Thursday, December 30, 2010

First Ride

"Kurt" arrived yesterday! After we got him settled there was a great deal of discussion about where he was going to sleep. Turns out he ended up in the garage, precisely where I said he should go to from the start.

Kurt is not a puppy (a puppy would get first rate indoor accommodations at our house). Kurt is what I've named my new bike trainer. I jokingly refer to him as my "new boyfriend" since I expect to be spending a lot of time with him!

The trainer was easy to set up, although I'm going to have to get another skewer because the one that came with it is too short to accommodate my mountain bike (anyone else have this problem?). Other than that, it was operational in about 20 minutes.

It is absolute HEAVEN to be active again! I enjoyed hunting up my bike shoes, recharging my Garmin and my iPod, and pulling the water bottle out from the back of the cupboard. I've still got a lot of prep work to do, like:
  • Setting up the cadence sensor that I bought last spring (I never used it because I was so busy trying to get in a first season of training that I didn't have time to evaluate stuff like that anyway).
  • Figuring out how to use my Garmin for the cadence and heart rate zones that I will need for these workouts.
  • Getting a couple of workout variations, since I will be riding 4x per week for the next few weeks (there is a good one in the January issue of Triathlete magazine).
  • Finding some good music in my iTunes library and making new playlists for the bike.

This morning I took my first ride. It was just a 30-minute test ride, since I didn't have any kind of workout in mind (nor really any clue as to what makes a good workout on the trainer). I started out easy, then did a couple of faster intervals, went through all my gears to make sure everything was in good working order, then finished with some easy spinning at the end.

My first "official" workout will be on Saturday morning. I'm starting the new year off with the 60-for-60 cardio challenge my "Be Fit Club" kicked off last year - 60 minutes of cardio a day for 60 days straight.

The first couple of weeks will be swim and bike only.

Can't wait to get the running started again.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

New Year, New Gear

It's a Green Machine Christmas! I ordered my Kurt Kinetic Road Machine on Christmas Day (thanks to my MIL and Uncle Jim) and it arrives on Wednesday.

I never thought I'd be doing very much indoor riding, but as I recover from that darn foot fracture and as it remains very dark in the early morning, I thought it would be a lot safer right now.

It was between the CycleOps Fluid and the KK. After doing a great deal of online research and taking an informal poll on Beginner Triathlete I decided on the KK even though it was a little bit more money. Two primary reasons led me to the fluid trainers - quietness and reliability. Since I do most of my training in the early morning I didn't want to wake up the whole neighborhood. Special thanks for recommendations from M and Jeff.

I guess I'm going to have to be very, very good this next year if I want Santa to bring me a new bike!

Monday, December 13, 2010

First Hike - Bamboo Forest

We have seven college girls from UC Santa Cruz staying with us right now. It is a fun, lively group up for just about any adventure.

Bruce and I took them to the Bamboo Forest hike in Huelo on Sunday and it was my first outdoor activity post-recovery. I was happy to go along at my own pace with Bruce and Anya (one of the girls who is also his second cousin) checking on me periodically.

This is a strenuous hike over slippery rocks with several climbing sections. I managed fairly well with a hand up from time to time and it felt great to be doing something active for a change!

I have lost a fair amount of fitness over the last three months, indicated by my sore quads and glutes from the hike and sore shoulders from carrying what was a relatively light backpack. But today I am reveling in the memory of what ended up being a great full-body workout!

My next (and hopefully final) doctor's visit is on Wednesday - hopefully I will get a pass to get back to full activity after a couple of weeks of PT.

Monday, December 6, 2010


Early morning darkness and a 57-degree air temperature heralded my return to the pool this morning. My coaches’ only comment was, “Well, at least it’s not windy too!”

It’s been almost three months to the day since I last swam with my Masters group. This morning we slipped the covers off the pool amid chatter about the weekend, comments on the cold (for us), and the merits and drawbacks of barefoot running. I was pleased to see the usual faces and it was nice to hear the concern in their voices when they asked how I’ve been.

I sat on the edge of the pool, legs dangling in the warm water, and pulled on my cap and goggles. I felt a small thrill as I slipped into the water and prepared for my first 50. I used an awkward, limping kick as I swam my first lap – as much as it is possible to “limp” in the pool – which smoothed out a little bit as I got my bearings. Much of my workout involved the pull buoy since I didn’t want to do too much kicking at first.

I am RUSTY! My back and shoulders are tired from loss of fitness and the effort it takes to retrain my stroke, but my legs feel pretty good although my left leg is definitely weaker. It’s going to take some time to get my left ankle back to its flexible self as well.

Overall, I’m pretty pleased that I wasn’t totally out of it and back to square one. We’ll see how I feel in the morning.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Packing my Gym Bag

FINALLY! Back to the pool tomorrow morning and back to weight training at lunch. I'm looking forward to packing my gym bag tonight. On December 11th it will be 3 months (and 5 lbs!) since I've done any kind of "normal" fitness program. However, I feel like I can call hauling myself around on crutches for a month one type of upper body workout - one that I hope I never have to repeat.

I miss my training regimen. Terribly.

I can't wait to see where I stand in the pool tomorrow. Wish me luck!