Thursday, February 28, 2008

Learn my lesson??

I keep thinking that I will one day learn my lessons in training or something like that, but as the days pass I just find I do dumber things that I 'think' might actually not be a silly idea.
You know...powerlifting in the evening on Wednesday at Crossfit and then going to the AM Thursday crossfit workout 12 hours seemed reasonable in my head or something. Notsomuch.

This morning I showed up to crossfit all groggy, not feeling too, too bad from the backsquats and deadlifts we powerlifted 12 hours before. Somehow I told myself that this was a good idea, mainly based upon the fact that I couldn't go to Thursday afternoon's class, and I didn't want to go to Friday's class since I had some plans for actually running and biking on the weekend. And since sometimes the workouts leave me sore for a bit, I thought I would actually give myself a day to recover rather than hop on my bike the next day for a long ride. Soooo...instead of saying "maybe i will only get in one crossfit workout this week", it turned into "well...I guess I will go tomorrow morning". Real.good.logic....not.

This morning was 5 rounds, for time of 500m row, 15 Thrusters (squat on a ball and then do something similar to an overhead press with dumbells on the way back up) with 15lbs and then 15 pullups. After my first thought: PULEEZE shoot me now. All in all it took me 32:15 minutes or something like that. I have my first callous casualty with both hands having the callouses start to rip on the pullups. Owch. My only other option was doing pull ups strict without the kip in them so that I wouldn't keep hurting the callouses...I ended up taking the pain of the kipping pull ups over doing strict pullups mainly because it was taking me an impossibly long time to do the pull ups strict. (even band assisted) I did have to go to work at some point that morning.

The hip injury is behaving itself. I am not fully discharged from my PT, but we are on the "see you in two weeks if you need to" basis. I'm not completely better, but the main things at the moment are tightness in my quads along with tightness in my hip. But I don't really have any pain associated with it anymore, even though the tightness is stressing my running in a minor way. We will see how things go with the increase in training that is starting. I had left my running milage low so that I could focus a bit on getting better before I started training for this HIM and I think that was a wise decision. We shall see how the hip fares over the next few weeks.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

That reminds me...

Claire reminded me in my last post that I forgot to mention one of the most important parts about my trip this weekend to Napa...I did scope out part of the bike course for Vineman 70.3. My impression of what I saw and the area...hilly but not too bad. It actually reminded me of Western MA's hillyness...not the major climbs out there, but the general rolling hills at times. There is a couple of climbs on the course, but I wasn't able to see them...but from the rest of the terrain it didn't seem like a course that was infamous for its hills. Doesn't look like there will be a ton of shade either, but it will be beautiful scenery.

I got a good 5.5 hilly run in at lunch today. Where I work is VERY I will hopefully become a pro with hills. At the moment, I am very un-pro like with the hills, but I found a sweet place for some nasty hill repeats. And the location isn't on a main road so I won't feel like a major idiot when I do them. The other crazy thing about the run...I got sun burned. I am very fair hair/blue eyes and very light skin, so I'm not necessarily that surprised but I just am not in 'sunburn'/sunscreen mindset. Someone told me just yesterday I looked like I just got out of grad school due to my pasty white complexion. Gee...thanks...I did just get out of grad school...but let's just be honest...i'm like this all year long buddy.

I got a crossfit workout in this evening too. We are currently in a 'powerlifting' phase of stuff. I'm not really excited about that = lots o weight and potential for major soreness. It was just 5-5-5 of back sqats and 5 deadlifts. Backsquats = 85lbs, and Deadlifts = 135lbs. Good place to start.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Weekend extravaganza

This last weekend I flew up to Napa valley to meet up with old friends from grad school as one friend was in the SF area interviewing and the other lives up there. We had a great weekend, wine tasting, spa treatment, shopping...a great weekend all around. Sadly I lost my digital camera on the adventure. Fortunately I had recently pulled all my photos off the camera so I only lost pictures from the weekend. Still is a bummer.

