Sunday, July 29, 2012

Well hello

No real news this week. Running slooooooow and walking a lot. 
So here's a pic of Max.♥  

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

6 months, baby!

Happy 6 months to meeeee! 
Half a year ago today I had my stent procedure and was told what happened to me.
Half a year ago today I got a new lease on life and changed my perspective of mortality forever.
Half a year ago today I matured beyond my chronological age and faced one of the most challenging events in my life.

Today I am thankful, reflective, anxious, confused, filled with wonder, and so hopeful.
I can't wait to see how I feel in 6 more. ♥
[image via ctworkingmoms]

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Dear Heart Rate

Dear Heart Rate,
Ok, I'm listening. Last weekend wasn't good. So this week I've been trying to stay under 147, as prescribed by cardiac rehab. However my body isn't a fan. Could you maybe work with me here? I'd really like to run more than I walk. :(
Sincerely, moi ♥

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Finally Got My Tat!

I've been pinning heart tattoo ideas for 5 months now, and I finally got it! I'm loving the results! Thanks to Ed at Revival Tattoo who always does amazing work. The lines are actually from one of my many EKGs! Also, shout out to my heart guardian Amanda for going with me, waaaay past her bed time. ♥  

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Heart Rate, Humidity & 5ks...Oh My!

What a week. I've been working my tail off to get my doc work done before the end of the semester so that has consumed most of my daylight hours. Tuesday I overslept for track, which was a huge bummer. I definitely made up for it Thursday though! Thursday morning we ran the Timberland Shores hill route and I got in 2.34 miles in the fog-like humidity. Then Thursday night we all ran the Urban Trail 5k. It wasn't a timed race which was good because it was HOT. Plus Kathleen and I caught up with Gloria, who is one of the most inspiring and hysterical ladies. She's a race-walker who puts most runners to shame. Afterwards we hit up Graffiti Junktion and had a blast.
the before shot...look who got another #4 in her race bib!

(l-r): Kathleen, Amy, Elie, me, Gloria, Amanda, Leah...MIA: Lora
Today was scheduled to be a 6 miler. The first 3 weren't great, but they weren't terrible. Then around mile 3 my heart rate started spiking. It even got up to 223! So we ended up walking quite a bit to get it down, but it held steady in the 160s. So lesson learned...sometimes a walk is needed. ♥

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Alternative Therapies Quest

So being the somewhat freaky holistic person that I am, I am a big believer in alternative therapies. If I can help the healing process in any sort of natural, non-medical way, I'm game. So far after this heart attack, I've tried the following things.

1. Yoga: Yoga is a staple in my life. I'd totally go postal and start throwing myself against walls if it weren't for regular downward dogs. Yoga has always helped calm my mind and given me a safe place to just be in the moment.Yoga has tons of heart healthy benefits too, like decreased blood pressure and lower stress hormone levels. Definitely recommended for everyone, heart attack or not. Lately the classes have been a little too much for me because of the running, but I lay my mat out on my porch and do a practice a couple of times a week. The benefits of being at home are you can light your own candles and play your own music. The negatives? Your dog trying to get a belly rub while you're in shavasana. 
2. Meditation: This has been a newer practice for me, since the beginning of last year. There's an app for that...I'm serious. The iPad app has really helped me learn how to meditate and now I can do it with or without technological assistance (go me). There's tons of research to show that meditation helps support a healthy heart rate and can help reduce stress. It takes a lot of practice but the health benefits are amazing.
3. Massage: This is my least favorite on the list. I do not find massages relaxing at all, rather an exercise in how far I can push my comfort limits. Plus, I've always been someone who carries stress in her feet, not back or shoulders. Pedicures? Oh we're talking. Massage can have tons of circulation benefits, so this is a great option...just not my cup of tea.
4. Reiki: This was a recent adventure for me. Reiki definitely was an interesting experience, and one that I would consider again. It was more spiritual for me than anything else, and brought about an increased sense of awareness. I had no choice but to stay completely still which caused me to notice every ache, pain or sensation. I definitely paid more attention to how the energy moved throughout my body and that alone was beneficial.
5. Acupuncture: Again, this therapy sponsored by Groupon. Friday, I had my first acupuncture session in a long time. I've tried it before, but with different intentions. The acupuncturist was interesting and we even had a few downstate NY connections which was great. He noticed a decreased lower heart beat which he said was coming from my kidneys and adrenal glands. This is usually brought on by stress (to which I sarcastically thought to myself, DUH). He used a couple of points that are directly related to the heart and the rest were to help me veg out. So I laid on the table like a pin cushion for half an hour and thought about the amount of needles I've endured in the last 5 1/2 months, wondering why I subjected myself to anymore. Moot point. I did feel much more relaxed and leveled out afterwards, so I think I might try this one again. Sure the feeling only lasted until I encountered I-4 traffic but c'est la vie. 

