Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Easing back in

So, after the disastrous and terrifying weekend in the hospital, the Doctors warned me to really ease back into everything, especially exercise.  They particularly warned me against high intensity exercise and giving myself time to get back into it.

Can I just say: GRRRR!

I thought this would be hard at first....until reality hit me.  My body was drained.  Like a battery on empty.  Monday night I made some of my awesome chili and after dinner, headed over to the Y to get an easy bike in.   I intended to do 30 minutes but I was feeling good and did 50 minutes total, but at an easier tension than usual.  After a nice long stretch and some foam rolling, I got home and was famished and exhausted.  After an easy 50 minute bike, really?!  That's when reality came crashing around me- my body needed to take it easy.
awwww cuddly cat naps

So Tuesday I took the day off work and literally slugged through the whole day like I had just run a marathon.  I had a killer headache and Tylenol was doing zero to help it.  Yeah, I did some stuff like physical therapy and getting my hair cut....and I also took an hour nap in the middle of the day.  After physical therapy and making brunch I felt like I had just ran for 2 hours.  Actually, if I had just been running, I would have had energy and an endorphin high at least!  I do NOT nap.  It seriously messes up my sleep patterns and then I can't sleep that night.  Well, yesterday was the exception.  And that nap was GLORIOUS and spent spooning with my wonderful hubby.  Cuddly naps are the best I must say.

I did eventually decide I had to do something productive so I hit up the gym for a strength training workout.  Why I decided to wait till after 6pm to go in is totally beyond me. I did have some fruit as a snack before I went in because I just wasn't hungry enough for dinner after having lunch at 2pm.  So I easy biked again, this time about 30 minutes, as a warmup.  Emily came in to give a massage, so I caught her up more fully on everything that was going on.  She reminded me again to take it easy and perhaps my 50 minutes on the bike the day before wasn't taking it easy.  She was totally right given my exhaustion level afterwards.  A good trainer does know best, after all.

So I took it gentle on my strength training least on my heart.  hehehe.  Only did a couple exercises that got my heart rate up and focused instead on some shoulder, chest and back machines Marty (my physical therapist) and I had talked about.  Because I was taking it easy and not powering through super fast it did take about 45 minutes or so.  During which I was reminded of a very annoying gym etiquitte habit that people often don't even realize they are doing it or feel it is wrong. (Or perhaps they just suck and do it to piss people off)

So, I must go off on a rant, sorry.  PLEASE stop sitting on machines in between sets!!! This guy would do a set on a given machine and then sit on that machine for anywhere from 2-5 minutes (WHY SO LONG!?) and then do another set on the same machine.  He would repeat this about 5 times on each machine he used.  GAAAAHHHH. I HATE it when people do this.  DO NOT sit on a machine while you catch your breath, twiddle your thumbs, kill brain cells, day dream about Twinkies, whatever it is you think you are accomplishing.  Get off your butt and let other people use the machine while you wait needlessly to do another set.  Or, crazy thought I know, move on to another exercise!!!  I am pretty flexible at all times with my workouts, so I was able to work around said annoying guy but I had to hold back from schooling him on proper gym etiquette.  But I was A- too tired and just wanted to finish as strong as I could, B-  not a jerk.

So yeah, aside from above annoying gym guy, the workout was good and I felt better leaving the gym than I did coming in, which is always want I want to accomplish.  Thinking I had enough energy to run an errand before going home for dinner, I went to rite aid in search of a watch battery (no luck) then basically crash into a pool of exhaustion in the car after my meager and fruitless errand.  I was going to meet up with Adrian for a Subway dinner and the thought of having to get out of the car at Subway, stand in line, buy food, drive to Adrian's work, etc seemed like a huge daunting task (by now it was close to 8pm) that I could just not accomplish.   I know, sad right?  I probably sounded like a grumpy cow on the phone, but I just wanted immediate and nourishing food.  So home I went for a huge salad with chili on top. YUMMY

Tuesday night, I got it in my head that I needed to run when I woke up the next morning.  I would try for a mile or 2 and turn in if it felt like too much.  And my pace would be sloooow to ease my body back into such a taxing workout.

Run puppies, run!

And then I woke up this morning feeling like myself for the first time since before my dizzy spell.  In comparison to just 12 hours beforehand, I felt like a ROCK STAR!  I felt like I could not eat yogurt and a banana fast enough to get my butt out the door and into the beautiful morning weather, I was buzzing for the run just that badly.  I even wore a new workout top today that I had gotten at the Adidas tent sale.  It is totally awesome, in red (not a common color in my running wardrobe, yay!) with a zip pocket on the back and it is very flattering if I do say so myself.   I decided that I would run Woodcrest loops (local neighborhood) because it is about as flat as you can get in Gettysburg and there is hardly any traffic.  So, I headed out into the wind and then just let my body find a comfortable and easy pace.

It felt like coming home.  My 1-2 miles turned into 3 miles, and I could have gone more.  Emily scolded me later when I got a massage, but it felt darn good to get some miles under me.  It was slow but not terribly slow, definitely not my slowest miles, not even close.  But, I felt like I took it easy and my body seemed to appreciate that.  The only odd thing I noticed was my heart was staying a good 10 bpm higher than normal for the speed I was putting forth, but I chalked it up to being out of shape a little after the days in bed and lazing around.  It also took longer for me to recover, but again that is probably just due to so many days off and laying in a bed.  It really does affect everything, apparently.  I am looking forward to my next planned run, on Friday where I want to run the same area but add some more distance. 

I really want to start adding some longer runs in.  The reality is, I know my heart and body CAN handle longer's my mind that is the issue.  Running, and working out in general can sometimes be such a mind game for me that I can kick butt or completely come unraveled in a workout due to my own mind games.  I think this is something I will forever struggle with, but I need to work on finding a better balance so that I can start tackling my next big fitness goal- a half marathon.  A good first half would be the Harrisburg half on September 9th.  It's fairly flat and scenic and I have 2 friends running it already.  They are much speedier than my slow as molasses pace, but that's cool with me as long as they don't mind waiting for me at the finish. ;)  It is in almost exactly 12 weeks so if I start training and picking up mileage now, I can totally be ready in time.  Now to start obsessively planning the next 3 months so I can accomplish this and not embarrass or injure myself....


  1. Yay, cuddling! And you weren't being a grump! You actually sounded really distressed, which I'm glad didn't last long. No surprise you bounced back to quickly, my rock star wife! 8-)

    1. yeah, I felt kind of distressed because I was a little worried I could even just make it back home and make dinner before collapsing in exhaustion on the couch lol