Fitness Update: Bicycle anecdote


Since I don’t bicycle to work on a regular basis anymore, I don’t have that part of my usual fitness regimen to keep me active.

But I did get the encouragement from talking to one of y Madrigal singer friends, who has apparently taken up a similar fitness regimen — or like me possibly also a practical economic regimen — of riding a bicycle to work.

While giving him a lift from rehearsal home yesterday (carpooling is always a good economic and environmental idea), we got to talking about his latest bicycle leg bruise, which brought up the whole topic of cycling.

What came of it is how hard it is to get started. You have so little relative stamina at that point. But if you just keep going, soon you find out that you are climbing long hills without stopping that a short while ago would have had you walking and stopping several times.

We also discussed the benefit and handicap of computer and mobile app route makers. Google Maps sometimes gives really good, and sometimes really poor, advice on what routes to take.

But overall, the encouragement was to keep at it, and to keep learning about the better ways of doing it.



Fitness Update: no Sham Rock


As I mentioned last week, My health (near-flu and bruised ribs) meant I didn’t get practiced for the 10K Sham Rock and Run. So Sunday went by, the race went by, and I didn’t go by.

But I did set up daily 3.5 mile routes — 7 total for the week — to take the dog out and get 100 miles biking a month with the dog. So I have a definite cycling base for the year. I’ll need to see how long it takes for the ribs to heal, and how I get back into the jogging.


Fitness Update: Mile sprints


My first race of 2018 is coming up in a very short time: the PR Mile on Jan. 13. So this past week I got out and did a couple of faster mile runs.  If I want to beat my last year’s speed of 6:51 I will have to keep pushing, as I was running an 8:00 and a 7:50.  But it still appears doable.

I also worked on my bicycle miles.  My annual goal is 3000 miles, and I was right on tempo Dec. 1.  Today I still have 168 miles to go. So the next two weeks I have to do a bit more than 10 miles a day.  Still doable again, but tighter to the goal than I wanted at this stage.

Fitness Update: Biking in the rain


Well, a couple of things on the fitness front this week:

  1. I went to the MD doctor about the bone cramps/muscle aches in my lower and upper left leg. (At its worst, this made it painful to drive at all, as any application of the clutch in our stick shift stressed the offending area.) I had been seeing the chiropractor, who did adjustments that gave improvement, but his latest was that there was a tight muscle (he pressure pointed it and I could see what he meant) that needed to be stretched, rolled, etc. So I’ve been doing that a whole month, and while it is improved, it doesn’t seem to get all the way there. So I went to the MD, thinking a muscle relaxant. But his thought was a pinched nerve, and even though the back xray came back clean, he has me on anti-inflammatories. I haven’t experienced any significant issues since I started them on Wednesday, but I still feel tightness in the muscle area pointed out by the chiropractor. I am hoping the anti-inflammatory might do something about that as well, or I don’t think I’ll have the full cure I need.
  2. The only one of my three triathlete sports that got anything this week was cycling. I managed to put 50 miles on, which keeps me on pace for the month. A good portion of that was done Saturday during a break in the semi-constant rainstorms we received. I enjoy biking in the rain, though the big torrential downpours, and the streams of water across the road, are things I take seriously and avoid dangerous hydroplaning areas. This trip I got a 60-second torrent the minute I went out the door (totally soaked), and then it almost stopped, and most of the trip was the just barely rain, with about 3 more torrents, so I came home with squishy/squeaky shoes and only lightly damp shirt and shorts.

So, now to see when I get the rest of my workout house in order.

Fitness Update: Making the Miles


Well, this is the week where one month ends and another begins. I have been working on three fitness activity targets all year. Only one of them has been definitively on target — bicycle miles.

And now, with the lull in cycling due to the vacation earlier in July, I am just making the miles today, and just barely. But I made the 1750 miles for 7 months to make the 3000 miles.

I’ve done some swimming at Oceans of Fun, but I need to get back to running, at least this fall, when the weather gets cooler. My schedule might be clearing up allowing more personal life around responsibilities. We will see.