Last Thursday I was all excited as I had done a crossfit workout without any modifications. It was my first time trying to see how strong my back was deadlifting...while the actual workout didn't seem to bother me and during the work out I didn't seem to be 'failing' during the lifting, later was another story. Last Thursday I started to get the tell tale sign of slight spasming in the back. I heated, stretched, repeated. Friday I was sore and also spasming so I kept a heater thingy on my back all day. I even stopped by the grocery store and picked up one of those Thermaheat things that you can wrap around your back. Saturday I was planning on running prior to the wine tour we were going on, but my back was having non of that. By the end of the day the back was fine. I think the wine cured it, either that or I just didn't care by the end of the day :-)

But the experience has brought up an interesting thing I am seeing a little bit with weights...I don't know how to reconcile how heavy I should lift with the level of soreness I will have the next day. I know it will come with time before I can figure out that edge, but it is sort of frustrating to me at the moment because during the workout I wish my muscles would just 'fail' earlier or give indication of "ohhhh that's gonna hurt tomorrow". Currently I'm at the stage of "hmmm...that was doable" and then needing to be scraped off the floor for my next workout. I even had a workout last week on Tuesday that was the opposite where I thought I wouldn't be able to use my arms the next day, and then I was a little sore, but it was fine. With time I will figure it out I am sure.

Training this week has been everything short of a fiasco between lack of sleep, forgetting shoes for a run at work and having to reschedule. I am trying not to be frustrated with the way things have been but sometimes that doesn't seem to be an option with me. I tend to run hot or cold with things, and finding a middle ground sometimes doesn't work too well for me. I do try to work on that, but with training trying to find a middle ground when things don't go well tends to make me annoyed more than I'd like to admit. But I've got some plans on for tomorrow and the rest of the week so i'm looking forward to pushing forward and getting back at it.

Thursday, February 21, 2008


Yesterday consisted of a short run on the treadmill in the AM and the spin class from the depths of despair. Not because it was particularly hard...but i had NOOOOOOOOOOO energy. I sat there and counted the minutes. I think I didn't properly refuel between crossfit on Tuesday night...running Wed am...and spin wed evening.

I didn't embark upon the joys of an early morning workout this AM as I needed to get in early so I could see me PT....and then get some KILLA news. I knew that my psoas had been doing better, but I haven't run much this week due to a pathetic cold i've been sporting, but even after digging into my side he couldn't really find a spasm...which was so cool! I'm going to run a lot this next week and we will evaluate next week how I held up...but if all is the same and I only end up with some general sore spots...i will be DONE with PT....SWEET!! Fingers crossed.

Funny thing about Tuesday's crossfit workout with the billions of push-presses...I awoke on Wednesday to find a nice half dollar sized bruise on my collar bone. Guess I smacked it a few times during the workout.

Tonight's crossfit workout was 5 round for time of:
15 deadlifts (95 lbs for women, 135 for guys)
Run 400m
30 Situps

Time: 22:15

No modifications...thankyouverymuch! I did the 95 lbs...although my back right now is questioning my rational on that one. That's the weird part. I got through the DL's with 95lbs...and didn't struggle too much. I couldn't go super fast, but I did fine weight-wise. But a few hours later the back is wigging out. Not pleased. Stretch, heat, repeat.

I do have to say doing DL's and then running...that's a fun one. (notsomuch)

And off to Napa valley this weekend...very excited. And while the back may be having some issues, a nice spa and a massage are on tap so i'm excited!

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Shred 'em

Another title for this post could be:

"How to shred your arms in 20 minutes or less" or

"Ways to make your forearms completely inoperable"

First part of crossfit workout today was basic bench presses, just 5-5-5...considering I haven't bench pressed anything since, high school I didn't really know where to start weight wise. In the end, ended up with 52 lbs and focused on form. It was 'heavy enough'...but I prolly could have inched the weight up. Yet considering the next part, I just decided 'good enough' and moved on.

