Monday, July 16, 2018

Week in review July 9-15: Family, a 5K, and a bit of everything

It was a little bit of everything last week.
I had a bunch of stuff going on last week, and some of it did affect my training. But it was good stuff – I gave up most of my Saturday to attend my cousin’s graduation party out of town, but got to hang out with some family members and even teach my grandma how to send pictures from her phone. And my husband and I jogged a 5K Sunday morning, which threw off the entire’s day schedule but was also a ton of fun.

Training-wise, the week started off slowly with an easy swim on Monday evening, an easy run/walk on Tuesday evening, and a barre class Wednesday. Nothing too strenuous but at least it was some kind of activity, consistently. But, the bad news is I didn’t do any PT until Thursday, doing half my routine that night and the other half Friday, and that was it for the week. Ugh, ugh, ugh. I really struggle to find the time for PT when I prioritize running, cycling, and weights.

But, at least I am doing my weights; I did a video for the first time in forever as well as that barre class. And since a lot of the PT and weights moves overlap, at least that is something???

I made myself do some yoga on Sunday night just so I could say I did a little bit of every type of activity I usually track:

Run/walk: Three times, all on the road and one race, for 10.35 miles in about 2:40.

Weights: Twice, a barre class and a video, in about 1:55.

Bike: Just one trainer ride for about 50 minutes.

PT/Rehab: One round of my exercises in two sessions for about 45 minutes.

Swim: Some very easy drills for about 45 minutes.

Yoga: One solo session for 15 minutes. My hips are so, so tight. Ugh.

Total: 10 sessions in about 7:10, which is still more than an hour a day so I am not complaining.

I was happy to get back into the pool. We made another adjustment to my thyroid meds, for the 5,397th time, which should hopefully help with the anxiety I've been feeling in and out of the water. With a physiological explanation to what was going on, I was able to calmly do some kick board and pull buoy drills. It was the first kicking I've done in months and my knee felt fine afterward.

Overall, it was a good week with a lot of good stuff. I'm hopeful as we move into the next.

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Race report: Rock CF Pure Detroit 5K 2018!

Short report: It was hot, but my knee cooperated, and we had a blast!

Longer version:

This is the third year for the Rock CF Pure Detroit 5K and we've done it every year so far (2016, 2017). It's held in the New Center and Boston-Edison neighborhoods of Detroit, which is right up the street from us. We have an "in" for a parking spot right off the race course, so we headed up shortly after 8 am and had plenty of time to get our bibs, run our shirts back to the car, sunscreen up, and people watch before the horn went off right at 9.

I didn't have a plan except to jog nice and slowly, walking if my knee didn't like that. The heat index was already well into the 80s with full sun and zero wind, so I wasn't setting any PRs anyway. Not long after the start we saw someone on the ground struggling to breathe, but people were helping and an ambulance was on its way. It was definitely a day for taking it easy.

Overall, the race was pretty unremarkable, in a good way. We chugged down the street, negotiated the turnaround, stopped for water, and chugged back. Some little kids sprayed us with water guns near the end, which was funny. We were able to pick it up near the end and cross the finish line strong. Hooray!

Best of all, I barely noticed my knee. It started to get a little grumpy right around the 2 mile mark, so I scaled my speed back even more. I was prepared to walk, but it seemed to settle down and I was able to run the whole race except for the water stop and squirt gun stop.

We hung out a bit, bought another t-shirt for my husband, drank some water, and waited for the course to clear out so we could make our escape. We were home by 10:20 and I made pancakes and bacon. Perfect!

And we got some pretty cool swag, too. All in all it was a great race, a great cause, and a great morning.

Monday, July 9, 2018

Week in review July 2-8: Let’s call it a stepback week

Of course I wish I had more bars, but I can't be mad.
The week didn’t get off to a great start, so I’m happy I got any decent level of anything done. My knee was still giving me some problems at the beginning of the week, and I eased back into movement with yoga on Tuesday and a barre class on Wednesday to celebrate the Fourth of July.

I was pretty much back to normal knee-wise on Thursday so I did a trainer ride and tried to do my PT, but I let my blood sugar get too low and had to call it quits and lie down for a bit. I felt fine by the next day and finished my PT after a run, but that was the only PT I did all week. BAD!

