Recovering

After a week of pouting about my race and injury, I’m glad to say I’ve come to terms with where I am right now. Pity party over, I’ve run out of peanut butter pretzels, and I’m ready to get a PR in recovery and general fitness improvement. I’m optimistic, patient, and excited to experience some other physical pursuits that don’t involve pounding pavement with my legs.

I don't have any workout pictures, so I'll flood this post with random other things that happened this past week. Starting with a puppy visit last Friday at work.

I don’t have any workout pictures, so I’ll flood this post with random other things that happened this past week. Starting with a puppy visit last Friday at work.

I’m logging more km in the pool, typically swimming 1000-1500m each time. I usually break up the distance with intervals with the pull buoy and flutter board. Here are a couple workout examples:

1000m Swim Workout
100m freestyle (aka front crawl)
50m pull buoy (arms only)
50m flutter board (legs only)
100m freestyle
50m pull bouy
50m flutter board
100m freestyle
All that x2

1500m Swim Workout
300m freestyle
100m pull buoy
100m flutter board
100m pull buoy
300m freestyle
100m flutter board
100m pull buoy
100m flutter board
300m freestyle

Using the pull buoy helps build some upper body strength and learn proper body position. Start with placing it between your thighs, and work your way down your legs as you progress. I found that mixing it up with the board and pull buoy gives my body a break, as I’m still finding it a challenge to do loads of consecutive laps of freestyle. I hope that maybe by the end of the summer I can complete 1500m of front crawl without a break (taking under 45 min total).

My babely friends.

My babely friends.

I’ve been hitting up spin classes. I’m not always in the mood to listen to crappy techno at 6am in the morning, so I don’t always go. But I don’t worry about it too much. It’s a good way to keep up VO2 and anaerobic capacity somewhat up and I do it when I can.

Mother's Day! Out in Lake Louise.

Mother’s Day! Out at Lake Louise.

Another big ‘recovery goal’ of mine is to work hard on my strength. I’m not able to comfortably work on any type of impacting plyometrics so I thought I’d jump on the heavy lifting bandwagon for a while. It has been known for eons that high-weigh-low-reps is a surefire way to make muscle gains, and finally it is no longer taboo for women to desire strength and have muscles. It’s been more than rumored to even help endurance sports. So why the hell not.

I recently shadowed my friend Jen, a lady of strong legs/butt and heavy squats, and got her to show me the way around a squat rack. I’ve trained on one before (back in my skiing days), but it’s been a while and I was feeling a little shy. Here’s a quick run-down of what we did:

Warm-up squats with the bar
Back squats
Overhead squats (with a lighter barbell because I’m a n00b)
Deadlifts
Lunges on the smith machine
Calf raises on the leg press
Hamstring curls

~3-5 sets of ~5-10 reps, usually increasing weights with each set

I had a blast. It was fun to have someone show me something new, and to work out with a buddy. My legs didn’t even feel that bad the next day (two days after however…). I’m looking forward to seeing some progress in my lifting abilities.

Lake Louise herself

Lake Louise herself

Which brings me to my next topic. One thing I loved about running is the progress I would see. I liked seeing my pace drop and race times improve (who doesn’t, really?), and it gave me a reason to push myself past my comfort zone. That was something I was upset about and miss from being injured. Thinking about keeping fit through my rehab, I chose activities that I could aim for tangible, quantifiable improvements with. Weights, I will see the numbers increasing. Swimming, I will (hopefully) see my times dropping, and feeling more comfortable swimming consecutive laps.

I’m happy to have a new focus to bring me out of my rut, thus feeding an upward spiral of positivity that will in turn only help my recovery and mental approach when I do get back running. I’ve had to keep my mind focused on my long term goals (we’re talking very long term) and see this as a bump in the road that allowed me to develop as an athlete as a whole.

Keep your eyes on the prize.

Lazy cat and boyfriend's morning hair

Lazy cat and boyfriend’s morning hair

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6 thoughts on “Recovering

  1. I hate crappy techno music at anytime of the day! Lol Sounds like you’re in the right head space. I love your pictures. The cat wins the prize 🙂

    • Thanks! I need to share more pictures of her, she’s so funny.

      A friend told me once that she knew of a spin class that played metal music, but didn’t last because it wasn’t popular enough at the gym. Which is unfortunate because I would be SO down.

  2. I’m already thinking ahead to my no running break in June and I know I need to find something to keep me motivated. Like you I’m considering swimming, spinning and strength. I really need strength – I am a weakling.
    I’m glad you’ve move out of your funk 🙂

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