Tuesday, December 31, 2013

end of year

I'm glad 2013 is almost over. I know it's just another day tomorrow, nothing really new, but mentally I can pretend that a new year might mean something new and better?

Yesterday I walked at work in the afternoon, which is usually a sluggish proposition at best, and this walk was no exception. I struggled to push at all, and my legs felt heavy and tired. I did 6km in 37:22 for 6:13/km with ave HR 147. It is a slightly hilly route at work, and I'm sure that contributed to the heavy/aching legs, but some of it was the mystery illness I think.

This morning I woke feeling ugh-ish and opted for elliptical; after 30 min I'd had enough - my legs were tired. They have felt OK the rest of the day though - not too achy even though I drove a bit after work today, taking my mom shopping up to Park City and driving to and from Sandy.

I totaled my miles for the year --- pretty pathetic compared to my usual totals, but it was the best I could do given the circumstances. I did 614 miles (987 km), all of it hard-earned.

***Mileage update - forgot miles done in part of June & July that didn't make the blog. New total: 643.5 miles, or 1035 km.

I am hoping and praying for a better 2014 for racewalking and for health in general.

Sunday, December 29, 2013

challenging week

It was a challenging week. Vacation is always interesting - with more opportunities, but also more difficulties.

The soccer game on Sunday with Calvin did change my week a bit. It definitely left me sore and off-kilter, and then I followed that up with a hilly walk Monday (which actually was good, in retrospect). After that I felt I needed a day off racewalking, so I used the hotel elliptical. Big mistake. It was so different from the ellipticals at my gym! I don't know what it was about the angle of the foot plates or something - but it used my calf muscles way way more than I am used to. By that evening they were screaming, and continued to be excruciatingly painful for several days. It hurt just to walk across a room. A lot. They were tender to the touch and extremely sensitive. This left me in a quandary. I wanted to exercise - let's face it, food was going to be difficult this week, and exercise was essential - but exercise was also painful.

If you have been reading this blog any length of time, you won't be surprised that I went out and exercised anyway. Mentally, I needed it. It was painful, but on Christmas Day (Wednesday), I race walked 6.86km at a slow 6:55/km pace. My average HR was only 136 --- you can see that the problem was my sore legs, not my cardiac conditioning! To make matters worse, I had consumed a fair amount of chocolate prior to going out (hey, it was Christmas!), and I got nauseated about 2/3 of the way into my walk. That slowed me even more, but I was still glad I went out. When I got back to my brother's house (we were visiting him in northern California), my mom wanted to go for a casual walk with me. I rested up for a bit and the nausea subsided and then enjoyed a very nice walk with her. The weather was SO lovely - mid 60s (17C) and sunny. I was almost hot on my racewalk, even though I wore shorts and a T-shirt. Ahhhhh. The warm weather was fantastic.

The next day, my calves were still screaming, but I knew I had to try to exercise. The elliptical was out of the question. The kids wanted to swim in the pool at the hotel, and I wanted to walk with my mom. Solution? The exercise room had a window to the pool, so my mom and I walked on treadmills in there while watching the kids in the pool. Awesome, except that I hate the treadmill. I lasted for 30 min of good racewalking at a very slow pace (5.5 mph - 10:54/mile, which is just under 7min/km --- keep in mind that RW on the treadmill is IMO ridiculously more difficult than RW on the street) before I quit. Later that day, because I am crazy? Stupid? Forgetful? I did a very hilly hike with my brother, his wife, and Calvin. It was an awesome hike and I'm glad I went, but it did make the calf problem worse for sure. We hiked up and then did some trail running on the way down. Calvin and Alex were waaaaay ahead of me but it was still a good time.

On Friday my calves were certainly not any better for having done the trail hike/run. So I race walked anyway! I enjoyed a somewhat painful racewalk on a lovely trail over to Discovery Park in Sacramento, near our hotel. I managed 6K in 38:01 for 6:20/km with ave HR 139, which was not bad at all considering the amount of pain I was in for the first 500m. You'll notice that split was rather slow… as was the 2nd 500m because of a hill up over a bridge. Mostly the route was flat (Sacramento is very flat) but there were a few inclines on the road due to overpasses etc.

Saturday I took a rest day, because I knew I had to sit in the car all day while we drove home (10 hour drive). My legs don't tolerate car rides after RW these days. They don't tolerate car rides much at all, come to think of it, though that seems to be improving slightly.

This morning I wasn't feeling much in the mood to work out. My calves were still fairly sore, believe it or not, and my mood wasn't the best. A week of eating a bit too much combined with muscular pain had me wondering if I'd ever feel back to normal again. It's been a long year. But I got out there anyway, and as usual, felt MUCH better for having done a walk. Today I did 6.27km total in a relatively speedy (for me, lately anyway) 6:13/km for a total of 39:01 with ave HR 151. My legs actually felt quite good for most of the walk, and the odd pain I've had the last 6 months only showed up at about 5km or so, and even then it didn't sap my strength much. I finished well and wasn't sore from sitting in church afterward, either. It was cold, though… sigh… I really miss the warm weather in CA. This morning it was 18F (-8C), which isn't too terrible for here in the winter, especially since it was calm and foggy-ish, with good footing.

I'm glad I am feeling OK today, and that my muscles seem to be recovering. I am hopeful that with my return to a more normal routine this week that I will feel good and continue my improvement despite last week's stall-out.

Monday, December 23, 2013

made it through the week

Wow. About all I can say about this one is that I made it through the week. It was a bit over-the-top, with work insane, holiday preparations, getting ready to go on vacation, etc. I burned the candle at both ends for too long, and come Thursday & Friday, I had had it. I took rest days.

But let's back up a bit.

Sunday, Dec 15th: after my lovely 10K on Saturday, I decided a rest day was a good idea.
Monday: my legs felt rested and ready to go, but my 8K didn't feel good. It felt OK, but I was dragging a bit and my legs got pretty tired at the end. I still managed 50:45 for 6:20/km with ave HR147, and the good news is that later that day I felt OK and I recovered well.
Tuesday: I felt much better on Tuesday and cranked out a good 8K. 49:27 for 6:11/km with HR 150. Finished strong with a 3:01 and 3:07 for the last km. Awesome.
Wednesday: Here it began to go downhill… woke late because was up late working on holiday stuff and then only managed 30 min on the elliptical.
Thursday & Friday: tired/felt sickish (probably just from being sooooo tired)/didn't sleep enough/worked too hard. Didn't exercise. That was probably a mistake. I felt lousy.
Saturday: Got in a nice 45 min elliptical before we left on the long drive to California. We drove 12 hr from Salt Lake to Castro Valley where we visited our friends Dean and Debbie.
Sunday: played soccer with Calvin for 26 minutes before tripping and almost falling and pulled a muscle in my right glutes somewhere --- ouch. Definitely had to stop playing and was super annoyed because 1) I was having great fun even though Calvin was totally killing me, 2) I was worried about how bad it would be, and 3) darn it! I just want to be able to do stuff like this with Calvin! Walked it off and took ibuprofen and felt OK the rest of the day; a bit sore, but OK.
Monday (today): Decided to try to racewalk. I was slow and cautious and did not push at all, and in addition it is really quite hilly here, so it was a very challenging route. The good news is that I did almost 6K at 6:50/km with ave HR just 129. My right glutes were somewhat sore, but it didn't seem to do much except slow me down a bit, and they didn't get worse with racewalking. Good news. I might be slow for a few days but hopefully that's it.

Today it's on to visit my brother in Davis, CA. Hopefully I can bicycle a bit there, as well as racewalk/trail run/who knows what. My brother is a runner and it'll be fun to do some active things with him. Calvin brought his running shoes too, so perhaps the 3 of us can do a trail run.

In other news, I saw the rheumatologist (finally!) this week. They looked me over and aside from my Reynaud's phenomenon, they see no signs of autoimmune or rheumatologic disease. But because Reynaud's phenomenon is associated with some autoimmune disorders, they did some blood tests to rule them out. Interestingly, my anti-SSB/La titer was a bit high, which by itself means nothing, but does raise the index of suspicion. I have no other clinical signs of autoimmune disease though, so they just want to see me in 6 months for follow-up. There's nothing to worry about, but just need to keep tabs on things. The attending's conclusion was that I might indeed have protein deficiency - she thought my hypothesis was a good one. So I'll keep eating more protein and hope it helps. Other than the blip this week of overworking, I have continued to feel better overall.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Feeling better!

I haven't blogged in a couple weeks, but it's only been because of busyness. I have been feeling much better overall, and have been walking a lot more. Though I'm still not feeling totally normal, it's much improved.

It's been ridiculously cold and/or snowy, so it's been hard to walk outside as much as I'd like. Good thing I have the option of the indoor track! Sometimes, I've walked outside anyway, and it's been slippery; hence, my times were slower those days.

