The Awesome Adventures of Amy the Amazing Athlete

"Racing is not some elite club, reserved only for the fast, the thin, and the beautiful..."
Mar 02, 2013 by Amy Wells

"But it is a club for really BRAVE people in stretchy fabrics!"


Today was my favorite GT so far. While I missed all my running friends, I did not miss the cold or the hills at Percy Warner Park. Instead, the walkers met at Opry Mills and got our mileage done inside. So, I got to sleep past 6am!!! Which was really nice, cause I had a horrible afternoon yesterday and had trouble getting to sleep. I didn't want to miss GT, I knew the exercise would be really good for my stress and I need to get my miles in.


Coach Shellie, Paulette, Denise, and I walked and window shopped! If you do all the little alcoves, a loop around Opry Mills is a mile and change. This was good to know for days when it's rainy or cold or super hot outside. Plus, I found out there's and Underarmour outlet and some neat looking stores to check out. I got to try out my new Super Hero Hydration/Utility Belt (don't call it a fanny pack!) The one I had last season was huge- I could fit a small dog in there, and ended up carrying around more stuff than I needed. Live and learn...


I'm having a lot of trouble with my right hip. I see a PT on Wednesday morning, but Coach Shellie thinks it's my IT band- and...she thinks the horrid Finnish shoes are to blame. So, back to my old Brooks and lots of yoga and stretching. I'm pretty sore this afternoon, so I'll use my new Moji360 (thank you, Fleet Feet) and get some of the knots out. It is amazing all the 'stuff' you acquire once you pick up a passion for something. I'm in the process of decluttering my house, and it's been eye-opening to see what I'm keeping and what I'm donating. If you had told me a year ago I'd be hanging up half-zips and checking fabrics on yoga pants, while bagging up loose t-shirts and anything with cotton- I would have never believed it! In amongst all the laughter and soreness and chafing and blisters and good friends, I formed a lifestyle:-)


I'm working on a few more fundraising ideas, but I'm always open to a straight up tax-deductible donation! Help me fight cancer and get to San Diego! Any amount matters and goes to help people!


As always, thank you for sharing my journey.


Since I didn't take any pictures in the mall, here's today's photos to make you smile:

Fergus says, "You have to STRETCH, like this!"


Fergus is not as fond of the Magic Moji360 as I am.

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"Pain is Weakness Leaving the Body" ~ USMC
Feb 23, 2013 by Amy Wells

"What a load of crap" ~ Amy Wells


It's my Saturday blog! This has turned into a mini-therapy session every week, so I hope you all don't mind coming along as I traverse the miles and the junk in my head.


This week has been challenging, physically. My plantar fasciitis from last week calmed down, mainly because I have this horribly cumbersome boot to wear at night and I never go barefoot anymore. However, over the week my knee, hip, and back progressed from twingy to downright painful. After consulting with my coach (after all, that's what she's there for!), I took it easier on the miles this week and this morning and I'm calling a Physical Therapist on Monday.


This morning we all met up at Grasslands, my least favorite GT spot- not because it isn't pretty, but because it's the furthest from my house and I'm still not a morning person. I got a hug from my fabulous mom/mentor, Denise, who I haven't seen in a while. Keeley facetimed with her husband, Jon, so the Cycling Team could share our Mission Moment and we could all wave. Afterwards, I headed out with Denise and Coach Shellie for a s-l-o-w mile and change. We took three stretch breaks. I was sore, but feeling good. I always feel better once I've exercised, even if I didn't want to start.


Coach Shellie and Denise are good listeners, and we talked about cross-training. I haven't been doing any yoga, even though I enjoy it, because I didn't think it would count as 'real' exercise. I was emphatically disuaded from that theory, so I'll be adding yoga to my cross-training days. When I admitted to Coach that I hadn't used my inhaler that morning, because I was only doing a short walk, I realized how much I hate needing that inhaler, because (to me) it's a sign of weakness. Which is ridiculous, it's medicine for a condition, but it's amazing the crap we carry in our heads. Just like I don't stretch as much as I should, because I think I'm just walking. My friends, Keeley and Lynn and Kristen and Kay, they run. They need to stretch. I posted this picture on Facebook this week-

Maybe I need to re-read it?


