Catwoman

Tuesday

Today during lunch I sat outside with coworkers at the picnic table on the front lawn. I was sitting in the sun and moved to be in the shade after I ate. I could feel the back of my neck burning and my shoulders were starting to turn red. A coworker said that’s what I get for dressing like Cat Woman on a 90 degree day. It cracked me up she used that as a reference for my all black outfit. I was actually comfortable because this outfit is very light weight, but I could tell I would burn if I stayed in the direct sunlight for too long.

I left work early to go see the specialist about my ankle. He said my tendon seems in great shape and prescribed PT for 6 weeks. If my ankle wasn’t better after that, then he’d prescribe an MRI to see what’s going on. I’ve already scheduled my first appointment for next week since they were booked this week. My calf muscle is very tight from being in the boot for so long and he believes doing more stretching and strengthening will help my tendon.

I really want to be able to run again.

Quiet time

friday

This was Friday’s lackluster outfit. I was comfortable, but very slouchy.

Things aren’t going as well with my ankle as I’d like. I’m getting too anxious to do too much too fast and need to slow it down a bit. This is extremely depressing for me.

Also, work is really stressful lately. I know it’ll work out, but I’ll be dealing with a very upset client for a while until everything gets sorted.

All of this is to say I may not be posting much because I’m feeling the need to really hunker down with myself and stop feeling so loud. I’ll still take outfit photos, but may just do a weekly roundup.

Hope everyone is having a good holiday weekend.

Crying (inside) for the next 4 months

This week flew by incredibly fast.

thursday

Tuesday: Sweater – Halu Maybe from Yesstyle; pants – Uniqlo; shoes – Lems.  This sweater is the best winter sweater I own. I love it. When I spread out my arms I look like a giant bat. The hubs calls this my flying squirrel sweater. The turtleneck on it is massive. It’s so long that if I unfolded it all out it would engulf my whole head and flap over my entire face – it’s that big. There’s a tie string for the turtleneck, which is actually two layers. There’s a black layer and an inner grey layer so you can wear it either way. I usually wear the gray out and tuck the tie string under. It’s a cheap, fast fashion buy from one of those huge fast fashion websites and it’s one of the best purchases I’ve ever made. I live in this sweater in winter.

tuesday

Wednesday: Shirt – Yohji Yamamoto (Everlane long sleeve tee underneath for warmth); pants – Brass Clothing; shoes – Lems. This was not a good day. I was late to work due to a dramatic story revolving the alarm clock and the husband. As a result, I was thrown off all day and felt stressed out. At least I looked nice. I took this photo right when I walked in the door so I’m covering up my ID badge I hadn’t taken off my pants yet. Everyone has to wear an ID badge because it has a fob for door access to various parts of the building. Some people have more access than others, depending on department. I’ve never worked some place like this so it’s a bit weird. I’m always afraid I’ll forget my badge each day. I try to keep it in my purse when it’s not on me so I  know where it is.

wednesday

Thursday: Everlane mock neck shirt under an Everlane cotton sweater; pants – Uniqlo; shoes – Allbirds.  This sweater is a few years old and hasn’t really aged well. It’s comfortable, but it’s very flimsy and I feel like it looks too frumpy now. I bought a new Everlane cotton sweater and got it this week. It’s the mock neck cropped one. The cotton is much more substantial so hopefully it’ll last longer without looking bad. In general, I’m finding that Everlane clothes don’t hold up over time nearly as well as I thought they would.  The tees are ok, but the sweaters have been misses so far. The red lux one I wore twice last week got a hole in it so big I can’t wear it anymore. friday

Friday: Sweater – J Crew; jeans – Grana; shoes – Frye. I really like this sweater. It’s thick and comfortable. Since I cut all my hair off I’m constantly looking at turtleneck everything to keep my neck warm. I’m not a huge scarf person so turtlenecks are my only option.

 

vince

For the next 4 months (roughly) these Vince shoes will be the only ones I wear with any and every outfit. Why?

effing boot

Because this shit is happening again. After trying to wear the soft brace for several months I’ve come to realize it’s not going to work at all and I need to wear this damn immobilization boot again. I. HATE. IT. This will be round 3 in this annoying thing.