The next part of the workout called for 12 Push-presses (42lbs for me...65lbs for guys) and 10 kipping pullups. Then do as many rounds as possible in 20 minutes. My initial reaction to the 42lbs for the push press...

"Uh...these are kinda heavy...i can do a few but i'm sure this is going to be ugly over twenty minutes."

The instructor's response to my whinging: "I want you to do them heavy". Oye vey...

I got 7 full rounds in and an extra 7 push-presses done in 20 minutes. My forearms were shredded after the workout. It took a good 30 minutes to get them to stop spasming from hanging on the bar for the pull ups. The cool thing about the pull ups was that I realized I can graduate from the highest resistance band down to the next color as I'm doing pull ups pretty efficiently at the moment.

The other thing I learned today...I hate doing lunchtime workouts. I am more likely to skip those than any other workout...I know this, yet somehow convince myself that I will do it...sigh...missed another run today. It gets tough changing, running, showering and all of that with other constraints at work, trying to learn my lesson: don't schedule a lunch workout.... but I keep relearning this one for some reason.

Monday, February 18, 2008


I did manage to get out in the nice weather today...athough it was a battle of headwinds and tailwinds. As I was doing some loops, I got them pretty equalled out and in the end, each loop was roughly an avg speed of 16mph...which isn't too bad considering at points I would look at my speed and see 12.5mph...and equally 21mph, depending on where I was.

This past week of training hasn't been the greatest...i blame a cold that wasn't. One of those colds that slows you down just enough to make you want to hide in bed in the morning, exhaust you enough that doing much of anything isn't fun, but really not that terrible aside from feeling crappy upon waking up in the mornings.

Lately my thoughts have been around "things that I do that makes me feel stupid all in the name of 'training'". One thing that has been making me feel self conscience is the fact that I drag a scale around with me for constant sweat weight calculations. I'm trying to determine my potential 'range' of sweaty-ness depending on sport/weather/speed for my HIM. This should allow me to adjust salt intake and appropriate fluid intake when race day comes. And the more data there is...the more accurate the tuning of the salt and fluid. :-)

I never dreamed when I started this whole triathlon thing, that I would one day be dragging a scale around with me. I feel the similarly with hill repeats. Anyone else acquired new habits that they just wonder what am I doing?? Maybe its just me....

Saturday, February 16, 2008


I intensely pondered how many ways I could break 50 reps down into smaller portions on Friday at a crossfit workout called the "Filthy 50".

The work out of the day was prescribed like this:
50 Box Jumps
50 Jumping Pull Ups
50 Kettle Bell Swings
50 Walking Lunge Steps
50 Knees to Elbows
50 Push Press 33 lbs
50 Back Extensions or Supermans
50 Wall Ball/squats (8 lbs)
50 Burpees
50 Double Unders or 100 Jumping Jacks

So...fifty reps would get broken into smaller pieces at times like
25 and 25
12+13 and 12+13
10-10-15 and 15 (each 15 broken into 5-5-5)...this one was on the burpees. Yes, it was more like 5-5-5-5-5-5-5-5-5-5...but mentally I had to have little chunks of bigger pieces. I don't know if that makes any sense at all, but it did to me last night.

Still not box jumping on smaller 20" box (just doing step ups) mainly because it freaks me out and I'm more afraid of falling on the box and further injuring myself...cuz i'm good at injuring my self in stupid ways and falling does seem to be a talent of mine. I'll have enough power one day where that fear is gone.

One of the funny sets was, Knees to hang on a bar and bring your knees up to your elbows. That hurt my arms more than I was able to engage my core although my core is pretty pathetic too. It was more of a pathetic attempt most of the time, although I do feel it a little bit in my upper abs this morning.

I left the gym with my arms shaking pretty close to uncontrollably, mainly due to the stupid burpees (or some people call them 'up-downs'), so I was slightly surprised to see that while I am sore today I'm not the kind of 'Can't get out of bed sore'...more 'oh...there's my gluteus medius' kind of sore. Although there is always that danger of DOM...delayed onset muscle we shall see how I feel tomorrow.