Fitness Update: Midway Point


What do I mean by midway point?

I mean I have gotten through the first couple of races in the Kansas City Corporate Challenge — the 5K and the (modified) half marathon — and have one event at the track meet (don’t know which one yet), the triathlon and swim meet yet.

Before the Corporate Challenge I had my Progress Series of races. So, in a sense, the halfway point should be between the end of the series and the beginning of the Challenge. In a sense I am talking about two halfway points, which means I’m three-quarters of the way through the combination of the two. Put together, or even each half considered independently, is a sort of long-distance event.

Planning for a long-term event or project requires a certain amount of psychological perspective and perseverance. My practice sessions, my runs for the Progress Series were pretty consistent.

But in heading to my second half-marathon, for the Challenge, and the rest of the Challenge events, my workouts have gotten more aberrant. They said to train for consecutive half-marathons you didn’t need to practice the full distance between races, just do “long runs” and keep the cardio training up. I did enough swimming and biking to do that.

So, for this past week, I had quite a bit of cycling, one day of 1,000 yards of swimming at the NKC YMCA. But no practice runs. I did run 2 miles on a treadmill at the Wellness Center as part of an “inside triathlon” program they are sponsoring. I did a lot of walking at Worlds of Fun. I also swam six laps (three laps each of Friday and Sunday) in the Caribbean Cooler at Oceans of Fun.

My total bicycle miles to date are 1,408 miles. My May interim goal to reach my annual total is 1,250 miles. I am 158 miles ahead of schedule. I have vacation time in June, and a lot in July where I won’t have opportunity to cycle. So I will need to have some ahead to stay on schedule.

My total running for the year is 250 miles. I am halfway through my annual goal of 500 miles. A midway point of sorts. Whether I make my annual goal or not depends on how I continue running through the rest of the year.

For swimming, I have swum 12,000 yards at the lap pool, and 1,600 yards at Oceans of Fun. That is much less than halfway through the 50,000 yard goal for the year. So no midpoint there.

There is less focus, and more holistic gestalt to today’s post. Which sort of emphasizes the point I previously mentioned about the psychological component of the fitness training regime.

Fitness Update: Swimming and tracking thereof


Okay, this week I finally got back to the pool. I swam Monday-Wednesday-Friday and ran Tuesday-Thursday-Saturday.

My FitBit Flex 2 did not track the swimming. I was certain I had set it for swimming when I got it, but when I looked up a manual online, it only mentioned the word swim once, and that in the context of being swim-tolerant. It took until Sunday for me to go directly to the website and find a video on how to turn swimming on.

Which was curious, since I had apparently set the pool length and units back when I first got it, so it must have somehow turned itself off.

Which means it will take this week for me to see exactly how well the swim tracking works. Swim tracking was the whole reason I decided to try the Flex 2 over continued use of my MisFit.  The Flex 2 has worked better on the other features than the MisFit, so as long as it works well on the swimming, I will have decided that I made the correct choice.

My total swimming was 3,000 yards — 1,000 yards each day.

As for my running, this was a 21-mile week. I ran 4.5 miles each on Tuesday and Thursday, and then did a 12-mile run on Saturday morning. I ran it on the Levee along the course of my half marathon, or at least as close to the course as I could figure. I set my 9-minute mile pace again, if I measure my distances and course right. But it should be close enough to make that pace when the race actually occurs.

This coming Saturday my plan is to try and run the actual 13.2 miles of the half-marathon course, and see how well I time. I’ll be doing some guessing on some of the points. I know most people train for a half only to 11 miles and then expand on the race day, but that isn’t the pace I’m on.

Running on the levee has been good, feeling the difference between pavements and the dirt and gravel sections of the course. I am thinking that I’ll want to get to the chiropractor next week (week before the race), just to make sure everything is aligned before the run.

For the biking, I am up to 975 miles, with this month’s interim goal to be at 1,000 for the year, so don’t expect to have any issues with that. The running means I haven’t been getting in as many long biking excursions as I did in previous years, but so far I am still managing to get in the miles by shorter outings.