Road Block

Lack of activity destroys the good condition of every human being, while movement and methodical physical exercise save it and preserve it.
— Plato

Yesterday, I set out to finally – after three weeks – complete Day 3 of Week 7 of the Couch to 5k training program that I began on January 1.  I had been completely each week, well, weekly, until week 7.  I ran Day 1, then went out of town and opted not to run while I was gone.  A week later, on a Wednesday, I ran Day 2, and it was rough, but I managed to run the whole thing.  I went to the doctor the next day because my hip had been acting up for about a month and I knew I had bursitis in my hip again (I had it in 2008 when I training for my first-ever 5k, too).  He gave me a shot of cortisone in my hip and forbid me from exercising until the following Monday.  No worries.

Well.  Sunday I decided to finally give up caffeine again.  Which I know I also said more than a year ago.  And then promptly didn’t do.  Ultimately, I was drinking at least one soda every day, and sometimes much more.  My migraines were back, and now caffeine wasn’t even working to make them go away – which is exactly what the doctor who ordered me to quit caffeine in 2008 in the first place told me would happen.  So I decided to do it again, for real this time.  I knew I was in for several days of withdrawal headaches, but I had no idea how bad they would be.  Starting Sunday afternoon (I last had caffeine Saturday at lunch time), I had a severe migraine every day this past week through Thursday.  By the time I left work Monday and Wednesday, my usual weekday running days, I was nearly incapacitated, and running was totally out of the question.  (The good news is, I’m 8 days caffeine-free; even at my worst moment this past week, I refused to give in.)

Yesterday, after a brief period of lacking motivation, I went out to finally complete Day 3 at around 2 in the afternoon.  Holy shit.  My legs were like lead, and I had to walk after only THREE minutes.  I walked for a minute, then ran again, telling myself I could walk again in 5 minutes.  I didn’t even make it that long.  I looked at my heart rate monitor and it was at 190!  No wonder I felt like I wanted to throw up.  I continued on this way, never running more than 5 minutes at a time because my heart rate got back up to 190.  At one point, I was sure I was going to have to give up and just limp home.  But I finally managed to get my breathing under control and ended up running probably very close to 75%.

I was so disappointed in myself, but, when I was walking home, I realized that, not only had I not run in 10 days, I also hadn’t eaten since 9:30 that morning, and all I’d had were some scrambled eggs and clementines.  No carbs for fuel.  Dummy.

Anyway, another thing I’ve realized lately is that since I started running, I’ve mostly neglected all other forms of exercise.  A few times I’ve done arm weights when I’ve come in from running, and two or three times, I swung by the gym for an elliptical session, and once I did Zumba.  But for the most part, running was it.  I’ve watched Lydia training for her half-marathon, and her progress pictures show that cross-training is really paying off for her.  I need to work weight training and other forms of exercise into my routine, too.  So, here’s my plan for this week:

Monday: Run – Week 8/Day 1

Tuesday: elliptical and weight circuit (upper and lower)

Wednesday: Run – Week 8/Day 2

Thursday: elliptical and weight circuit (upper and lower)

Friday: off (optional Zumba class)

Saturday: Run – Week 8/Day 3 and weight circuit (upper and lower)

Sunday: off

Does that look ok?  Should I split up the upper and lower body weight circuits?  I thought since there’s a day off in between that should be ok, but I’m open to suggestions.  I really wish I could swim; that is hands-down my favorite exercise.  I am going to look in to community pools and see what turns up.


One thought on “Road Block

  1. Thank you for the kind words about my progress.

    I’ve read that cardio is most effective after weights. Also, be sure you ease into it. I start so gung-hi and then am really too sore to be useful the next few days.

    One of the mental tricks I employ when my breathing seems all out of whack (or if I’m trying to tackle a big hill) is to concentrate on breathing in for two steps and breathing out for two steps. It short of feels like the running version of labor breathing, but it does help

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