So, after my walk, I went home (via breakfast at Panera) and laid on the bed with a bag of frozen broccoli on my hip, where most of the pain had focused. Then, this afternoon I had a massage from my friend, Barb, at my chiropractor's office. That really helped, though I never knew the muscle on top of your feet could get knotted up. I never knew you had muscles on the top of your feet! Then, I went to Fleet Feet and got one of those rolling massager sticks. I am on a mission to recover this week. I'm also back in my Brooks and abandoning the hideous Finnish shoes, which seemed to be giving me shin pain.


Now, I'm home, slightly less sore. I have a pot of Braised White Beans simmering on the stove for this week, and Skinny Pad Thai on the menu for dinner. Sleepy cats on the sofa and 'Quantum Leap' reruns on the Roku while I clean the kitchen. I am a wild woman, for sure:-)


As always, thank you for sharing my journey.

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"I am awash in a river of snot." ~ Amy Wells
Feb 16, 2013 by Amy Wells

Sorry, there just aren't any good quotes about snot on Google.


This week has been going well- I am back on track with training; doing strength training on Monday and Tuesday, wobbleboarding on Wednesday, and treadmill on Thursday. Keeping up my midweek mileage really helps on the weekend, you can only fake it for so long!


After a horrible night's sleep (seriously, what are my cats doing up at 3am?) I got up at 5 to get myself together and meet Coach Shellie at LP Field to set out waterstops for everyone. It was 25* out. I am SO tired of freezing my ass off! The cold is just hell on my lungs, and no matter how high I turn up the heat in my car, my legs are cold for the entire day.


BUT...then I got to see Morgan from last season, and Kay hugged me, and Anne-Leslie arrived, and then Zeke gave a beautiful Mission Moment about losing his mother to leukemia, and how his cousin is now battling the same disease. It was a great reminder to all of us WHY we are doing this.


We all headed out, straight up the Shelby Bridge. Grrr. I am the Turtle, bringing up the back of every GT- but I'm cool with that now. I might be slow, but I'm faster than everyone doing nothing! Between the cold and the wind, I developed a drippy nose, and I didn't have any Kleenex. So, for 4 1/2 miles, I sounded like this: "Huff, huff, puff, snooooorrt"


Coach Shellie was walking with me, and we stretched out with Owen Bradley at the Roundabout- I even shoke his hand! And she got the best line of the morning when I said, "I need to bring Kleenex next week, I'm awash in a river of snot." and she looked back and deadpanned, "I know."


So, I finished up and defrosted in the car. Then I went to Costco and spent too much money (I think I was hungry). Now, I'm home and my legs are STILL cold. My friend, Edith, asked what my 'Hero' shirt looked like- so I put it on the floor to get a picture of it. It did not go as planned:

Tom says, "What?"

Zoe says, "Oh, Mama! It smells like you! I LOVE IT!"

Zoe wallowing in my stinky shirt. Tom is concerned.


I'm meeting with my Team Green TNTers tomorrow about group fundraising. I know a lot of you donated last season, and I really appreciate it. But my poor fundraising account has been stuck for ages- surely someone out there can spare a few bucks to fight cancer!


Thanks for sharing my journey.

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“The only person who can pull me down is myself, and I'm not going to let myself pull me down anymore.”~ C. JoyBell C.
Feb 10, 2013 by Amy Wells

“I am my own biggest critic. Before anyone else has criticized me, I have already criticized myself. But for the rest of my life, I am going to be with me and I don't want to spend my life with someone who is always critical. So I am going to stop being my own critic. It's high time that I accept all the great things about me.” ~ C. JoyBell C.


So, yeah. Another week on the roller coaster in my head. I should tell you about being the sweeper yesterday at GT, about getting up at 5:15 and dragging coolers of water, and driving around Belmont trying to spot my friend Kristen's bright orange running shirt- making sure that everyone was OK and worrying when part of the route was on a one-way street- sure that someone would need me and I wouldn't be there. But that's not really what this past week was about.


I should also admit that I completely slacked on my training since I got the flu.


