Monday, November 30, 2009

11/30/09: running

I haven't felt like running lately. Today I went running for impure reasons-- my brand new wardrobe will no longer fit it I don't keep my act together. That being said, the run felt fantastic. Run stats: 2.35 miles, 10'53" minutes per mile

Split times: 1:13, 1:20, 1:19, 1:20, 1:20, 1:19, 1:22, 1:24, 1:23, 1:24, 1:23, 1:26, 1:26, 1:27, 1:25, 1:30, 1:30, 1:34 (18 laps, average time 1:24)

Thursday, November 26, 2009

11/26/09: turkey trot + yoga

Ben, Gretchen, Annie and I did the 37th annual Ithaca Turkey Trot. It started and ended at Ithaca High School and went through Cayuga Heights, Stewart Park and the golf course. It was a total of 5.5 miles which Annie and I did in 1:03:30 (average pace of 11'32" minutes per mile). I felt out of shape and had to walk a lot more than I would have liked, but our average speed was actually pretty good for me given the distance. Afterwards, I did a yoga video for cooling down after skiing or snowboarding... those are the same muscles, right?? I'm really starting to enjoy youtube exercise videos. I'm much better at stretching when there's a predefined time and someone telling me what to do.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

11/25/09: bike trainer + strength training

I meant to go running but the cold always scares me off. Instead, I biked to one episode of 'Curb Your Enthusiasm' this morning before work. After work, I did a few short strength building exercises from

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

11/24/09: swimming

I've enjoyed swimming all semester, but I'll be so glad when it's over. These days I dread getting in the pool and the first 100 yards are always painful. After the initial hump it's always fun. However, a break will be nice. I only did 1050 yards today because my foot and ankle cramped up as soon as I put on the fins.

Split times: :52, 1:04, 1:01, 1:22, 1:02, 1:27, :57, :58, 1:01, 1:31, 1:16, 2:07, 1:37, 1:24, 1:01, 1:05, 1:21, 1:22, 1:02, 1:14, 2:50 (21 laps, average split time 1:22)

Sunday, November 22, 2009

11/22/09: strength training + biking

I did a quick weightlifting video with 8 lb weights (it hurt!), followed by about 40 minutes on the bike trainer while watching the latest episode of 'Bones.' My pumpkin tarts for our annual pre-Thanksgiving dinner were in the oven so the entire apartment smells like pumpkin. I'm glad I squeezed in a workout because now I won't feel guilty for gorging myself for the rest of the day.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

11/19/09: swimming

Maybe someday soon I'll be able to stop saying this: my (lack of) upper body strength is embarrassing but I have cyclist legs. I got promoted to the top of my lane today for the kick exercises and seriously lapped on the pull ones. Also, my $30 watch is the best investment I've made in a long time. By next semester, I think I'll be able to see changes in my split times.

Split times: :53, 1:25, :55, 1:19, 1:02, 1:14, 1:02, 1:12, 1:28, 1:41, 1:45, 1:48, 1:01, 1:01, 1:16, 1:12, 1:11, 1:05, 1:08, 1:25, 1:07, 2:40, 1:13, 1:44, 1:13, 1:50, 1:24, 1:27, 1:13, :38, 1:15 (31 laps, average time 1:22)

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

11/18/09: strength training + running

People tell me from time to time that they don't have enough time to exercise. I've found a couple of simple ways to become more efficient about my workouts. For example, 2 videos take approximately 15 minutes, the time I used to spend eating cereal and checking my email. Now I do the latter while getting dressed. I also shower up to 5 times a week at the gym. It takes me about 45 minutes to shower, blow dry my hair, and get dressed at home, and only a fraction of that time in the locker room. Those extra minutes can be used for a quick swim or a run.

Today I went for a run at lunch with Shamoni. It's my first real run in two weeks (15 days to be precise) and it felt amazing. A little exercise regulates my body and I require less food, less caffeine, and I have much better focus afterward. We ran in the middle lanes of the indoor track at Barton Hall. I timed myself using my watch and using the iPod.

Run stats (iPod): 23'51", 2.06 miles, 11'31" minutes per mile
Run stats (watch): 22'38", 2 miles, 11'19" minutes per mile
Run split times: 1:26, 1:32, 1:27, 1:24, 1:23, 1:24, 1:27, 1:28, 1:28, 1:40, 1:34, 1:51, 1:38, 1:33, 1:15 (15 laps, average time 1:31)

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

11/17/09: swimming

Since it's been over a week since my last decent workout, I took it easy today by swimming in the slow lane. I went a couple of hundred yards further than I should have for it to be a mellow workout. I didn't feel great afterward, but it's time to resume aerobic exercise.

Split times: 1:05, 1:05, 1:11, 2:07, 1:18, 1:25, 1:26, 1:44, 1:23, 1:07, 1:07, 1:55, 1:40, 1:39, 1:45, 1:45, 1:10, 1:22, 1:36, 1:36, :57, 1:48, 1:29, 1:29, 1:30, 1:49, 1:30, 1:03, 1:05 (29 laps, average split time 1:30)

Monday, November 16, 2009

11/16/09: strength building + bike trainer

I did a few quick strength building exercises before work. I think they're working because I definitely felt sore in my legs and arms today. After work, I did 30 minutes on my new bike trainer while watching Law and Order. Finally-- guilt free television watching!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

11/15/09: strength building

I'm still too sick for the bike trainer, but I can handle non-aerobic, strength building exercises. I've found some workout videos that I really like on YouTube from I like the variety that using different types of equipment introduces. It keeps things from becoming too repetitive and boring. I also like these short videos because I can isolate muscle groups that need work. Upper arm and leg exercises are lacking from my current regime and have the potential to really help my swimming.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

11/14/09: strength assessment

I'm slowly going out of my mind due to boredom and lack of exercise. The cold has flared up again and now I also have pink eye. Earlier this week, I checked out Tripower: The Ultimate Strength Training, Core Conditioning, Endurance, and Flexibility Program for Triathlon Success from the library. It's a book specifically dedicated to building strength in muscle groups that are used in triathlon sports. It begins with a strength assessment that is supposed to repeated every month. I really like tests like that because they're a great way to measure progress. I was missing a few vital pieces of equipment, so I made a quick shopping trip to TJMaxx.

