Monday, October 31, 2011

Have you had your 6 daily servings of pumpkin today?

Today gave a new meaning to 'case of the Mondays'; it was day full of good things!

1. It's Halloween.  This is one of my favorite holidays, even ranking up there above Christmas thanks to all of the ridiculousness, sugar, costumes, and pumpkin flavored ev-er-y-thing!  Including the pumpkin pie Clif bars I greedily ordered in bulk from REI.  Oh so much yummy!

2. I finally had my appointment with my ortho this morning and he all but ruled out a meniscal tear (happy dance!).  Since last weekend, my pain has largely subsided to 0/10.  I am having better and worse days but the pain was far from constant by 3 days s/p. An MRI was still ordered but only after a long chat about the pros and cons of meniscal surgery, as well as the specificity of special tests for meniscal tears.  I felt like I was taking a practical exam!  I'm still keeping my workouts low key until my follow up next week but hopefully it will just be some PT and good to go.  I really just want to be sure that my I'm not making anything worse while exercising.

3. Did I mention that it's Halloween?  It was the perfect excuse to wear cheesy themed jewelry and fuzzy striped socks... and take bad pictures.

4. Trick-or-Treating and Halloween are the perfect excuse for every child to cancel their PT appointment today, meaning I ended up with an overwhelming 2 kids on my caseload.  That translates to getting lots of paperwork done, leaving uber-duber early, and getting home in time to enjoy the trick-or-treaters!

So my evening luckily included a bowl of Twix, Pinterest, and a piece of cheesecake enjoyed on my front steps which are tastefully covered in the ugliest carpet still surviving from the 70s!

Now... gearing up for an early bedtime; this weekend was way more eventful that I was prepared for!

Saturday, October 22, 2011


I worked with my kiddos from 8-1 this morning.  That's the end of my physical activity for the weekend.  Thanks to my bum knee and a monstrous sized paper due on Halloween I won't be moving anything but my little fingers all over the keyboard this weekend.  Don't the faculty realize Halloween is a week long+ celebration?

So you'll find me cozy on the couch, with my face buried in a chai latte in my favorite blue mug.
 With frozen corn on my knee because let's be honest, no other "ice pack" conforms better than those frozen kernels!
And giving the pretty-little-pinkness a serious workout!

And when all of that is over... I can finally relax, enjoy one of my favorite holidays, and focus on getting this knee back in one piece!

On a much happier note, this lovely lady will be running the Pittsburgh Marathon with me in May!
Um, flashback a few years, yes.  Suz is a high school friend and she's ready to run the full in May and if I can swing my schedule the right way I'll be heading her way to run the NYC13.1 (I think that's what it's called?) with her in March!

Need some entertainment for your Saturday?  Go to youtube and search "disney surprise fail".  Then laugh, really hard, at all the kids that would rather go to Chuck E Cheese, Chattanooga, or stay home instead of going to Disney!

Friday, October 21, 2011

Cold legs and bum knees

I always love a good deal, so I was super excited when I snagged a pair of Canari cycling tights for $1.99 this week.  No matter that I haven't yet decided if they fit me or the hubs better.  Either way, one of us will have warmer legs than we did last weekend!

I love, love, love my Pearl Izumi Sugar shorts for their shorter length (and the perfect fitting dri-fit tees I snagged Costco!), but the  weather is getting a little chilly for them here.  Thankfully we warmed up but I was shivering about 30 seconds into our ride on Sunday!  Our lack of preparation though, may have been due in part to the fact that I accidentally checked Atlanta's weather report instead of Pittsburgh's, oops.

Also worth mentioning while talking about last weekend... this amazing mound of sugar I assembled.  I saw the Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Pull Apart Bread recipe everywhere, and after seeing it was all my favorite food groups in one bread, I knew I had to make it.
Verdict: It was really quite yummy but it was a LOT of work for a little loaf of bread.  I was also rather bummed by how little of a pumpkin flavor you got out of it.  On taste alone, I wouldn't have guessed there was pumpkin in it at all.  Like I said though, still good enough to lick every last morsel off you fingers!

And now with all the warm fuzzies of the weekend out of the way, I think I did myself in last night.  I felt something a little "funny" in my left knee at the start of my soccer game.  I pulled myself out, stretched out really well, and everything seemed fine as I continued on.  Then I woke up in the middle of the night with sharp shooting pains down to my foot and up to my buttock.  Every slight turn of my knee was another pain.  Now stairs, walking, and even just straightening my knee hurts.  I'm fairly confident that it's (another) left lateral meniscal tear, which won't be fun moving forward.  I already have an appointment set up with ortho next week, but I'm not giving up hope that it is magically going to heal itself before then...

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Pumpkins, Bananas, Cinnamon Oh My!

Workout: 30 minutes on the elliptical, hip and core strengthening on the physioball, pushups x20... all while taking in some good Sunday afternoon football!

There is a lot to love about weekends.  One of my favorite things to love is the extra time to make a nice breakfast.  ie. something fancier than a Clif bar eaten in my car while driving.

