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What a Week!

April 4, 2009

The past week or so has been full of ups and downs.  Tuesday marked the first anniversary of my dad’s passing, and so I’ve been occasionally weepy, but mostly okay.  I wonder how many years it will take before I don’t take note on March 31, before my eyes don’t fill with tears every time I think about him.

Not that I have had much thinking time lately.  I’ve increased my hours at work and this week marked the start of my 12-week triathlon training program.  I finally came to the conclusion that the only way I will be able to fit in my workouts is by getting myself to the gym by 5:30 a.m. on weekdays.  For many years I’ve wanted to do a morning yoga practice, only to be overcome by the lure of the pillow.  It turns out that the missing motivational ingredient was fear of public humiliation.  I know I have to be able to complete this triathlon or I will embarrass myself horribly, so therefore every day this week I was at the gym by 5:30.

My first attempt to swim laps was rather pathetic.   I had to borrow my son’s swim goggles, which leaked.  I didn’t even know where to put my towel.  I could only swim one length before having to grab the wall and stop.  But by the second day, I could swim a lap before stopping.  Improvement!  Woo hoo!

For my running training, I’m following the Couch to 5K program, which is a walk/run program that gets you up to running a 5K by gradually increasing the running portions.  My running workouts went fine, although it is somewhat humiliating to be lapped by 70-year-old white-haired men.

5:30 a.m. is too early to be out on a bike, so I had to settle for the stationary bike.  I think that was my favorite workout, since I could sit down and just listen to podcasts (Cody, thank you for keeping me entertained!!).   Also, the stationary bike I chose was on an upper level at the gym so I had a great vantage point to watch the other exercisers.  The weight-lifting guys are especially amusing, trying so hard not to interact with each other and to look macho.

It still seems unlikely that by the end of June, I will be able to swim .5 miles, bike 12 miles and then run a 5K.  I mean, I just don’t see how that is supposed to happen.  But then, I never thought I’d be able to do a headstand in yoga, either, and I did.  So I guess I’ll just keep slogging away and see how it all goes…

6 Comments leave one →
  1. April 4, 2009 3:08 pm

    you can do it! no doubt. its just putting in the time like you are doing. Just like yoga.

  2. April 4, 2009 3:37 pm

    yeah, I have no doubt either… sounds like you’re off to a good start (hilarious reading- please keep us up with the latest early morning work outs! For some reason it’s thrilling for me to read about weight lifters, old men swimming, etc)
    I used to want to do a triathlon, but then talked myself out of it. I’m the kind of runner who is lapped by walkers. yes.

  3. gumbomum permalink*
    April 4, 2009 4:35 pm

    Thanks for the encouragment, Roshi! I know that if I hadn’t ever practiced yoga, I wouldn’t be doing this at all. Yoga taught me to just keep slogging away and being bad at something!

    Liz, believe me, it is probably even more hilarious to watch than to read about. I feel like such an uberdork!

  4. April 4, 2009 11:33 pm

    A bit of swimming advice from a former swimmer:

    1. Get a good pair of goggles that fit! Your son’s goggles are likely too small for you, which is why they leaked (unless they’re just old, in which case…). Fancy suits are no big deal, but decent goggles will make your eyes happy, which will make it easier to spend time in the pool — especially once you’ve built up some stamina.

    2. Speaking of, you will build stamina quickly. It won’t always feel like it, but you will.

    3. The thing that helps most with stamina is a good stroke. If you don’t have someone to help with that, chat up a swim coach, team member, or any of the more efficient swimmers at the pool.

    4. Half a mile seems like a long way now, but you’ll get there! Try this: count how many practice session it takes to reach your first half mile, then count how long it takes to reach your second, and your third. It’ll let you see your progress.

  5. April 6, 2009 9:39 pm

    Triathlones! Maybe when I’m one of those 70 year old white haired men.

    • April 7, 2009 7:42 pm

      I believe it is entirely possible for you to complete a triathlon. It’s just about making the right effort. But remember to add yoga to your training routine. 🙂

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