Adjusted Reality

“Reality can be beaten with enough imagination.” – Mark Twain

The Long Slow Climb Back

Finally feeling a little bit of peace (so far) this week.

May31-7

Clearing your head with an hour walk when it looks like this?  Peaceful…

First of all, I feel like I can pretty much claim I’m back where I started a year ago with the adventures in nutrition.   I kinda forgot that new scale weighs heavier than old scale, so my weight right now being 183-187 means on the old scale, I’m about 181-185 (confirmed by stepping on the old scale a few times).  Average of 183.  That’s where I raced at for the beginning of tri season 2015, my average weight at the beginning of June was 182.6.  Taking stock of how I feel in my own skin… yep.  About there.  Finally!

The next step will be tackling the 5 lbs I lost last summer, between June and August, before I started training for Kerrville.  I will breathe easier once that’s behind me, I’ll have undone all the damage that crazy nutrition plan did and as my weight lowers, I’ll look at as actual progress, not just fixing a stupid mistake.  I know it might be healthier to look at ALL of this as progress, but I just can’t.  Gaining so much weight so quickly put me in a mental tailspin, and I just want it gone so I can move on.

May31-2

Achievement unlocked: having the bike handling skills to actually take a picture while riding.  Still quite don’t have the on-the-bike selfies down though…

At this point, I am definitely ready mentally, physically, and logistically to start the long slow climb back to being a triathlete.

Mentally, I think I’m unbroken.  Triathlon videos make me giddy.  I’m resisting the urge (but it’s tough) to start laying out a plan yet because I want to give myself the freedom not to stress about hitting specific workouts for another month at least.  I’m excited to bike, do weights, swim, and run (and that’s about the order of what I’m loving right now).

Physically, I feel weak and strong at the same time.  Let’s be honest, even if my mental game wasn’t in the crapper after the marathon, I needed at least 6-8 weeks of chilling the fuck out to heal that hip issue.  It’s nice not to limp anymore.  My cycling muscles are definitely not at peak or anything, but I feel capable.  I definitely feel more solid and stable overall with the weights sessions.  The swim feels a little slow and crappy but I *KNOW* that comes back quick with regular training.

The run, though.  I can’t remember feeling this out of run shape in a long time.  Yeah, it was feels like somewhere between 90-100 degrees.  Yeah, it was after the longest bike ride I’ve done in a while with some actual hard work intervals.  However, I’ve never ridden such a struggle bus to complete 2 measly running miles at 10:15/mile pace.  This will be a fun and interesting long, hard, slow climb back.

Logistically – I’m finding that logging zero official training hours leads to a greater than zero number of adult beverages being consumed most nights.   Last week, I logged 52 miles/6.5 hours of legitimate run, bike (mostly), swim, or weights time (including commuting on the cruiser bike).  This is more than I intended to do, but it all felt fun, and my body feels like it’s holding together, so we’ll roll with it.  Last week, I also had zero days of being dumb and getting 4 hours of sleep because ONE MORE DRINK.  Coincidence?  I think not.

This week, actually, this month, the goal is the same.  Log some triathlete hours with a very loose plan.  Two weights sessions.  Riding evilbike at least once, and lots of bike miles.  A few runs between 1-3 miles (once this feels easier, I’ll start increasing the distance but I am in NO HURRY since the next race I’ll need to run more than 3 miles is the end of September :P).

May31-1

Bikes = smiles.

Speaking of bikes, one big component to #projectspring was to become a biker chick.  Reading over that post, I just had ZERO clue how hard the bike bug was going to hit me and I love it.

Tuesday, we did our first commute to work and HOLY CRAP, cycling outside in the morning puts me in such a better mood than driving a car.  It’s about 20-25 mins on the bike vs about 10 in the car, so it’s rarely going to be a huge issue to take an extra 10-ish minutes each way.  I get to spend time outside both in the morning, after work, and even at lunch if we decide to do so.

I’ve really realized that there is very little of my life that cannot be on two wheels now, and it’s the best.

Tuesday, we commuted to work and back and it made me so happy all day.  Thursday, we rode to dinner.  I think it took less time to ride there than drive because of the traffic.  Blew my mind… why have I been driving across the street to get food?

Friday, we almost called off the commute because we had a swim planned after work and errands to run at lunch, but after some logistical considerations, we figured out how to make it work.  It wasn’t the most comfortable, but I had my little backpack stuffed to the gills, and Zliten wore his giant one to haul our gear.  We rode to work, to the bike shop and Whole Paycheck at lunch and made it back to work in an hour, to the gym after work to swim and run, and then home.  We racked up over 17 miles that day just bopping around town.

