Saturday, January 31, 2009

Making Nice with the Treadmill

I've blogged on this before. Perhaps, even multiple times. Desperate times call for desperate measures. And the old adage, "keep your friends close and enemies closer," is the tactic I've imployed here.

Yes, I have been running on the treadmill. As much as it bores me to tears, its the only way to get back in the saddle and start to run again. With the past 2 months being inconsistent at best in terms of running, I have decided to forgo the icy and slick streets of Madison and do my miles indoors. So far, so good. While I feel as if my pace is no more than a fast walk (think 5.0mph...blech!!!) it sooooo much better than not running, the other alternative.

I am happy to report that I've been taking 3-4 days off in between, and starting with 3-4 min/run followed by 1-2 min of uphill fast walking. And you know the funny thing?? I am actually enjoying my workouts. In fact, its making me really appreciate the time I am spending running during those 35-45 min on the treadmill. I am logging my progress and how I feel, so I know if I need to scale back or increase. My fingers are crossed on this one!

On another note, its time to start thinking about the upcoming cycling season. While my Tucson friends have already started their race season, mine won't get underway until late March. Now's the time to really start putting those miles in on the rollers, and any nice day I can get out where the temps are above 35 degrees, I will try to ride outside. But for now, I am still taking full advantage of the snow-covered golf courses and skiing or snowshoeing on the weekends. There will be plenty of time to ride in the coming months, so I am not too anxious about this one.

Its Saturday morning, and I am fed, caffeinated (probably too much!) and hydrating for day of training! Happy for the weekend ahead!!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

A Reason, Season, Or Lifetime

My friend in Tucson introduced me to this thought awhile back after a nasty break-up. It seems to be quite fitting, esp since I really believe that people come into your life in one or all of the above.

The community I've surrounded myself with starts as a group of "reason" or "season" people- upbeat, happy, usually-competitive, athletic folks, either triathletes, runners, and cyclists. The bonus is always the possibility that they will be in my world for a "lifetime." Many of my best friendships lasting years on end are with these people. However some of them are just "reason" friends, and after we complete our training session/race we part ways until the next event brings us together again.

Then there are my friends who have been around thru thick and thin--All of the hardships, the disagreements, the break-ups, the make-ups, the people I can call whenever I am just feeling the need to vent, get some sound advice, or just B*tch my little heart out (which I tend to do!!) when I know everyone else is probably not going to get it. They are my lifeline. My strength for those days, though few and far between, when I really need a shoulder to cry on.

My immediate family, they are my "lifetime." That's a given, since no matter near or far, sick, healthy, dead or alive, they have shaped my life. While some family are only around for a short season, and others specifically find a reason, they are still important figures in my world.

Most of the men I've dated can also go into the above "reason" and "season" categories, since after a few months/weeks/years their reason and season have failed to keep them around for a "lifetime." In some ways, its a bit depressing. But on the other hand, what you don't find in some people makes you keep searching for it in the others that come into your life for the next reason or season.

I think this lesson is a positive way to look at your personal relationships--with family, friends, and all of the others in between. Every person that comes into your life makes an impression, a footprint, leaving their mark so as to influence your life, your decisions, your next big move. So think about your life, your relationships, and how the people whose paths you cross usually can somehow fit into one or a few of the above


Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Tue Happenings

While most of everyone in the country was busily streaming the Inauguration on their desktops at work, I managed to attempt streaming 4x's without much luck. Ok, as I can always watch it later tonight online.......

Apparently age doesn't do much for eyesight. At my annual opthamology exam, I was told that 1) I have an astigmatism (tha hell is that??!?!) 2) my eyes have worsened by almost 3 levels in BOTH eyes 3) my insurance doesn't cover new contacts or glasses
Bummer on all accounts, but amazing how new Rx can make a world of a difference. Was that light green or red? And apparently I am no longer color blind

Tue Masters was eventful. In honor of CHANGE TODAY we wore flippers for the kick set. SOME change it was. Hard. And flippers I've always thought to be the wimpy way to kick. Put some glute and fire those abdominals, not so easy. In fact, a nice challenge that I welcome.

Madison is warming up, and though it would have been a most perfect afternoon to run--sunshine, pleasant winter air, and the best yet, off work early- my gut is telling me to giver a go one more week without it. At this point I've been off running for just shy of 4 weeks, what's another few days if it means I come back healthier and stronger!?!?? Besides, my butt is still stiff from marathon cross country ski sessions over the weekend and a little biff I took coming down a steep hill.

I am behind on my ABC addictions- Grey's, Private Practice, and Brothers and Sisters-so I will fire up the rollers and punch out some indoor miles and core training instead. I have also discovered a "create your own radio station" on that just about rules!!!! You pick the artists/songs. It soooooooooooo makes the time fly by when you are stuck indoors.

Off to train, until next time

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Starting Late

Its funny, when I lived in AZ I was accustomed to being up and at 'em for a pre-dawn workout. Not so much since moving to WI.

