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Archive for the ‘Training’ Category

Hi guys … I’ve been away for a little while and thought I should come back and catch up … I’ve been meaning to but have been busy.

Firstly, just to put your minds at ease, I’ve still been doing well with my healthier eating and exercise. No, I haven’t fallen apart because I’m not reporting on this blog, although I do miss the encouragement you guys have been giving me.

Second, I ran a 5K on May 31 and set a new personal record! My previous personal record was 22:23, and I wasn’t in doubt of beating that, as I set the old record last year and I’m a much better (and lighter) runner these days. So I set out at a pace under 7:00 per mile, and held it the entire race. By holding my pace fairly steady, I passed a lot of people who naturally slowed at the end, so I was happy with my pacing.

I was hoping, in a best-case scenario, of coming in under 21 minutes, but just missed that mark at finished at 21:03 … a full minute and 20 seconds faster than my old record! I was super happy with that achievement. I’m not much of a 5K runner, but this showed me that I’m getting faster. I really only run a 5K when I want to test my fitness and speed, so I’ll probably do another in a few months as a test.

Third, I injured my back lifting weights, about 5 days ago. I had been doing great with my weight lifting, joined a gym and have been lifting heavier. I started on a new weight routine (after doing the old routine for about 7 weeks), to push myself to a new level. It has a split routine, upper body and lower body. I was doing the lower-body routine, with a superset of squats and deadlifts, and when I was on my second set of squats I forgot to focus on my form (specifically keeping my lower back straight) and as a result pulled a muscle deep in my lower back.

I immediately stopped my routine and rested for a few days. I had my back checked out just to make sure it wasn’t serious, and it was just a muscle strain. My doctor said I could start light exercise after a few days, so I started by walking, then a little jogging, and yesterday ran a few miles at easy pace. The last couple of days I’ve also been doing bodyweight exercises like lunges, squats, pushups, pullups, chinups, and so on, just to stay in shape.

The first few days were difficult, as I couldn’t exercise at all. I couldn’t even sit down for very long, as my back would start to hurt. I used a heating pad, some stretching, some massage, and some walking around to keep my muscles loose and the blood circulating. I think it all helped me heal faster as I’m feeling pretty good right now. I can still feel the strained muscle if I start to move too fast or hard, so I’m taking it easy, but I’m feeling pretty good right now.

I hope to be reporting back more often from now on, but I’m pretty busy with wedding planning, finishing my book, and preparing for my honeymoon (less than 2 weeks away!). I’ve missed you all!

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As I mentioned in the previous post, yesterday (Thurs) became a recovery day for me because I kinda overdid it on Wednesday with a hard run in the morning followed by a really hard bike and run brick workout in the afternoon. I was wiped out following the workout, and tired and sore all day yesterday, and am still tired and a little sore this morning (Friday) and have already skipped another workout.

This means that my hard workouts on Wednesday required at least 36 hours of recovery if not more (I’m still playing it by ear). A recovery of that long means that I’m skipping some important training — which is fine for now, but I can’t make that a regular thing or my training volume will be greatly reduced.

So, reflecting back on my workouts, I realized that I have to hold back my intensity if I want to continue to train almost every day. This is something I’ve read about before, of course, but it’s also something you tend to forget in the middle of a workout when you’re feeling good and want to push yourself.

This has been a good lesson, I think. For my regular training days (non-race days), I need to hold back the intensity. I can’t go all-out if I want to train the next day or even the day after that.

So, for those of you following along at home, take heed: training intensity should be somewhere between easy and medium-hard, but never very hard, or you’ll mess up your training schedule — either that, or you’ll continue your training schedule while tired and risk injury or burnout. And remember to alternate hard days with easy or rest days to ensure that you’re recovering properly from workouts. I might even redo my schedule because I’m doing three hard days in a row and that’s not ideal.

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