Here's a summary of what I've been up to:
Wed, Dec 4: elliptical, 45 min
Thurs, Dec 5: 8.78km racewalking, slippery - outside, Garmin data here. 6:32/km w/ave HR 141. -13C with wind chill -18C. Cold!
Fri, Dec 6: 6km racewalking, hilly route - outside, Garmin data here.  6:32/km w/ave HR 141 again. -12C with wind chill -19C. Brrr...
Sat, Dec 7: elliptical, 45 min
Sun, Dec 8: snowshoeing with Calvin, 45 min.
Mon, Dec 9: 5K on indoor track, followed by 10 min elliptical. On the indoor track I tend to push harder for some reason. 5K took 30:33 for 6:05/km with ave HR 148. My legs had a bit of the odd soreness at the end, so I stopped.
Tues, Dec 10: 6.25K Liberty Park route. It was really cold again, at -13C (wind chill -18C). I felt tired, and did only 6:28/km with ave HR 145. My eyelashes and eyebrows froze… uncomfortable.
Wed, Dec 11: 30 min elliptical. I needed some recovery.
Thurs, Dec 12: 8K on indoor track in 49:14 (6:09/km) with ave HR 150. Didn't have the odd soreness until about 7km in to the walk :). My legs were feeling great the rest of the day!
Fri, Dec 13: Much warmer outside at just -8C. It was actually not too bad. My legs were tired from the 8K, and so I just did 6.25km at 6:25/km for total time of 40:13 with ave HR 142.
Sat, Dec 14: I felt pretty good this morning, so decided on a longer walk. The weather was decent, too - almost felt warm at -4C with no wind. I decided to try for 10km. I haven't walked that far in a long time. I know, it's a bit sad since that used to be an easy recovery, but I'm just glad to be getting back into things. At 8km I did get very tired, and the odd muscle soreness was bothering me, but I felt strong enough to make it to 10km! At about 5.3km I walked by a friend's house and she was taking out her trash, so I stopped to talk with her for a bit - nice to see her. The break helped me feel refreshed and able to do the 10km. Total was 10km in 1:03:38 for 6:22/km with ave HR 147.

Week of Dec 1-7: 33.8km (21 miles)
Week of Dec 8-14: 35.5km (22 miles)

OK, so the mileage totals are pretty much laughable, but it's the most I've done since January, between illness and injury. I know it will increase as I continue to feel better. Edited: nope, I did more for some weeks in August… but it's the most since then for sure.

Meanwhile, I haven't been doing as well with my eating. It's a hard time of the year to be disciplined, and I have fallen down a bit this week. I lost 1.8 lb over 3 weeks, but then gained 2.2 lb this week. Sigh… I am still above my goal weight for Weight Watchers, so I have to pay weekly fees. You'd think that would motivate me, but it's been challenging. But being able to racewalk again is helping my mood, which will help with my eating, and hopefully start an upward spiral.

There's a lot of work ahead, with eating and with training. Time to get serious.

Tuesday, December 03, 2013

3 days in a row :)

This morning my legs felt a bit tired, but the weird pain wasn't bothering me, so I decided I'd have a go at racewalking. Of course, it was snowing as predicted, so I went to the field house and walked on the indoor 211m track. It always seems harder to me to walk there than to walk on a regular track or to walk outside. The tight turns, the warm building (warmer than I'd like for racewalking anyway), and the number of laps make it tougher. So I brought some music (which I don't usually do during workouts) and decided I'd try to enjoy it as much as possible.

My legs felt fine until about 3km, when they got tired, and yes, I had some of the odd pain. But it didn't keep me from working out well, though my HR was a bit high for the speed.

I did the 6K at 6:20/km in 38:02 with ave HR 154. Yay!

Monday, December 02, 2013

Progress! (just before winter...)

I'm finally feeling sure that I am making good progress. Yesterday I did 5K easy, and today I did 8K easy. My legs hurt a bit today in that weird way, starting at 3.5K, but only a little - and it didn't hinder me from a decent time of 49:25 for 8K (6:10/km) with average HR of 149. Garmin data here.

Better yet, my legs only hurt a little bit today at work, even though I spent a good hour sitting at the microscope doing injections, and another hour sitting in a seminar. I feel fully recovered this evening, and in fact, I'd like to walk tomorrow, assuming the forecast snow dump doesn't stop me. I might just go ahead and walk at the field house on the indoor track. We'll see.

I'm really excited that I'm feeling better - finally! Too bad there's a huge storm coming tonight and winter is really here. No matter. I'm happy to be feeling decent at last. Not to say there won't be any more setbacks or problems, because after all I am still not sure what the problem was other than B12 deficiency (for sure) and protein deficiency (undiagnosed - possible not certain).

In other news, I have taken off a few pounds, weighing in at 158.6 this morning, which is the first time I've been under 160 in about a month (or so...not sure). That's not great, since my goal WW weight is 155, but it's progress toward recapturing my goal. Racing weight is lower still, but let's take baby steps toward that. I'll get back there - just have to get in the swing of training again, and continue being more disciplined with my eating.

Sunday, December 01, 2013

catching up again

I've pretty much been neglecting this blog. Weird, because I've been doing a bit better overall, but life has been more insane than usual. Namely, I got a terrible stomach flu in the middle of the night after Thanksgiving, and spent the entire night worshipping the porcelain god. Yeah, it was ugly. The next day, I had chills and hot flashes, had terrible muscle pain all over, and was weak as a kitten. The good news? I felt OK by Saturday and was able to enjoy that day with my family, cleaning up the house, getting the Christmas decorations out, making turkey soup, and attending the sing-along Messiah at Abravanel Hall with my mom and Grace.

Since November 18, the last time I updated this blog, I've been racewalking a fair amount, and my legs have been holding up OK. I *might* be ready to start light training again soon. Maybe. I did a lot of cross-training from the 19th-23rd --- weather was nasty (cold rain) and I didn't have to racewalk, so I stayed warm in the gym. Last Sunday, the 24th, I did 6.25k in 39:25 for 6:19/km. On Tuesday the 26th, I did 8K (yay!) rather slowly, at about 6:27/km (missing 1km at the start, which was faster than the other km, so perhaps overall this might have been low 6:20s). I was a little tired and just took it easy.

Then on Thursday the 28th, I did the Cold Turkey 6K race, as is my Thanksgiving Day custom. The weather was cold at 33F (1C), but in the sun it felt warmer than that and I was good in just a long-sleeved shirt, tights, and gloves. I knew I wouldn't be able to race it hard, so I settled on doing it at a moderate-moderately hard pace. Garmin data here. I definitely worked it moderately hard, which is harder than perhaps I should have gone, but it was fun :). I did the race with Calvin (SO awesome!) and I knew he'd be able to go faster than me (running, to my out-of-shape racewalking). I saw him about 1.5-2 min ahead of me at the turn-around up the canyon, and it looked to me like he was in good position in his age group. I focused on being happy for him and not being unhappy for myself, since I was hurting going up the hill and knew I'd be slow. In fact, I wasn't as slow as the slowest I've done this race (when I was sick and it was icy, 2-3 yrs ago), and I was satisfied with my time of 38:11 for the 6.23km (yes, the race is longer than 6K, consistently each year) for 6:08/km with average HR 156. I felt a bit sore the rest of the day, but not terribly so. The next day I was VERY sore but I am sure that was from the flu, as by that evening I was a lot better and on Saturday, 48 hr after the race, I was well recovered with just a few sore spots from the race itself (shins a bit, and abductors).

The exciting part of the race was seeing Calvin cheer me on at the finish, and then waiting to find out that indeed, he had placed first in his age group (9-11)! He was first of 7 boys, and at age 9, one of the youngest, AND beat the next boy by almost FOUR minutes. I think he has some talent! I was SO proud of him! He was thrilled, too - and that was a kick to see. He seems excited to do another race, as well.

This was the first race we've done together (besides a Wasatch Walkers 3K when he was 3, and I don't really count that...he ran it instead of walking, because at 3 he couldn't understand - though the club was nice and let him do it). Actually, I guess the VERY first race we did together was in 2005, when he was 1 - it was my first race too. I pushed him in the stroller and won a 3rd place ribbon for the female stroller division :), which got me hooked on racing right from the start. Hopefully Calvin's win will have a similar effect!

I did win the walking division, as well. One never knows about this, because it's not judged and sometimes runners misunderstand and enter and think run/walk is OK. But this year people were honest, and I was happy for the win :). Full results here.

Getting sick pretty much derailed any thought of a Friday or Saturday workout, but by this morning I thought I might manage 5K decently enough. I asked Calvin if he wanted to come with me, and he did! He seemed a bit off this morning, and actually struggled to keep up with me. I think he might have a touch of the stomach virus. We did 5K in an easy 31:33 for 6:18/km, and my average HR was only 133 - like I said, pretty easy, and I'd have been faster alone, but that was OK. I liked the company, even if he wasn't feeling 100%.

My legs are feeling good enough now that I think I will racewalk again tomorrow. That will be the first time I've walked 2 days in a row in quite a long time. I hope I feel good enough! I'm excited to walk again, and the weather has one more good day before we get really cold and snowy (forecast high for Tuesday is only 34F with snow... and it gets colder the rest of the week).

