Monday, December 10, 2018

Week in review December 3-9: It wasn’t great, but I enjoyed a bit of a break

It wasn’t a great week. I logged about half the number of workouts and volume I usually do. Part of it was because I felt super crappy on exhausted on Tuesday (thanks, hormones) and part of it was that my old, rusty treadmill decided to stop playing nicely. I am pretty sure Santa is going to bring us a new one this year.

The week actually started off well with a barre class Monday. We had had our Christmas card pictures taken the day before, so I spent the rest of the evening color correcting and ordering cards. (Yes, we are the weirdos who do pics with our dogs every year.) I barely slept early in the week but rallied for an easy treadmill run on Wednesday followed by a bit of yoga, and a decent trainer ride on Thursday.

It had been a loooooong day Friday and I wanted nothing more than to crawl into bed and order takeout, but I rallied again and got on the treadmill to do a speed workout only to find that the belt wasn’t keeping up with the speed I wanted to run. I managed to plod for a mile before calling it quits. The jerky motion aggravates my hip and knee and I didn’t want to be surprised if/when it did suddenly start going the speed I wanted.

I could have been productive on Saturday after a good night’s sleep, but I did boring things instead like have a nice breakfast out with my husband, run errands, address cards, and start Christmas shopping before meeting my parents for dinner. I was surprisingly successful tracking down gifts so it wasn’t a total waste of time. By the time Sunday came around, I was refreshed and ready for a long-ish run.

As frustrating as the week was, it had its successes. I cooked dinner every single weeknight. (Going out with my parents Saturday was the first time in almost TWO WEEKS we had gone out to dinner!!!) I had a prepped breakfast and lunch every day. It was warm enough to do my long-ish run outside. After a walk warmup, I ran a straight 10K, the first time in over a year that my knee has allowed me to do that.

I think my biggest “fail” of the week was that I didn’t do any PT. As we get closer to the holiday crush, I expect that I am going to have to be judicious with my time in the evenings. I know I have to run one errand after work today and probably another tomorrow, so I may be deciding between cooking, a run or a ride, OR PT, but not all three. I get frustrated when I can’t check off my entire to-do list, so I am going to have to practice patience with myself. Maybe I will call it getting into the holiday spirit.

Anyway, my week by the numbers was:

Run/Walk: Three times, twice on the treadmill and once on the road, for 14.1 mile in a bit longer than 2.5 hours. This included one aborted speed treadmill run and a really nice 10K in the brisk air.

Bike: Once on the trainer for 13.5 fake trainer miles in an hour.

Weights: One barre class for about an hour.

Yoga: One self-guided session of mostly hip openers, bends, etc. for 20 minutes.

Total: 6 sessions in a hair less than 5 hours.

Yeah, I could have done a lot more. But everyone needs a few days off here and there, and hopefully I can use that rest to build toward a stronger week this week.

Monday, December 3, 2018

Week in review Nov. 26-Dec. 2: It was a “little bit of everything” kind of week

A third run, a third bike, a third other -- sounds about right.
It wasn’t a spectacular week, but it had its small victories. I got to the pool! I did a birthday “triathlon”! I got to run outside in the sunshine and warm-ish air! I was able to squeeze in some yoga!

I even managed a rest day, taking Thursday completely off training. I don’t remember why, so I was probably just tired and fed up with the week. Usually that happens by Tuesday, haha. But I was able to finish the week out strong with doubles Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, so a day of rest and an early bedtime definitely didn’t hurt.

My week was:

Run/Walk: Three times, twice on the treadmill and once on the road, for 18.25 miles in about 3:17. This was a weird week: One 39-minute straight run for my birthday, bookended by walking warmups and cooldowns; one “speed” run of increasing 0.75-mile intervals with alternating walks and jogs, ending with a jog to hit 65 miles for the month; and one straight “long-ish” run that ended up being shorter than my “speed” run earlier in the week. But, I got to enjoy the 50-degree weather and sunshine yesterday, and nothing hurt by the end of the week, so I’m considering this a success even if I got there in a strange, roundabout way.

Bike: Three times, all on the trainer, for 41.32 fake trainer miles in about 3:13. Doing a shorter ride of 39 minutes for my birthday threw off my usual totals a bit, but other than that the week’s rides were pretty unremarkable.

PT: Just two solo sessions this week for a total of about 1:15. Unfortunately I can’t make everything a priority, and these fell down the list this week.

Weights: Just one video this week for about 50 minutes (skipping the warmup because I did this right after a trainer ride). Again, I would have liked to do a heavy/body session, but it fell down the priority list. I usually lift heavy on Saturdays but we went to a Christmas party with friends instead, and we had a blast, so the trade-off was well worth it to me.

Swim: Yay, a swim! Just one session of 39 minutes of drills for my birthday.

