Bionic Hip?

It is crazy to think that a year ago, TODAY, I was having hip arthroscopy. I honestly can’t believe a year has gone by. Those first few weeks were hell (a breakup and no running will do that to you) and I felt lost. I can look back at how truly depressed I was at that time and continue to be thankful for where I am now and where I am going.IMG_3326

The legasus. 3 hours a day and sleeping in it. MIZ.

I appreciate yalls sweet (and funny) comments on my speed and that maybe super powers were put in my hip during surgery. If only that were the case. But, I will share my thoughts on how I’ve changed over the past year and how it may have helped with my running.

1. I’ve lost 15 pounds since last January. weightloss

I never really thought I was that heavy or that I had that much weight to lose…but looking at pictures now, I couldn’t be happier with where I am. I have worked HARD to get to this point. I wish I could say I was one of those people who can splurge a lot or eat cupcakes and cake and candy whenever they want, but I don’t. And I won’t. I have to put limits on my splurges (and obviously lent has helped with that).

Some people say weight helps with speed, some don’t. I say, it definitely didn’t hurt to drop some pounds.

2. I’ve focused on core, strength, and cross training work.

I lost almost all of my strength in my legs, core, etc. after surgery. I was only allowed to do arm work and approved PT work. BUT, once approved, I went back to pilates. My PT was also a pilates instructor and she, along with Laura (current teacher), have taught me how to engage my core and glutes during workouts.IMG_4023I focus on actively engaging my core (and glutes) when I run, in pilates, and at Flywheel. When I run uphill, I literally talk to my glutes. Sounds silly, but in order to take my mind off the hill…it’s “fire, fire, fire” so that they actually work and I can feel them doing the work (not just my quads and hamstrings).

I’ve also spent a lot of time cross training. Many suggest that cross training is key to staying healthy and challenging different muscles while training for running-type races. I think Flywheel has definitely helped with my speed and turnover and learning to engage my muscles.

3. I’ve put in the work.

Even though my training has been more of a base building phase this winter/spring, I still have had goals. I wanted to get to a comfortable 25-30 miles a week. I wanted to do some tempo and hill work before digging into real track workouts. So far, so good. I’ve already seen results.

What I will continue to do:

1. My PT exercises, strength work and cross training.

I have done my best to do my hip work at least 3 times a week. I will continue with pilates and flywheel. And while I’ve improved, there is still plenty of room to continue. I am currently a guinea pig/tester for a local physical therapy practice, Motion Stability. I am working with them on a program they offer called Fusionetics.

They did an assessment on my body and where my weaknesses are. No surprise, my hips and knees (knee issues stem from hip issues) are still a weak point. They did say I am actually a lot stronger than other runners they have seen. But, again, there is ALWAYS room for improvement!IMG_6446

score was a 60.45 with most averaging in the 40 range.

The program generates a customized plan for your body, videos and all. I will do them for the next 4-6 weeks and see if my body changes from baseline. First up on the list of things to work on…get more sleep!  IMG_6451 IMG_6453

2. I will continue to believe in myself.

This is huge for me. I’ve had several conversations with 3 of my best running buddies about believing in myself and realizing my potential. Molly laughed at me when she realized I ordered a large race shirt (that swallowed me) the other weekend. Old habits die hard? I struggle with realizing that my body has changed, and that I have changed.

The speed is no different.  I ended up laughing right back at Molly when she put my 10K race time in the McMillian calculator. My easy pace is WHAT?!? And funny enough, IT IS.Screen shot 2014-04-08 at 9.48.23 PM Screen shot 2014-04-08 at 9.48.49 PM

I’m now realizing that Boston isn’t some BHAG. It’s 100% achievable. I can’t say when, but I know it will happen. I will qualify. I will put in the work. 

3. I will continue to have FUN and race SMART.

My heart has felt SO FULL running. I literally smile ear to ear during each race thinking about how far I’ve come. It’s really, really hard for me to pull myself back from registering for a race a weekend. I am just so thankful to have the ability to do so. I will run races when it’s appropriate, and race races when it’s appropriate. I will not compromise my health, I will focus on happiness and smart running.

