Weekly Rundown

Ok, it is the crazy time of year. I guess holidays are always a bit on the chaotic side. So I should be used to it, right? And yet, somehow, every year I am surprised.

It’s a good chaos, with family and friends. And work going nuts. And wreath making/decorating as fast as possible. And fun events to go to.  And, meanwhile, normal life keeps rolling, requiring feeding of the dogs, washing of the dishes, and, really, must I vacuum again?

I am happy to say that since I feel better, I am making an effort to keep exercising. It helps keep me sane, too. I love taking my break at work and going for a walk, even now that I have to do it inside. On days when it is too busy to skip out on my desk, I just don’t feel the same.

Monday: I did my 15 minute break at work, and made sure I did as many stairs as possible (7 flights). I figure the stairs work my legs as well as a hill. I managed another walk with Daisy before it got too dark after I got home. Don’t imagine we will get too many more afternoon walks til spring. We did a brisk 1.32 mile in 22 minutes, followed by my plank, at 1 minute with 4 push-ups.

Tuesday: off. I did do a walk with 7 flights of stairs during my break at work.

Wednesday: I didn’t do any stairs during my break because I was planning on running and I finally figured out all the stairs was making my running kinda painful. I guess I need to get those muscles in shape to do both in one day….slowly. I ran into a bigger snag when I got home, however. The light blew in my library–it’s one of those stupid domes that need the screws removed to change. And the lamp in the library would work either (still haven’t figured that out). I was on the verge of running in the dark–cuz, dammit, I planned on running!–when I realized my treadmill dashboard is not backlit and I wouldn’t be able to see time or distance.  So I did 30 minutes of weights instead plus a 1:10 plank with 5 push-ups. And my husband fixed the light later 🙂

Thursday:  I did do stairs during my break at work, I figured, what the heck! Only 6 flights, but I jogged up the last 2.  Then, finally, a run on the dang treadmill! I did a nice (as it gets on the treadmill) 2 miles, followed by a 1:20 minute plank with 6 push-ups.

Friday: off. I had to run errands in the afternoon, with Chinese grabbed on the way home for dinner. Not a bad day, in all.

Saturday: A run on the road! Funny how 3.4 miles on the road is soooo much easier than 2 miles on the treadmill. Frosty morning, but lovely for a run. I did a 1:30 plank with 7 push-ups when I got back.

                 now, I know I have small hands, but I don’t think that is a deer track…got moose?

Sunday: another walk with Daisy. We did 1.42 mile in 23 minutes, then she got to watch through the window while I did some hill work. Instead of sprints, I did four regularly paced passes up the hill. The first was roughly 75 yards long, and I added about 75 yards to each run up. Gotta admit, the last one pretty much sucked! And then I still had to plank for 1:40 with 8 push-ups.

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Weekly Rundown

Another flown by. At this rate Christmas will be yesterday! It was a good week, and I didn’t even eat too  badly at Thanksgiving.  The weather has been cooling off, and I noticed it seems to be affecting my knee a bit, since the knee is bothering me more. Not enough to slow me down….much!

I started a new 30 Day Challenge on Friday. I thought the time from the day after Thankgsiving to the day before Christmas would be an appropriate period to do a Challenge and keep exercise (and not food) in my mind.

Plank Challenges are floating around, so I kinda came up my own. I can plank fairly well, although I am not sure how long I can do it as I haven’t timed it recently.  We will find out soon enough 🙂 I started with 30 seconds, and added a push up. With each day I add 10 seconds, with a push-up at the 10 second mark. Currently I am up to 60 seconds with 4 push-ups.

I really enjoyed the results of my Burpee Challenge, particularly my core. I didn’t actually want to do Burpees again, so I thought planking with push-ups should work my core as effectively.  I am doing it a bit different this time, as I am going to take the day off from the Challenge when I take a day off from exercise.

Monday: off

Tuesday: treadmill walking, 31:30 minutes at 3 MPH. Just didn’t feel up to running. I have been walking at work on my fifteen minute break, and now that I can’t walk outside, I am back to walking the floors and stairs. I find that since I haven’t done it since last winter, stairs are hard. And running after trotting up the stairs is harder!