Since I've graduated from my fundamentals class in crossfit , I have found the workout are intense, but I am also seeing that my endurance is carrying me a bit too and I am feeling like my general strength is my limiter. I am looking forward to when my endurance and strength intersect on some of these workouts where I don't have to do so many modifications, but it will come with time. It may be 6 months, it may be a year it may take a long time...but by being consistent, it will come.

My training this week has been less than steller mainly because I'm battle a half cold and a lot of exhaustion (exhaustion is mainly self induced, keep finding other things to do rather than go to bed on time). HIM training is going to start ramping in soon enough. I am feeling a bit better with the hip injury...but I will run at some point this weekend and see how that fairs under 4-6 miles of fun.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

I just moved here...

The other day I had to tell my landlord "No i don't want to extend my 6 month lease again"...I do have hopes in this market that I will be able to find a cute condo of my own...time will tell...but the exchanged echoed in my head for a bit, mainly because 6 months isn't really just in the 'just moved here', is it? Time is flying by!! The distance between me and the end of the whole grad school fiasco is really getting wider. Time heals all wounds...but I feel like I'm going to be waiting for a long time on that one.

This weekend...was a weekend of "where am I and what month is it?" Early Feb?? No way. Yes the weekend was spectacular. Yes I did feel a little guilty as I thought of all my New England/midwestern friends suffering through the cold and nasty snow. I did get out and enjoy it.

Sat was an interesting brick. Yoga and then running. 8 am yoga on Sat at my local Yoga studio is part ashtanga (power yoga) and part breathing stuff (pranyama) least with the typical guy. We had a sub and while she did do some breathing focus, most of it was ashtanga....which I love. The class got me thinking about strength especially in my arms and back as the class was reasonably rigorous. She would suggest extra vinyasa's between poses and as I was feeling pretty strong during the class so I took them all. I expected I'd be sore today or that by the end of class my arms would be shaking, but neither happened. Go crossfit! What is weird about strength for me is that I gain it in bouts. It's not linear. I know, I know...break it down, rest it up...and wha-la!! More strength. But I haven't really taken any rest this week so it is weird. Overall I am starting to feel some fitness building and it feels super good.

Now on to the sucked. 4.5 miles that was supposed to be 6.5 of pure suckage. I was lathargic and crabby the whole time(someone suggested that I may be allergic to everything here and possibly having allergy issues). I was going to power through the last 2 miles, but as I neared my apt prior to the last 2 miles, the hip decided it wasn't happy and my psoas started to spasm and give me a side stitch. Typically if something is nagging, I will power through, but since I'm on 'injury alert' and actually seeing a PT at the moment, I decided that when my hip gets cranky, I must respect it. I am seeing some improvements so I think if I continue the stretching, and PT stuff I'll be better with time. Injuries suck.

I got a desired 20miles in on the bike today...soon here, I think I'm going to be riding with some groups in the area. I really hate riding alone, much more so than running alone.

Some good training this weekend. Pretty pleased.

Friday, February 08, 2008


Thoughts on politics:
Does it bother anyone else that the whole Democratic nominee may be decided by an un-democratic process???!!! Superdelegates...if they make the final decision...I won't be too pleased. It will make me more annoyed than the whole electoral college issue. What country do we live in again?

Thoughts on running:
I think i'm just getting slower. BUT that being said, I am loving this turn in weather from what people call cold and yucky (I just call it a 'change in weather') back to 'normal' San Diego weather 68 and sunny...bring it. And I'm loving the fact that we are fast approaching day light savings. Happy girl.

Thoughts on biking:
Need more of it. Need to figure out where to bike too...this whole urban living thing is not sitting with me as well as I thought it would. Not pleased about traffic and I keep reading stuff about bikers getting hit.

Thoughts on swimming:
Um...this is the weekend I join the whole masters deal. OHHHHH and I found a cheaper way to do it. Go me. Only down side is that by being a cheapskate it means I have to get up at something like 430 in the morning. My bed and my wallet are starting to have a fight as I type this.