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

elliptical; 8K

Yesterday: elliptical for x-training, 53 minutes. That's what I had time for! Wanted to do an hour but had to go. Legs were still sore so maybe that was for the best? It was that weird soreness again, not too awful, but there for sure.

Today: woke feeling pretty good so decided to racewalk. During the first 1km I could feel the weird soreness, though it abated a bit as I loosened up. I felt OK - not great, but not bad - so I decided at 6K to go on to 8K; legs were pretty tired but not awful, and I finished in reasonable speed considering the small uphill. I'm paying for it a bit now (at lunch). When I've been sitting this morning analyzing DNA sequence at work, it's been a bit painful. As long as I get up and move around it's not so bad, but sitting is the kiss of death. It's not as bad as it has been, but it's not good either. I'm hoping I'll feel better later tonight and tomorrow. Worried a bit that this is a relapse, but most likely it's the usual scenario where recovery is not a nice smooth linear progression. (Did I just write that? I'm such a geek!).

Total for 8K: 49:33 for 6:11/km with ave HR 144. Garmin data here.

Sunday, November 17, 2013


Thursday: Cross-trained with elliptical + biking to work for a total of 1 hr cardio. Felt good.

Friday: Racewalked 6.3 km around Liberty Park and to/from. Garmin data here. I felt strong for the whole walk, even the slight uphill at the end. It was chilly (4C, 39F) and raining lightly but wasn't too unpleasant. I was glad to get out. Did a pretty good 6:16/km with ave HR of only 142.

Saturday: 1 hr elliptical for x-training - too nasty outside to ride my bike, sadly. I felt quite good on the elliptical, but afterward my muscles were hurting the weird way again. I don't know how to describe it, but it's quite unpleasant. It is not delayed onset muscle soreness - it's a sharper pain, but not sharp like the acute pain of an injury. It's just really odd. It especially bothers me when sitting, and I did a LOT of sitting Saturday. Driving is the worst, because I can't move around as much. I drove a lot Saturday, to and from the Olympic Oval a couple times to watch World Cup speedskating (photo at left-awesome! Saw a world record in the ladies' 500m!), and to breakfast with Kelly, and to pick up the kids from my parents' house. Probably in the car about 3 hr total, plus sitting at the World Cup. It hurt.

Oh, also, I attended my Weight Watchers meeting. I lost 0.8 lb this week, but I can't say I was really trying that hard. I am lucky the scale moved, and I have some work to do on my eating this week.

Sunday: Was still sore when I woke up, but I wanted to try and racewalk. It didn't hurt as much as it has in the past, so I figured I had a walk in me, as long as it didn't make the pain too much worse. The kids were all gung ho to go with me! Calvin wanted to run alongside me, and he can now run faster than I can race walk, though he doesn't have my endurance, even in my weakened state. He had to stop and rest a couple times but he made it the whole 6K with me :). I was really proud of him. Grace came along as well and rollerbladed, but got tired after 4.5K and waited for us in the car. They had a great time and I'm sure we'll do this again - but today marks a major milestone - the first time I took the kids on a training walk! OK, so I'm not in rigorous training, but it's just great to know that they can start to enjoy this with me! Calvin commented that it was so nice to have someone to talk to, and he was correct. I thoroughly enjoyed their company.

I did better than I thought I would on the walk, considering how iffy I felt. My muscles were sore, but it didn't hurt my performance too much. I did 37:32 for 6:15/km with ave HR 141. Of course we did stop a few times to get drinks for the kids/rest a bit, so I probably would've been a bit slower if I hadn't rested, but I still felt all right. Garmin data here.  I kept things loose in the afternoon by walking the dog briskly with my mom for an hour - enjoyable! The weather was chilly this morning at 38F (3C) but this afternoon it was lovely at 52F (11C) and sunny. I'm enjoying these nice fall days while they last. My legs felt OK the rest of the afternoon - sore in that weird way, but not horribly so. Better than yesterday. I got a bit worried that maybe things are getting worse again; however, I'm thinking it's just the usual 3 steps forward, 2 steps back of recovery. We'll see how I feel tomorrow; I'm planning elliptical/stationary bike at the gym, with possibly some racewalking on Tuesday.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

recovery; 6K

After my 8K Sunday I was pretty sore! I don't know why that surprised me, but what was more interesting was that it was 80-90% the normal delayed onset muscle soreness one gets from unaccustomed activity, and only 10-20% of that weird soreness I've been having the last few months. I was so relieved to have the usual muscle soreness - I can't explain it, but it just felt good and normal. Unfortunately, it bothered me enough that racewalking on Monday or Tuesday wasn't really a good idea. I was OK with that, and know it's going to take time to get back in shape. As long as I see progress, it's good.

So on Monday & Tuesday, I did the elliptical ~40 min and then biked to work, so I'd have a bit over an hour of good cardio. I recovered well from that.

This morning I felt ready to go - so I planned a walk with Kelly. Her knee is better but not 100% yet, so she racewalked some and ran some. She had to leave early to study for a quiz, so she only walked 20 min with me, but that was super. I continued on and did a total of 6K, and it felt good just like it did on Sunday. I felt strong and able to push myself, which I haven't felt all year, really. It just felt so good. Admittedly, I did tire and the last km or so wasn't as easy, but it felt OK. And best of all, I have only felt a bit of that weird soreness today. I almost feel normal. Almost. Not quite. But I'm encouraged!

My plan is to cross-train again tomorrow and hope to racewalk on Friday again with Kelly :). If I'm feeling brave enough maybe I'll be able to racewalk on Saturday too? But if not, for sure on Sunday I hope. I just hope this trend continues. Finally.


Oh, I forgot my time for today. Fast! 37:08 for 6:11/km and ave HR 143. Garmin data here.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Another week gone by...

Since I haven't been training, it's been easier to post less frequently. But things are looking up and I might post more often now, depending on how things go.

This week has been a good one, continuing the upward trend. I continue to have a good amount of energy to get through each day, and I am more able to exercise. Yay! It wasn't a good week at all in the food department, but that's another story. I will address that issue below.

Monday: 40 min elliptical
Tuesday: 45 min elliptical
Wednesday & Thursday: rest days - but due to lack of time, not energy - this one falls into the poor planning department. Usually exercise is my #1 priority, but I kind of blew it this week. I was presenting zebrafish stuff to my kids' classes Thursday morning and just didn't plan far enough in advance, so those days were full of last-minute cramming and extra work to make up for missed hours. Enough said. Lame excuse, but it is what it is.
Friday: 5K racewalk with Kelly (YAY! Kelly's knee is getting better!), in 31:45 for 6:20/km. My legs felt really very good and didn't hurt much afterward. Amazing!
Saturday: 1 hour elliptical
Sunday: 8K racewalk in 48:29 for 6:03/km with ave HR 147! Wooo hoo! Some good speed, and my legs didn't give out at the end, and they have just been moderately sore the rest of the day. In fact, after my racewalk I still had enough energy and stamina for a nice easy 2.5K walk to church and then back once the service was over. 8K is the longest walk I've done since September 16, and this is the fastest I've walked 8K in a much longer time than that. Am I really on the mend? I'm almost daring to hope that I am.

I have continued to eat more protein, and more of everything else as well, contributing to some serious weight gain. I'm not beating myself up, just stating it like it is. I finally bit the bullet and went to Weight Watchers on Saturday. I needed to 'fess up and move on. I needed my meeting and the accountability. I weighed in at 163.8 lb (74.5 kg), way over my goal weight of 155 lb, and way more than the 148 lb that I like to race at. I had to pay for being overweight for the first time in 7 years. I thought it would be humiliating, but honestly, it was refreshing to be back, to get my head on straight, and to start over fresh. I am going to attend every week until I feel things are back to normal again, and then go back to a couple times a month. It will take a while to take the weight off, but I'm OK with that. I just need things to get moving in the right direction again.

Back to exercise: so why am I feeling better? My best guess is B12 and protein deficiency combined to make me feel lousy (fatigue, sore muscles, pain) and once the B12 levels were up I still wasn't eating enough protein until the end of September when I realized that might be a problem. It's not Weight Watchers' fault - I wasn't following their good health guidelines very well. Because of my racewalking, I cut way back on dairy, which in retrospect was probably not the problem with my GI distress (I'm still not sure what causes my runner's trots, but I suspect it's a combination of a sensitive intestinal tract and eating just a little too much the day before a long walk? I also think the higher protein diet is helping a lot with that - we'll see when I get back to long walks again). In addition, I was trying to eat less meat to be more environmentally friendly and more healthful. I wasn't conscientious about replacing it with nuts or legumes, and therefore I actually wasn't eating enough protein when I started calculating how many grams I was getting per day - rare for an American, but seemingly true for me. Now that I'm on B12 supplements and eating more protein, I hope I will continue to feel better and get back to my new normal: athletic and enjoying it!

