Monday, April 27, 2015

Why quiet?

No, I did not give up already...

On Thursday last, I had surgery to repair a deviated septum and remove polyps in the sinus cavities.  This surgery is uncomfortable enough, and mine had the good fortune of taking almost twice as long as expected.   It was more of a mess than my doctor expected, despite a pre-surgery CT scan.  My sinuses and nose bled for the better part of the next 3 days, finally stopping in the wee hours of Sunday morning.  I go Wednesday to get the "packing" removed and hopefully a clean bill of health to resume exercise.

This has been a lifetime problem that got worse as I aged.  It interfered with sleep in a big way, and since sleep is as important as exercise in terms of recovery and stress management, this was literally killing me slowly.  If you have any such problems, deal with them NOW, for your own sake.  I will be encouraging my daughter to do likewise.

I was required to sleep on my back after surgery, which for me is like not sleeping at all.  I just cannot do it.  I am hoping to get clearance from my doctor today to start sleeping on my side.  If not, then it is two more nights of resting in the recliner through the night.  I am optimistic; however, that this surgery will allow me to sleep better than I have in years, to breathe better than I have in my life, to enjoy exercise more than I have known.

Take care, run freely.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

First ride in a while...

Today was cross-training, in that I did something different from running.  The theory of cross-training is that the body becomes very efficient in its main activities, such as running, and one reaches a point of diminishing returns.  By cross-training, different muscles are being exposed to new activities, and even the "running muscles" are used differently, so they fail to find that "lazy path" to motion.  Further, by training different muscle groups, blood flow is increased throughout the body, resulting in better aerobic performance.  All good reasons to have cross-training in one's regime.

Blood certainly flowed in places it had not in a long time.  My thighs were swollen after this first ride of the new era.  The blood doesn't flow in that area as much when running or walking.  It did take me 9 minutes to reach the aerobic zone for my heart, but my legs would have fatigued if I tried to do it faster.  It is a matter of conditioning, which I no doubt need, and time.  It is all in the right direction.

Take care and run free.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Starting over...

The only way to be defeated is to quit entirely.  The last three years, especially the last year, have taken a heavy toll on my body and psyche.  Without getting into any details, I allowed such obstacles to detract from good fitness and dietary habits.  I have gained a lot of weight and can no longer expect to back up a little and get back in my running groove.  My focus must now be on weight loss through diet discipline and exercise.

I am starting over, which means to focus on aerobic (fat-burning) exercise and watching what I eat (at least 2/3 of the weight loss battle).  So far as running is concerned, I will be running on heart rate, keeping myself in the 70-80% HRmax zone.  This is achieved through a combination of running and walking.  I run until I hit my upper limit, then walk until I hit the lower limit, then run again, and so on.  In this way, I am keeping my body in the fat burning zone at all times.  I will add cycling at least twice a week for cross training.  I will push it until I am in the aerobic range as well.

I performed such a run today as the official "starting over" run.  I know this is going to take time -- a few months -- before I can start thinking about performance training.  I know it will work if I stay the course.  Besides, what better day to start something anew than your birthday.

Take care, run free.