Friday. Feelings. I’m feeling strangely peaceful this week despite the hustle and bustle going on. Workouts are back in full, I have a lot of work-work on my desk (which seems to get more complicated every time I go back to it.)
Yesterday was a long day and I can’t believe how much I crammed into it. I started by meeting Steph at 6 a.m. and walked up to the park for practice with our coach. OMG was that a hard workout!! We did sprints/squats/sprints/squats and then a bunch of calf and quad busting exercises. It was hard. I was able to do everything but the bunny hop thing (ten little bunny hops then three big bunny hops) — that hurt my knees so he gave me more squats to do instead (I need to land softer but I wasn’t able to do it). All the jumping and calf work was to give up more push in our run. Two ways to get faster, more reps or longer strides (not too long though, just longer within your range of motion). The push from your calf is what gives you the length. We also had to do quick steps, BACKWARDS! Then we had to do this hopping thing on the long benches in the park. One foot on the bench, one foot on the ground hopping with the foot on the ground and hopping with the foot on the bench. I was too uncoordinated, but Stephanie picked it right up. Must be all her years of dance training.
When I got back from practice I had to head right down to the gym for my Thursday workout with Vanessa. She took pity on me when she saw how exhausted I was and only made me do a few core exercises and then spent the remaining time doing stretching exercises — even those hurt. I think those exercises probably did me more good than another workout would have anyway. I was already starting to turn into a pretzel.
After that I went for a massage with Leslie. She’s really good and digs down deep in my muscles. I’m experiencing a lot of aches and pains in my back and in my rotator cuff. She explained that if I’m not breathing properly during my pilates sessions these would be typical injuries – particularly with a pull move — it is essential to breath through the pull. I told her I’m still new to pilates and I admitted that sometimes I can’t get the breathing right if I’m concentrating on other things like scapula, transverse, knees bent — oh yeah, I’m supposed to breath too! I have graduated to being able to concentrate on two things at once, but not three. She recommended that I make the breathing always one of the two!!! LOL
So all that was finished by 11 a.m. and then I had to get to real work! Geesh!!! I had twisted my body sufficiently, now it was time to twist my brain.
After work I went for another acupuncture session. I should have scheduled stuff so that I wasn’t doubled up like that but those were the only appointments I could get. Plus I felt these were all very important things to do in preparation for Saturday. It was a very tough session. He worked on both of my legs and we found some pretty tender spots. I asked him about recommending something I can take while running to eliminate pain (instead of aspirin which is supposedly not good for you.) He gave me some pills which are called hit pills used by martial arts practitioners. The ones he gave me are called San Qi 17. I’m practicing with them today because he said sometimes they are hard on the stomach. If they work, I can take them tomorrow during the run after mile 10 if I’m experiencing pain.
Finally I went out for a farewell party for my good friend Corinne. She’s leaving for Charleston to start a new life there. Major kudos to her for embarking on a new journey of discovery. It takes real guts to do uproot and start somewhere fresh. I admire her so much for taking on this adventure. I’ll miss her a lot. I had fun hanging out with my tennis buddies last night. I haven’t played tennis since May and I’m really not going to be able to get back to it full time in the next two years. It’s just too hard to do swimming, biking, running AND tennis. I would like to just play socially once a week to keep my skills and friendships in maintenance mode. (The friendship part is more important than the tennis part.)
(This is a picture of me and my friend Corinne — a beautiful person inside and out. And she is a great tennis player too!)
When I started playing tennis again in 1998 (after a hiatus of 16+ years) it changed my entire life. I made a whole new set of friends. We traveled together, partied together, oh yeah we played tennis together too. I had been living in the city for 14 years and it became like living in a different city altogether. Many of those friends I consider sisters and brothers now we have gone through so much together. When I think of my friend Corinne heading off to a new city, I realize how frightening that would be to many people. But she has one HUGE advantage. Good forehand = new friends. If you can play tennis you are welcomed anywhere. Corinne has one of the prettiest tennis games amongst all my friends — truly classic strokes, excellent form and she’s the ONE person who actually gives ME good advice on the court. She doesn’t comment often but when she does, she’s right! She’ll be the Bell of the Ball in no time. (Get it? Bell of the Ball? Geesh, forget it!)
Anyway, I’ll miss my good friend, but believe you me she’ll be seeing a lot of me. I already checked out the Charleston triathlon club and they run a whole sprint series during the summer. In addition there is the Kiawah Island triathlon, The East Coooper Coastal triathlon and the New Wave triathlon — all in lil ole Charleston. Can you say Road Trip?!?!?!
This poem is dedicated to my friend Corinne, it’s a classic standard, for good reason!
The Road Not Taken
by Robert Frost
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth.
Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same.
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I–
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.