A year ago, I would’ve never imagined being in this moment. I was in a dark hole struggling to see any sort of light. I’ve moved past the pain and the weakness. I wish I could say it was all bionic, but there has been nothing bionic or magical about it. Just hard work, mentally and physically. I’m a much stronger, happier version of myself.

Thank you, friends, for believing in me and pushing me. Love yall!!

If you could choose a bionic body part, what would it be? Do you have a weight loss success story? Are you good about cross training and strength training?

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  • I’m a strong believer of “everything happens for a reason”. A year ago was a rough time for you, but it showed you how strong you are and that you can do anything and more!! You are so determined and focused – you deserve all this and more!

  • You’ve come a long way, baby!
    And, I appreciate your 15 lb. “before and after” shot. I believe the weight makes a huge difference in my running. You’ve worked so hard in the past year. Can’t wait to see you in two weeks!

  • I absolutely love this, Elizabeth! You have come so far and you are kicking so much ass! I hope the rest of this year is even more amazing for you!

  • I am SO glad you have had such great success. You look amazing. Like I said on IG, you give me hope with my hip. I’m trying to really avoid surgery. In PT again and learning to fire, fire, fire my glutes and make them strong (along with my back, hips, core) and not rely so much on my freakin’ quads. Ahhhh. This too shall pass. Congrats to you, lady! Keep rockin’ it!!

  • well written- one thing you didn’t mention but that everyone who knows you can concur is that you have the DESIRE to get better. Some people can put in the work, but if they don’t have that special ingredients, their results don’t align with their wants. I wish I could be as disciplined as you and hope someday I’ll follow in your footsteps. Enjoy all the PRs I’m sure you’ll continue to achieve throughout the year!

  • What an incredible year you’ve had!! I am going to make #1 read your entry about the core/cross training, because that girl does NONE, despite my best cajoling.

  • Congrats on the amazing changes you have gone through and come out victorious. It is so fun to see what incredible progress you’ve made in such a short time since your surgery. I’m excited to see all the amazing things ahead for you this year. You have a very smart outlook on what is important and I know you will achieve big goals! xo

  • It makes me so happy to see you back, running better than ever! I well remember those dark days. Way to work hard, put all the pieces together and be your best self!

  • Yep, definitely think that strength/cross-training is huge in making people “stronger” runners. Great job on your success!

  • Great post, Elizabeth! It was very obvious all weekend how much fun you have when running. Congrats on all the hard work! I’m really curious to hear what new stuff you learn in the motion stability program!

  • That program you are doing is super cool! I am jealous. Also…that exercise in the picture is what my PT calls “Jane Fonda’s” and she wants me to do them every time before I run so that I can remind my glutes to fire during the run. I also put a towel behind my foot so that I have to hold it against the wall.

    I love, love, love everything about this post and the confidence you have gained over the last year. I feel honored to have been going through it all with you since the beginning (you know virtually, on the phone, through text and sometimes in person :)). It has been really fun to watch you put in all of the hard work and take all of the baby steps that have resulted in this one giant improvement in such a short time. I can’t wait to see you soooooon!

  • I miss you! And am sooooooooooooooooo proud of you! Wow! What a tremendous year. From serious surgery, to PR’s. As you know, I’m a big believer in the crosstraining for improved speed and injury prevention! Here’s to many years ahead of injury free running. you look fantastic!!

  • This is so inspiring for me! I remember last spring. Hard times, indeed! You are such a strong, smart woman. Once I am more mobile, I need to pick you brain on all of this stuff! I need to bookmark this post 🙂

    Bionic body part? Now I’ve got my own bionic hip! Yes’m. Let’s hope it works 🙂

  • Oh so proud to call you my friend. You work hard in everything you do. Congratulations. And try and Orange Theory class for some cross training if you ever want to change it up.

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