Today's super-amazing breakfast started with a frying pan and a little margarine.  Next was a banana sliced into thin discs.  Stirred that a little before adding pumpkin pie spice and a little cinnamon sugar.
Mixed all of that up and kind of mushed it a little while it sizzled away.  It wasn't as pretty anymore, but it smelled simply amazing.  It's unfortunate for you that this blog isn't scratch-and-sniff!
Next, I toasted 2 Eggo Pumpkin Spice frozen waffles.  I may have done a little happy dance after laying my eyes on those at Target last night.  Obviously my life was not complete before discovering those little gems.
Layer the banana mush between the waffles, serve with chocolate milk, and enjoy the little party on your tongue.
Just to be safe, I should probably buy an extra freezer to stock with pumpkin waffles... enough to last me at least part way to next fall!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011


I spend my Wednesday afternoons doing aquatic therapy; seeing my patients in a 92 degree pool at the swanky wellness center.  It's not too shabby as far as jobs go, but it also makes me stink like a bucket of chlorine for no less than 48.5934 hours.  So a shower is necessary asap before I make the hour-ish drive home, and I always ends up in shorts and a running tank rather than putting work clothes back on.

Where am I going with this?  I made a Target run around 9ish to pick up some necessities.  I was eyeing up the fancy little Halloween hand towels when a middle-aged woman clearly fresh from the gym, sweat still intact, laughed and said, "I'm glad I'm not the only that still stops to shop even right after working out!"

Um, confession, I didn't work out today.  And boy did she make me feel guilty!!

Off to do a few push-ups before bed so I can stop feeling like such a poser in my workout gear!

My favorite way to push up!
It's not that my low back is sagging, it's just that my backend really does stick out that much further.  The scapular winging on the other hand... oops.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Smarty Pants Running

I have this little personality flaw.  I'm working on it, but haven't made much progress.  It stresses me out, wears me out, and sometimes flat out just exhausts me.  What it boils down to is that if I am going to do something, I want to do it really, really well.  I'm kind of allergic to failure.  I'm kind of opposed to falling short.
Hi, my name is Abby, and I like to be an over-achiever.
Over Achieving one shiny over-sized wine-filled goblet at a time!
So it's no surprise that I've been pouring over first marathon testimonials, training plans, tips, tricks, course maps, and training seminars ever since registering for the Marathon last week.  But here's the thing, the Marathon is still 7+ months away.  It looks like I'll be buckling down with a real plan come the new year, but I have a lot of time until then.  (And no I don't know why I feel the need to always capitalize Marathon)

So what do I do in the next 3 months?  Work my bum off to make myself feel as ready as I can be by January.  Coincidentally, the Sunday before the Marathon also happens to be graduation day.  That's right, doctorate degree and first Marathon all in one week!  Lucky for me, my smarty-pants degree also happens to be in Physical Therapy.  Strengthening?  Stretching?  Cardiovascular conditioning?  Injury prevention?  Yes please.
Hi, this is my intimidating version of cross-training. 
I suggest steering clear of that scary looking rectus femoris.

I hope to share a lot of my workouts over the next few months here on ZestyNerd.  Sharing brings knowledge; come be an over achiever with me.  So I figured this was a good time to put a little disclosure out there.  You know, for anyone that may somehow fall under the false assumption that I know everything.  So here goes, in concise list format like any hyper-organized person would do.

1. Yes, I am a Physical Therapy Intern/Student and will have my DPT degree next Spring.
2. Yes, I have all sorts of fantastic knowledge of the musculoskeletal system as well as health, wellness, medical care and conditions, and general well-being (wanted to know just how gross that pressure ulcer is, I'm your girl!)  I love to hear questions, but you can probably bet my answers will be "Go see your physician or PT" or just very general knowledge stuffs.

....but more importantly...
3. I don't know any of my readers well to enough to, under any circumstances, be making personal fitness and exercise recommendations.  Unless you're my hubs, then I tell what to do anyways by default.
4. Always check with your personal health care provider(s) to ensure you are healthy enough to embark on any type of exercise routine, especially if you start out sedentary, overweight, or with known or suspected medical conditions.
5. Nothing stated in my posts or anywhere on ZestyNerd is every intended as medical advice.  Let's be honest, I don't even have a real license until at least next July when I take the NPTE exam.  I'm a faker til then, so don't take me too seriously.  You probably shouldn't take me seriously after I graduate either though if we're going to be real. 
6. As smart as I like to think I am, sometimes I get it wrong.  I'm not a textbook.  Heck, I'm probably not even Wikipedia quality knowledge.  Take it for what it's worth, and know it's not worth much more than some mediocre reading!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Setting up Camp

Looking for sure fire proof that you are getting old(er)? 
Include a high school reunion in your Saturday night plans.  Let's just clarify now though that I have only been out of high school for 9 years and 8 months.  It's the old-man-hubs that graduated more than 10 years ago.  Just saying.

I was kind of excited for a good reason to bring out some of the new fall clothes I have lustfully been staring at in my closet for 2 months!  In true Abby fashion though, I totally missed out on taking a pic of us all dressed up.

Just this one this AM... my sweater dress airing out in hopes that the cigarette smell goes away on it's own, yuck! 
And now it's Sunday, and I woke up with a nasty case of sinusitis (and hopefully that's all it is!).  So I put on my game day sweats....
And set up camp on my couch, with all the sick Sunday afternoon necessities.
PS- The 5 miles around the lake on this chilly Autumn afternoon obviously not happening secondary to not being able to breathe out of my nose :(