Ballet Shoes & Mickey Ears

The happenings of this Disney-obsessed runner and dancer!


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Who Doesn’t Bleed When They’re Stuck With a Needle?!

Me! That’s who!! I went to have blood drawn this morning to see why I’m bruising like I am. The phlebotomist tried my left arm first. She stuck the little butterfly needle in, and I saw a little blood go into the tube. I then felt her moving the needle around under my skin. I was not bleeding!! Who the heck doesn’t bleed when a freakin needle is in their arm?!? So needless to say, she had to give up on that arm and move on to my right arm. At this point I was starting to feel really lightheaded and nauseous. Awesome. Luckily she was able to hit my vein right away and get the blood she needed because I was not feeling good. I needed to lay down for a few minutes because I felt like I was going to pass out. No bueno.

I had the same problem last time I tried to get blood drawn. She couldn’t get my left vein to bleed, dug around under my skin, and then ended up in my right arm. I got woozy that time too. So from now on, my left arm is a no go for getting blood drawn. I’ve learned my lesson!!

Hopefully I will hear back from my doctor later on today. She wasn’t very nice so I don’t think I want to keep her as my primary care doctor. I’m really bummed that I’m not able to run in this beautiful weather we have today. Or dance this week either. Super bummed. Hopefully my leg feels better soon!

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Bruises from Running??

Ugh. This is how I feel right now. Just ugh. I’ve been having problems with my left calf now for a couple of weeks. Last Sunday, not in yesterday, but as over a week ago, I attempted to go running. I was scheduled to run 5 miles. I ran them, but was in pain the entire time and had to keep stopping. It felt like I strained it maybe? Or it’s just being overused? Then I woke up the next day with this:

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Yes that’s a huge bruise. Except I didn’t hit it off anything. I simply ran. I’ve had this happen before on my thighs/hips from just stretching for dance, too. It appears more like broken blood vessels. Not good. I’ve had this bruise on my calf now for over a week. I tried to run again on Saturday, another 5 miles, and had the same pain/problems. After attempting to run, I’ve been having strange sensations in my left leg. Almost like a cold sensation starting from around the bruised area going down into my foot. Weird. My leg isn’t a different color either. I’ve been wearing a compression sock on it today, and when I take it off that cold feeling comes back. As long as it’s in the sock, it feels better. Who knows. I’ve decided to go see a doctor tonight though. I’m hoping nothing serious is wrong. I think I’m mildly anemic, so maybe it has something to do with this? I’m also resting this week from everything…running and dancing. It sucks, but I have to give my calf a chance to heal. I’m just hoping that this bruising problem isn’t what’s causing the discomfort I’ve been having when trying to run. I’ll keep you posted!

On a positive note….my new pointe shoes are working out perfectly! I’ve actually decided to only wear my hard shank on my left foot and keep the broken in supple shank on my right foot. It’s working…but my right foot needs a little more support still. So after I figure out my calf problem, I’m going to try the hard shank shoe on my right foot. Our recital dance is coming along beautifully. We even get the opportunity to add some of our own choreography with a partner for a couple of counts in the dance! So exciting and fun! I have some good ideas for my partner and I’s part, I’m hoping we can use them!

Hope everyone had a great weekend! I think the weather has finally broken here in Cleveland. No more crappy cold weather! Bring on Spring!! πŸ’πŸŒΈπŸŒ·β˜€β˜”β›…


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Exciting News!!

I have exciting news!!! As you all know, I’m a huge Disney fan. Like completely obsessed. I talk about it at least once a day. I love learning and reading new things about anything involving Disney. So when I had the opportunity to become a contributor for a Disney blog, I had to jump on it!! There’s a blog known as WDW FanZone that is run from WordPress. There’s a family of contributors that all write about anything Disney every month. I also follow this blog on twitter, and this past week the man who runs the site, Stuart Sternberg, tweeted a message looking for anyone interested in becoming a contributor! I immediately responded and got in contact with Stuart. He said he liked what he saw here on my blog and offered me the opportunity to join their family of writers! So that’s right folks….yours truly is one of the new contributors for WDW FanZone!! I’m so excited about this opportunity!!! I’ve already started making a list of topics I want to write about. For right now I only need to write one article per month, so this is definitely manageable. I’ll be re-blogging my posts I do there on this blog too, so keep your eyes open! My first topic will be posted around the end of May.