Its a much different mindset when you have gusting wind and negative temps until midday, so my weekends have been a little more lazy in the am...Get up, linger to the coffee pot and grind up some beans for a cup of joe. Eat breakfast, watch NBC, think about my friends in Tucson halfway done with their 70-mile ride on the Saturday morning Shootout..Facebook the crap out of friends..Facebook is such an addiction...its probably good they block it at my work! :)...................

Two doctors appts this week: one with sports med/athletic trainer, and another yesterday afternoon with a chiropractor, and I am already feeling more positive about healing this SI joint/ITband/piriformis thing. I really hate the elliptical but I sucked it up for 45min Fri morning at the gym, as I watched my friend Tina and other random runners jog circles around the indoor track when it was -25 outdoors at 6am. For the first time, I was actually wishing I was running around that track with them. Soon enough.

Laundry is drying and I am slowly getting my morning off on the right foot-literally-and heading to the UW pool for what I anticipate to be a good hard session. You really can't beat the facilities at a DivI pool.....Crystal clear water, a million lanes to swim in......and when its this cold there is no where else I'd rather be if I have to workout indoors.........

Thursday, January 15, 2009

New Core Exercises!!! (thank GOD!)

So, I have been mulling and griping, and frankly just dragging my feet...Or my leg, for that matter, in the past week! I finally had an appointment today to see a Sports Med specialist to figure out WTF is wrong with my left leg!

If you live under a rock, then you probably haven't heard that the entire middle section of our country is in a glacial freeze right now, and Madison, WI is certainly no exception! In fact, I think we may be in the top 5 right now of COLDEST cities in the USA...I am sure some random North Dakota town has out done us, but that's a fight I will let them win..I promise, this tangent of weather patterns has something to do with my damn knee and stupid injury, so read on...

This morning, after a solid 20 miles indoors on the rollers, I geared up post shower to head to work...knowing that the temps were in the -10's and dropping, I layered like a good girl and walked speedily to work, as my entire body continued to freeze every step I walk to work is about 10 min/-/+ so opting to cut the time, I picked up the pace and ran in the snowboots for the last 200 yds!! BIG F*n mistake! My knee was stiff the remainder of the afternoon..

Good, however, was the appt I had at 2pm to see Dr. Gronski and Deb-Athletic Trainer extraordinaire! I was so impressed with both evaluations I received from them, and Deb remained in the room to perform some myofascial release on my SI joint, hip, and piriformis... Dr. Gronski doesn't seem to think that its more than just imbalance in the SI joint, which in turn is sending negative energy and inflammation down my IT band, hip, knee, and consequently causing other bursitis, tendonitis. In fact, he seems to think that this will heal relatively quickly if I am a good student and do my homework in the form of core work, ice, and slowly introducing running to my regimen again

Deb offered up some new exercises, which I will post later with instructions! (want to make sure they work!!!) I am stoked, and after my evening trainer session, I hit up the gym for some work! I love new stuff, and I am hoping I have that "good" soreness tomorrow from the workout!

Here's to getting running shoes have cobwebs and they miss me!

Friday, January 9, 2009

Whine and Wine...........

I am a lover of wine. And lately, the more I whine, the more I wine. Well, not in a bad way, so to speak. I am good with my intake, a glass some nights of the week with dinner...Perhaps more often, not necessarily a large serving. My faves are generally whatever is on sale at TJ's for less than $6, and I am always a sucker for anything dark red, but particularly the lighter ones like Zin, and Pinot Noir. White wine, though I rarely turn down a glass (!), tends to give me a gnarly headache, and hangover, no matter how little I consume

Apparently my wine goes hand-in-hand with my whine, because that seems to be more prevalent as well. This knee/ITB syndrome/hip/What-the-hell-is-wrong-already thing is really becoming quite the bugger....While I have been swimming my little butt off and feeling fabulous in the water, my leg is both literally and figuratively at a stand still...No running, going on 14 days today! It sucks! (and since its Fri, how about a glass of Cabernet while I am at it)

I just need to put it out there: Has ANYONE, ANYWHERE, in the land of Blogville, ever had a lingering knee issue that feels almost like a pressure of fluid building up around their lower quad/and posterior knee that is not pain but tension???

I have broken down and made an appt with a sports med MD, which being in the industry, I have finally taken my own advice...I stretch, I ice, I rest, I cycle, I swim, nothing is really making it any better, so I am at a loss. My only hope is that it really is just a bad ligament sprain or strain, and not a tear to something requiring an operation. Damn, health is something I really take for granted. And I miss my pain-free body. Whine, ya, that's twice in one paragraph. Pathetic.

Madison, on the other hand, is so pretty and snowy today, it just makes me want to layer it all on an run in the park. Shit. There I go again, whine. No running. So I will wax up my skis, take off into the beautiful hills and try my hand at some more skiing. The conditions look to be stellar, and its things like this that keep me hoping I will be back to my old self really soon.

Here's to a happy, healthy, and lovely winter weekend filled with a moderate dose of wine and a minimal amount of whine!