South Jersey Belle

It's all about the attitude.


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Always Wear Your Helmet

This weekend I took part in the Ocean to Bay Bike Ride in Bethany Beach/Fenwick Island, Delaware. With several routes a century (100 miles), metric centric (62.5 miles), 50 miles, 36 miles or 27 miles I originally planned on completing the metric century. I was just recently cleared to ride the bike, but the Doctor didn’t really know the distance I was looking to cover. I haven’t been on the bike since my injury and I knew it was going to be tough. Especially because I clip in and getting out would prove some difficulty for my left foot.  Out of the 62 miles I was able to cover 40. Acceptable. I’m pretty tough on myself when it comes to giving up or in, but I knew if I kept pushing I could set my recovery back further.

The main reason I decided to name this post, Always Wear Your Helmet, today during the ride, which covered some pretty rural roads, a man taking part in the ride was sitting in the middle of the rode bleeding from his head. Thank goodness he had his helmet on, which was severely broken, but it helped to protect him to give him minimal damage. I’ve seen several incidents in the city where a car just clips the back tire of a rider and it causes major accidents. I know wearing a helmet doesn’t look that cool, but it can defiantly save your life. Scrambled brain on the pavement or minor injuries? And just in case you didn’t know the law requires a minimum of 3 feet between a cyclist and passing car (in some cases I know this is impossible).


Safety is always very important when taking to the roads whether it being running or riding your bike. Overall, the ride was nice and the weather was perfect. We couldn’t ask for much better riding conditions, only for my foot to cooperate more and heal faster. I will be back to running as soon as I can!

See you on the road.

xo

Leann

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Will it be easy? Nope.

Will it be worth it? Absolutely. I hate the saying good things come to those who wait. What the hell are you waiting for? If you want something bad enough you have to go out there and suffer for it. No one especially in this day and age are going to hand you anything (few exceptions, but we are not going there).

As you all know by now if you have been reading my blog I injured myself at work and I’ve been totally bummed out about it. I don’t have any kind of cool story to go along with the boot I’m dragging with me, I didn’t save puppies from a burning plane or run an ultra. But this time in recovery, rest, and healing has given me the time to reflect about what my passions are, what drives me, and my plans for after my ankle has healed.

We all tend to go thru times of trial. While in the middle of something we think to ourselves what the hell am I doing here or why am I doing this to myself? My mother always taught me to stick through it, no matter what it may be because there is always a lesson to be learned. Read Jared’s story of how he didn’t want to go to college, struggled through it, and is now working on his master’s degree at an ivy league school. He also shares his many passions on his website.

Today was my first day of physical therapy and my therapist answered and gave me the straight up facts I needed to know to get myself focused on this road to recovery. It was clarified that I tore ligaments or fibers that connect the bone. This explains why there was so much bruising (blood under the skin, gross). He gave me the ok to bike, but I can’t go to crazy! And he fully support swimming because of the lack of pressure. Running is something we will be working back up to.

Zig Ziglar once said, ” Motivation gets you going and habit gets you there.” This quote is what leads me to my point of this post. Years of running developed into a habit. It was something fun, to keep me in shape and is now a passion. I’ve never really pushed myself until the last two years. I saw with my dedication to running my times were getting better. With more drive to see improvement I started cycling for cross training where eventually I pushed my limits as far as an 80 mile ride. I’ve already got two centuries (100 miles) lined up for this year. My motivation to stay healthy and in shape as turned into a lifestyle with some serious dedication and life changing goals. With my first triathlon coming up in July I already know that I want to train for an Ironman 70.3 and eventually qualify for the Boston Marathon.

None of these goals I have presented myself with appeared over night. Training for my first marathon was intense. After my second marathon I was so thrilled with my time and my comfortable pacing, I knew I could push myself harder. Each time I set new goals  I also have to hurdle new challenges.

The one saying I do like, if it was easy everyone would do it.

xo

Leann


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Clean Sport Athletics

In general we all have heard about performance enhancing drugs. Usually you hear about professional athletes taking them to become bigger, faster, or stronger. As these drugs have become more widely accessible even amateurs have started taking them. You are probably asking yourself, how this topic came up. Since I’m not doing much, I’ve been watching Netflix documentaries. I like to find things of interest to educate myself on. It just so happens the Lance Armstrong documentary, Stop at Nothing was on there. Armstrong was an amazing athlete. I say was because he had an amazing start to his early career. He was super dedicated to the sport of cycling, until he found it necessary to take performance enhancing drugs. Armstrong won the Tour de France seven times, before being banned for life!

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So my connection to all of this is just about living a healthy and active life. I workout for the physical, mental, and emotional benefits. I would never even consider taking any kind of performance enhancing drugs. The Clean Sport Collective also supports this. The Clean Sport Collective  believes in athletes, brands, clubs, fans, and communities that abstain from performance enhancing drugs. The Clean Sport Collective allows you to pledge to be and support clean living. You can also donate (if you wish and get some rad gear) and show support by taking a pledge (which is completely free). I also urge you to check out the many companies that are partners with the Clean Sport Collective supporting the cause and do not support any athlete who has tested positive for performance enhancing drugs, these companies are: Nuun, Rabbit, Oiselle, SOS Rehydrate, and the rest of the list can be viewed here.