I also have more exciting news!! I mentioned in my last post that I was beginning to train for a half marathon. Well, I’m almost positive that this half marathon will be happening for me! Only downside…I have to be ready in about 9 weeks. Tough, but not impossible. I completed all my scheduled runs for last week, so I’m off to a good start. I just need to figure out my shoe problems and I’ll be all set. The exciting thing about this half marathon?? It’s in Seattle. We have friends that live in Seattle, so we would be staying with them. This half marathon is part of a series of runs put on by a company called Rock n Roll Marathon Series. They seem awesome. Live bands play at every mile during the race, and there is a concert at the end! And you get these amazing rock n roll themed medals for completing the races. You even get bonus medals if you complete 2+ of their events within a year. I’m always up for a challenge so my goal is to complete 3 half marathons by October with this series. This would earn me not only the 3 race event medals, but an additional 2 awesome medals for completing multiple races. I can’t pass this up. It’s just too awesome. I never thought I would like running so much. But I’m so happy I do. I feel such a great feeling of accomplishment every time I cross the finish line or run my farthest distance. I may not be the fastest person out there, but I finish every race I do. And I enjoy every minute of it πŸ™‚


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Pointe Shoe Update

Ok folks we have progress!! Are trying to dance in my broken Supple shank pointe shoes last night, it is confirmed that they are in fact broken and I need a stiffer shank. My teacher is confident that my hard shank ones will be ok. I will be able to soften them slightly in time for the recital so I should be ok. I’m feeling way more relaxed and at ease now about my pointe shoes problems. I’ll give these hard shanks a go again and see if I like them. Now that I’m almost 100% sure on my sizing in terms of length and width/box size, it’s just a matter of finding the most suitable shank I feel comfortable with. Shouldn’t be too hard, right?!!? Hah!! I know I want have any pain in my hard shanks, I just hope they allow my feet to still work. We shall see.

I did not have a good class last night either. I knew, just KNEW that as soon as I said my IT band wasn’t giving me any problems since I began running that it was going to flare up. And right on cue….my IT band flares up. I can’t win. I felt a little twinge of discomfort on my 3 mile run on Wednesday evening, but ignored it. Then I tried running my 4 mile length Thursday morning only to have horrible pain in my right hip. I was super upset. I pushed through my 4 mile run breaking it up with running/walking to get through. I immediately used my foam roller once I got home and that helped with the discomfort. I was pretty stiff and sore for ballet class and it showed. I was really wobbly and had a difficult time with everything. I used the time in the studio to get some stretching done in hopes it might help. I didn’t think I was going to make it to pointe class, but it started to feel a little looser as the night went on. While the hip wasn’t causing any pain in pointe class, the choreography sure was. I don’t know what was happening but I just could not for the life of me pick up the new choreography. I was getting frustrated and so were some of the other girls. With some encouragement from our teacher though I pushed through and it ended up finally clicking. I need to work on just relaxing during pointe. I tend to overly stress on every little detail. Deep breathes here, deep breathes. I know I will be ok, I just need to trust myself. Having good solid pointe shoes will help too.

Well, here’s to hoping my IT band stays quiet for my 5k tomorrow morning. I’m also hoping the weather will cooperate. It was 83 degrees yesterday and by tomorrow morning they’re saying it will maybe be 40 degrees. Stupid Cleveland weather. Pick a season and stick with it. Please.


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Trouble in Pointe Shoe Paradise

Sorry for the silence over here! I’ve been super busy lately. Between work, dance, and running…oh and being an adult too, I haven’t had as much time to write. Anywho….no big news to report on the ballet front. Our recital dances are coming along. Two out of the three are completely choreographed now. Yay!! We are working hard at our pointe dance still. It’s proving to be difficult week after week. I’m seeing improvements though with myself from when we first started piecing it together. I’m becoming more confident and learning to just go with the flow. This means I’m just using my feet more and relying on them to get the steps done instead of letting my mind talk me out of it. Stupid mind. We’re also only waiting on one more costume to come in. So that’s exciting. And now we come to pointe shoes. Oh how these little things are such a pain! As an adult dancer, I’m constantly nitpicking my shoes. The size, the width, the shank. I feel like right now there is still room to improve the fit of my shoes. As I mentioned in my previous post, I thought I had somehow managed to break the shanks on my Gaynor Mindens. I wore them to class last week though and was still able to dance in them, except I started getting a lot of pressure and pain on each of my big toes. Not good. This either means that my shank is definitely broken because I’m not getting enough support, or I’m starting to sink into my box. I feel like I’m starting to fall off pointe more frequently too. Like I’m not getting enough support under my feet to keep me up. I spent more time today on the Gaynor Minden dance website. I read their fitting guide….again. From what I see when I’m up on pointe is this: my shoes are not holding me back and they are not allowing me to go over too far, or knuckle. My box seems to be the correct width, although there’s a chance I might fit into a slightly tapered box, but they don’t carry that in my size. My length is correct. So how did my shoes end up getting like they did? Who knows. It’s like those old Tootsie Pop commercials with the kid and the owl. How many licks does it take to get to the Tootsie Roll center of a Tootsie Pop?? The world may never know!! Why do I keep having problems with my pointe shoes?? The world may never know!! Hah!! In my frustration after class last week (and the pain) I decided to order yet ANOTHER pair of Gaynors. I decided that I just needed to go back to the hard shank. So I get them in the mail on Monday and check them out. They felt really stiff. I don’t remember my first ones feeling this stiff. After researching again today online I’m starting to think that I don’t actually need the hard shank. I think it’s too stiff. Maybe I need the Exra Flex? That’s the shank down from hard and before Supple, the shank I currently wear. Why does this have to be so difficult?!!?!?