I had the best time on my walk this morning - I just felt so normal again! I saw my friend Henry at the park, stopped to chat a bit and told him I was feeling better. The weather was just lovely - chilly but sunny and calm, and SO beautiful. It was only 37F (about 3C) but our fall weather has been so amazing this year...I know the snow is coming but I'm in denial. Anyway, it was gorgeous today, and I was just SO VERY HAPPY that my legs felt decent. They felt pretty good until the last 1km, and yeah, I got tired. But it was a more normal tired and not that horrible pain-tired I've been having (well, maybe a little bit). The rest of the day I have had some soreness when I sit too long, but it's been pretty good, really. I am going to cross-train tomorrow, but plan to RW on Tuesday with Kelly.

Here's my Garmin data for the walk today.

Sunday, November 03, 2013

the week in review

It's been a whole week since I've blogged. This week has been much better than last week. I've felt pretty darn good - more energy, and able to exercise more.

Monday-Wednesday: 45 min elliptical each day. Felt good!
Thursday: up a bit too late, so only managed to bike to work, but still felt good.
Friday: 1 hour elliptical. Longest I've worked out in a while, and I recovered well from it :).
Saturday: 30 min elliptical + bike to work to do some stuff. Body felt good.
Sunday: Got brave and decided to racewalk for the first time in 2 weeks. I wish I could say it felt good. It felt OK-ish during, and my legs have been stiff and sore since. It's 3pm now and they are hurting a bit especially when sitting. I stretched thoroughly afterward but not sure it helped (don't think it hurt though). I did it at 6:21/km pace for 31:45 total time for the 5K. Not bad. I just wish I didn't hurt.

I told Loren this morning that I was just so glad I'd been able to work out more this week. I really need it for my mental health and for my general sense of well-being, never mind the fact that I also like to eat and therefore need exercise to help keep my weight in check. I hope I'll be able to racewalk again, but if I can't, I will learn to live with that somehow. Not being able to exercise at all would be much, much worse.

I'll play the next couple days by ear. I expect to be sore since I haven't RW in 2 weeks, but I also hope I'll recover well so I can RW later this week. But if it is RW that is messing me up, I will give it up if I have to in order to be able to work out. I have just been SO glad to feel better that it has shifted my perspective monumentally. It's not that I don't fervently hope I can RW again, it's just that I have to prioritize right now. Health is #1, and being able to do some kind of exercise is much more important than being able to racewalk. Feeling good and healthy is such a gift.

Sunday, October 27, 2013


Thursday: felt a bit better. The 30 min on the elliptical didn't hurt as much.

Friday: elliptical + biked to work for total of 45 min cardio. I felt surprisingly good.

Saturday: 45 min elliptical. Still felt surprisingly good.

Sunday: Woke up more sore than I'd like, probably from Friday's bicycling. Hiked with my mom for 45 min (2.75 miles) and that felt pretty good and loosened things up. The fall weather here has been amazing and the leaves are SO lovely (see pic at left)...wish this weather could stay a bit longer. Later, I biked to book club and then up to work, then biked to a friend's home and then home. Feeling pretty decent right now. Hoping I don't pay for all this tomorrow, but I suspect I will. Off to bed soon so that I can get up early for some elliptical tomorrow.

Been eating much better yesterday & today. Right now my #1 priority is to eat right and get in as much exercise as possible. No racewalking for now - I just need to keep my weight under control and feel better if possible. Racewalking was making things worse and so I just have to take a bit of a break from it. I should probably swim, but I'm just not feeling the love right now. I'm reserving the swim card for later, if it needs to be played.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

more of the same

Elliptical Monday-Wednesday, 30 min/day.

Legs very sore :(. Took some naprosyn today and it didn't seem to make a dent in the soreness.

Thinking about what course of action to pursue next to try and get some help.

Monday, October 21, 2013


I'm pretty sore today. Just 5K yesterday was enough to do it. ARRRGH! SO FRUSTRATED!

Did 30 min elliptical this morning. Spent the rest of the day annoyed at my sore muscles. Mostly ate pretty well, at least. That's something anyway.

I haven't been feeling depressed again, thankfully. Just frustrated, angry, irritated, pent-up, wanting-to-racewalk-but-dreading-the-aftermath. Annoyed that my boss and his wife did a half marathon last weekend and both did really well...happy for them, yes, but just so annoyed that I couldn't do it too. Irritated that my Facebook friends are all having lots of fun at the races. Stressed that I am still not feeling better. Angry at myself for being such a schmuck when others I see walking through the hospital on my way to work every day have much worse problems.

That's pretty much it in a nutshell. Just getting it out there.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

cross-training; hiking; 5K

Thursday, despite fighting off a cold, I did 30 min elliptical and then 15 min stationary bike before going on vacation with my family to Southern Utah. We enjoyed an awesome hike in Dead Horse Point State Park on Friday, and then a hike in the Fiery Furnace in Arches National Park on Saturday before returning home to celebrate my mom's 70th birthday. Whew!

My legs actually hurt a lot from the car ride on Thursday, but they felt fine hiking - no problems whatsoever. We hiked about 6K (3.7 miles) on Friday, and then a bit more (2-3K?) Friday night on a night hike with the park ranger. Then Saturday we hiked 2 miles (3.2K) in the Fiery Furnace, with lots of scrambling and some beginning rock-climbing moves. I wasn't sore at all from that either.

Today I decided to do 5K, because I could, and my legs felt recovered. I was pretty slow, doing 5K at 6:20/km with ave HR 146. I felt OK - legs weren't sore much during the walk. However, now after a few hours, my legs are starting to hurt, mostly in the glutes. It feels like I've done a hard weight training workout - too many lunges or something. It feels much worse when sitting, so standing is better, though not terribly convenient when you want to edit photos, watch football, etc.

My diet hasn't been the best as you might guess, between camping and birthday cake. My weight is a bit out-of-control at the moment. Time to re-strategize and figure this out.

I just wish I knew what was wrong. I wish I knew what to do to make my legs feel better. My fatigue level has improved a significant amount over the last week, so maybe my legs will follow? But I have to assume that might not happen and plan accordingly. I am not exercising like an athlete now, so it's time to stop eating like I am. That will be more difficult than it sounds, but I have a few ideas to tackle the problem. I need to start acting on my alternate plans for when I feel like eating - other things I can do instead. I have been saying this for a while...now time to DO something, before it gets worse.

On the bright side, some photos from our trip:

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

cross-training, 6K

Yesterday: 30 min elliptical

Today: 6K. My legs didn't feel as recovered as they did on Monday, but they didn't feel horrible either. It was a crisp fall morning, clear and 40F (4C), and it felt good to be out. My legs were OK until the 5K mark, when they started to really hurt. At least I only had 1K left at that point. I was pretty fast through 5K, too - yeah, it's a net downhill, but not really steep or anything, but I still got to 5K at 6:03/km pace (about 30:15 --- gee that's only 20 sec slower than my race a couple wk ago...sigh.........). Then I slowed a lot on the last uphill, finishing in 37:00 for 6:10/km with ave HR 152.

Now (at lunch time), my legs feel quite sore and very tired. Grrrrrr. I WANT TO FEEL BETTER! I want to walk 10K without muscle pain. That apparently is too much to ask right now. I will have to adjust expectations and be patient, two things I'm obviously not very good at. At least there's no pressure of an impending race.

Garmin data here.

Monday, October 14, 2013

rest day, 6K

Yesterday I took a rest day. My legs felt pretty good, so I thought about swimming or other x-training, but was busy working for 90 min or so and also helping a friend paint, so I opted to skip it.

This morning I woke up and my legs didn't feel too sore! They were a bit sore, but it wasn't painful to bend over and tie my shoes like it has been. My glutes weren't screaming at me from the stretch needed to tie shoes (with bent knee). I figured that was good. So I went for a walk with Adriana; we planned on 5-8km depending on how we felt. I thought I'd make 5km but doubted I'd go farther than that. I was pleasantly surprised that my legs felt OK at 2.5km, so I suggested we turn around at 3km and if we felt like more then we could do more when we got back to our cars. By 5km my legs were tired and somewhat sore, but nothing like how sore they have been on some other days. I was ready to stop at 6km, but I could have done more if I'd had to. My legs have felt decent so far today (it's lunch time), though I will cop to taking a couple naprosyn prophylactically.

We did the 6km slow and easy, finishing in 38:25 for 6:24/km (though my watch was off badly for the first 500m (3:46???!??? - know it was not more than 3:10 or so), so it was probably more like 37:45 for the 6K?). Anyway, regardless, my ave HR was 145, so it was a nice easy day and felt OK. I need more days like this. I'm going to allow myself to have a little hope that maybe things are done getting worse? OK, it's only been a couple days of feeling better.

I'm still eating the higher-protein diet, averaging probably 80g protein per day. I wonder if that is helping? It will be 2 weeks of that tomorrow.

Garmin data here.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Can't leave the blog alone...

I guess I need the therapy of writing this, of getting my thoughts on "paper".

Not surprisingly, it's been a tough week. I rested Sunday after the race, and was extremely sore. Glutes, hamstrings, right shin, obliques. Monday I was even more sore, but felt I needed to work the kinks out of my muscles, so I opted for 30 min elliptical. Tuesday, I did 30 min elliptical and I biked to work. That was rough on me - I hurt badly on Wednesday-Friday, but still managed elliptical at least 25 min each day.

