – but hardly doing anything at all for legs.

I’ll hold my breath for now about it and give it some time. I don’t want to call it a chronic condition just yet. More like – I’m afraid to accept it right now.

workout
Reflection in mirror hanging on the back of the basement door to the workout room. I use to to check my posture for dead lifts and squats.
weights (1)
Husband had a shit winter/spring too health-wise and he’s gradually getting his weights back up. 
dumbbells
Rusty old dumbbell set from the in-laws. 
barbell
We have two barbells, a few dumbbells, a weight bench, a rowing machine, a treadmill, and lots of mismatched weights from relatives and Craigslist finds.

 

Half tucked

cardiganoutfit

Rolling up the jeans and half tucking in the shirt made me feel a little more put together even though I felt craptastic today. I was perfectly comfortable and thought I looked a little better.

Shirt: Banana Republic – old. Jeans: Grana – no longer available. Shoes: MaddenGirl from DSW. Necklace: Swarovski -gift. Cardigan: Banana Republic – old.

Last night I looked through some photography books I bought a long time ago. They were from people who I’d followed on Flickr and admired their work. I used to take a lot of photos and kinda miss it. When I got back into anime and started reading manga photography was pushed to the back burner. I used to take hundreds of photos a month of everything around me and even published my own book of photos about breakfast when taking breakfast photos was a huge thing then. It still is, but it’s now all on Instagram. It’s amazing how phone cameras changed the photography world, for better and worse.

I took some photos around the house today. I was never a professional by any means so the disconnect between what I think I’m shooting and what ends up on the screen is still rather great.

plants
Plants I bought yesterday.
crumbs
Our crumbly dining room table.

The photography books I looked through were about a journey two photographers took in mainland China. The people in the photos had very simple lives with no technology and barely any electricity. It made me think of how odd it was that my life was just as simple, but it felt hurried and rushed – like I’m always waiting for the next Big Thing to happen even though there isn’t anything. I have every convenience around me, but I take it for granted and even resent it at times. But it’s not the fault of the technology – it’s me. I’m the one who’s bored and needs to make better use of my time.

So I’m going to try to take some more photos. Maybe I’ll even do a series to give myself a project of sorts.

Anime Slang Fail

Game of Thrones started up again on Sunday night. So naturally my FB feed explodes with GoT posts and memes again – from all my friends because I am one of the minority who doesn’t watch the show. (I watched the first 4 seasons and then gave up because I found it boring.)

I noticed my husband put an image up in a comment and mentioned anything with more Tormond and Brienne was a good thing.

  • Me: Do you ship Tormond and Brienne?
  • Him: …….
  • Me: You know, re-la-tion-SHIP?
  • Him: …..
  • Me: *explains “shipping” and where the word comes from*
  • Him:….. this is an anime thing, isn’t it?
  • Me: It’s in regular pop culture……. to a degree….
  • Him: …..
  • Me: … ok, so yes, as far as I know it started in anime culture…
  • Him:….
  • Me:…..

Style inspiration – linen

Lately I’ve been obsessed with pinning all things linen on my pinterest. It’s most likely due to how freaking hot it’s been here lately. That being said, I’m also being aware of items I can wear throughout the year just by layering them. Most of it would easily work for spring and autumn seasons when it’s cooler – just layered up a bit.

button down
Ovate
dress
Fantasy Linen 
jacket
Evam Eva – no longer available
orange pants
Calo Rosa on Yesstyle
pants
Fantasy Linen
top and pants
Knock Knock Linen

I’m also realizing what sorts of colors I like. Browns, creams, white, black, deep green, blues (predominantly navy), dark orange, umber and grays are what I tend to like the most. There is of course white in there because it’s good to have a contrast to all the darker colors in the list – even if I’m not overly fond of it.

I also would love a collarless linen jacket – a la Paul Harnden style (yeah, right – may as well take out another mortgage loan), so I’m on the hunt for something similar.

harnden
Paul Harnden jacket

Collarless items or Mandarin collars (is that racist? It sounds racist or culturally insensitive – I’m not going to use that anymore – collarless it is) are prevalent on my wishlist items too.

Linen blends, linen lined with cotton and various linen fabric weights are what I want to test out. I realize there may be a LOT of ironing/ steaming in my future.

Perfume – the unseen accessory

I wear perfume almost every day. I have scents I like for specific seasons and ones that work well year-round. Even though I only have one handbag, I have a lot of perfume. Go figure. I may have more than the average perfume consumer who may choose a couple “signature scents” to wear all the time, but my collection is small compared to some perfumistas I know online. Either way, I do think perfume can play a part in an outfit.