So needless to say…my new shoes are not sewn yet. I’m thinking now I might return them and possibly go with the extra flex. Or even possibly try to tinker with the current ones?! I tried putting one of their blue pads in each shoe. I placed them a little to the sides, so that my big toes are not using them. I’m hoping this helps take some of the pressure off my big toes and redistribute it to the rest of my toes. We’ll see how that goes tonight!!

In running news….I’m officially crazy. I’m actually thinking of trying to do a half marathon in oh about 9 weeks. I’ve dove head first (or foot first?!) into a training plan. I need to run 10 miles by mid June anyways, so this shouldn’t be too much worse. Right?? I did 3 miles last night and another 4 miles today. I have a 5k race on Saturday, too. Holy cannoli. I’ll keep you updated!

Oh and I might have some exciting news to share soon! Still figuring out the details…so I will let you all know when I can!! Have a great weekend everyone πŸ™‚


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First 5 Mile Race!

Well I did it! I ran my next farthest distance race. I completed a 5 mile race this past Sunday morning. Our day began super early…I think we got up at 5:30?? I know, crazy. It was warm with strong winds therefore making it more chilly. I got dressed and husband and I headed off. We got to the parking lot with about an hour and half to hang. After tirelessly debating what to wear…I had brought multiple clothing items….I settled on my outfit and we headed over to the start area. It was starting to warm up and the wind was bearable. My nervousness turned quickly into excitement. I was so excited to start. They had some music playing and the post-race food area set up. So I bounced around and talked to husband to pass the time and calm my nerves. Then it was go time. I said bye to hubs and got in the pack. They had an officer sing the national anthem and then we were off. Holy cannoli!! I started my music and running app and got running! By the first mile I was really hot and sweating…totally should have just gone with the shirt sleeve shirt. I was slightly familiar with the course route because we have biked on it before. I just kept running. And running. And running. The only times I stopped running was to gulp down some water at the three water stops. I ran the entire thing. I couldn’t believe it. When I hit the 4 mile marker and heard my app say only 1 mile left…my eyes actually teared up a little bit. I had done it. I had ran the whole 5 miles. Not such a big deal to most people. But seeing as I’ve only been running for about 2 months now, it was a huge goal for me. I even powered through the hill right before the finish line. Bam! Take that stupid hill. I kicked your hilly butt. As soon as I crossed the finish line I saw my husband and he had a big smile on his face. He was so proud of me!! I was proud of me too. I wanted to finish in under 55 minutes, and you know what? I did it. My official time was 53:22. Now I know I’m not breaking any world records here with this time, but I’m so proud of it. I finished 22 out of 37 women in my age bracket and 223 out of 383 total runners. That’s a win in my book!! I didn’t wear my new running shoes for this race because I’m still trying to break them in and adjust to them. I’m excited for next race…I’m hoping to hit up maybe 2 more in April. Here’s my before and after pics! Hah!!

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My awesome tech shirt from running the race! Love it! Only wish it said 5 mile on there too…

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Waiting to start. It was a little chilly!! And I’m obviously nervous lol.

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I did it! 5 miles DONE!! πŸ™‚


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New Gear!!

Who doesn’t love getting new gear?!? I’ve picked up some new items this past week to help with both ballet and running. First off, I got fitted for new running shoes and over the counter inserts. Of course, just my luck, I got the least cute pair of running shoes they had. I was kinda bummed….but it’s not a fashion show. I need to have comfort and reliability. So here’s my new shoes!!

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They are Mizuno Wave Creation 13.

I also picked up some new gear for stretching at home. My house is mostly hardwood floors, and even though I have some padding with marley flooring over it, it was not comfy to stretch on. I mainly use my “dance floor” to practice turns on and to work on pointe. It fits nicely now in our newly cleaned out spare bedroom.

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I decided to get a yoga mat to use for stretching at home. I went with a nice, thick, squishy one because of my hardwood floors. The mat is 6mm thick and it says its recommended for use for stretching…perfect! I got the mat for about $16 and a new 3-pack of looped resistance bands for about $9. So not too bad. Here are the mat and bands.

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I’m going to try them out tonight in part of my new 30 day challenge. I took a work out class at my dance studio, taught by my ballet teacher, this past Monday. Ohhhhhh boy did it work!! I’m still sore! We did about 360 crunches, a TON of leg work, push ups at the barre, and some stretching at the end. Man oh man are muscles I didn’t even know I had hurting!! It was the best workout I’ve done in a long time. I absolutely loved it!!

Well, my 5 mile race is this Sunday. I’m starting to get really nervous! At least this race should be mostly flat. Whew! I’ll let you know how it goes!! Oh, and a big shout out to Kristen over at Adult Ballerina Project! I was the lucky winner of her Sweat Pink shoelace giveaway!! Yay! I’m so excited. I can’t wait to get those pretty pink laces on my new running shoes! They will be the perfect thing to make them “cute and girly”. Thanks Kristen!! πŸ˜ƒ