I could have gotten a lot more training in over the weekend but I ended up spending quite a bit of time in my garden. My tomatoes needed the pruning, all the plants needed the watering, the dogs needed to roll in the grass and bark at every living creature, and I needed the calm. We followed garden time with a super fun barbecue at a friend’s house. So while my totals aren’t that high, it was a win for everyone.

The numbers work out to be:

Bike: Twice, once on the trainer for 7 fake miles and once on the road for 26 miles, for about 2.5 hours total. It was warm but gorgeous on Saturday and I thoroughly enjoyed a wonderful bike ride in the sunshine. It was my longest and my fastest in a long while, and my legs were really feeling it the next day.

Run/walk: Twice on the road for 4:00 run/2:00 walk intervals with walk warmups and cooldowns, for a total of 8.4 miles in about 2 hours. This included a walk cooldown to the garden yesterday and carrying some beets about a mile home, haha. They were delicious.

Weights: Just the one barre class for about an hour.

PT/rehab: Just the two solo sessions to make up one round of at-home moves in about 45 minutes.

Yoga: I did actually do two solo sessions, mostly pigeons and bends to try to loosen up my hips and hamstrings.

Total: 9 sessions in a hair longer than 7 hours, which is still an hour a day, so it’s not terrible?????

During some quiet time yesterday I started thinking of the words “grace” and “forgiveness.” I’m not sure why they popped into my head, but I want to be a bit nicer to myself on the nights when I can’t do 5,207 things between work and bedtime (spoiler alert: every night). Instead of letting myself get more and more stressed, I need to do the things I can and let go of what I can’t.

I think the weekend was a good mix of exercise, chores, and relaxation. I’m hoping to take that feeling into this week.

Friday, July 6, 2018

A small but hopefully useful goal checked off my list

I checked a small healthy living goal off my list today: Organize all my PT homework exercises.

I made copies of all the pages, cut them into horizontal strips, and made new pages based on exercises I'm supposed to do every day and every other day. I have another packet of all the moves, organized neatly. Everything is labeled and color coded.

My husband said this was a "very Kristin thing" for me to do. I'm happy to have one tiny thing in my life a bit more together.

Neatly organized and ready to go.

Tuesday, July 3, 2018

My June numbers were a very pleasant surprise

Hours trained in June. Not too bad!
I was legitimately shocked when I added up my totals for June because I had no idea it was so good of a month. Sure, there were five weekends, which skewed things a little bit. But I was floored to see my numbers! More than 11 hours biking and running! 100+ biking miles! Almost 45 miles of running! WHAT?!?

I’ve had some disappointments – running out of time, not making it to the pool, sore knee making me take a few days off – so this was a huge confidence booster. It turned out to be my biggest month, time-wise, since at least the beginning of 2017. I attribute it mostly to being excited to run again, NOT going anywhere for vacation, and being diligent-ish doing my PT at home. I only took three days completely off all month – two to hang with friends and family, and one just because. It definitely all adds up.

My thrilling month worked out to be:

Bike: 12 times, 10 on the trainer (67.5 fake miles) and 2 outside (33 miles), for about 11:37. I increased my usual trainer ride from 30 minutes to 45 and added in a couple of longer weekend rides, which really made the difference. Plus – two outdoor rides on beautiful days. If you do the math I just hit 100 miles for the month and I wasn’t even trying. And, best of all, my knee only had a bit of discomfort here and there while riding. I’m still not doing hills or big gears but I am perfectly happy riding flat and easy for a while.

Run/walk: 13 times, 8 on the road and 5 on the treadmill, for 44.92 miles (I seriously couldn’t add this up before the end of the month and do another 0.08 miles?) in about 11:15. For these, I include the walk warm-up and cool-down I do before my running intervals since it is part of my workout and I call the shots for my training and logging. I started out the month at something like a 16:00 minute/mile pace average including the walk parts, and ended the month at closer to 13:00 including the walk parts. (I haven’t been tracking pace for the run-only segments but I have seen a few 9:20s, 9:30s in there.) I also bumped it up gradually from 3:00/2:00 walk/run to 4:00/2:00 walk/run and my knee is feeling OK. I am NOT looking to do too much, too soon here – slow and steady will win the race and I intend to continue slowly and steadily.

PT/rehab: 14 sessions in about 8:30. All of my PT work is at home now since being unofficially discharged and I try to rotate a shorter routine and a longer routine with a few additional exercises. I feel like I have been slacking lately so I am happy to see that I am averaging about every other day. I mean, I SHOULD be doing this every day, but if I only have an hour I’m going to run or bike. However, I have been good about only allowing myself a few days in a row off PT, max.