Yoga: One quick Sunday night session of about 15 minutes. I definitely needed this. Even though I logically know my hips and glutes would especially benefit from some yoga several times during the week, I am struggling to find even a few minutes here and there. Usually by the end of the day I’m tired and just want to relax. This is something I need to keep working on.

Total: 11 sessions in about 9.5 hours. Overall, a good week.

We’re moving solidly into the holiday season and I’m hoping I can keep up my good weekly habits. We don’t have a lot of plans … yet … but I’m sure the parties and shopping and all that other stuff will be popping up shortly. On the days when I can work, work out, sleep, and repeat, I will. On the days I can’t, I won’t. I’m going to do what I can and try not to beat myself up about it. And if I have more "little bit of everything" weeks in the meantime, that's good, too.

Sunday, December 2, 2018

November in review: Highest volume and run mileage in a long time!

I love it when I add up my numbers for the month and I'm pleasantly surprised. I only had a couple of days here and there during which I did not workouts at all, mostly when I had plans or just needed a day off. I put in a solid couple of days over Thanksgiving break and I did a birthday triathlon, which helped with some of that solid volume.

I also managed to run 65 miles this month! I was so happy to see that I was in the late 50s by the end of the month and I wanted to hit that milestone. The last run of the month was on the 30th and my husband was running an errand, so I found a new series on Netflix (Schitt's Creek — HILARIOUS) and settled into the treadmill. And, best of all, my knee held up.
Running miles for the last 13 months.
I didn't get to ride outside at all. We pretty much went straight from summer to winter and missed fall completely. I got a couple of runs in outside, but sadly the bike is probably inside for the winter.
Not a bad showing.
Overall, my month turned out to be:

Bike: 12 times, all on the trainer, for 177.57 trainer miles in about 14 hours. Nothing special here — just a lot of Trainer Road interval rides.

Run: 12 times, 6 on the road and 6 on the treadmill, for 65 miles in about 12 hours. Again, nothing special — just building up slowly and steadily so I don't re-injure anything.

Weights: 6 times of 3 videos, 2 heavy/body sessions and 1 barre class, for about 6 hours. This averages out to about 1.5 per week which isn't terrible. I can't be too mad.

PT: 11 times in about 7:30. Eh, this should be closer to 2-3 hours per week. I keep working at this.

Swim: 39 minutes for my birthday triathlon, which worked out to be 1200 yards of drills.

Yoga: 2 sessions in about a half hour. Eh, again — this should be about 1 hour per week. Something else to keep working at.

Total: 44 sessions in about 40.5 hours. WOW! I haven't had that kind of volume in a while. Thank the Thanksgiving holiday, thank wanting to do something special for turning 39, thank my boring life and desire to be a hermit.

I am trying not to gain 100 pounds with the holidays coming up, so hopefully this will give me a good base to hitting December hard. Or, at least, hard enough where I can fend off some of the stress without creating more for myself. I do plan on enjoying wine and cookies in the near future; I just plan on enjoying some runs and rides, too. =)

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

A birthday triathlon

I turned 39 the other day. Last year we were still figuring out what was wrong with my knee, the year before that I was sick, and the year before THAT I was taking it easy after gutting out a marathon through some SI joint weirdness and pain. So, I wanted to do something special this year.

I had seen on social media people doing their age in distance or minutes for swim, bike, and run and figured I could do that. I had to work on my actual birthday, so I split my “triathlon” into two days: 39 minutes of swimming and biking one day, and 39 minutes of running the next day (followed by about 39 minutes of cupcake eating, haha).

I am WAY out of swimming shape but I figured I could do drills for 39 minutes. I found myself heading back to the wall for the final time as my watch read 39 minutes and then… I couldn’t remember how to stop and save my workout! Luckily I was able to figure it out before the clock ticked over to 40 minutes. My cycling leg was pretty simple; I just hopped on the trainer and increased the resistance until I settled into something challenging yet sustainable. I cooled down with a few minutes left to go and wrapped up at 39 on the dot.

It was dark and wind chills were in the teens by the time I got home from work for my run the next day, so I just hopped on the treadmill for 39 minutes of running. This was the first time since my duathlon over Labor Day weekend that I didn’t take walk breaks! And everything felt fine, if not a little boring. I just settled in and watched some Orange is the New Black until the timer clocked in at 39 minutes exactly.
This was fun to do and not too challenging, and it felt like I was getting 39 off on the right foot. Maybe next year for the big 4-0 I’ll be up for swimming 4,000 meters, riding 40 miles, and running as fast as I can for 40 minutes. I have a year to train, right?

Monday, November 26, 2018

Week in review Nov. 19-25: Surprise! When I have a few days off work, I train more

A pretty evenly balanced week.
OK, it isn’t much of a surprise, haha. I had a glorious four and a half days off work last week with Thanksgiving and Black Friday. Even though I didn’t do anything active on Thanksgiving besides eat, I was still able to log 12 sessions for the week, including my PT.