Last night I was feeling better. I got a text from Stevie's dad, suggesting I join Stevie for 10K. Well, I thought 10K rather unlikely, but figured a little company for 5K would be lovely, and so I went. Stevie took off like a shot, and I stayed with him, though we did slow a good amount on the way back. There was a lot of frost on the section of the parkway that has the wooden walkway over the swampy area, and we had zero toe push there, so that was slow too. Yes...I said frost. It was 43F (6C) this morning, but near the river it was a bit cooler and there was some frost.

Enjoyed the walk a lot, though the last 2km hurt a good amount. Did the 5K in 31:14 with a high ave HR of 150. Afterward, I took an ice bath. Yes, an ice bath for 5km. Sad but true. Coach thinks it might help, and hey, can't hurt. OK, yes it can hurt! It was freeeeezing cold and I have Reynaud's phenomenon, which was acting up for a couple hours afterward. A mug of hot tea and cranking the heat in the car on the way to Calvin's soccer game eased things up a bit. Despite all that, I think the ice bath helped. My legs are sore but not as bad as it has been sometimes.

I miss racewalking SO much. It felt so good for the first 2.5K, and I wanted so much to keep walking. My boss is doing a half marathon in southern Utah next weekend, and I expressed jealousy. He said, "You can still sign up!" and I had to explain that I could not do it - no way. I know I'd never get through the race. He said, "You could walk". Hahahahaha. I doubt I could even walk casually for 13.1 miles right now. I would love nothing more than to do that race. It made me want to cry. Finally he said, "Oh. I'll shut up now." Thanks...

I admit that last night I felt depressed. I allowed myself to wallow in it a bit. I haven't done that much at all (yet) and have been impressed that though moody, I've managed to keep my head up. But I'm worried that I can't take much more of this. The muscle pain, the sadness from missing my sport, the weight gain due to comfort eating (duh) are getting to be too much. I have avoided the nasty pit of depression, but with winter coming on and being prone to seasonal affective disorder, I will admit to being afraid.

I have a few strategies left to combat this. I have to work harder to get more sleep and to eat right. That makes everything feel better. Eating right has proven to be quite a challenge, though eating more protein the last couple weeks has helped somewhat. I need to have a bit more time to myself, so maybe I will ask Loren to do a bit more around the house, if he can. At the moment he's furloughed from work because of the gov't shutdown, so theoretically he can help; however, he's had a nasty cold which has messed with everything.

Well, seeing this on "paper" has helped me realize I need to do a little more planning and strategizing. I have a bit of time this weekend and hopefully can get an hour to myself to think.

Monday, October 07, 2013

National Masters 5K

The weekend was lovely, except for the race. It was great to see everyone (photo with my friend Lis below), Tennessee was beautiful, and I enjoyed myself. The redeye flight out there wasn't so great, and I didn't sleep enough, so I'm tired now, but that didn't diminish my pleasure in the weekend in general.

The race? Yeah, worse than expected. I hoped for low 29s. Barely squeezed under 30 min, and my heart rate was ridiculously high, averaging 167. My legs hurt from end of the first km on, and now (2 days later) they are very painful --- like I'm recovering from a hard half marathon, not a 5K race.

I did come in 2nd place, but that's not saying so much when I was the youngest in the race except for two teenagers (age 14). I was first in my age group...but then again, I was the ONLY one in my age group. Hey, I didn't get DQ'd!

The course was slightly hilly - slight downhill for 1st 500, slight uphill for 2nd 500 in each lap (1k/lap). It also had a complex turn at one end, so I'd say most people were slowed 30 sec-1 min by the course (vs. a fast, flat course). So maybe I would have done low 29s? No matter. The weather was perfect - 13C (55F) and very humid, which was no biggie since it wasn't hot that early. It was warmer for the men's race.

Garmin data here.

I'm frustrated but I'm doing OK. Mostly.

I'm going to take a break from racewalking, and therefore probably from my blog as well, for a little while. I will walk some for exercise, as I'm able, but will not train. I'll try to update if there is any good news or even bad news or something about my condition changes. I know I could blog about trying to lose the weight I've gained or something potentially useful, but honestly, I'm too tired and too afraid I'd be too negative. It takes a lot of energy right now to just try and stay positive in real life, and adding in the blog makes it harder.

Hopefully I'll be back soon.

Thursday, October 03, 2013

mixed feelings

I head to Tennessee this weekend with mixed feelings. On one hand, I love racewalking and love my racewalking friends, and I look forward to being part of all things racewalking at the National Masters 5K. On the other hand, I know I won't race as well as I'd like to. Of course, I also feel lucky that I get to race. It's confusing and perplexing, this mess of feelings.


This week in review...

Monday - 3K fartlek in 17:13, and my legs felt stronger than they have in a while, probably because last Thursday & Friday I only did 30 min elliptical each day, and I rested Saturday & Sunday. Way to taper! Hahaha...

Tuesday - rest day.

Wednesday - elliptical plus biking to work = 45 min cardio.

Today - 20 min racewalking. 3.2 km in 19:35 for 6:07/km w/ave HR 139. I felt pretty good while I was out walking, and felt smooth and in control. My muscles felt stronger than they have overall. I'm a bit sore now, but not too bad. 20 min shouldn't make me sore, though...sigh. At least I feel optimistic that I can do 5K and finish at the race on Saturday. Goals? To race as well as I can and be happy with that, whatever it is.


New thoughts on what might be wrong with me.

1) Protein deficiency. I eat a fairly carb-heavy diet, when I've tracked it in the past. I read that for a sedentary woman my size, 46g/day is the minimum. Some recommend as much as 125g/day for an active female athlete my size! I would guess I've been eating around 40g normally...that's not much. A small deficiency like that over time could lead to fatigue and muscle soreness and poor recovery. This seems likely, and hey, it won't hurt to eat a bit more protein and fewer carbs. It's something I know hasn't been quite right about my diet anyhow.

2) My friend Sarah (an M.D.) suggested possibly a food allergy/sensitivity causing inflammation. She suggested dairy and gluten as two possibilities, but didn't limit it to that. I think this is definitely possible, though I'd expect I would have more GI symptoms if this were the case. Still, it's not hard to try dairy free or gluten free for a few weeks to see if it helps.

I'm going to try 1) first and eat more protein for a few weeks and see if I feel better. I started on Tuesday and this week has been better than last for sure; however, I've done less exercise and also have ditched the cold that was dogging me, so it's not a perfect comparison. I have to give it a good try - several weeks - and then evaluate again.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Since last Monday

Wow it's been a week since I've blogged. Easy to let time pass when there's not so much to report.

I cross-trained a good bit last week, except for Thursday when I warmed up with Adriana on the track for 1600m before deciding a 3km fartlek was not happening for me. Adriana did a very nice fast one, though - she did 16:47!!! She is improving a lot, and would improve more if she had time to work out more frequently.

Saturday I intended to do some racewalking, while we were camping at Yellowstone National Park (we were there Friday-Sunday). However, when I woke I felt awful and knew it would be a waste of time. I contented myself with a bit of light hiking around the geyser basins.

Sunday I woke feeling a bit better and decided to do an easy 5K. Yellowstone is at altitude (7700ft, about 2360-2408m on my walk, according to my Garmin). The campground had gently rolling hills - enough to notice and affect my walk, for sure. I still managed 31:55 for 6:23/km with ave HR 148. Not great, but not awful. My legs hurt A LOT though. Seriously painful. Add in an 8-hr leisurely drive home through the Tetons, and it was not a pleasant leg experience. Garmin data here.

Yesterday I cross-trained on the elliptical and rode my bike to work. My legs felt a little better, but not great. I did an experiment though. I lifted some weights with my upper body only to see how my upper body muscles respond to training. Will they get as painful as my legs? It's mostly my glutes that hurt, so I wonder. It's just so odd. Anyway, I did dumbbell bench presses (only 25 lb each arm...weak!), rows on the machine (60 lb), upright rows (20 lb each arm), military press (17.5 lb each arm), bicep curls (15 lb each arm), and tricep extensions (12 lb each arm). 3 sets of 8-12 reps each exercise.

Today, not surprisingly, my arms are sore. Not ridiculously so, but definitely sore. We'll see how I recover. Normally I'm sore for up to 48-60 hrs post-workout for lifting, so we'll see.

My legs felt decent this morning - almost pain-free! - so I decided to go for a little walk. I did a nice 6K around Liberty Park, and the first 5K felt not-too-bad, and I got to 5K in 30:11. That was decent! But then my legs crapped out and the last km was a tough slog up the slight incline home. I finished in 36:52 for 6:09/km with ave HR 156 (yeah, I was pushing). Garmin data here. My legs feel OK right now - sore, but not too terrible. We'll see what tomorrow brings. I'd like to do a 3K fartlek Thursday if possible.

