Monday. I once had a boss who said I had “flashes of brilliance followed by long periods of inertia.” I’ll never forget being stunned (and hurt) by that comment. As the years have gone by, however, I have embraced that description of myself as extremely insightful. I think it is spot on. I embrace it now because I don’t think of long periods of inertia as a bad thing. Now I think of inertia as simply part of my “process.” Maybe inertia is not the right word. I’m more like a dormant volcano. Just because you don’t see lava spewing, doesn’t mean there isn’t a fire brewing.
I was nervous last week when I looked at my training schedule. It seemed like a lot. I wasn’t sure if I could do it all. There wasn’t one thing in particular that looked undoable, it just look scary when I saw everything lined up in a row. I couldn’t help but think “geesh, let the games begin.”
Wednesday was supposed to be a big workout day. I did two loops at the cancelled bike practice in the early a.m. Was disappointed I didn’t get to work hard on the bike. At lunch I made it Fight Club. I liked the class. This time we did a lot of ducking and weaving before we came up to throw a punch. I do laugh at myself often in class because I am so slow that there is no way I have avoided any imaginary punch thrown at me. By the time I get back up to come in with my cross my adversary has walked away with my purse and is counting the money. I enjoyed the pretend badashness of the workout though. “Take that!” I mutter as I give the bag a final slap. “Don’t slap, punch, twist your body and lean into it” the instructor says as she walks by. I don’t know, never underestimate the power of a fast, well-placed slap or a bunch of them in rapid succession. I call it the hummingbird defense.
My greatest feat of the morning came when we were doing rocking back and forth with two kinds of kicks. On the second kick we were to come up and swing out with a wide (roundhouse) kick. Somehow i managed to totally miss the punching post and sent myself into something reminiscent of a Dorothy Hamel flying camel. I swear the look on the instructor’s face said in no uncertain terms that she had never seen anyone manage that one!! I do love the 1 minute free-style punch and kick the stuffing out of the bag segments. It is amazingly freeing.
After Fight Club I ran directly to the tennis courts and played one hour with John. I felt totally warmed up and noticed a HUGE difference in the flexibility in my left knee. I was really able to get down low to the ball and I was pleased with some of the balls I was hitting. I’m really glad I’ve been hitting with John every week. This week I’m running a doubles clinic on Wednesday so that will be a little extra tennis this week. The PTR just sent me a new video of some advanced tennis drills I can’t wait to try them out and brush off my instructor skills.
So I made it through Wednesday unscathed and feeling pretty good. Wasn’t bad but no flashes of brilliance either.
On Thursday I had to do a one hour powerwalk in the a.m. followed by my team run in the p.m. I’m getting better with my powerwalk. I still don’t have that really fast powerwalk down but I am starting to get it. Thursday night we did some running drills and repeats of Cat Hill practicing our cresting (pick up speed as you go over the top of the hill). It was good. We have a nice little group that stays somewhere in the vicinity of one another so it’s not so lonely out there and there seems to always be someone to chase up the hill or someone is right on my heels. Lots of encouraging and comiserating words as we trudged up and down and up and down. We did a little stretching and then I did a brisk walk home because it was cold.
Friday I got to yoga class again. Yeah!! That was two yoga classes and one Fight Club class in one week. I was clicking off my assignments and feeling good. Of course I am still way behind in my yoga but there is a glimmer of hope. We went into the pigeon pose and I did it!! I got all the way down with my head on the floor! Just when I think I’ve got it, however, he ups the ante. Now it’s not good enough to get my head and shoulders flat on the floor. Now I have go all the way down and twist my torso so both shoulders are on one side of my body with my hands in prayer position. Pain in the butt. Literally. I’ll master that next week. Geesh, never done, never done. It looks like this when done properly:
Got to WW on Friday and was relieved to find I was down 1 pound. No flash of brilliance there either but I’ll take it considering last week was a big loss. I see room for improvement and my number one focus this week is working on the small stuff. Reducing 100 calories here and there. 5-6 small meals a day and every time I sit down it must be a meal. Carb, protein and fat. A banana is not a meal. That’s this week’s focus along with not going crazy at Thanksgiving.
Saturday was my worst workout in a long, long time. Really not good. I was supposed to ride with the team and then go for a 2 hour run. It was too cold so they cancelled the ride. I got out for my run but I was miserable from the get-go. Even walking up to the park, I felt hungry even though I had eaten breakfast. I stopped and bought a banana before entering the park. I was cold and I had no energy. The run stunk. I had to really fight to stay with it. After 1 hour I wanted to go home. I forced myself to do the second hour but I couldn’t even walk home, I had to take the bus. When I got home I retreated to a hot shower, cranked up the heat and hide under my electric blanket. I fell asleep staring at my bicycle hooked up to the trainer which I never got on. I was really at mad at myself for being lazy. As it turns out it was just part of my cycle so I was running low on iron. The volcano had gone dormant. Phhht. Fire was o-u-t out. It’s okay, just a little inertia.
Sunday I got up to do my 3 hour run. I was ready for a repeat disaster. Just do the best I can, I muttered. I could barely muster 2 hours on Saturday, how was I going to do 3 one day later? The temps seemed the same (though not as much wind) so I put on an extra layer and walked up to the park. Hmm, very strange. Felt fine. First hour, zip. No problem. Second hour, zip. No problem. What the heck? I’m taking my walk intervals and really working during my run intervals. I’m practicing my cadence, my kicking, my posture. I feel great. Uphill, downhill, pick it up here, pick it up there. Harlem Hill no problem. What the heck? I finished 3 hours and felt like I could do another 3. I was super human. I walked to the grocery store, bought bags of groceries and still walked home.
[I wore the gel bands on my knees on Sunday. I was feeling some discomfort in my knees but not enough to stop.]
When I got home, I got on my bike for 15 minutes and spun my legs. Then I got down on the floor and did a full stretch session. Twenty minutes!! Including the dreaded pigeon pose. I had no idea what was going on. I wish I had had this kind of energy on marathon day. I felt like I was super human. Need that building moved? No problem, let me at it. My new goal in life is to someday peak on a race day feeling like I felt on Sunday. All I can think is I was on some kind of hormonal surge. I’ve heard of women peaking at certain times but this was crazy. Really, I could have picked up a car and tossed it out of the way of the oncoming train. Where’s that purse mugger now?
20 minute walk to the park, 3 hour run, grocery shopping and 20 minute walk home, 15 minute bike, 20 minute stretch and felt more than fine. It was a total flash of brilliance. I have no idea who this person was who had inhabited my body. The only question I had was what did I have to do to make her stay?
Alas this morning she was gone. I feel fine but I do not feel super human by any stretch of the imagination. It was a flash after all. I have a lot of fun workouts to do this week but now, in addition to finishing my assignments, I’m going on the search for another peek at that flash of brilliance.
I almost died when I saw this video. It was like someone stole the dialog from one of my runs! And I love the line at the end. Reincarnate now!