Tag Archives: Past Week In Fitness
Lately, I have been wondering why I even bother to even give you all fitness updates. I’m gonna be honest here– I feel like I barely exercise and really have nothing to report. However, I guess the value of continuing to do this weekly post is to fill you all in on how injury recovery is going and to give you the raw and honest truth about how this injury is impacting me, both on a fitness level and on a mental health level.
So, this past week, I got to the gym twice. On Monday, I did 30 minutes on the bike and 30 minutes on an elliptical that simulates running, yet is very low impact. I also lifted weights for back and chest that day.
I also went to the gym on Saturday, where I biked for sixty minutes. I also walked six miles on Saturday outside with my husband.
On Sunday, I skipped the gym but went on a walk with the husband covering 5.85 miles.
I went to physical therapy twice this past week, on Tuesday and Thursday, and am pretty happy with my progress. The nerve pain in my legs and stiffness/pain in my back is definitely letting up a bit. If I had to guess, I’d say I have another month or so before I probably can attempt running again.
As far as my mental state, I am still pretty down about how my running has come to a halt. I feel lazy, out of shape, and just not myself. On the one hand, I realize how important it is to treat my body right– my physical therapist insists I don’t walk too much or lift weights, in fear or aggravating my nerve issues. His recommendation is doing the bike. I have been listening to him for the most part, and know I should trust him. I want nothing more than to get better and slowly get back into running, so I plan on heeding his advice. Still, I am wildly envious of all those runners I see outside or posting their race recaps. I am also envious of those who can do things like circuit workouts or plyometrics since I can’t do that right now! The thought of bouncing around in my current state makes me cringe, as I can imagine how much it would hurt if I come down on my left leg with too much force.
In other words, I feel stuck. I am glad in a sense to have about a month left of school (weekends included) to distract me from my injury, and like I said, I would love if my full recovery coincides with my final days of school. I guess all I can do is wait and see.
How’s your fitness going? Indulge me since mine doesn’t seem to be going anywhere!
I have to say, writing these fitness updates is sort of getting depressing. I am nowhere near the fitness level I once used to be, and my workouts lately have been sporadic, to say the least. If you read my post from a few days ago, you know I was having lots of inflammation and pain issues this week– probably the worst its been in a long time. While I had grand plans this week to get back into strength training, when I woke on Monday (and Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday!) I knew there was no way that was happening. The fact my back was literally spasming on a few of those days if I moved a certain way ruled out any type of exercise period– even walking hurt. So rest, rest, rest it was.
I have been really struggling lately with all of this. . . despite how much I try to avoid it, I can’t help but have a type of all or nothing approach to exercise. I know it’s not good at all, but sometimes, I feel like if I can’t go out and run ten miles, why bother stationary biking for half an hour (which is the only exercise other than stretching my physical therapist recommends). I have been trying to overcome this by reminding myself a little movement is better than none at all. Hopefully someday I will be able to ease back into running, but for now I need to take it easy and concentrate on recovery, which is really hard to do because my moods are so tied to the endorphin rush I get from a good sweat sesh.
I am also sad that today, in Providence, there’s a half marathon going on that I was hoping I would be able to run. I remember mentioning it on the blog a few months ago– I was having aches and pains back then too, but hoped I would be better by May. Well, clearly that didn’t happen! I do have another half in my sights that I believe is in September, so I hope by then I will be good to go.
I really only exercised on Saturday of this past week– I did 30 minutes on the stationary bike and 30 minutes on a very low-impact elliptical at my gym that kind of simulates running. I also did some lifting for my arms and shoulders (7 exercises, 3 sets each). My husband and I also went for a 4.5 mile walk on Saturday that I felt pretty good on in terms of my leg. I have been doing my stretches pretty consistently too. Yesterday, the husband and I went on a 5.6 mile walk in the sunshine.
Needless to say, I am feeling pretty low about all of this but I remain optimistic that I will eventually be OK.
Have you ever faced injury? How did you deal with the mental aspect of it?
Last week, I wrote about how I planned on going for more short outdoor walks as a way to de-stress, especially when I simply feel too tired to go to the gym, which has been an excuse I have been rocking a lot lately. I want to take advantage of the beautiful weather and just be outside more. I am happy to report that I followed through on this resolution of mine almost every day this week! Spring has definitely sprung here in Providence, and I really enjoyed getting out and about in the late afternoons and embarking on casual strolls!
On Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, I went on 3.25 mile walks on Blackstone Boulevard, a gorgeous walking path here in Providence. On Friday, I skipped out on walking in favor of napping. Also, everyday this week except Friday, I did a series of back stretches my physical therapist told me to do that took about twenty minutes each day.
On Saturday, I did what I probably shouldn’t have done– run. I do feel like my physical therapy is working– my back, while still stiff and sore, isn’t as painful, and my sciatic nerve issues seem to be dwindling. I woke up Saturday feeling pretty good and decided to try running outdoors for just as long as my body could handle without pain. I also took it easy and went extremely slow. The weather was gorgeous and I saw dozens of runners (and a few friends!) on the running path, which really motivated me to make this run happen. I ended up going ten miles before I stopped to walk the rest of the way home. Throughout the run my back was definitely stiff, but not necessarily in pain. At about mile ten, I really started to feel like my form was going downhill, so I stopped. My endurance was there but my back started to tire, causing me to slouch. I knew ten miles was more than enough, so I called it a day, and was extremely psyched at the fact I could go that far after not having run in two weeks or more.