I’m not messing around anymore and dead serious on getting the tendonitis under control. Also, I still want to punch the doctor I spent near $200 on for visits half a year ago. “Oh, you’ll only need to wear it for 3 weeks and then taper off for the 4th”. MY FUCKING ASS! People who deal with tendonitis – if you go to a doctor, then double, no – TRIPLE the amount of time they tell you to wear an immobilization boot. It’s the strongest tendon in the body and it also takes the longest time to heal of any other tendon in the body.

I’ve read ALL the things about tendonitis I can find online and message boards and everyone says the same thing: most doctors underestimate the healing time. Also, most of them don’t give patients a good idea of how long to do recovery exercises (let alone what kinds they should be doing) BEFORE they can start their regular exercising again. This is how my condition became chronic and I’m sick of it. I was never given a proper gage for when I should do certain activities so I wouldn’t risk tearing the tendon again.

So outfits be fugly for the next 4 months because I’ll be wearing this boot, but whatever. I want to run again.

Just today

outfit

Shirt: Everlane. Pants: Brass Clothing. Shoes: Allbirds.

“Your outfit looks really good today.” An intern said this to me while getting coffee in the kitchen. At first, my inner snark wanted to reply, just today? but I decided to shrug it off and said, “I just threw it on this morning.”  She said whenever she threw on clothes in the morning she never looks half as put together as I do. I just smiled at the compliment.

Later on I came across articles on different sites about how people can have multiple selves when it comes to fashion. Each day is different so we present a different side of ourselves and that’s reflected in how we dress. A person can be coherent with their wardrobe (uniforms or same structure styles in outfits) or near schizophrenic, exhibiting a variety of styles and silhouettes. I used to think I wanted to be a uniform type of person, but now I’m not so sure. But this got me thinking about the intern’s comment. She didn’t mean it negatively in any way I’m sure, but rather, something about my outfit today  resonated with her.

My outfits yesterday and today are generally the same. I’m wearing a striped shirt and black pants with slip-on shoes. However, the styles of the clothing differ. Today’s shirt is a button-down and the stripes are vertical instead of horizontal. Although not entirely fitted, the shirt is also more structured than yesterday’s. The pants today are form-fitting and closer to the norm for most black pants women wear. The pants yesterday were structural, but in a slightly more formal fashion and they were large in the legs, which is not normally seen. I almost wore my TOMS again, but changed to the Allbirds because I felt wearing the TOMS would be too boring. Honestly, I prefer yesterday’s look to today’s.

I talked to the husband about my tendonitis woes and how either I can wear the moon boot again, or see how well this brace works out. I also might get a different brace for wearing to bed. He suggested I just wear this one and so I thought about how I could do so comfortably. Yesterday I wore my soft brace without any socks and realized it was far too itchy. The company recommends wearing socks under the brace and I’m guessing comfort is a big reason for that. However, it would irritate me to sleep with just one foot covered in a sock and I generally don’t like wearing socks to bed.

What I needed was a sock-let type of thing. I don’t have many long socks, but my husband has half a drawer full and he’s still got some that have never been worn even though he got them 3 years ago. I asked to have a pair of his socks and I wouldn’t be able to return them because I needed to cut them. He gave me a pair and I cut off the very ends so the socks fit on the areas I need them to while wearing the brace. Also, since the socks were long, I could fold them over the brace, which would make it more comfortable to wear at night (I’m a side sleeper).

brace

This is the sock-let experiment result. The top part of the sock is completely folded over the velcro bits of the brace so I have sock covering the inside and outside scratchy parts.

I didn’t sleep as well last night as normal because I was aware of the brace most of the night, but I think I could get used to it. What surprised me was how comfortable I was today while wearing this. The ponte pants were stretchy enough to fit over the brace and even cover up the sock parts so it didn’t look weird. I highly doubt anyone even noticed I was wearing a brace.

I’d read that wearing a brace at night to keep the foot from flexing too much would help in addition to wearing a brace during the day, so I’m trying this out for a while. And by a while, I mean probably a few months. I did notice yesterday that my bump, which wasn’t huge to begin with, is already decreasing in size.

I. Will. Beat. This. Mother. Fucking. Tendonitis.

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.