I got a solid start to the week with a trainer ride and weights video on Monday, and a run and PT on Tuesday. On Wednesday we were sent home early – hooray!!! – so of course I did a longer-than-usual trainer ride and more PT. I also squeezed in some Thanksgiving baking.

I chose to Opt Outside with a run instead of shop on Black Friday. It was miserable and rainy on Saturday, so we stayed in, I did another trainer ride and lifted weights, and we watched a few episodes of the new Narcos. I was able to round out the week with a long-ish run yesterday – it was perfect running weather! – and even more PT. I’m pretty sure this is the most PT I’ve done in a while.

By sport, it was:

Bike: Three times, all on the trainer, for 49.75 trainer miles in a bit less than 4 hours. Had I known I was that close to 50 I would have done another easy quarter mile somewhere in there.

Run/Walk: Three times, twice on the road and once on the treadmill, for 16.25 miles in a bit less than 3 hours. I made sure to get outside on Friday and Sunday because those are probably the last good outdoor running days I’ll have for a while.

PT: Four sessions, two longer and two shorter, of my take-home exercises for about 2.5 hours.

Weights: Two sessions, one video and one of my heavy and bodyweight routine, for about 2.25 hours.

Total: 12 sessions in about 11.5 hours. Not bad at all!

The best thing about having a few days off for Thanksgiving is that I got to do other stuff, too: Sleep in, finish an actual book, hang out with friends, bake, etc. It was hard getting out of bed and tackling the day today, but Christmas will be here before we know it. EEEEK!

Thursday, November 22, 2018


I hope you (Americans, anyway) had a wonderful Thanksgiving! I slept in, ate donuts and drank coffee, snuggled my mutts, went out to lunch (no cooking! no cleaning!), and drank my weight in mimosas. So, an awesome day.

It has been a struggle to come back to running after my injury last year. So, while I do my share of grumbling about workouts, I have been trying to remember that every time I run, ride my bike, lift weights, or even take my mutts out for a walk, there are lots of people who can't. A year ago I couldn't. And I am thankful that, right now, I can.

I am also thankful that I've found my racing team, TBD Racing, and that I'm a part of the team for another year. I love being a part of a team that is made up of normal people. We are all shapes and sizes, all talent and non-talent (raises hand), road runners, trail runners, cyclists, beginners, veterans, you name it. We support each other and cheer each other.
Part of the team for another year.
We have a lot to be thankful for, today and every day.

Monday, November 19, 2018

Week in review Nov. 12-18: A birthday celebration!

Two hours per sport was my sweet spot, apparently.
Last week was a light week for training, but for a good reason: My husband’s birthday was Saturday, and we spent much of the weekend celebrating. In fact, for TWO weeks in a row now, I have had plans both Friday night and all day Saturday. That is very unlike my natural hermit tendencies.

I went into last Monday already stressed out and I ended up making it a day off from training. I think I watched a movie and spent some time catching up on online stuff. It ended up being a wise move because I was able to train hard (well, hard-ish) for three straight days, doing doubles on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. Friday and Saturday were also rest days from training with an early Christmas celebration with friends on Friday, and honoring the birthday boy all day Saturday.

I got to cut short my food prep on Sunday since I only work Monday-Wednesday this week, and we had birthday leftovers for dinner, so that freed up some time for a nice long-ish run and even a full round of PT. Yay! So, even though I only did workouts on four days this week, I made all four doubles with three PT sessions and one weights video. I definitely got some bang for my buck.

I managed to do both of my runs this week outside. I don’t think my hands ever warmed up yesterday, and I need a slightly warmer pair of running tights, but I survived. I was glad for the fresh air, but man oh man I can’t believe it’s this cold already and it’s not even Thanksgiving yet. I am going to need polar expedition equipment just to take the dogs out, come February.

Anyway, my totals were:

Bike: Twice, both on the trainer, for 26.5 trainer miles in just longer than 2 hours. I am enjoying being back on TrainerRoad… for now.

PT/Rehab: Three times at home for about 2 hours. This included two longer session and one shorter session, for the first time in a while I’ve done PT two days in a row.

Run/Walk: Twice, both on the road, for 10.6 miles in just shorter than 2 hours. Nothing out of the ordinary here, just trying to acclimate to winter running for as long as I can.

Weights: One video done right after a trainer ride for about 50 minutes after skipping the warmup.

Total: 8 sessions in about 6:50. That’s still almost an hour per day average, so I can’t be too mad about that.

And, honestly, it was better than I expected with three full days off. I’m in a good groove with a few solid workouts during the week and I hope to ride the momentum into Thanksgiving so I can preemptively burn off the turkey and goodies I am looking forward to enjoying. =)