So now my quest continues for the next alternative therapy. Any suggestions? Have any of these therapies worked for you? ♥
[image via catspictures]

New Running Tradition? Napping!

What a week for running. The Watermelon 5k pretty much zapped my energy for the rest of the week. Today I did a downtown run with Elie, Leah, Lora and Elie's friend Chris. They run 3:1s which I rarely do anymore so I was really fatigued after 3 miles. I ended up bailing around 3.3 miles and heading back to Panera. My heart rate was going up fast, I felt nauseous and a little dizzy. Some days you're the windshield, other days you're the bug.

My new tradition after running is napping. This running thing is kicking my tail more than I had anticipated. I really hope the fatigue goes away before the start of the school year or I'm not sure how I will keep running while working again. At least right now I can come home, shower, read, watch "Pretty Little Liars" episodes and drift off to never never land. In just a little over a month I will be speed showering, shoving some oatmeal down my face and flying out the door to work 10 hour days and coming home to do doc work at night. Definitely looking for more ways to boost the energy level now. Any ideas? ♥
11 miles? Could be worse!

Friday, July 6, 2012

Central Florida Bloggers Conference

It's official, I'm registered for the Central Florida Bloggers Conference on September 15th! Who knew! It's the same day as the Greater Orlando Heart Walk so I will be super busy! I'm hoping I can pick up some tips about bringing awareness to heart disease in an engaging, eye-catching (and legal) way...ha.
Check out my registration schedule! Who else is going? ♥

Thursday, July 5, 2012

More Heart Walk!

♥ My "Why We Walk" story for the Greater Orlando Heart Walk is online now! Check it out!  ♥

Greater Orlando Heart Walk

T-minus 2 months and 10 days until the Greater Orlando Heart Walk! Please take a moment and support me for this important event. All of the proceeds go towards the American Heart Association. These funds help improve patient care, advocate for better health, reach out to at-risk populations, raise awareness, protect the future and educate Americans about heart disease. This will be my first Greater Orlando Heart Walk! As a recent survivor I want to be able to give back as much as I can. Definitely feeling lucky these days, so let's pay it forward! Click on the thermometer below to pledge and read all about the Greater Orlando Heart Walk!

Another great way to support the Heart Walk is through CFLBlogCon's "Blogging For Good" basket raffle! There are some fantastic baskets in the raffle, including the American Heart Association basket that includes heart-healthy red wine, a cookbook, a gift certificate to Shula's in Lake Mary & a gift certificate for The Spa at Thorton Park! A suggested donation of $10 will put you in the raffle!

Thanks for supporting the Greater Orlando Heart Walk & American Heart Association! #cflgood ♥  

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Watermelon 5k

Happy 4th of July everyone! This morning was the Watermelon 5k, which was my first official 5k since the heart attacks. Considering I didn't have much sleep, there were over 4500 runners and the temperature and humidity were out of control, not bad! ♥
Runners are supposed to be morning people. I missed that training session.
The weather? Not great. Oh, what's that? I live in Florida? Touche´.
This screenshot was taken afterwards but there really wasn't much of a difference. Plus the body heat of thousands of people. Yikes.

All in all the run went well. Joe came along to offer support and to run circles around me but I really appreciated it. He also took some great pics.
This is pretty much how it looked for 2 miles. PACKED.

What's in the pack? Oh just a little nitro.

Finished and red-faced

Da bib. There were at least that many runners. My lucky bib number has always been 4 so this was awesome. 

Overall 40:31 with a moving pace of 12:13. Not bad I suppose.

Happy 4th!

Heart fireworks at Red, Hot & Boom on July 3rd! <3

Monday, July 2, 2012

Keeps On Tickin'...

Not a very eventful week. I skipped running last Tuesday (mmm sleeeeeep) and then started getting this fluttering sensation in my chest on Wednesday. I had a crappy run Thursday morning and then felt even worse so I skipped Saturday too. Luckily I went to the cardiologist today and all is good. I need to start taking some magnesium oxide and that should help.

Last Tuesday I had kind of a strange experience. Those of you who know me know that I love Groupon and Groupon-related sites. LOVE. I've gotten some amazing deals on there for everything from dog grooming to pedicures. Recently I got a deal for a Reiki treatment so I finally had a chance to use it. Pretty interesting. Reiki is basically the transfer and balance of your body's energy through the chakras. I really wasn't feeling much until she got to my heart chakra, then I had this amazing stretching feeling, like I was arching my back but I wasn't moving. After it was over with, she says, "I just feel like your heart space is huge. It feels like it's being restricted. You should open up." I know this exact quote because I was so weirded out I typed it into my phone immediately after I left. If she only knew! I felt calmer after I left which was good enough for me.

Up this week: 3 runs, Watermelon 5k, accupuncture on Friday & another week at attempting to relax ♥

Here is a visual of the chakras of the body:
[image via wikipedia]