Oh, and I rode my bike to work today, after doing the 6K. That might not have been smart, but I had some GI distress after my walk and hung around the house too long trying to calm my insides, so I missed the bus and had to get to work somehow!

Monday, September 16, 2013


Yesterday was a rest day.

I'm getting very discouraged. It hurts so much to racewalk that I just don't want to do it any more. But I DO want to do it because I love it. I miss being able to walk without muscle pain. It's so frustrating...I know it's a first-world problem, but it's a real problem nonetheless, and it affects me in a lot of ways.

Today I planned to cross-train, but then Adriana texted me last night wanting to walk. I decided I would go with her, and we'd try to do 8K. I was so glad she was with me - it made the pain more bearable, having someone chatting about other things. It did still hurt just as much, especially from about 5.5km onward. My legs just burn in the glutes - it's hard to explain. They just hurt deeply, like I've walked about three times as far as I actually have. Just pain and aching. And then after I walk, for hours or even the rest of the day, it hurts when I sit, walk, go up stairs, whatever. It's like I'm being punished for exercising. Then there's the fatigue - that all-over tiredness/sleepiness/exhaustion that envelops me especially later in the afternoon. I'm writing this to remember how it feels and make notes of it, not to complain.

We were averaging about 6:15/km until 6K or so, when we slowed down because of me. It's embarrassing... but Adriana was OK with it since she's not in great shape right now either. I think she could have gone faster, though, and I felt bad. We finished in 51:03 for 6:23/km.

Garmin data here.

I should hear my test results in a day or two. Meanwhile...waiting...and trying not to give up.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

really tough week

Backing up a few days... got behind on my blog - too tired to maintain it well. To my few readers, sorry. Actually, I write this mostly for myself, so should I apologize to myself?

Wednesday: Was supposed to walk 5-6km but woke up really sore and figured it was better to do the elliptical. Still having cold/sinus symptoms. Did the elliptical, took Grace to school, took Calvin to get his cast off then back to school, then I took the bus to work. In the afternoon I took the kids to the state fair. They had been begging me to go...really begging, all week. I was so tired that I fell asleep on the bus on the way to their school, but I still took them to the fair. They absolutely loved it, which made it worth it to me even though it pretty much wiped me out.

Thursday: Too tired to move, and I felt sick. Took a rest day. Debated taking a sick day from work, but managed to drag myself in, and made it through the day.

Friday: Still very tired, but did 25 min elliptical and rode my bike to work. I was just sick of being sick, and figured if I rode my bike to work it might make me feel better mentally. It did, sort of. I thought I'd try and finish up my work a bit early and go home and get a nap before the symphony last night, but that didn't happen - work was busy as usual. Had a bit of trouble staying awake in the first half of the performance, but still really enjoyed it.

Saturday: Slept in until 8:30. Seriously, unheard of for me to sleep that late, ever. Felt rotten when I woke up and debated what to do. Decided that a nice racewalk might make me feel better, so I dressed and went out to do 6K or so, figuring that would be all right. My legs were a bit sore (they never recovered at all this week - just felt sore all the time at a basal level). The first 2K went OK, but after that my legs just HURT. Hamstrings and glutes were fatigued and dragging. I just felt awful. I love racewalking, but right not it's just not fun. At 5K I was in more pain, and stopped for a second to regroup. I actually stood there in tears for a minute, trying to muster up the strength to continue, and also just feeling sorry for myself and how lousy this all is. I really miss being able to do my sport pain-free.

Here's the Garmin data from today's walk. 38:17 for 6:23/km with ave HR 145.


Doctor update: the wheels of medicine turn slowly. On Friday, I finally got blood drawn for some additional labs my sports medicine doc wants (vitamin D, creatine kinase, and liver panel). Now I wait for the results and analysis before we decide what to do next.

I'm still not over my cold. I'm tired. I'm whining, so time to stop writing.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

rest day

I woke up with pretty sore legs and a cold. Last weekend in Idaho I had a bit of a sore throat and attributed it to dry air. Since I got back, I've noticed a runny nose, which has increased in intensity to become rather annoying. Normally I work out when I have a head cold, as long as it's not in my chest. But with how my legs are feeling, I decided to forego the workout and do some reading for work instead. I had a few papers to read to try and figure out some things related to some projects, and it seems there is never quite enough time at work. I'm 30 hr/wk, which means I have to cram a lot in to get everything done. But I digress...

Bottom line: rest day. Cold + sore legs + tired.

Monday, September 09, 2013

one foot in front of the other

Just keep going. Put one foot in front of the other.

Saturday: Was in Salmon, Idaho (photo from our hotel grounds, at left) for the weekend with my friend Sarah. She got up at 4:50 am and therefore, so did I. Not being one to waste an early morning. I put on my reflective vest and headlamp and went out for a walk. Just past the downtown area, I met a couple of elderly ladies out for a walk and chatted with them for a few minutes. Then I walked on, going up a small country road. It was pitch black outside and the stars were vividly bright; I even saw a meteor! I was sure glad I had my headlamp - couldn't see a thing except the occasional light from a farmhouse.

I walked up the road to the 6K mark, slightly uphill. My legs were tiring, but I figured I had another 6K in me. By 7.5 or 8K, my legs were really tired and I was worried my right hamstring/glutes were going to do what they did last week and give out. Fortunately, they didn't. I wasn't able to go any faster on the downhill and was about the same speed as last week: SLOW. 1:19:50 for 6:39/km with ave HR only 137. Yup, tired legs.

On the way back it was lighter out and I saw horses, cattle, and bucolic country scenery. Lovely! Oh, and the temperature was lovely too - so nice and cool at 50F (10C) and refreshing after a whole summer of 70F in the mornings in Salt Lake.

Garmin data here.

After that, I volunteered for the marathon, directing traffic at mile 25. That was actually pretty entertaining, and I cheered Sarah on to the finish when I saw her.


Sunday: rest day.


Monday: warm-up 1600m in 9:43 with strides. Then 3K fartlek in which my legs tired at 1.8km, but I still made it to the finish. It was a bit faster than last Thursday, probably because I went in with a day off instead of 6K on my legs. I did 17:21, with ave HR 161. Splits were better to start as I felt good, and it was nice and cool (60F). At 2km I fatigued and they were slower. Oh well.

2:44, 2:47, 3:01, 2:48, 3:06, 2:56. Ave HR on last split was 169, with max 171. Definitely working hard, for all the good it did me :(. 

Garmin data here.

I rode my bike to work after walking the kids to school. Legs are quite sore now, and will x-train tomorrow.

Thursday, September 05, 2013

3K fartlek; doctor visit

This morning I met Adriana at the track at the U for a 3K fartlek. She's a student there, and I work there, so it was perfect. I took the bus to campus, and after our workout I walked up to work, and she walked to her class. We'll probably do this again, because it was pretty convenient.

She'd never done a 3K fartlek before, so as we warmed up (1600m in 9:43, with strides), I explained the workout to her. 1K hard, 500m medium effort, 500m hard effort, 500m medium effort, 500m hard effort. She got it.

We got started - I let her have about a 5-10 second head start, figuring she'd probably be faster anyway, since my legs were still hurting from yesterday a bit. I took an Aleve last night which really helped, but they were still sore this morning and the warm-up didn't feel too good. At left, a self-portrait at the track after my warm-up.

She was fast for the first 500m - way too fast - at 2:34! After that the workout wasn't too nice to her - 2:49 (OK), but then 3:23 for recovery, 2:5x fast, 3:30 (!) recovery, 2:5x and her total was just over 18 min (18:0x) - not bad for her first 3K fartlek! I passed her during her last recovery...and finished about 25-30 sec in front of her at 17:36 for my own workout. Slow, for me :(. I did 2:47, 2:53, 3:05, 2:56, 3:04, 2:53. Something close to that, anyway. My average HR was 162 and max 174, with ave HR on the last interval 171. I was working very hard, but I guess yesterday's 6K was too much for my pathetic legs. Arrrrgh.


Doctor visit yesterday: I saw my sports medicine doc, and she had a resident working with her. He took a very thorough and good history, and did a brief exam, checking heart, lungs, and muscle strength. My doc then did an exam as well, noting only that my left hamstring was a bit weaker than my right (it was more sore from my workout) but that overall my muscle strength was very good. 

They are waiting now on my labs from my family doc - they need a copy of them in order to figure out what tests have been done (I told them, but they still need the labs) and what they want to do. They want to check liver and kidney function as well as creatine kinase (measure of muscle breakdown), and possibly a couple other things. If they can't turn up anything, they will refer me to a neurologist and/or rheumatologist to see what more can be done.

I'm relieved that they are taking my complaint seriously, and hoping that they can find something easily treatable. I'm ready to feel better any time now.

Wednesday, September 04, 2013


I met Adriana for 6K this morning. I wanted to do more, but my legs were not feeling great and I figured 6K would be enough. Besides, I have not gotten a new parking permit for campus (on purpose), and I either have to bike or take the bus to work. 6K plus biking to work is a good hour of cardio, which makes me happy these days.

