How it has been going

So I fell off the blogging wagon because I have been so busy with the actual course.

Tuesday night is running practice – it’s been going relatively well. The physio had me not go for the second session, because my shin splints were hurting, and she said that a week off would do me good. She had me taped up that week, and stretching at every and any moment. The third week I was allowed to run 2 minutes, walk 30 seconds and I managed 45 seconds running on the path before it started to hurt. I immediately went to walking. After 2 minutes the coach suggested trying running on the grass next to the path, and I was able to do the intervals as prescribed. Week four was a run through the park which was I believe about 1.3 km, then hill sprints.

I tried hill sprints and felt it twinge, and decided to wuss on the sprints. I just ran normally, in the dirt to the right of the path that we were using, and was OK. I walked back to the stadium and headed home.  Week 5 (last week) I went all out. We had an ‘endurance run’. As I was the only person doing the mini tri in my running group I went with the 3km runners. We had a 500m loop to run, and I managed it (slowly) five times in 18 minutes 40 seconds. It works out to about 8km an hour, which isn’t fast, but I had NO PAIN! 18 minutes and 40 seconds or 2.5km of constant running with no pain! Fricken woot or what?! That’s once around the park plus a bit! I’ve never done that before, so I was pretty damn proud.

Swim training. Well. I knew I wouldn’t be good. I was right. While I don’t feel like I’ve improved, I’m swimming further but still feeling exhausted after it all. I just have to keep in my mind that it was a struggle to swim 150 metres; now I can swim 500 metres before I feel the same level of tiredness. A couple of weeks ago I sprained a facet joint in my neck while swimming. I couldn’t turn my neck to the right much (gosh, 25km down the freeway at 100km/h is fun when you can’t turn your neck) so I went to the physiotherapist downstairs from work. Yes, if you are counting I have 2 physiotherapists at the one time. Anyway, he gave me back the ability to turn my neck, and I’m still getting treatment to get it back to normal.

To make up for my cut very short session, I went swimming after cycling last week. I managed 500 metres (I was trying for about 800 metres, and supposed to swim about a kilometre), before realising that I was too tired to properly work. My form went even more to poo when I was tired, so I was just swimming myself into exhaustion. I drove home, and managed to talk to Jeremy for a full 20 minutes before I said: “I think I’ll take a nap in the hammock”. I slept for 2 hours. Glorious.

We went cycling that afternoon, and it was so much fun. Jeremy was just test riding the bike that he replaced the bottom bracket in, so we went around the block, so to speak – 40km. I realised that I have missed riding for pleasure. I haven’t been able to ride to work these past weeks, because if we don’t have something on I have training instead, so it’s been a bit of car driving – at least 240km of driving to training sessions alone. If I ride it has been from Challenge Stadium, and I don’t have the stamina to ride the 40km there, do the training session and then ride the 40km home.

Today was the day that we put it all together – we had a mini triathlon, with a swim in the ocean, a bike ride up the road, and a quick dash. That deserves a post by itself.

New goggles, pull buoy practice, shin splints.

I finally got to use my new goggles. They are freaking awesome! I won’t say that they improve my swimming by being more aerodynamic or some such shit, but it does help your lap times if you can swim more than 75 metres without having to empty them of chlorine water.

I did a few laps and then got out to dig around in the foam things box at the end of the pool, and found a pull buoy. I’d never used one of them before, but they are fun! It’s so nice just swimming along without having to keep my legs up – I am very much not buoyant sometimes, so this helps hugely.

Running has hit a bit of a snag – I have (self diagnosed) shin splints on my left leg. I looked around for information on the web about them, and worked out that it wasn’t tight calf muscles. I suspected that if it was a ‘conditioning’ thing, then it would probably be more even in the soreness – with both legs instead of just the left one.  On Saturday morning I stopped my run halfway through because I was in too much pain to continue; I suspected that I would do myself further injury.

I called The Running Centre for an appointment to get my gait looked at. They booked me in for lunchtime.  When I got there they put me on the treadmill and videoed my movement when I ran barefoot. Sure enough; my neutral stride when I walk turns into a pronating stride when I run. They had me test two sets of shoes – New Balance on my left leg, Asics on my right, and then to do a quick test run down the street and back to see which ones felt better. The New Balance felt solid, like they would help, but on their terms. The Asics felt more comfortable, so I put on the other shoe and had another dash. Bought the Asics and went back home.

I tested them out last night, and while the soreness hasn’t gone completely, it doesn’t feel as bad as it did on Saturday morning, so I think I should be OK. Crossed fingers.

The training course started yesterday morning. It was the bike session, which I expected to not really need in comparison to the other two legs, and I think it might be an accurate guess. I suspect that I might learn a couple of things over the next five weeks, but not a great deal that I didn’t already know. For a novice, however, the course would rock.

I have my first running session tomorrow (Tuesday), or I can do the Friday session, which was the one that I am actually signed up to, but Friday morning has 90+ participants, and the Tuesday evening session has only about 45+.  Depending on whether I get a strata meeting notice tomorrow for tomorrow night, and whether my legs feel like I should do the run, I think I’ll aim for tomorrow night.