Weights: 6 times, 3 barre classes and 3 heavy/body weight sessions, for about 6:45. This is another one that surprised me – I didn’t think I was being THAT consistent. My usual goal for the week is to lift heavy on the weekends and go to barre during the week. I have a few videos that I like that I should dust off, as well. It doesn’t hurt to change it up every now and then and work some different muscles.

Yoga: 3 times, all at home, for 55 minutes. OK, this wasn’t great, but I have only done yoga once this year in April! So this is a huge improvement! Catching 15 or 20 minutes here and there is what seems to be working for me, when it works, so I’m going to continue as I can.

Total: 48 sessions!!!!!!!!!! In 39 hours!!!!!!!!!!!!! Holy cow!!!!!!!!!!!!

I made some loose monthly goals at the beginning of 2018, which were:

Work through my health issues and re-start a training schedule that gets me back to racing. I am running more and signed up for a 5K in a few weeks, although I won’t be “racing” it. I feel like I’m on the right track. I have a doctor’s appointment next week to check in on a few things.

Run some cool places, maybe another marathon. I am back on my usual running routes, does that count? I didn’t really do any cool places in June.

Work on whole-body health, incorporating things like yoga and pre-hab. Yay, I made some progress this month! I need to work on the non-workout things like going to bed at a decent hour and having actual downtime, but that is in progress, too.

Keep a healthy work-life-training-family-friends-other balance. I did spend some quality time with friends and family in June.

Have fun. I did some of that, too. My two outdoor rides were a big highlight. Basically, whenever I could enjoy time outdoors, I did.

If I can do this all over again for July, plus throw in a swim or two, I will be ecstatic. So that’s my official goal for July: Have as good a month as June was.

Monday, July 2, 2018

Week in review June 25-July 1: Starting with a bang and ending with a bummer

Well, at least I had some consistency for bike, weights, run/walk, and PT.
I ended last week on a down note: My knee was bothering me to the point where I didn’t think it would be prudent to do any kind of workout. Add to that a rest day Monday due to skipping town to avoid the fireworks and resulting dog meltdowns, I had two full rest days this week.

It has been so hot I have moved a few runs indoors, and I really think treadmill running is messing with my knee. My treadmill isn’t great and my belt will jump occasionally. Plus, I remember it hurting more after treadmill runs in the past. So I think I’m going to take a couple days off and start running outside again once this heat waves move out.

Staying inside in the air conditioning Saturday meant I logged my second bike and second weight workout of the week, plus the third PT session. So, even with two days off, my totals weren't terrible:

Bike: Twice, both on the trainer, for about 2:21 and 22 fake trainer miles.

Weights: Twice, one barre class and one heavy/body weight session, for about 2:15 total.

Run/walk: Twice, one on the road and one on the treadmill, for 8 miles in about 1:50. Right now I'm at a 4:00 run/2:00 walk interval schedule, run four times total.

PT/rehab: Three times, all homework sessions, for about 1:45.

Yoga: One solo session for about 15 minutes.

Total: Ten sessions in about 8:25.

It wasn’t a bad week, I just wish I could have ended a bit stronger. And my knee was a bit stronger. Hopefully, resting it for a few days will help me get things back on track. I few days when it's not quite as hot as the surface of the sun will help, too.

Sunday, July 1, 2018

Two bummers on this Sunday

1. My knee has been bothering me these last few days. The only thing I've done differently is run on the treadmill a few times in the past couple of weeks. My form isn't great to begin with, so add in the unnatural running on the treadmill and it sounds like a recipe for disaster.

"Just run outside!" you say. Well:
Feels like 96 degrees after 7 p.m. Yuck!
2. A friend of mine ran the Independence Aquathon today. I've done it a few times (2014 and 2015 race reports here) and DNF'd/DNS'd once (2016). My swimming has been in the toilet pretty much since then. I've really struggled with my times and keeping my anxiety under control. I'd like to say it's a work in progress but I haven't done anything lately that could be considered progress.
I've even won a couple of age group awards at this event!
I'm trying to stay positive, but ugh.

I did go to an outdoor pool yesterday, when the heat index was more than 100 degrees, just to splash around. It was nice to get in the pool with zero expectations.

There's nothing I can do except keep working at what I can do. If I can't run or swim, at least I can ride and stay inside in the air conditioning.