Wednesday: a day off due to my beautiful new refrigerator! The seal on the door of our fridge has been going, to the point where we occasionally leaned a heavy chair against it so it wouldn’t pop open when we weren’t home. We finally decided to get a new one, and my husband went to pick it up. We had a friend come over to help move it in, so when I got home from work I had to empty the old one, then clean behind it after they moved it out. And help  settle the new one, and then quickly put everything back in the fridge. By then it was time to feed the horses, feed the husband and sit back to enjoy how nice my new fridge looked in my kitchen 🙂

Thursday: Thanksgiving! Except, it wasn’t really for us as my family was doing it on Saturday. But we cooked a small turkey and fixings and had it for dinner after a busy day of making wreaths. I made myself get on the treadmill before lunch and did 2 miles in 22:06. Not terribly fast, but we have a love/hate relationship: I love to hate being on it.

Friday: my first day of  actual yoga after a long, long time. I have been mixing in my yoga stretches, but haven’t done an actual yoga practice in, well, months. At least, it feels that way. And I have to say, it was pretty dang awesome to do a full 40 minutes! I started the Plank Challenge too, doing 30 seconds and 1 push-up.

Saturday: a quick mile on the treadmill to start. It was 9:41, and I started low, but kept pushing up the speed until I ran the last quarter-mile at 6.9 MPH; which was the fastest I have gone so far on the treadmill. I followed up with 15 minutes of weight lifting and day two of Planking.

Sunday: a nice day so I took advantage for a short run on the road. It was a slow 2 miles, but it felt good and I wasn’t truly concerned with the time. I was just out there having fun. And, of course, when I got back I stretched and did day three of Planking: 50 seconds with 3 push-ups.

Weekly Rundown

The week after my illness wasn’t terribly productive or exciting, so I thought I would do a two-for this week.

The first week I did about 20 or so minutes walking on the treadmill for most of the week. Oh yeah, I did 11 minutes of yoga after one of those walks. On the bright side, at least I was moving again!

I worked a bit harder last week, although not what I should have done–I think. But I ran and lifted weights and on Friday I was wiped! Guess I didn’t bounce back quite as well as I had thought.

Monday: Quick 9:59 mile (my legs didn’t understand why it should be that quite that quick), followed by 21 minutes of weight lifting. I didn’t do much legs, but I did my arm sets of 3×15–no extras this week! I did a few more minutes of stretching, especially the legs, after the lifting exercises.

Tuesday: more walking on the treadmill. I did 25 minutes, starting at 3.0 MPH and working up to 3.8 MPH by the end.

Wednesday: another quick run, 2 miles in 21:15 minutes. But this one was outside on the road in the brief time I had before dark when I got home from work. Probably by my last afternoon run, as I skipped right home, changed and headed out immediately and the sun was still sinking  when I got back in my driveway. The run itself felt fabulous!! I thought the hill was going to kill me  after all my time off, but I was too busy thinking and was at the top before I knew it. After that, I just ran as fast as I could and managed two very decent mile (for me) times. And it felt good doing it 🙂

Thursday: off

Friday: Thursday was a planned day off, but Friday was off just because I was too tired to do anything.

Saturday: a busy day trying to get everything done for winter around the house. First thing I did was carry and stack some wood (I call that walking and weight lifting) for 20 minutes in the basement. Then I helped my husband stack some more wood in the wood shed as he split it, but that involved a lot of waiting so I didn’t call it exercise. I took Daisy for a quick walk, and she was ready to go after sitting around for the last couple weeks. We did the first mile in 16 minutes, and the second in just over 14 minutes. When we got back I needed to walk (and fix) the fence line before letting the horses out back. They had been locked in the barnyard–again–after the pony got out–again–for the week and I wanted them to go run the friskies out. They are in the barnyard for the winter, I think, as when we came in that afternoon from gathering evergreen tips to build wreaths, there was a pony in the driveway. I am thinking of renaming him Houdini.

Sunday: a rainy day, so not quite as busy. House cleaning, followed by wreath decorating (my husband ties them), and more running on the treadmill. I did a mile, realized I was whupped, did a half mile walking then another mile running. More wreath decorating followed before, finally, sitting down and watching the Patriots game.

Weekly Rundown

So two rather momentous events occurred last week. The first one affected just about everyone in the area, but the second only affected me.

