Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Ups and Downs, and the joy of recovery week

Since the milestone 60 mile ride there has been some interesting incidents... Sunday and Monday after the run I felt horrible, stomach was turning and I just didn't understand what was happening. I felt like i had done an ironman race or something. Work started getting busy, and as I got over my stomach problem my left hip flexor tightness started creeping up on me again. Had some long bike sessions during the week on the trainer, felt ok but very fatigued. Come Thursday/Friday, i declared a burn-out from a week of 12-16 hour work days and my unbelievably tight left side, from my hip flexor all the way up my left side and abs. I just didn't know what to do with myself, so I skipped the long ride on Saturday.

I spent the entire Saturday morning cleaning and doing normal human things, like having brunch with friends and cleaning out old mail, etc. It was really nice for a change. I went to my strength training session with my trainer, which helped me a lot with the tightness.

So speaking of strength training helping with the tightness - here's my point. we get tight and feel pain because we don't move enough and our muscles stay constricted. Muscles stay short - short muscles equal weak muscles. so if you try to move with those short muscles, everything is going to hurt. My trainer started me with stretches, and had me do lateral moves concentrating on my hips and upper body - because they never get to move laterally, only front and back. I sit all day at the office, I sit for hours in the car, then i bike/run/swim which are all front-back movements. our body, however, is built to move 360 degrees. My lateral movement muscles have fatigued so much, which caused weakness in my hips and core (more the obliques), which made sitting one of the most painful things to do. I reconfirmed my learning of late - move, move, move...sitting still, or lying down still is not something you do for a prolonged period of time. It will make you stiff, short and eventually fall into a state of pain. Move, stretch, dance, spin around, utilize those muscles that are meant to move and pump some oxygen in to those muscles. It works!

This week has definitely been awesome. It's called recovery week, where most of the workouts are 30-45 minutes long, after a series of rather grueling weeks preceding. I have been so enjoying this, this morning I swam 1200m and ran for 25 minutes. It was so fun and short and sweet. :) I know that this means next week I ramp it up a notch and things will be tough, but I'm sure enjoying the short and sweet workouts for now!

I feel like over the past 3 weeks my body has been going through some extreme ups and downs and they have been exhausting to the body and the mind, I admit. However, I also know that there is a solution to everything, and I'm still searching for the solution to my left side problem...they just hurt along the entire upper body. Strange. But i'll get there. We can grow so tired of dealing with pain it's so easy to give up and drop the ball. At this stage, I have no idea if i can actually train up to be ready for my half ironman, but what the heck i just have to keep training as much as I can given my situation. I will only know what i am capable of on...8/1 RACE DAY. until then, i have to face the cards that i'm dealt with and go through the rounds of ups and downs, hoping for some stability in the next couple of weeks. I believe in hard work. I believe in ....believing. Just gotta keep going.

We get stronger as we aim to find peace in the midst of chaos... that's my thought for the day.


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