Thoughts on Crossfit:
This is a response for triguyjt's question of 'how tough is it?? on my last post and anyone else who ponders about crossfit...the great thing about it is that you can dial it in to what you can do at that moment in life. Like yesterday part of the work out was climbing a rope 3x-2x-1x. I can't even hang on the rope properly at the moment much less climb the silly thing, so I did a modification so that I could gain strength that would help me climb the And no one makes you feel stupid because you can't do something, they still cheer you on no matter what. That being said... it can rock your world like not other, make your arms shake and sometimes make you want to puke.

Keep in mind...I.HATE.WEIGHTS...yet i'm having fun and I look forward to classes. Also i'm starting to see my deltoids (I think those are the coolest muscles), more general definition in my arms, and strength gains in my legs (and I've only been going for 5ish weeks). A couple of weeks ago when I went to my nutritionist I had only been going to crossfit for a few weeks but when we checked my lean body mass I'd gained a 1.5lb of muscle. So that's pretty cool. I find it fun even though it can be a killer workout.

The way the workouts are structured you never know what it might be, which switches it up and makes it fun. I'd say that generally the Workout of the Day will take people anywhere between 3 minutes and 30minutes, it just depends on what kind of evil someone has thought up for that day. Check out,

Thoughts on life:
I hate it when I end up back in the same dilemma that I have been faced with at other points in my life, over and over again. Just when I thought I'd learned my lesson in the comes back and bites me. I sometimes just hate it when I'm right.

Thoughts on fun:
I'm super excited...I have a fun weekend get away coming up in a few weeks with friends from grad school up in wine country. A fun filled weekend filled with wine tasting and spa treatments. Woohoo!!

I have many more thoughts, but that's it for now.

Thursday, February 07, 2008


Well, I think I have managed to swing my luck more towards 'neutral' at the moment. Been sorta a 'meeh' week. BUT my PT apt went rather swimmingly in that the crazy spasm that has been plaguing my psoas was not evident and I even went for a run last weekend, so that is good news.

Also good news is that I 'graduated' from my crossfit fundamentals class which means I can now just go whenever. I went this morning (at 0 dark thirty) and disappointingly my first class as an 'actual' participant...what do we do? The same workout that I had done on Tuesday. Boo!! That's no fun. The super duper cool thing was on Tuesday I actually was able to do about 3-4 successful assisted kipping pullups (out of 20) and today it was more like 10 out of 20. Woohoo for progress! And when I did them correctly they were so easy. It was way kewl. Fun times ahead.

Monday, February 04, 2008


I am the type of person who's luck swings quite wildly. When I have good luck, I don't have "meeh...sorta good luck"...I have AWESOMELY good luck. I also have bizarre luck or bizarre things happen to me on a regular basis...i would say that that is the good luck category because bizarre things are pretty fun and good in my book. Now to make sure that the universe doesn't explode and come to a halt I think that my good luck must be balanced with equally rediculously bad luck. Take falling...i'm good at falling. It was pointed out that I've had two pretty good falls in the past year...actually a year a part from one another. One fall, almost put me in the hospital last year, fortunately I was irrationally concerned about breaking a teapot at the time and ended up just falling on my butt (although I did get a good set of x-rays to make sure I hadn't broken my back)...and the other fall...well that is the current tale of woe of my Psoas issues.

Granted I have bizarre 6 degrees of separation situations, which I would categorize as 'fun good luck' and I have good good luck, like when I found 101 dollars over the course of 5 days. That's pretty darn good luck. But it all must be in balance I guess.

So when I went to Vegas on Thursday, and got to my hotel room to find that the room had not been turned over and cleaned and ready for me, the next guest...pillows strewn, room service cart in room, stuff all over the place (yes, my initial thought was wildly irrational when I thought "I hope no one is dead in my room...I can scream real loud!"...I've watched too much CSI in my life...sigh) and then we went to dinner at a buffet (as you do in Vegas) only to find that when i got to the food plate part, the only plate left was dirty. I decided then and there, that gamblling should really not be on my radar that evening. And I did manage to stay away from any gambling.