I love incense so I have several perfumes with incense in them. Next would be woods and after that green notes. I like the more chewy and slightly sweet resin notes during the winter and citruses for summer. I don’t like grapefruit – the fruit – but surprisingly I do like it in some perfumes. It’s a bit funny how some things I like as smells but not as the actual item it is and vice versa. I like hyacinth flowers, but they tend to be too sweet for me in perfume. I’m also not afraid to wear men’s perfumes because sometimes they are better with certain notes than women’s.

My one handbag

handbag

This is the only handbag I use – a boho style from Coach. I do technically have another bag, but it’s more like a bag you use when going to the beach. It’s small and cotton with light colors. Considering I rarely go to the beach I don’t use it at all. The wallet inside the above handbag can also serve as a wristlet, which I do occasionally do when I don’t feel like carrying everything in my bag.

I’ve always been a one-handbag sort of person. I know a lot of women, especially near my age, have a whole wardrobe of handbags for different occasions and outfits. I think what prevents me from buying and using different handbags is simply my own laziness. I think it’s too much of a hassle to move everything in this bag to another bag just to match that bag with an outfit. A simple black bag like this seems to go with everything, so I’m ok with that. The last handbag I had was a brown one from Fossil and I used it for so many years the leather on the bottom was worn through and the liner started to show. It was a great bag, but it was very casual looking so it didn’t always go with more formal occasions – not that I have that many of them, but still….

I think I would like another handbag like a cross body one, but I’m not too sure. My laziness is still preventing me from putting in the mental effort to consider why I might need one. (How do I even get myself up in the mornings? I’m a lethargic zombie!)

“Staples” I don’t have in my wardrobe. Part 2

This portion of all my rambling thoughts on wardrobe “staples” includes items that I, as a woman, lack. I’m not saying women should all have these items. Again, this is just based on fashion/style/influencer blog sites I’ve read that seem to assume women have or need these items in their wardrobe. There are plenty of women who don’t. Power to all of us.

Despite my love of black clothing, I do not own the prized token of any woman’s wardrobe (or so people would say…), the Little Black Dress. In fact, I currently don’t own any dresses at all. Zero. Nada. None. Zilch. Last year I had three dresses. Two of them I’d worn only once and the third one I wore to a slew of weddings the year before. Since that time I’ve lost 17 lbs so none of those dresses fit me anymore. All three of the dresses were black, but not plain black.

In general, I’ve never been the type of person to wear dresses. I’ve always preferred jeans or trousers. I suppose one could say I’m a bit of a tom boy and that’s fine. There are plenty of women who cut a mean figure in a formal pants suit for special occasions. I’ve not done that because I always assumed I’d need to wear a dress for formal occasions. Maybe now that I’m entirely dress-less I’ll try that out. I do have two upcoming weddings to attend this autumn, so we’ll see. I’m not entirely against wearing dresses and perhaps I just need to find my own perfect Little Black Dress to change my mind.

So, based on the above information, what’s the likelihood of my actually having skirts, which tend to be another wardrobe staple for a woman? Yeah, not quite. I do have one skirt right now and it’s too big. It feels like it’ll drop off me so I’ve only worn it around the house when I’m washing all the jeans/trousers. I recently washed the skirt (it’s cotton jersey so it feels like PJs) and have tucked it on the shelf in my closet I usually designate to clothes on their way out of the wardrobe. So that means – zero skirts! Again, I’m not against wearing skirts, but I normally don’t reach for them or dresses (when I have them).

Another “staple” that is one of my least favorites, are high heeled shoes. I hate heels. Lots of women hate heels. Some totally rock the high heeled look and it does make for a flattering silhouette, but I am Queen of the Klutz People. There are many of us in the female realm and we simply do not know how to walk in heels without looking like we should be in some slap-stick comedy where we perpetually harm ourselves. I’m not talking about the 1-2″ kind or “kitten heels” on booties or boots or sandals. I’m talking about the 3″ and up crowd of heels. Barbie heels. Stiletto heels. Heels that make women sound like Clydesdale horses – and vaguely look like them while attempting to land each step they take in them. I have one pair of black wedge heeled shoes. I think they go up to 3″. All other heeled shoes I have are shorter. I’ve worn those shoes maybe 4 times for special occasions. I’m ok in those because they are a wedge and I’m not trying to balance my heel on a needle head. I’d be willing to try wearing more dresses and more skirts, but high heels are a big, fat NOPE.

Out of the three traditionally known items to be most women’s wardrobes, high heels are one I won’t budge on. I don’t care if I have a meeting with the god of the universe and need to look formal. I’m not doing high heels. I’d be willing to wear a skirt or dress if the need arises. But first, I need to have some in my wardrobe.