Friday, March 20, 2009

First group ride of the season tomorrow!

Last night's swim plans got scrapped because I committed to go on my first group ride of the season this Saturday morning (tomorrow!). Instead I went home and spun on the trainer for about an hour. It was hard but I had some easy spins intermittenly so that I wouldn't suffer today. Legs were nicely sore this morning. Thank God - no uncomfortable, burning pain. Left hip flexor is still pretty tight but I'm loosening it up frequently.

I'm a bit nervous about my group ride tomorrow - i know i'm going to be slow but I managed to find some self-proclaimed slow people in the group. I know i have to start braving these rides and keep doing them so that I can get better. Last year i had very few group rides, but thanks to my friend Susan she always managed to find the time to ride with me so I wouldn't be completely alone on the road. This year, I want to expand my eeeeasy rider's group! I know there are so many people out there who get intimidated by big group rides with super fast cyclists. :)

It's Friday - time to get home and relax, physically and mentally prepare for the ride tomorrow. It should be fun more than anything. If i think too much i'm going to end up totally bailing at the last minute. then I'd feel so bad about myself for days being such a copout.

have a great weekend everyone!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

One day at a Time...

Tuesday I did my first swim workout. I was really concerned about my ability to do it all, but since I was meeting with a swimming partner I had to push myself to show up and do the workouts. 2,000 meters done, thanks to my friend's encouragement! I was pretty sore the day after, but I stretched a lot and drank my FRS to get some energy.

I managed through the day on Wednesday, not feeling so sure about doing another workout after work - when I got home at a decent hour (around 7p) I felt the urge to get on the bike trainer and do a 40-50 minute spin. I observed my posture carefully, making sure I was using my core to keep my back protected, didn't go too hard for too long not to overwork my hips. I kept my cadence around 70-80 rpm, depending on the resistance levels. Overall, I got a refreshing workout in and got my heart rate going.

I don't think I have been eating enough carbohydrates since the training started so I've changed my protein/carbs/fat intake from 40%/30%/30% to around 30-35%/35-40%/30%. not having enough carbs while doing all these cardiovascular exercises, I realized, puts me in a moody place. Not fun. While I've increased some of my calorie intake, I haven't changed it drastically. My goal is still to lose some weight - which has been going nicely by the way.

Tonight i'm meeting with my swim partner again to do another workout. Having a workout buddy REALLY helps, especially when I'm tempted to just not do it. and it makes me push myself harder during the workouts.

Tomorrow I will most likely have a rest day, looking ahead of the weekend training. I am still being cautious, don't want to ramp up too much.

I am realizing more and more that I would have to have two rest days during the week instead of the usual one that every training program recommends. One on Monday, the other on Friday. I think that works for me.

Left hip a little tight today since the bike yesterday, but foam rolling last night after the spin really helped a lot with my calves and upper quads.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Training Week 1 - a bit of a detour...

My aggressive weight training over the past couple of weeks caught up on me and I was helplessly in pain and foggy Friday - Sunday. That put a damper on my half ironman training schedule, but I suppose that's just part of the entire training experience...

Friday morning, I upped my weights and lowered reps per workout schedule. It was tough but I managed to get through it. However, the rest of the day at work I was foggy as heck. I asked weight training friends who don't have FM and they said they would feel out of it after a heavy session as well, so I was somewhat relieved.

Saturday morning I got up with a lot of pain. Sore, yes, pain, double yes. I took it easy that morning and ran some errands to get my body moving. Afternoon yoga - even that was a painful session and I barely finished a short 45 minute routine. I was planning on going hiking afterwards but I just didn't have the strength to do more.

Sunday morning I forced myself to do a 40 minute run before going to church. Basically, I came home feeling like I got hit by a car instead of my usual exhiliarating *i'm glad i went running * feeling. I didn't make it to church, I passed out for a couple of hours after a tough shower. Taking a shower never felt so painful! So ironic!