So I thought my luck would have changed since last week. I mean time has passed it really should be back to either neutral luck (where it is neither good nor bad), bizarre luck or good luck...right? RIGHT???

COME.ON. I get to spin class. Yes I'm running a little late. To top it off...I have to look like a total nerd in the dressing room because they have moved the scale and now I bring my scale to workouts with me so that I can have lots-o-data for sweat rate calculations (per my nutritionist) so I have to take a few more of my precious seconds of my running late time to weigh myself before the work out. To make things even more fun since it is only early Feb there are still scores of New Year's Res-ers hanging out at the gym AND we just got new spin bikes last now EVERYONE thinks that the cool kids hang out in spin class and if you are a mere 5 minutes late you better pray that there is a bike left.

And there is.

And it is broken.

The seat won't stay up.

The instructor tells me to just 'climb' the whole time and not sit down.

Now considering that on Sunday I did (gasp) what I don't typically do on Superbowl sunday...I actually watched the Superbowl and I ate a lot of yummy, yummy cinnamon gummy bears....and then today I had some yummy, yummy cinnamon gummy bears left over and I had all kinds of intentions of giving them away at work....but when I got to work...I lost all self control. Yummy, Yummy Cinnamon gummy bears went into tummy over the course of the day. So when spin instructor told me I could just stand the whole spin class I thought of gummy bears and realized I had no other choice. It didn't sound so horrible.

OK...owchie feet!! I had to stop every so often and just rest my feet that kept falling asleep. Yowza...I WILL get to class early from now on!!

And then I race from spin class to orchestra rehearsal eating a chicken sandwhich on the way...only to have one side of the sandwich BURNT to a crisp. I guess I'd rather it burnt than undercooked, but seriously...tasty charcoal.

I show up at orchestra rehearsal only to find my stand partner decided not to show up. Errrr..I joined in on this whole orchestra thing a few months ago and might I say, i'm a wee bit out of practice playing my violin. They wouldn't let me hide in the back of the seconds, no I got stuck in 2nd chair on the first stand. Not cuz I can do much good up there, I just think cuz there was a spot and no one else wanted to sit there. Now I had to fake section leader and realize how much I still need to practice. ARG.

So...i really wish my luck would change. Even just neutral boring middle of the road luck would be fine with me. None of this bad luck stuff thank-you-very-much. This worries me a little, I do have to see the PT tomorrow. PULEESE let my luck change by then!!

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Of this and that...

My week has been interesting on many levels. I had my PT question the fact I was in quite a bit of pain last week after my treatment with much so, that he's making me a wee bit worried about the fact my Psoas is maintaining a constant state of spasm which may actually be a bigger issue than I'm willing to let it be in my little brain. When he starts throwing around that I may need x-rays, all i can think is that there is may be something structurally wrong that may be the root cause of all of this. Yes I fell in November, but the fall may have uncovered something that has been a problem for a longer time that has contributed to IT band issues and a host of other things. Not too cool if I have a structural issue.

I did just print out my HIM training schedule. May and June may be some interesting months for me. Schedules freak me out as you see where you are going. The beginning bits don't freak me too much, its just the 3 months down the line and i start seeing crazy mileage. I understand the process enough to know that I will get there as long as I put in the time incrementally as I go. It still freaks me out all the same. It is kinda exciting though assuming this Psoas situation changes soon.

On a work note this week, I even escaped to Vegas for a trade show. Interesting on many levels....I did get to see a Cirque Du Soile show, that was super cool. This was my first trade show with my company so that was pretty interesting too. I feel a little funny hanging out at other booths when they inquire who I work for..."err...uh..."But that is the point of a trade trade information.

Hoping this week and all the insanity that comes in a given week is equally good. Happy training.