First, Maine got hit by a So’Easter. This little storm came in late Sunday night and knocked out power to over 500,000 households, businesses, and schools. The winds gusted at 60+ miles per hour, knocking over trees and tearing down limbs. Some trees snapped, while others were dragged out by the roots.
I tried to go to work at 5:30am and found both possible roads to town blocked by fallen trees stretched out across the road. I tried again after the sun came up at 7:00am, and found even more trees down. At which point I called out from work and sat in a powerless house with the puppies.
My husband came home in early afternoon and started the generator so we at least had tv and dinner. Later that night we lost internet too–apparently the power line and the internet line come in from opposite directions, so the internet lasted a bit longer.
We were fortunate that we had a good generator, and could shower and live mostly normal lives. It did get a bit tiresome having to get up early to start it, buy gas to put in it and turn it off so we could go to bed. And I found out the limitations when I tried to water the horses while the oven was on.
But it was more than many people in the area had. The local power companies did a good job, getting 30,000 to 50,000 people power each day. But we were off the grid for seven rather long days. Thankfully, internet actually came back at the same time as the power.

The other thing that happened last week is that I developed anaplasmosis.  This a nifty little issue caused by ticks. I found a tick on me on last Thursday and pulled it off, and thought little of it. We have so very many ticks, I pull dozens off the horses, and I have developed a rather carefree attitude towards them. That may change.
Sunday night (72 hours later, the incubation period) I developed some violent chills. Like, “I couldn’t hold a glass of water without spilling it” shudders, followed by intense heat flashes. Now, I was going to go to work anyway, but the storm prevented me. So I spent most of the Monday sleeping.
I did head off to work Tuesday, and had a bit of trouble getting there without falling asleep.  My biggest symptoms were fatigue, hot/cold flashes, dehydration, queasiness, and muscle aches. And I couldn’t drink coffee!! The horror! I wanted to eat (and drink coffee), but my stomach didn’t agree.
I finally went to the doctor’s on Wednesday. She confirmed that I did in fact have a tick borne disease, and wasn’t impressed at all that I been going to work. Like a good girl, I took Thursday off. That was a good compromise right? I went back on Friday before resting up all weekend. The doctor put me on doxycyline, which seems to work fairly quickly as my symptoms have mostly faded.

The upshot of all this is, of course, that I did not exercise at all over the past week. Guess I have to work harder this week!

Weekly Rundown

I gave into my foot and didn’t run at all last week. The withdrawals were pretty bad. But I made it!

Otherwise, it was a lovely week. Good weather and lots of walks with Daisy. She does love it when I can’t run 😛

Monday: Took Daisy for a walk, it was pretty brisk pace except I took a bag to collect pine cones for the wreaths we make. We did 2.16 miles in 38 minutes, although she was chafing whenever I stopped to gather the cones. Afterwards I took Christopher out to lunge in the riding ring. He was VERY frisky, and there was much cantering and a little bucking and kicking. It was pretty windy, which usually winds horses up as they can hear things far away that they have no frame of reference for, which makes them rather flighty. Not sure what he was hearing, but it made him rambunctious.

Tuesday: off, with joy.

Wednesday: another walk with Daisy, gathering more pine cones as we went. Then she watched from the chair while I did some weight training.  I have been doing my set of standing arm/leg positions recently, but haven’t  been on the floor. I got down on the mat for my front leg lifts, reverse plank mixed in with flys and triceps for 20 minutes. Afterwards, I took Charby out back to the ring where she was just as frisky as Christopher had been the day before as l lunged her.

Thursday: off again 🙂 I could get used to this two days a week off.

Friday: I had to work late, but I managed to get home before dark and walked Daisy up the hill to look at the sunset. It was a pretty  2 mile brisk walk, even with photos and meeting my neighbor, with Daisy tugging me along.

Saturday: a longer walk with Daisy,on  my own personal 5k trail. We did it fairly quickly, the first two miles in 17 minutes, with the last just under. I had planned on doing weights again, but we had wood stacked in the basement that was shifting and would soon  be in a mess on the floor. Since it was right under our bed, we really didn’t want it falling over at night! I spent an hour moving and restacking the wood in a different location in the basement, and I think that was enough weight training for my arms. I still managed to get out and ride Charby late in the afternoon. We took a nice 30 minute ride in the ring; and, as usual, she was a great girl.