Surprisingly, despite some residual soreness in my glutes, I did well this morning. I felt good and smooth and was able to go pretty fast. I pushed Adriana a bit, going 30:23 for 5K. She was working it VERY hard at the end, as that is just 1 min slower than her race pace that she did at the 5K on July 4 in Murray. Muahahaha! It was fun to push her, and I don't think she minded. I felt fine, with HR in the mid-upper 150s at the end, and averaging 144 for the whole 6K. We did the last km slowly to recover.

Total time: 37:08 for 6:11/km.

Garmin data here.

Legs definitely feeling it now, between the racewalking and then biking to work. Taking it easy the rest of the day and hoping (maybe against all hope?) that I'll be up for a 3K fartlek tomorrow. Maybe. Meeting Adriana at the track at the U at 8:30am, so I'll have to racewalk at least a little bit!

I had to bike to work today, though, as I have a doctor appt at 3:15pm and it's on campus, but far enough from my work that it makes sense to bike there. I could have taken the bus and walked but that would have been more of a nuisance. Hopefully the doctor will have some ideas that my family doc didn't think of. Hopefully.

Tuesday, September 03, 2013

this week so far

Sunday - rest day


Monday - intended to do 8K; ended up doing 5K and then a bit later 1.5K. I was going to do 3K and then 5K with Adriana, but when I started the 3K my legs just felt icky, and I knew it was going to be bad. I decided shorter was better and just quit and waited for Adriana to come, and we did 5K together, in 33:12 (she is just learning so that was plenty fast for her...and honestly, I liked going a bit slower and didn't have enough legs to go much faster anyway). At the start of the 5K my right hamstring (or whatever it was that bothered me on Saturday) felt pretty sensitive, and I was worried, but turns out it loosened up and felt fine. Whew. When we stopped I thought I could have gone farther as long as I went slowly.

After that, Julia, a new racewalker, met us at the park to learn. I taught her the basics and did some video technique work with her and with Adriana. We had a great time, and I walked 1.5km with Julia, bringing my total to 6.5km.


Tuesday - went to the track, planning on a 3K fartlek. I did 1km of warm-up in 6:36 and my legs were not feeling it at all. Just sore and tired, and I knew I'd be wasting my time to try the fartlek, so I gave up and went to the gym, where I did 34 min on the elliptical. Then I drove home and got ready for work, and rode my bike to work. Not sure the latter was smart, but I am feeling OK now. 


I called my sports medicine doctor and made an appointment this morning. The receptionist asked what I wanted to see the doctor for. I told her fatigue and muscle soreness/weakness from racewalking. She asked which body part, and I told her that I was generally tired and it involved all my muscles. She said I was not allowed to see the doctor for more than one body part at a time. I was floored and irritated. I said that I was a competitive racewalker and that it was the exertion from my sport that was giving me the problem, and that since the doctor is a sports medicine doctor, she should be willing to see me for this! Finally she put me on hold to ask someone about it. No one could tell her anything, so she made the appt for me anyway and told me she'd call back to cancel if it wasn't OK. It's 3:30 pm and I haven't heard anything so I figure it's OK. The good news, after all that aggravation, is that the doctor has a 3:15 pm appt tomorrow! I'm not sure that there will be anything she can do that my family doc has not, but a second opinion can't hurt.

Saturday, August 31, 2013


Most days now I'm not excited at all about racewalking. In fact, the opposite. I kind of dread it, because I know I will just feel sore and be slow. Today was no exception. Despite just light x-training yesterday (elliptical 45 min) and elliptical and biking to work the day before, my legs felt a bit tired and sore even before starting. Never a good sign. I did OK through about 7.5km, when my legs just got more and more tired. By 10K I was hurting more - my right hamstring at the top started to bother me a lot and I'm sure my gait was wonky as a result. Geez. I just can't catch a break.

I know, I can either live with it and have a good attitude or be a whiner. I can't change it, and I am trying oh so very hard to suck it up and have a positive outlook, with mixed results.

I kind of wish now that I wasn't signed up for the 5K in Tennessee on Oct 5th, except that maybe I can help Stevie to do better by encouraging him in his training and walking with him once a week. He beat me back to the finish line today by a minute or so, because I couldn't even manage 7 min/km the last couple km and I told him to go on ahead. I really thought I'd be feeling better by now.

Yes, I know...it could be something else. People keep telling me that. But in all likelihood, it is the low B12, which just takes time. Yes, there's a small possibility it's something else, but it's just not as likely. And yes, if I still feel lousy after the 5K in October, I'll go to the doc again to see what he can do if anything.

Total time: 6:38/km with ave HR 143, 1:19:38.

Garmin data here.

Oh, yeah - edited to add that it was extremely humid (for Utah). I was very hot, and dripping with sweat... I'd go more into detail but it's not pretty. It was 73F (23C) and 54% humidity when I started, and about 81 (27C) and 54% humidity at the finish. Ugh.

Friday, August 30, 2013

lots of cross-training

After Wednesday's not-so-great 5K, I decided to take it easier. I cross-trained yesterday, doing 35 min elliptical plus riding my bike to work. Today I just did 45 min elliptical and then took the bus to work. I want my legs well-rested for tomorrow's planned 12K. I hope I can still complete it, despite hardly walking at all this week.

I'm sick of this.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

rough week so far

Sunday I took a rest day. My legs were very tired from just the 12K on Saturday. I was pretty busy with family stuff on Sunday, and didn't get much physical rest. I'm sure that contributed to what was to come.

Monday I was exhausted when I woke up. I decided I'd ride my bike to work and skip racewalking, since I felt so lousy. I figured I could get a bit of extra cross-training in later. I worked, herded the kids home from school, and prepared dinner and set it to warm in the oven while attending Calvin's soccer game from 6-7 pm. After we ate dinner, Calvin begged me to go play soccer with him for half an hour before he had to go to bed. I didn't think twice about it, because it sounded fun. And it was! However, the consequence of doing an unfamiliar sport aggressively for 30 min were pretty severe.

Tuesday morning my legs were completely trashed. I intended to do a 3K fartlek, and knew it would be tough, but went to the track anyway. I tried to warm up, but my legs wouldn't respond. I did one lap in just under 3 min (normally this is 2:30 for warm-up!) and knew I couldn't racewalk. So I drove to the gym and rode the stationary bike for 20 min and did the elliptical for 20 min. Somehow I still found it in my legs to ride my bike to work. But again, I paid for all that activity. After work I was terribly exhausted, and went to bed at 9 pm.

I thought maybe after 9 1/2 hours of sleep last night that I'd be better today, and I am somewhat better. I went for a walk, planning 5 or 6km. After 1km I knew it would be just 5km today. I really didn't feel good. I still managed to do the 5km in 31:11 for 6:14/km with ave HR 140. My legs were very tired when I finished, but after a bit of rest I managed to bike to work.

Garmin data here.

I'm feeling OK now. Definitely not as exhausted as yesterday. I wonder if I'll feel better yet tomorrow if I get a lot of sleep again tonight? This ailment has to be one of the most frustrating I've dealt with yet. It's lasted a long time and impacts every area of my life - home (tired, hard to keep house clean, keep up w/kids, prepare good meals, etc.), work (forgotten items, lack of energy), racewalking (for obvious reasons), weight maintenance (tired all the time - leads to lowered willpower and increased eating, in addition to less ability to exercise). But at this time, I have two choices. I can whine and feel sorry for myself and give up, or I can persevere and be patient. Each day I must choose the latter; and yes, it's a first world problem, but difficult nonetheless.

Saturday, August 24, 2013


Yesterday: cross-training - 40 min elliptical plus ~23 min ride to work. The bike ride might have been a mistake. Haven't ridden my bike in a bit and I think it made my legs a bit tired? Felt OK at the time but my RW today suffered from something.


Today: 12K on Jordan River Trail with Stevie and Kathy from Wasatch Walkers. It was rough - I won't lie. By 3K I was wondering if I'd finish because my right shin and right glutes were bothering me. Oddly, they never got worse and if anything they improved as I went. I did focus a lot on technique so maybe that was it? Or maybe I just needed to relax and settle in a bit? Still, I felt tired, though it never got really horrible. It was never a death march, but I was definitely slow. Slow or not, I finished. Interestingly, it was faster than last Saturday, but that was only because I walked slower for Stevie last Saturday. Today if anything he walked slower for me. Hopefully we will both be faster next week.

I'm not a patient person. This is getting old. My glutes are quite sore now, about 12 hrs later. Ridiculous! 12K is a nothing, a short walk, a lark...normally. But not now. At least I have hope that eventually this will get better.

Only 6 weeks until 5K national masters race in Tennessee. I am still hoping to feel better before then. Maybe I'm delusional?

Garmin data here. 1:18:46 for 12km for 6:34/km with ave HR 144.

Got some video too on my iPhone, of both me and Stevie, but have to figure out how to get it from phone to my computer 1st. It's a new phone so I haven't taken the time to figure stuff like that out just yet. Can't be too hard. Anyway, the video looks pretty decent. I'm slow but form seems all right.

