Sunday, April 13, 2014

Hoosier Half Marathon...a run around campus

Hills, hills, and more hills. They were relentless. 13.1 miles of brutality. When the description of the race said "rolling hills" they weren't kidding. Last year we did the 5K, and we thought how bad could the half be? Well, we found out before we got to the first mile. The race started out across from the famed Assembly Hall and immediately headed downhill before turning onto a long stretch of uphill lasting for about half a mile.  
It was freezing cold! Temperature was barely
 30 degrees at the start. 
Our traditional pre-race shoe picture. We dressed in red and white to sport the school's colors. Go Hoosiers!
Blurry picture of the start, but you can see the hill ahead. Yikes!
The Sample Gates. This is the point where we could have split off and opted for the 5K, but we persevered and chose the race we came to run. Once through the Sample Gates, we continued our run through the beautiful IU campus.
There is a lot of green space, trails, and open areas throughout the campus. IU is known for its limestone buildings using the limestone native to this area.
 Contrast this to the brick buildings found on
 its rival school, Purdue University.
We ran by mansions like this one as well as sororities and fraternities on Greek Row.
Kevin tackling one of the multitude of hills on the course. You can see how steep this hill is by looking at the steps on the left leading up to the house. The man in the green shirt halfway up the hill was from California and was using this as a practice run for a 50 mile trail run in the mountains of Colorado he has in a few weeks.
A street named after me!
Official time on my Garmin. Wanted to finish in 3 hours but the hills did us in. We were happy with this since we walked more than we had planned. 
Glad to be done! Now it's time to eat!
Our shirt and medal

Assembly Hall; back were we started a
 little over 3 hours ago!

This is a race that we will NOT be repeating in 2015!

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Life With Arthrtis

About 5 years ago, I had to have my wedding ring,  engagement ring, and anniversary bands cut off due to swelling in my fingers from arthritis.  After decades of wearing my rings, I felt naked without them. So, I had arthritic shanks made so that I could wear two of my rings. However, over the last year the pain and swelling increased to the point that I could no longer even wear them. Last week I saw a rheumatologist and finally got some relief by way of cortisone injections into my painful joints. I kid you not, childbirth didn't hurt as much as these injections. First, a numbing injection between the joints and then the cortisone injection in both fingers. My fingers felt like balloons that were about to pop from the pressure of the fluid invading my deteriorating joints. The doctor said that with the stage of my arthritis I may not benefit from these shots but it was worth a try. 
My fingers prior to injections
My fingers today, a week after the injections

Although it's been just a week, I have had some relief from the constant joint pain. The joint on my middle finger is considerably smaller and the swelling has decreased to where I don't feel like I'm sporting sausages for fingers. My next appointment is in 4 months, and at that time I will decide whether this course of treatment is one that I want to pursue.  If I chose injections as a sense of relief, I will receive shots every 4 months for life. I guess I better get over my fear of needles!