Sunday: more weight training-ie, more wood stacking. The pile had swiftly formed over my head, so not only was I using my arms and core to lift the wood, I used a small two-step stool as a stairmaster too. Fortunately I had taken Christopher out for a ride first thing in the morning before the wood fatigue hit me! I finished off the day with 30 minutes of Candlelite Yoga. It is primarily stretches and relaxing, which I needed after all that wood.

 

Weekly Rundown

Another long week. My foot muscle still gave me aches, although my back did feel better. I got only occasional twinges that warned me not to try anything wild.

Monday: off (whoo-hoo!)

Tuesday: 2 miles running on the treadmill.  Started at 5 MPH and worked my way up to 6 MPH in the first three minutes for the first mile, then when I hit the second mile, I bumped it up every time I felt comfortable. Which got me to 6.5 MPH by the end, not terribly fast but a good run. Then I grabbed a lunge line and Christopher Robin and took him out to the ring to do some work. He was such a good pony! He is doing very well at “stand”–an important feature for a horse, as “stay” is for dogs.

Wednesday: a brisk 1.4 mile walk with Daisy, then back to weights. I did 1×15…and then 2×17. It is a sneaky way to add instead of doing a whole extra set, we’ll see how many I do next week.  I finished up with 6 minutes  of yoga stretching.

Thursday: I thought my walk on Wednesday with Daisy, while brisk, could have better faster (although we did a 15:45 mile), so I set out to go faster. Frequently we are several minutes in before I decide to see how fast we can go, and that really can affect the end time negatively.  I’d like to point out that I am still the weak link, as Daisy was tugging me right along the whole way as we did a 14:16 mile. Still, not bad.  I did some hill and flat drills afterwards (that took the wind out of my sails!), and followed up by lunging Charby for 15 minutes.

Friday: I took it off after a long, crazy day at work.

Saturday: I went out for a leisurely 3.47 mile run. I took the mostly hill route–not that I can avoid hills around here–and wasn’t very concerned about time. I wasn’t sure how far I was going, and I turned around after my foot began to ache.  Glad I did, as the last hill down to my driveway was fairly painful each time that foot hit the ground.  Then I cleaned the house (such fun!) before heading off to the movies with some girlfriends (that was fun!).

Sunday: a surprising day off. We had company coming, and by the time we got ready, and had the company, I was wiped. So the horses (and me) got the weekend off.

Weekly Rundown

I am falling apart! I went to bed last Wednesday just fine, but when I got up Thursday morning, my right foot hurt along the outside edge. How does one sleep on a foot wrong?
Then I did an actual Yoga session (instead of the just stretching I have been doing), and hurt the long muscle along my spine on the left side. Not sure what move caused it, but it feels like a rather painful muscle spasm. Argh. And did I mention I have been putting a brace on my other knee when running as hills-up and down-seem to cause issues for it?
Of course, being an idiot, I just kept going. The foot comes and goes, more when I sit and it stiffens up, so exercise helps, right? And my back is feeling better, and, fortunately, running doesn’t seem to bother it. Twisting is not recommended, however.

Monday: off after a very busy day at work. I did walk Daisy back to check on something in the camp, and then took CR for a walk in his backyard to do a little ground work.

Tuesday: a quick 2 mile run to the end of my road and back. My knee was a bit ouchy, so when I got back I did 15 minutes of yoga stretching. I was so very tired when I got home, so I was pretty proud that I did that much!

Wednesday: took Daisy out for 1.5 mile walk, then I did my weights while she watched from the couch. I read an article recently that suggested that instead of adding reps, one could do a couple extra lifts at the end of the set if one still felt strong. So I did. I went with 3 x 15, but did 16 the second set and 17 the last set. A sneaky way to increase without adding a whole rep-which my brain seems to be resisting.

Thursday: planned to go run on the Rail Trail on the way home, but work ran late so I decided to just run at the hospital. I did 3.46 miles, with the last half mile  back through field, and it was rough. Just like those extra lifts, I think running on uneven ground with long grass when my muscles were already tired probably pushed my muscles to get stronger. At least, that’s what I kept telling myself.

Friday: unexpectedly off.