I urge you to pledge to be a clean athlete and only encourage those who compete clean.

xo

Leann


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Swimming Beneficial to Runners

I don’t have many options for exercise at the moment-so swimming it is! I started to do my research on what benefits swimming has for runners. As you can properly assume there are a ton of great perks for runners.

1-No Impact!!!! This is a total win for me right now. Running can put  a lot of impact on the body particularly the joints.

2-Breathing Control. Proper swim technique forces rhythmic breathing. When you are swimming you have no choice, but to have your breathing under control and this can translate to running which will allow for a more smooth and efficient run.

3-Flexibility. Swimming allow the upper and lower body to develop flexibility and strengthen ligaments throughout the body that will in turn be of assistance in running (ankles and hip flexors).

4-Burns Calories! Swimming is a full body workout. Working arms, legs, back, core, and shoulders. While swimming provides resistance training for your entire body helping burn calories during your swim and even hours after!

So even though I am struggling mentally and physically not being able to run or bike I am starting to appreciate the pool a little more.


Chlorine is turning into my new perfume.

xo

Leann


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The Follow Up

So it has been five days since I sprained a ligament in my left ankle, its still swollen, and the doctor today has given me orders for physical therapy. This morning was the first time I met with this doctor and he almost had me jumping off the table. He pushed and poked at every tender spot and wanted to see the range or lack there of range of motion in my left ankle. After deeming I would still be out of work for at least 2-3 weeks, the torture of physical therapy will start next week.

To keep my sanity and wit about me I am trying to make the most of this time away from work and my passion of running. I understand many can not resonate how important running is. Many of you reading this may think, its just a form of working out, but really is so much more to me. It’s something I truly love and I’m missing greatly.

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What I can do is swim! I got in the pool today with my pull buoy and with no strain on my foot or ankle I got in a great upper body workout. Swimming is not my strength, hence why I got a swim coach for my training! Maybe over the course of the next few weeks I will come to love swimming who knows! LOL I’m doubtful, but I am happy that I can get in some form of exercise and clear my head for some time during the day.

I’ve had family and friends reach out to me and be so encouraging. I can’t thank you enough for that. It really means to the world to me! Even if you don’t run or race, your kind words have really inspired me. You all have insisted my come back will be a great one and this is really helping me put my head in the right place. I’ve gotten so many text messages telling me I’m strong and that this set back is going to allow me to make a even stronger come back. I can’t thank you enough for straightening me out and the wise words of encouragement.

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You are stronger than you believe!

xo

Leann


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When Injury Ensues

Well it’s not the end of the world, but when it happened it sure felt like it. After returning from work, I was sent to the doctor. I sprained my left ankle. It is completely swollen, bruised and very sore to touch or put pressure on. I left the doctors office with a boot and feeling discouraged. I was going through a range of emotions, being mad at myself, sad, angry, and extremely frustrated.

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I’m not an elite athlete, but being active allows me to feel like I’m living a fulfilling life. I’ve seen my own growth and progression of improvement. Each week, month, and year I can see my progress and give myself new goals. A large part of my identity is allowing myself the freedom to be active whether it is swimming, biking, or running. When I am exercising I can put aside all of my worries and anxieties and focus on a happier and healthier me.

Now that I am forced to have my foot up and stay off it as much as possible for recovery I am looking at other ways I keep my mind quiet and stay fit. I’ve considered some other exercises to while I can not bike or run. I think I will still be able to get in the pool if I use a pull buoy to keep my legs still and focus on my arms and breathing. Eventually I think I will be able to focus on more core and upper body exercises as long as I stay off my feet.

I am hoping for a speedy recovery as I look forward to my return to running and biking at full force. I’m visualizing the best possible recovery and being healthier than ever! This time off is going to give me extra time to do research and reading on training plans!

Here’s to the future!

xo

Leann


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R.I.C.E

No not the rice you eat!

R-rest

I-ice

C-compression

E-elevate

Well I’m on a layover in warm Sin City and I decided I would wake up and go for a run to Fremont Street and then back for breakfast. I was going to write a blog post about intermittent fasting! Then on my walk to get breakfast I rolled my ankle!!!!! Basically any runner’s worst nightmare. I started thinking to myself no that did not just happen. NO! NOOOOOOOOOO! Ok. Calm down Leann, walk it out. Take a breather.

So I get to the Peppermill for breakfast.img_4663 I propped my leg up on the seat to elevate my ankle. When it’s time to leave the pain sets in. I start to panic and reality sets in. I limp to the closest Walgreens for pain reliever and a banadage. 90% sure it’s a sprain and let’s not hope for anything more. So this is where R.I.C.E comes in.

While I am now sitting, I’ve elevated my leg. Icing it for 15 minute increments every hour. Later I will wrap it with a bandage to compress it as I actually have to work the red eye flight from Vegas to Philly tonight. And I’m trying to keep off it as much as possible.


This is extremely frustrating. Let’s hope and pray I can get back to running as quickly as possible if I follow this approach.
Here’s to R.I.C.E!

Xo

Leann