Note my average pace was about thirty to forty seconds slower than what I used to do before I went off of my back medication. I have no problem with having to slow it down right now– it’s a blessing I can run occasionally at all!
I ended up walking three more miles after my run, making it a total distance of 13.2 miles.
I even later went for another three mile walk with my husband later on Saturday, bringing me to 16.4 miles total!
The one thing I do want to note is my total lack of strength training as of late. I just don’t feel like it! This just may be the week I talk to my gym about personal training– I think I need someone’s help to get me back in the swing of strength training, plus, I want to talk to an expert so I don’t do anything that will aggravate my back and hips even more.
On Sunday, I had a breakfast to go to in the morning with my husband, so morning exercise didn’t happen. We did, however, end up going for a walk later in the afternoon, covering about 4 miles. It was a great way to end my week. I am proud of myself for at least sticking to the three mile walks on weekdays when the gym seems like such a chore. This week, I hope to get in at least two strength workouts. . . we’ll see how that works out!
Are you consistent with strength training?
I am pretty good in the summer, when I can lift in the morning, but lifting for me after work is really tough since I tend to be really tired!
Working out has been such a struggle this week! And I mean both a mental and physical struggle. Mentally, I just couldn’t find my groove. I let some after-work obligations serve as excuses to not exercise throughout the week, and my inability to run right now has left me sort of confused as to what I should be doing, considering my physical therapist thinks rest is a big component of my recovery. More often than not this week, I blew off the gym because number 1, I didn’t feel like putting much thought into crafting a workout that wouldn’t aggravate my injury, and number 2, poor sleep at night made me so tired after work that even the thought of changing into my gym clothes felt exhausting!
I completely understand a lot of what I admitted above are just “excuses;” I guess I am just venting and showing you all that I, like most people, fall into exercise ruts every so often. I kind of know in my brain what I should do to get back on track, but it’s certainly easier said than done. That being said, I am not giving up– tomorrow starts a new week, and I’m going to enter it yet again with a fresh mentality and new game plan.
Needless to say my workouts last week were lackluster. Monday was a rest day, Tuesday I did 70 minutes on the cr0ss-trainer plus some physical therapy stretches, and Wednesday, Thursday and Friday were all off. Saturday I did a decent elliptical workout, covering 7 miles in about seventy minutes, plus I went on two 3 mile walks that day. Sunday involved more walking, totalling about ten miles for the day split into two walks.
If anyone has gone through what I am now in terms of exercise, please, offer any words of advice! I realize this is a temporary bump in the road, but man is it annoying!
What do you all thing I should do? How should I shift my thinking?
Hi friends! I skipped my fitness post last week but am definitely ready to discuss my workouts for this past week. Since I was on vacation from work, I was able to get in some decent morning workouts as well as sprinkle extra activity into my days, which is always good. Before I dive into my recap, I do want to discuss one thing– my running.
Well, I still am having leg/hip/sciatic issues that come and go in my left leg. We spent the weekend walking all over New York City, and my legs held up pretty well. However, as soon as I get some running mileage in, the leg starts to feel weird again. I am actually going to a physical therapist tomorrow for the first time to see what they have to say. It is unlikely it’s a fracture or anything because I had X-rays recently that looked fine. No matter though, running can only happen sporadically now and only when my leg is having a good day. That being said, I was able physically able to run only twice this week– any more would have been too painful. My hopes for an early May half-marathon are pretty much dashed, but I am hopeful I can run one in the late summer.
Another thing I noticed, and I have mentioned this before, is my capacity to run even when my leg is feeling fine is limited because my back starts to stiffen after about eight or nine miles. I was taking anti-inflammatories that kept the problem at bay when I was running much higher mileage, but now that I am off all medications, my body just can’t handle high mileage anymore. My back acts up without fail, so even though I have the desire to run further, I can’t. Hopefully physical therapy can help me work some of these issues out!
So with all that out of the way, you can see why this past week in fitness focused a lot more on walking, cross-training and weights than usual!
Monday, April 15th: lots of NYC walking (about 5 miles)
Tuesday, April 16th: 6.1 mile outdoor walk
Wednesday, April 17th: 9.15 mile outdoor run (plus 2 more miles of outdoor walking); upper body weightlifting (5 exercises, 3 sets each) plus some core work
This run was tough– my body was definitely struggling to keep up with my mind. My pace was slower than usual too because of how stiff I started to feel!
Thursday, April 18h: 70 minutes on the elliptical (covering 6.1 miles) with some high intensity intervals; weightlifting for legs (6 exercises, 3 sets each); 3.1 mile slow walk
Friday, April 19th: 6.15 miles on the treadmill (4 run, 2.15 walked); 3.1 mile slow walk later
Saturday, April 20th: 70 minutes on the elliptical (covering 7 miles); upper body weightlifting (5 exercises, 3 sets each); 3.15 mile outdoor walk
Sunday, April 21st: 8.35 miles on the treadmill (6 run, 2.35 walked)
I actually have really been enjoying my walks and cross-training this week. Obviously, my body is telling me to back off on running and I am actually sort of listening. The need to diversify in fact has kept me much more interested in exercising this week because I get to mix it up without feeling like I am missing out by not running– even if I wanted to, I couldn’t!
It’s back to work today, so while I can’t expect to exercise as much, I do want to workout at least five days this week, plus continue to sprinkle in a few 3 mile walks in the evening as long as the weather cooperates!
How have your workouts been going lately? What’s your favorite for of exercise as of late?