Saturday: Daisy and I went out for a walk. I planned on walking down Blinn hill and going maybe a mile more, then turning around to walk back up the hill, but Daisy and I were having a good time so we kept going. We have a loop around, so I can leave one end of my road and come back in the other. The loop is 5.7 miles, and I can’t believe how Daisy just trotted along! Took us an hour and thirty-nine minutes, and I was watching her furry butt the whole way (except when we stopped for an interesting sniff). And I even managed to ride Charby later in the afternoon for 26 minutes. I did sleep well that night.

Sunday: the weather messed up my day. I planned to ride in the morning and work in the house in the afternoon as the morning was supposed to be mostly clear with rain in the afternoon. But it started to rain at 8:30, so I started some long-term projects in the house. By the time the sun came out (unexpectedly) in the afternoon, I couldn’t leave my projects. So Christopher Robin got the day off. Probably didn’t bother him. I did a yoga session–the one that messed up my back. I think it might have been eagle pose, but I’m  not sure. I did hurt that muscle over the summer lifting something with my husband, so I might have just twisted wrong and aggravated it. It certainly felt aggravated for the next couple days.

Weekly Rundown

As I got ready to write this week’s Rundown, I realized I hadn’t written last week’s Rundown! My goodness, I am slacking big time! First I was going to just let it go, but then I realized just how much fun I had my vacation week.

As I posted, I made my first goal for the year: running the 6.5 miles on the Rail Trail between Gardiner and Augusta. That was awesome, especially since it wasn’t as difficult as one might think. Now I wonder how far I can run??

Daisy and I got a lot of walking in. We didn’t go far each day, but we got out to enjoy the changing leaves and fresh air. Well, I enjoyed the changing leaves, she mostly enjoyed the sniffs and racing ahead of me. She did like chasing any floating leaves, pre-emptively attacking them before they could hit the ground.

I also got to play with the horses almost every day–I had wonderful weather on my vacation. It was almost too warm.  I rode early in the morning most days, after the grain but before I threw out the hay to ensure it wasn’t too hot to make them exercise, much to the horses’ chagrin. But they did seem to appreciate the love, and I got to work my legs. Been a while since I had the time and place to make sure my legs were hanging the way they were supposed to be, heels down and on the horse instead of just reacting to what the horse was doing–or what I wanted the horse to be doing.

But I think the highlight of the week was the Great Inflatables Race.

I did it with 3 of my high school friends (and a daughter that got roped in), and we had soooo  much fun. We had serious issues getting over some of the obstacles because we were laughing so hard!
I did the Insane Inflatable last year, and there were some differences in the obstacles: this year’s were made with a much softer plastic, which made waves across the whole obstacle as people walked on it in different places–and speeds. That just added a whole new difficulty level,  not to mention more giggles.
The cool thing was that the set up course was 1.8 miles, so after all the waves went, we were invited to run it again. Second time was just as fun!

      There has been talk of skater skirts next year, inspired by all the tutus we saw

 Staring down the throat of the race (literally!) as we waited to start

      

 

 

 

Sliding home on the last obstacle!

 

Weekly Rundown

So I have been on vacation this week, and while one might think that means I would have more time to blog; apparently, one would be wrong. Then of course, my computer died on Friday, producing a scramble to get a new one.

But here is my much belated rundown from the previous week. It was a nice week, with lots of outside time weather.

Monday:  I met my friend Kate for a walk on the Rail Trail in Augusta. We had a lovely, leisurely walk of 3.41 miles in an hour and nine minutes. With  LOTs of squirrels. I guess they were all out collecting for winter, they did not seem the least concerned with us as they scampered across the trail, rustled in the leaves and flew up the trees.

Tuesday: Weight day. I did my 3×15 sets, with 5 Burpees in between the arm/leg sets I start with. I also added an “airplane” move; a variation on a yoga move: I stood on one leg, stretched my leg and upper body out flat (in an airplane stance) then straightening up, bring my leg back in bent so that it didn’t touch before stretching out again. I did 10 on each leg in between my sets after my Burpees.  Definitely worked my core and my standing leg 🙂

Wednesday: I decided to do some speed drills as I have been unhappy with my recent mile times. They were getting  longer instead of shorter, and that was just the wrong direction! So I hopped on the treadmill and did 2 miles. I did the first mile in 10 minutes, working up from 5 to 6.5 MPH. Then the second mile I did 1 minute at 5 MPH, then 2 minutes at 6 MPH and 1 minute at 7 MPH, for 3 cycles. I finished with a 4 minute cool down and I felt fabulous when I was done. I mean, sweaty and tired, but fabulous.