I don't know about you all, but I waste a lot of time listening to the voice in my head. You know, that voice that compares you to everyone else, or tells you how bad you are at something, or tells you how stupid you look. I give that voice a megaphone. I beat myself up for making mistakes, for not being perfect, for not magically knowing how to do something correctly the first time I try it. So, for a long time, I didn't try. See, Voice in My Head, I showed you- I won't try anything, so I won't ever fail, so you won't ever be right.


Yeah, well, that's a sad little life to live. That's no life to live. And it took me an embarassing amount of time to realize that. And I found that stepping outside of your comfort zone is pretty amazing, and thrilling, and I found a LIFE. I went rock climbing. I climbed a mountain. I finished a half marathon. I shut that Voice in My Head DOWN.


But sometimes, when circumstances get crazy, and things are happening that I can't control and can't fix (no matter how much i want to), and my head is full of all these balls I'm juggling in the air and I can't let anything fall....that Voice creeps back in. I didn't realize how loud it had gotten til this past week, when a friend told me what an inspiration I was to her, and that Voice spent the rest of the day beating me up, telling me what a phony I was, and how no one should look up to me.


Luckily, I have some really great friends in my life who gave me some good advice. Like mistakes aren't failures, and to admit to myself that I can't do everything, that I'm human. A good night's sleep, slowing down, and reflection really helped. So, I am publicly admitting this: I can't do it all, I can't keep all those balls in the air, and if one of them falls- the world won't end. I'll just set something else down and pick it up again. Eventually, I might be OK with being an inspiration. Give me a little time to process all this self-acceptance:-)


One of the ways I can take care of me and stay sane in this chaotic life of mine is to keep on training. I've printed out a calendar with my training and cross-training schedule and posted it on my TV cabinet so I can't avoid it. No matter how much I don't feel like doing it, I always feel better after I've exercised.


I'm meeting with the rest of my Team Green TNTers next weekend to come up with some fundraising ideas, so if you've got any suggestions, please let me know. Back to back seasons are hard, and there's two of us doing them!


So, I didn't get in much mileage this week, but I fought one hell of a battle. I came out stronger and more accepting of myself. I, in all my gloriously flawed humanity, am pretty freakin' awesome, and it is high time I realized that.


Thank you for sharing my journey.

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“A lot of people like snow. I find it to be an unnecessary freezing of water.” ~ Carl Reiner
Feb 02, 2013 by Amy Wells

Did you miss me last week? I was laid low by Type B Flu, but I'm BACK, buddies!


This has been a good week, I got my first bag of donated books- if you didn't know, I am collected used books, DVDs, CDs, multimedia games, etc. to raise money for LLS. If you have any, please let me know and I will come and get them! I also attended a Team Green Social and met a lot of new people, and proselytized about Team in Training. I realized, as I was speaking, that I sound like some sort of religious convert. But it's true! TNT is like a happy little cult of postive people trying to change the world. Nothing wrong with that! I really hope the people I gave Sammi's number call and join, because they'll be in for a life-changing experience!


I also found out several people have signed up for the hike I'm leading next week! I'm super excited to get out and lead some beginner friendly adventures, because I've been the one looking at a challenge and thinking, "I can't do that.." only to say, "I DID that!"


Today was GT, I was happy to get out and see my gang since I missed them last week. We were also having a clinic at Fleet Feet in Brentwood, which is the coolest running store ever- they were so helpful and supportive of me last season, I like going back to say hi and perhaps buy more half zips. I have developed an unhealthy love of half zips.


So, I headed out in all my colorful layers, and right as I hit the exit for Brentwood I saw....snowflakes. Tiny little cutesy snowflakes. Cool! Snow in Tennessee:-) I got to GT, met up with everyone and signed in. We had a beautiful and touching Mission Moment from Sarah, who runs for her amazing Grandmother. All the walkers met up, and we headed out.


Since I'm still recovering, I knew I wouldn't make all six miles we were supposed to do today. I got wallowed in despair about this while I was sick, but a clear head helped me remember that my race isn't til June and, as Edith so wisely pointed out, I won't be doing a race with the flu. So, I walked with our newest walker, Jennifer, and we did about two and a half miles. She's a trooper, and I'm so excited to have her on the Team and her story was inspiring. After a mile or so, it wasn't cute anymore. The snowflakes was big and wet and stuck to everything! The snow was blowing in our face and eyes and forming little balls on our shoes. I no longer like snow. My feet are STILL cold. I am done with snow.


