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I am an athlete!

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Yesterday, I decided that today would be a brick workout day. My bricks are still pretty wimpy, but I'm the type that prefers to start slow and work my way into things. Last night, I put the clothes I thought I would need for the run next to the front door. That way, I could get home from my ride and be off on my run pretty quickly.

Other than briefly being downwind of the waste water treatment plant, the ride home was lovely. I averaged nearly 15 mph on my round-trip commute. That pleases me. The best thing I saw on the ride home: a woman riding her bicycle wearing a backpack designed to hold a small child. In the backpack was a small dog. Its paws were on the woman's shoulders. It appeared to be having a grand time. That's a devoted pet owner!

Upon arriving home, I timed my transition. It was about five minutes. Not bad, considering it involves me securing the bike in the garage. I've learned a way to switch over much faster: instead of trying to swap out bras, I put the running bra on over my medium-impact bra. I also went with the FiveFingers Bikalas instead of the KSOs for the same reason: much easier to get onto my sweaty body!

So, fuel belt on, out the door I go. I started running immediately. And almost immediately, I started to feel a cramp in my left calf. Not a debilitating one, though. I ran through it. It was a little cranky the entire time, but it didn't screw up my stride, and the pain lessened. I'm pretty proud of myself for that. Once I decided to keep running, my inner coach started whoopin' it up. You are a warrior! You are an athlete! Good on ya!

I switch between running and walking at about equal intervals. My interval is about 90 seconds. Last time I did a brick workout, I looked at my watch between 43 and 45 seconds every time I was running. EVERY TIME. Tonight, I made it a minute before checking my watch. I view that as progress: I'm getting stronger and fitter. Yay, me!

At about 1.4 miles, I started feeling a weird pressure/pain sensation between my second and third toes on my left foot. I kept wriggling my toes, hoping it would move something around and make that sensation go away. It didn't. I ended up talking off the left shoe and walking the rest of the way wearing one shoe. It was interesting experiencing one bare foot and one foot shod in a FiveFingers shoe. They are NOT the same! It gave me an appreciation for how much cushioning there is on the balls of the foot of those shoes. It felt like a cushy layer compared to the natural cushioning in my bare foot. Clearly, I do not anticipate being tempted to try running truly barefoot. The asphalt in my neighborhood is in pretty good shape, and I didn't encounter any dangers to my unshod foot, but I did not like it.

I'm pretty happy with my mini brick. I'd hoped for two miles, but I ended up with 1.9. (My first 5K is in 9 days.) I'm really proud of myself for running through the cramp. If the pain had become severe, or it messed up my stride, I would have just walked the two miles. But I trusted my body, and I tuned into what was going on. My instincts were right. I've been rewarded with a sense of accomplishment, instead of a wistful "what if..?" feeling.

I still have a long way to go before I'm ready for a triathlon. But today was one of those little milestones that keep me motivated. So yeah, I'm pretty pumped. emoticon emoticon

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • v GHK1962
    HOLY GUACAMOLE....the weather here this week is AWESOME for a bike ride....what about over the mountains? (By the way...this is near a week late in me replying!)

    Good luck on your 5K by the way!

    Ok ... so the transition time and the bra thing...errr .... of course I am NO help there haha....however, the crap thingy ... I know my wife tells me that after coming off her bike and into the run it's like her legs are jelly...and what works for her is to not ride in her high gears on her bike....and go lower gears spinning abit saves her legs. (Again though... in truth... I have never done a tri what I say is all 2nd hand stuffs from me.) I will say, I take an Endurolyte tablet on long rides...and craps I used to get in my calfs are a thing of the past.

    And ... you TOTALLY rock the exercising ... at least in my head :)
    1018 days ago
  • v OPTIMIST1948
    Good for you! Those brick workouts can be surprisingly tough.
    1019 days ago
    Good job on the brick run. You seem to be describing "Mortons Neuroma" with your foot pain. I had that and still do, from time to time. I greatly reduced the pain by getting shoes with a wider toe box. In my case I got "Altra Zero Drop" shoes. I think they might help you.
    Good luck!

    1019 days ago
  • v HILLSLUG98239
    Yeah - it's CRAZY the way my legs feel. It's almost as if they've suddenly gained the ability to reject the commands my brain is sending them. It's like they become cats: I hear you making noise, but I cannot fathom what it is you're telling me to do; therefore, I will ignore your noisy declaration of "NO NO! Bad cat!" and resume what I was doing.
    1019 days ago

    Comment edited on: 10/15/2013 5:19:02 PM
  • v APONI_KB
    I did a tri without concerning myself with doing any bricks. It was not a good idea. I did ok, I was just doing it to see how it worked but I was shocked when I got off that bike and a total and complete leg rebellion.

    1019 days ago
  • v _VALEO_
    Wow, I am very impressed by your strength and resilience!
    You have indeed a clear goal in mind and you have been able to figure out the best available way to achieve that goal--knowing how to push and trust our body!

    1023 days ago
    Well done!

    I really admire all the planning you're putting into this - and it's paying off with real gains. YAY!
    1024 days ago
    Haven't tried bricks
    1024 days ago
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