May31-3

Check out that sweet drink holder!

This weekend, Zliten got his bike set up with some saddlebags (thank you REI sale!), and after some fails and shenanigans to get the equipment work on such and old bike, he made it work.  Today’s commute went pretty solidly, and we’ll be hitting the gym again for some weights after work and testing out the saddlebag capacity by hitting the grocery store after work.  I’m looking forward to being able to commute a few days a week and being able to run most errands on two wheels!

In other productive areas, the Personal Training certification course is going rather well!  We’ve been dedicating about 2 hours every few days to reading, watching the videos, and taking the quizzes, and we’re on schedule to complete it in 2 months total (we have 3).  The first section as all about anatomy and physiology, and it’s been a mix of high school biology and stuff I’ve studied online regarding endurance sports training, so for the most part, it’s gone pretty quickly and easily for me.

That’s not to say that I’m not learning anything new (I am), and some things are just clicking into place.  Studying the way the systems that cause muscles to move makes a whole lot of sense why I feel the way I do in the first few minutes of starting a cardio session.  And why I actually have to sit on my ass for 2 whole minutes in between heavy, heavy weight sets – there are actual physiological reasons for that beyond just annoying me that I can’t finish my workout faster.

It’s also fun to dream about practical applications, about what we might do with all these knowledge nuggets in real life.  It’s really convenient doing the studying with Zliten, and we make time to do it like we were playing a game, or watching TV, and we’ll often spend time discussing it after.  I was worried that it would be a huge imposition into my free time to take a class, but it’s actually not that bad… rather enjoyable, honestly!  I’m already thinking about what I’d like to do next…

Other tidbits:

May31-4

Look at my new sunglasses!

I went to the dentist.  He called my teeth boring.  I’m perfectly happy to have boring teeth.  Also, my resting pulse went up from 42 last time to 47 this time.  Probably time to start training again! 🙂

May31-5

I missed this place….

Hawaiian Falls, the waterpark (henceforth known as wah-pah), opened Saturday.  We were too busy playing bikes and (not playing because play hurts less) running to get there at opening, but we hit all 6 of the slides (minus the ball buster one) and took a trip in the lazy river.

May31-6

Voluntelfie?

We volunteered for the Cap Tex Tri on Sunday morning.  The day started at packet pickup, but they were really low on bike check in people so we headed down there instead.  It was honestly way more fun, I’ll probably sign up for that in the future unless it’s expected to be 1000000 degrees.  Sadly, it was all for naught because the weather yesterday morning turned the race into a 5k/10k run only.  It’s had weather issues the last few years.  It’s haunted.

Then, we went to a friends’ Memorial Day party and played volleyball in the pool… with a real volleyball.  As per normal, I jammed a finger diving for the ball… I’ll live, though.  Then later, we played beer pong with the neighbors and Zliten and I ALMOST won.  I also realized that I’m 37 going on 22 and that’s just fine with me.

I got up on Monday (late) morning and it was too pretty to stay inside (see picture above with the pretty wispy clouds).  I took the long way (about 2 miles total) and walked to the Chinese takeout place near my house and brought it home.  Just like bike commuting, I have NO IDEA why I’ve never done that before.  While I shouldn’t be greedy that I have ANYTHING within walking distance, I sometimes wish there was more around without crossing the main street, but I can make it work.

So, because goals are fun, what’s on tap for this week?

  • Keep doing all the things.
    • 1000 calories, water, vitamins, vegetables and fruits…
    • Staying on top of the class schedule
    • Maintaining a schedule in which I have some triathlete hours
    • Maintaining a schedule in which I get decent (7) to great (8+) sleep every night and I don’t have beer, wine, or liquor more days than I do.
  • Day to day stuff.
    • Bike commute today
    • Go to our first BRICK workout with the BSS team (and hope not to get too, too dropped by all the people who are fit for tri season) weather pending tomorrow.
    • Gaming Thursday.
    • Moar bike commuting Friday (weather pending, looks clear right now).
    • Swim challenge Saturday – I know I can do it, but right now, 2250m sounds like a LONG swim.  We plan to bike there and back or load up the bikes and ride somewhere pretty after.
    • Wah pah this weekend at some point.
    • Profit.

Time to get on with my Tues-monday.  Hey, at least it’s a short week, and if the weather cooperates, I won’t even have to wait until the weekend to #goplayoutside.

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2 Comments

  1. ….oh, because when you said “biker chick”, I totally thought you were talking about a Hell’s Angel kinda biker chick.

    • Quix

      It’s an important clarification I missed here, I know.

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