Once we got back to Fleet Feet, we defrosted and tried some of their nutrition samples they had out for us. Fueling your body properly during a race is very important, and walkers have different needs than runners. They had too many neat things.

This mug sums up what Team in Training has taught me (and it's purple!):


SO true.


Because of the weather and the traffic, a bunch of us went to The Perch for a late breakfast and had coffee and crepes. They were fabulous, and well-earned! Such a great group of people. I know I say that every week, but really, these people are just the coolest.


Also, I have decided who I'm dedicating my season to. She was the first person I thought of last season, but I ended up walking in honor of my friend's son, Robert. Robert's story had a happy ending, and I wanted to be upbeat and positive. Sadly, heartbreakingly, not all stories end well. I am walking this season for a little girl named Kayla. I can't tell you her full name, or where she lived, because she was one of the pediatric cancers patients I studied. I don't know what she looked like or what her favorite things were, but I can tell you what I knew about her. She had Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia, the most common childhood cancer. She initially developed a t(9;22), which has a poor prognosis. She got bone marrow taps every two weeks (they are very painful, and I would ache for her), she got a bone marrow transplant from her little brother and got better. A year later, her bone marrow showed her XX cells returning, then the t(9;22) came back, then additional material appeared on chromosome 14. When I called the nurse with a prelim about the 14, the receptionist told me the entire Pediatric Oncology department was out of the office, at Kayla's funeral. I gave her the information, I hung up, and I went to the bathroom and cried. I couldn't imagine a coffin small enough for an eight year old girl.


This is the monster we're fighting. This is why I'm raising money. This is why you need to donate.


Thank you for sharing my journey.


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Supporter Comments

  •  
    "Go Amy...I'm so proud of you!"
     

    Tim and Amie Trebing and Family

    Fri Nov 16 07:45:00 EST 2012

  •  
    "Keep on, Amy, even if others try to slow you down. You can do this. Love you!!"
     

    Anne-Leslie Owens

    Sat Mar 23 07:06:56 EDT 2013

  •  
    "Here's to the Starbucks card. Big money, big money, big money!"
     

    Keeley Puncochar

    Thu Mar 07 02:43:04 EST 2013

  •  
    "Go, Amy! Go, Amy!"
     

    Edith

    Wed Jan 02 07:53:45 EST 2013

  •  
    "I'm so proud of you and all your hard work Amy - I look forward to watching your continued success!"
     

    Ian Kirk

    Fri Dec 28 10:16:28 EST 2012

  •  
    "So proud of you Amy. You rock!! Thank you for all you are doing to fight blood cancers. Love, Anne-Leslie and Alan Green"
     

    Anne-Leslie Owens and Alan Green

    Tue Jan 08 07:59:14 EST 2013

  •  
    "So so so happy and proud of your accomplishments, here's to another great TNT year! "
     

    Ryan Bennett

    Tue Feb 19 07:52:47 EST 2013

  •  
    "Returning the favor. :) Also, it was a year ago this month that my brother was diagnosed with Lymphoma. After chemo and radiation, he seems to have beat it, but it was quite the year. Thanks for your efforts! :)"
     

    Kylene Dibble

    Wed Mar 20 01:15:31 EDT 2013

My Fundraising Total

Raised: $0.00 | Goal: $2,700.00
 
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In Memory of

Kayla

My Thanks To

Ian Kirk $500.00
Silent Auction $65.00
Centerplate $62.00
Edith $50.00
Carol Roth $46.25
Amy Wells $37.50
Kylene Dibble $37.00
Anne-Leslie Owens $25.00
Rebecca Sears $25.00
Carey Thompson $25.00
Anne-Leslie Owens and Ala... $25.00
Tim and Amie Trebing and ... $25.00
Mariesol Rodriguez $25.00
Anonymous $20.00
Keeley Puncochar $5.00
Meaghan O'Bryan $5.00
Ryan Bennett