Thursday: off. It was a planned day off, as I knew I was working from 6:30 am to 6 pm. I knew better than getting any sympathy from anyone else at the hospital, as 12 hour days are the norm for many nurses.  It was a long day, but went pretty well.

Friday: Another treadmill  work out.  I did the first mile starting at 5 MPH and working up to 6 MPH, then the second from 6 MPH to 6.5 MPH. I finished  up with a 5 minute cool down at 2.0 MPH. Geez, that was slow. It was work just not going faster 🙂

Saturday:  First day of vacation! Daisy and I went out for a long (3.5 mile) walk followed by 20 minutes of yoga to stretch out. I did try to ride Charby, but the flies were horrendous. Not for me, as they were all attacking her.  She tried to get a fly off her shoulder while we were trotting and she isn’t really that graceful. After about 15 minutes I gave up and took her back to the barnyard. Much to her surprise, I lunged her for five or so minutes before brushing her and turning her loose.

Sunday: I decided to do drills. I mixed my hill drills with flat drills, as I am fortunate in that I have a flat 200 foot driveway attached to the road on a hill. So I did roughly 90 yard dashes up the hill, then walked down to do a drill (high knees, butt kicks, grapevines and skipping) down the driveway and back before dashing up the hill again. I know my last two dashes were slower, but I focused on my form and just went as fast as I could. The rest of the day I spent helping my husband put log siding on the shed/camp out back.

                                                                            It is really cute now.
By the time we were done at 4pm, I decided it was really too hot to play with Christopher Robin. So I went in, showered, and watched the Patriots (narrowly) win.

 

Mileposts

I have a bunch of running goals I want to accomplish, hopefully before snow sets in this winter. Today I conquered a big one.

Milepost 1

I ran 6.5 miles on the Rail Trail from Gardiner to Augusta today. It was awesome!

I decided I wasn’t worried about time, I just wanted to make it from end to end. I haven’t run this trail (in its entirety) since the summer before my accident. And only the once.

So my stomach was a mass of butterflies as I drove to Gardiner today.

The longest I had run this summer was 5 miles, and that was a month ago. I was truly intimidated by the length of run. The plan was to meet a friend at the other end, then have coffee and shopping before she took me back to my car.  I knew that she would have picked me up anywhere along the route if it had been needed. So that wasn’t the issue, I was just concerned that it might be necessary. I had already decided that if I needed to walk, I would. That took some pressure off too. But of course I didn’t want to walk. Not to get too philosophical, but I decided the only thing I could do was take a deep breath and run one step at time.

So I went to the start of the trail, took that breath and stretched, then took that first step.

I definitely wasn’t going too fast to start, as I was worried about lasting all the miles. But I worked on getting a nice, consistent pace and kept taking those deep breaths. By the time I finished the first mile, I had relaxed into a rhythm. The nice thing about the Rail Trail is that it is a rolling path, with up and down grades instead of huge hills. And the only two big hills are coming the other way (I’ll be doing that next), going the way I was this morning meant I got to go down those hills. Gotta stack the deck anyway you can 😛

By the time I finished mile 3 I realized I could do this, and by the time I finished mile 4 I felt pretty dang good.  That feeling continued when I finished and looked at my splits.

The last longish run I did was 3.3 miles, and each one of those miles was 11+. Because of that, I have been doing drills and speed workouts on the treadmill. Apparently that helped, as based on my perceived effort, I thought I was doing 11 minute miles. Turns out that I was doing consistent 10:30 minutes, and mile 4 was actually  sub 10 minute.

Today’s total run was 6.5 miles in 68 minutes

I am very happy with that.  And ecstatic about how very good I felt doing it.  My knee did ache a bit during, but not badly enough that I felt I ought to stop, and it didn’t hurt at all once I finished, even though my friend and I went shopping so that I spent the following hours running around stores. It was a little stiff after I came home and sat for a while. I guess we will see how I feel tomorrow!