So the rest of Sunday was just a tough fight to stay awake and moving even in the smallest scale. That fog since Friday stayed on strong, and man, I had zero energy, no matter what I took (vitamin Bs, Flexessentials, Vitamin Cs, you name it). Frustrating as heck, but there was nothing I could do but wait. I spent some time adjusting my training schedule, moving things around, etc... thinking about how realistically can i complete all the items that were currently in my training schedule. But I also knew that in a couple of days I am going to feel ok and would be able to do a couple of great training sessions and feel like a champion again. I mean, I am a veteran at this point when it comes to training, then hurting, then training again. I shouldn't even be surprised, but I have to say going through it sucks every time and it doesn't get any easier.

Alright people, the fog has cleared a bit now and I'm feeling slightly better. I'm going to take it easy today and see what I can do tomorrow when I wake up. I can't plan anything right now, and sometimes you gotta let opportunities present themselves before you. I'm not going to freak out right now!

God bless,

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Another great article regarding weight loss

To my parents who've told me growing up that I have the "Lee family's thick legs" to make me accept the way I look while feeding me fast food, donuts and fried vegetables (what was the point of that?), ummm... thank you for all the comfort (yet lifelong psychological baggage)...

Changes come from us, and it is our own responsibility to make that change. And there is no easy way.

God bless you all and may he give us the strength to keep going (assuming that we are all doing our part to get decent rest, I don't want to sound like a total type-A slave-driver)!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Dieting - I mean, EATING

Here's an excerpt from regarding diet suggestions for people with Fibromyalgia. When I say diet, I mean just plain eating - not the typical low-calorie diet used as an extreme weightloss method, which is not recommended. This is how we need to eat EVERY DAY without depriving ourselves of food and essential nutrients.

My diet plan has been simple - eat at the right times, eat regularly without huge calorie swings between days and be consistent with protein consumption (do you see that my diet plan doesn't ever say "don't" eat?). I'm not eating much less - i'm actually eating probably just as much, but more protein and healthy fat - if I were eating, for example, about 60% carbs/20% protein/20% fat in the past, i'm now eating 40% protein/30% carbs/30% fat. There are some other little things that help, but i will save those for later, once I get all the new info i've been absorbing over the past several weeks. There is just so much in my head right now.

Anyway - here's the excerpt. You will see that this is nothing different from the usual guidelines used for a general healthy lifestyle/diet method.
The daily diet should include milled flax seed, 3 or more tbsp., or cold-pressed, unrefined flax seed oil. Flax seed and its oil contain the essential fatty acid omega-3 alpha-linolenic acid, which the body converts into hormone-like substances called prostaglandins. Prostaglandins help relieve the inflammation of fibromyalgia. The oils of fatty fish such as trout, cod, halibut, mackerel and salmon also contain omega-3 fatty acids and therefore work as anti-inflammatory agents.

Alfalfa can be used for pain control. It contains saponins, sterols, flavonoids, coumarins, alkaloids, vitamins, amino acids, minerals and trace elements.

Eat a high-fiber diet that includes plentiful servings of raw and steamed vegetables. Maximize your intake of greens.

Include ample servings of clean, lean protein, such as that found in fish, poultry, and fresh raw nuts and seeds in your diet.

Eat four to five small meals daily rather than three larger ones. This will ensure that you have a steady supply of nutrients available for proper muscle function.

Avoid processed foods and foods that are high in saturated or hydrogenated fats, such as dairy products, meat, and margarine. Saturated fats interfere with circulation, increasing inflammation and pain.

Avoid caffeine, alcohol, and sugar. These substances enhance fatigue, increase muscle pain, and can interfere with normal sleep patterns.

Drink eight glasses of pure water daily. Fresh juices and herbal teas are also good choices. A plentiful intake of liquids is important for flushing out toxins.

Investigate the possibility that food allergies and/ or sensitivities may be contributing to the problem.

I've been hearing a lot of people with fibromyalgia saying that they have a weakness for sweets and wine and this and that and i'm gaining weight because I haven't been able to exercise because of fibro, etc etc etc... trust me I have weaknesses too and at times I do indulge myself in some dark chocolate and ice cream and I choose not to do anything active all day long (believe it or not). But if we keep complaining about the same thing for the same reasons - doesn't that tell us maybe we should change our behaviors? There is a plethora of information out there about eating right, the right foods that work for certain conditions, etc... let's educate ourselves and be better.