I picked up a physio ball, some tension bands, and a yoga mat (total cost: $35). My spending has increased lately, but I blame it on the change of seasons. Home exercise is the only way I'm going to stay in shape over winter and is the most time efficient way to incorporate workouts into my schedule.

pushups* in 60 seconds: 10
wall sit using physio ball (time to exhaustion): 1'07"
side plank (time to exhaustion): 30" (R), 32" (L)
side plank with bent knee (time to exhaustion): 43" (R), 29" (L)
prone plank (time to exhaustion): 32"
extensor chain [balancing on physio ball parallel to ground while facing down] (time to exhaustion): 2'02"
core strength: 100%

*didn't even touch the ground

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Bicycle trainer

I got a new trainer for my bike and now I can ride indoors through the winter!

It's a Minoura Magturbo magnetic inter-rim trainer. Before today, I had no idea what that meant or how a trainer worked. Basically, it elevates the rear bike wheel and offers magnetic resistance against which you pedal. The downside is that it's not a wind resistance trainer, which apparently offers resistance in a positive feedback loop (i.e. the faster you pedal the more resistance there is) and is good for interval training. The plus side is that the resistance is applied to the rim of the bike tire and not directly to the tire surface so it doesn't wear out the tire tread. Total cost: $75 (used via Craigslist). If it allows me to exercise before work without having to go outside, I think it'll be money well spent.

11/12/09: swimming

Swimming was a disaster today. We did timed swims, and I was not up to it. We did timed 100 yard swims in heats, followed by 50 yards. I did a terrible job of pacing myself on the 100 and I just didn't have the stamina to finish. I paced myself much better on the 50, but just lacked the energy to sprint to the finish. My time ended up being 47 sec for 50 yards. I wish this wasn't the week I was sick. On Tuesday, the class did free swim for 45 minutes to see how much distance they could cover. My lane did 2000 yards. That's not so far off from my personal max of 1700 yards. Hopefully we'll do both these exercises again because they're great motivators for getting faster.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

11/11/09: abs+

I've been sick for the past few days. I canceled squash today with Mel but allowed myself to be convinced to go to abs class. I managed to multitask in my convalescence these past few days: the time off allowed by cold to get better and my back/hip injuries to heal. I think I hurt both my back and hip at the same time, and now the back has healed but the hip is still bothering me. Abs class gave me a chance to gently resume exercise. It was highly ab centered this week so hopefully it didn't make my hip worse.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

11/8/09: swimming

I got a brand new watch that has a lap timer so I gave it a whirl today while swimming. I did 30 laps in 36 minutes. I'm still working on swimming form and keeping my head low in the water and my feet high. It's getting easier and I definitely make each stroke go further when I'm in the correct position. All day I was feeling like I'm coming down with a cold, and swimming totally cured it (for the moment). My back is still bugging me so I didn't make it the entire 45 minutes that I intended, but I think I'll need to stick to gentle biking and swimming this week while I recover.

Split times: 59, 1:02, 1:04, 1:05, 1:08, 1:06, 1:09, 1:07, 1:09, 1:04, 1:30, 1:07, 1:08, 1:11, 1:11, 1:12, 1:03, 1:30, 1:10, 1:12, 1:12, 1:20, 1:12, 1:18, 1:20, 1:14, 1:12, 1:56, 1:10, 1:14 (30 laps, average split time 1:12)

Friday, November 6, 2009

11/6/09: running

Stupid: running after your back starts hurting
Smart: stopping a run once your back starts to hurt
Smartest: don't go running in the first place

Today I was smart. My back was bothering me, but I decided to give running a try anyway because I haven't been since Tuesday (it's becoming a drug...). After a mile, my back was starting to hurt and I was feeling exhausted. I read my body's signals and decided today should be a day of rest. Everyone needs those once in awhile. Run stats: 1.16 miles, 12'37", average pace of 10'51" minutes per mile.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

11/5/09: swimming

I checked out The Triathlete's Training Bible from the library. On the very first page was the quote:

"Many dedicated endurance athletes don't need to be told what do to-- they need to be told what not to do."

Seems very appropriate given my back problems this week. Luckily, I seem to have bounced back and swimming today was no problem. We are now up to 5 people in my lane and I am still the slowest... grrr. We used fins for most of today. I'm fast as long as no arms are required.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

11/4/09: squash

Apparently "taking it easy" in my world means playing squash... me and my poor life decisions. I won 1 game and Mel won 3.

11/3/09: running

Today I went to the gym with Maddie and ran on the treadmill. My goal was to run a 5k as measured by the treadmill, which I did in precisely 35 minutes. I tweaked my back and kept running through it which shows very poor judgment because now I need to take it easy. Nike+ run stats: 3.31 miles, 35'04", for an average pace of 10'34" minutes per mile.

11/1/09: running

I went running on the treadmill in the hotel gym the morning after Priti's wedding. Interestingly, this treadmill registered more miles and a faster time than the Nike+, so the misestimates seem to be treadmill specific. Run stats: 3.32 miles, 40'20", for an average pace of 12'07" minutes per mile.