Sunday, February 24, 2013

If She Can Do It...

...then so can I.

As I write this, it is snowing heavily, and we are expecting about a foot of snow by the time it is all done sometime after dark.   Not really great biking weather, no matter what kind of bike you have.  But, that doesn't mean I'm not thinking about it, or thinking about other news in the area that involve athletes and fitness.

I live in Colorado, the home of several Olympic athletes and medal holders, including Lindsey Vonn.  A week or so ago, she landed poorly during a giant slalom run in Schladming, Austria, trashing her knee in three very painful ways.  She had to spend nearly a week waiting for surgery, which was performed in her home town of Vail, Colorado, by the doctor who has kept her healthy since she was 13 years old.  I saw the film of her fall, and clearly heard her crying in pain.  Kinda sounded like me when they moved my ankle up on the mountain back in December.  OW.

What is remarkable about any of this is that she intends to ski in the next Winter Olympics, which is less than a year away.  She has to not only heal from the surgery and the broken bone, but she needs to rehab from that, and then work out until she is in Olympic shape again.  I realize she's young, just over half my age, but even so, this sounds really ambitious.  Not that I doubt she will make it.  I certainly do not doubt it at all.  Lindsey is a powerhouse skier who has worked hard to be where she is in the world standings.  

And if she can do it, set the goal and make the goal (which she has had to do before with injuries), then there's nothing to stop me, right?  I'm already well on the way to recovery, after the maddening weeks of the leg being immobilized by the cast.  I'm already walking without crutches, and the movement in my ankle is twice as good as it was the day after the cast was removed.  The swelling continues to go down, day by day.  My goal is to be on a bike by first of April.  I may beat that; if I am cleared to wear a regular shoe when I visit the doctor the middle of March, then I will definitely beat that date.  I may only be able to ride on flat surfaces at first, but that's okay.  There are plenty of flat trails around here.  I will probably be sore, and I will probably need higher-than-usual doses of ibuprofen.  

My knees miss biking.  My legs miss biking.  My face misses biking.  Soon.  Very very soon.

And I leave you now with the last picture I took before my fall.  Why not, right?

Sunday, February 10, 2013

New Treads

In anticipation of my return to freedom, I bought myself some new treads.  The cast is due to come off later this week, if everything looks good in there (won't know until the xray), and I have just about worn out my old New Balance 993's.  I learned years ago the importance of wearing good shoes, and I'm lucky to be in a business where I can wear my tennis shoes to work every day (with jeans).  My very first pair of New Balance 993's were pricy, about $150, but I'd been having problems with my feet and went to a better shoe store to have my foot measured and get a decent recommendation for a supportive, sturdy, and well-fitting shoe for my foot type.  I'm on my third pair of 993's in about 8 years.  They last a long time, they give my feet the overall support they need, the treads hold up in all the walking I do, and run in sizes big enough to accommodate my over-sized feet.

My current pair are pretty worn, both inside and out, and it was time for a new pair.  I went to my favorite website for New Balance shoes, Joe's New Balance Outlet, and took a look.  I usually get my 993's for about a third of the cost of buying them in the store.  And if there's a sale, I do even better, and often get free shipping. But after wearing the same shoes for so long, I kind of wanted a change of pace, so I put in my size in the shoe finder, sorted by price (low to high) and saw what was available.  I think I've found a new love.

These are fashionable, with a slight wedge heel, and leather and mesh.  They have big cleats on the bottom compared to my 993's, and are a more all-around outdoor shoe.  The wedge is going to be helpful as I wear the cam boot for the next few weeks, as it is a higher shoe than my current 993's.

And, they are pink!  I like pink.

The importance of good shoes that fit your foot properly cannot be emphasized enough.  My husband right now is suffering from a bout of Morton's Neuroma,  a very painful foot condition thought to be caused by wearing cheap shoes.  My husband is the king of cheap shoes...if it can't be bought at Walmart he isn't wearing it.  He is now paying for that.  When you're young, you can get away with cheap shoes.  But in your 50's?  You'd better be buying the good ones.

I'm looking forward to breaking these girls in.  Even if it is just one shoe at a time!