Saturday, December 17, 2005

Gray, Rainy Morning

The alarm went off. I took out an earplug and listened. Outside, it was pouring. I reset for 30 minutes and went back to sleep. Half an hour later, I repeated the exercise. Still pouring. Another 30 minutes and it was still raining and I couldn't put off my workout any longer.

So it was an indoor cardio kind of day.

Probably just as well, since my hip and IT band are really sore. I don't know if it's a good or bad sign. Does it mean the new treatments are moving things into place and this is just a normal growing pain, so to speak? Or did something go wrong? More on that after my next appointment, I guess.

Anyhow, this was a scheduled low-mileage day anyway, so it was all destined to turn out okay.

To minimize boredom, I followed a program of 30 minutes elliptical, 30 minutes treadmill, 15 minutes stair stepper, then repeat all three pieces and call it a day.

I managed to find two good long magazine articles to read on the elliptical machine, so that made the time go by pretty fast. I stayed in the 188-194 steps/min range, which I consider good for longer cardio work.

I did intervals on the treadmill, which is another boredom-delaying trick. I did 2 minutes at 9:00 min/mile pace, 2 at 8:30, 1 at 8:00, then repeat over and over while watching CNN. For my pace and stated goal of a 2.5 hour total cardio workout, this type of interval schedule, with no speedwork, was perfect.

I did nothing special on the stair-stepper. Fifteen minutes isn't so bad. I flipped through an old Smithsonian magazine, but I don't read well on the stair machine.

In all, it worked out pretty well. Various body parts started cramping and hurting on the run, but only toward the end of each session, so it was okay and I was able to finish. I noticed that my right foot was turning inward a bit and when I tried to analyze what was happening, I noticed that my whole right hip is tipping inward toward my center as I run. There's definitely a slight shift in that direction and it must be what's causing the IT band and knee issues because I noticed the same problem last weekend when my knee started giving me problems. I'll have to report this to the doc and PTs on Tuesday.

I really need to get a 21 miler under my belt next weekend if I'm still going to do this marathon. The fact that my hip and IT band are so tender this weekend worries me, as does the way my long run ended last week. I'm going to set up a massage appointment with Mary for this week and give the long run my best shot next weekend and see what happens, I guess.

As an alternate, I'm considering the Surfside Beach Marathon in February. It's a small beach run about 60 miles south of here and it's gotten good reviews. It sounds like one of those small, laid-back little venues where you quickly make friends with everyone. They also have a half marathon which I'm trying to convince Dan to do with me, whether or not I do the Houston marathon in January. Dan says he'll be too busy helping prep for the West U Warmup bike ride, which is the day after the Surfside Marathon. But I think I've got some room to debate that with him. I need to find out if he's really locked into an all-morning commitment, or if he's just making an excuse.

In other news, I think things are winding down at work, finally. The auditor wants various things, but it's at the stage where I get a call or an email and I go hunt down what he wants and take it to him. No more three hour interviews, thank goodness. Two of my three mandatory parties are over and I have my white elephant gift for Monday's party. After that, I think a lot of people will be out and I'll have some time to get things done without the phone ringing all the time. I'm being pestered a lot in these last few days before the holiday break, but it's all small stuff-- vendors wanting payment status, bosses wanting report updates, employees with questions about vacation time, etc.

My dad got into town last night and my brother had a birthday, so all is well in family-land. I sent my father one of Tidbit's picture books in November and he brought it home to show Mom. Now she wants one.

The Indian food was good today, the cat seems back to normal, the bunny has discovered the pleasure of lounging on the sofa and my writing is going steadily although it's been over a week since I had one of those days when I was really on a roll. Sometimes writing is a slog-fest, just like running.

And that concludes today's report.

Recent Workouts
Thursday: 45 minute elliptical (no running permitted - decompression day)
Friday: scheduled rest day
Saturday: 2.5 hour cardio (1 hour elliptical, 1 hour running, 30 min stair-stepper)

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