Thursday, August 22, 2013


How can I convey in words my impatience and frustration? At least I know I will start feeling better eventually, and that's a comfort. A huge comfort. And I know this is a first-world problem and that I should feel more grateful for everything I have (and I am grateful!). But it's still frustrating, and you know what? It's OK to feel frustrated because it's not an easy situation all the same. Yesterday I was SO very tired, and since it was the first day of school I decided to skip cross-training and help the kids get ready. I think it was a good decision.

I started off well this morning for the first 5K, and then Adriana met me for the second 5K. I slowed down to match her speed, but honestly, I didn't have the oomph to go much faster anyway.

It was dark this morning when I started. I had to start early because I drove 20 min to get to the meeting place w/Adriana, and then I had to drive 20 min back home and get home in time to make my kids' lunch and take them to school by 8. Whew. So I got up at 5:25 and started my workout at 6:00 sharp. It's sad to have to start walking in the dark again...I'm going to miss summer. I won't miss the heat though. It was 75F (24C) and 40% humidity this morning and felt sticky to me (yeah, you midwestern types will laugh at that, but for here that is humid).

Total time 1:04:08 for 6:25/km with ave HR 143. 30:38 for the first 5K and then 33:30 for the second 5K.

My piriformis only twinged a little today, which is good. My legs are definitely a bit sore and heavy now, but I think tomorrow I'll feel OK. I'm going to cross-train tomorrow anyway, so no matter.

Garmin data here.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

3K fartlek

I felt fairly well-recovered from my 10K yesterday. My legs were a little sore, but not bad, and I didn't feel horribly tired. So I decided to try the 3K fartlek. I did struggle, and though subjectively it didn't feel as bad as last week, I was actually slower. I'm not too troubled by that, as I just did 10K yesterday, and last week I was coming off of a rest day instead.

What does bother me a bit is my right glutes/piriformis. They started to bug me a little on yesterday's 10K and it continued to be irritated a bit today. It's not painful outright, just perhaps somewhat inflamed. I have to watch my technique more closely (drat...thought I had been!). This sport is challenging, but that is part of why I like it.

The weather was warm, as it has been all week - mid 70s. There was a slight cooling breeze, which helped.

Splits: 2:45.4, 2:45.1, 3:01.2 (med), 2:48.0, 3:09.1 (med), 2:55.3.

Total: 17:24 for the 3K fartlek with average HR 161 and max 170 at the very end (shameful that a 170 HR only netted me a 2:55 - oh well...it's just data...I'm going to get better).

Garmin data here.

State of mind: encouraged that I am feeling a little better, but this is still very difficult. It's hard to come back. It's hard to eat right. My weight is up, still - can't quite exercise enough, and when you add in eating due to tiredness (no excuse, just explaining what is happening) it's not good. I am struggling to make this all work somehow.

Monday, August 19, 2013


I took a rest day yesterday, and felt pretty good when I started off today. I'm definitely feeling better overall, even though I'm not back to normal. 10K doesn't completely wipe me out any more, which is good. I do get tired doing 10K, which isn't at all normal, but it's still an improvement on how I felt in June.

I forgot to bring my watch cable to work with me, so couldn't upload to the Garmin website. But here's how I did: 1:02:36 for 6:15/km with ave HR 151. I started nice and fast, doing 5K in about 30 min on a slight downhill, then did about 32:30 for the second 5K on a slight uphill. My legs got tired at about 7km and I did have some slow 500s, though only 3 of them were more than 3:15, so that wasn't too bad. Overall I felt OK today.

Tomorrow I will either cross-train or try a 3km fartlek, depending on how I recover. Thursday I'll do 10K, Friday cross-train, and Saturday 12K. That's the plan for now.

Saturday, August 17, 2013


I felt OK this morning. Not great, not awful, but OK.

I met Stevie at the Jordan River Trail for 12K. We kept the pace nice & slow on purpose, and also because Stevie isn't quite as fast as I am (yet). I figured that a slower 12K was better than no 12K, and besides, if I started out fast I was pretty sure I wouldn't finish. My legs are definitely not 100% yet. Though I have improved since June when 5K almost killed me a couple times, I'm not ready for a hard 12K for sure. I noticed my legs tiring by about 4K, and by 10K they were definitely more tired. But the nice slow pace helped, and I didn't feel dead when I finished.

In fact, after getting home, I made French toast for the kids, ate a little breakfast (oatmeal), and then went briefly to work with Calvin in tow. I had enough energy left to take him to the free wellness fair at the U, walking around for a couple hours. We had a great time, and he particularly enjoyed the magic show, the balloon animals, the giant inflatable colon (really! complete with cancers & polyps!), and the free hot dogs, fruit, and creamies. I think I might take a nap, though, now that I'm home.

Anyway, I am sure I could have gone faster today if I'd been alone - Stevie struggled to keep up, and I slowed my pace a little for him. I think I might have done 6:20/km alone (guess), but together we did 6:36/km on average for 1:19:08 total and my ave HR was just 141. Stevie was doing better early, but got leg cramps and it was rough going the last 5km for him.

I'm pleased because I haven't gone 12K in a while and I'm feeling all right. Stevie was thrilled because he'd never gone farther than 10K before. We are planning to do it again next Saturday.

Garmin data here.

Friday, August 16, 2013

getting better?

I cross-trained today, taking it a bit easy with 30 min on the elliptical because I plan to try 12K tomorrow, which is the longest I've gone in quite a while. I wanted to be cautious.


I got my B12 results back. 1964! That combined with my substantial improvement on the neuropathy has my doctor feeling like 1) it really was B12 causing the problems, and 2) I am on the path to being 100% again. I definitely do not need a B12 shot, with levels that high. That's the good news - I am improving, and B12 was the problem. The bad news is that it still might take a while for me to feel like my old self. No one really knows how long it will be, but as long as there is improvement and signs that the improvement will continue, I guess I am OK with that. It will be a bit easier being patient if I know that things are on the right track. I'm to continue taking oral B12 at 1000 mcg/day.

In other health news, racewalking and eating well (most of the time!) has its rewards. My cholesterol is "very, very good" according to my doctor, with HDL 62 (that's nice and high - high enough to be a negative risk factor for heart disease) and LDL 83 (less than 100 is desirable). My triglycerides are also very good at 85.


So, projecting ahead 6 weeks, it looks like I should be feeling a lot better. I decided to take a bit of a gamble and buy plane tickets for the national 5K in Kingsport, TN on October 5th. Steve, the 14-year-old racewalker who joined me for my workout last Saturday, is going to come with me. That saves his dad having to come along and pay for yet another plane ticket. It's not cheap to fly into Kingsport, as it's a little bitty airport, so that is significant savings for them. Another good reason for me to do the race!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

10K; doctor visit

My 10K this morning was actually better than I expected. I was tired and sore this morning so I figured it'd be a lost cause, but you never know, so out I went. My legs did get tired at 7K, and yes, the last 1K wasn't so hot (though it's a good uphill...), but otherwise it wasn't so bad.

Total time: 1:02:14 for 6:13/km with ave HR 146.

Garmin data here.


Doctor visit today was encouraging. I have regained some sensation in my feet, and the doctor thought that was a great sign. He ordered a re-check of my B12 levels, because I told him I still feel really lousy. I asked him for a B12 shot and he was going to give me one, but they had run out in the clinic. We will get the results tomorrow pm, so he said if I was still low he'd just write me a prescription and I can pick some up at the pharmacy and they can give me the shot in the clinic. But if my levels have come up, then there is really no point in a shot, and it will just take some more time for me to feel better. I am not feeling very patient right now...

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

cross-training, 3K fartlek

I stayed up too late on Monday night because I thoroughly enjoyed coffee with Sarah and chatted with her until almost 9:30. Oops. I'm glad I did, but I did pay for it a bit. Tuesday I intended to do my 3K fartlek, but I was simply too tired. I did manage to drag my sorry self to the gym for 30 min of elliptical before work, so at least I did something.

Today I knew I had to do the fartlek. On the 1600m warm-up with strides I noticed that my legs were definitely not 100%. They felt maybe like 80% recovered. Sigh. So frustrating. I did the fartlek anyway, but my legs died around 2km and despite working very hard, breathing very hard, and having my HR nice and high (upper 160s), I was slow on the last km. I felt pretty terrible.

Total time: an embarrassing 17:20 with ave HR 163. Garmin data here.

I had to sit a bunch at work this morning (at the computer designing subcloning strategies all morning) and that definitely did NOT help. My legs are sore and unhappy. Pathetic. I'm very glad I'm going to the doctor tomorrow.

Monday, August 12, 2013

8K; tired of being tired!

Today I did 8K. I figured I'd do a bit more than last week, so my plan is 8K, 3K fartlek, 10K w/3x3' bursts, and 12K on Saturday if I can manage it.

I had pretty fresh legs today and started off fast. Too fast...I chased some runners in Liberty Park and went a bit faster than I should have, and I guess that wore me out a bit so that I was slower at the end. Sigh...I'm SO tired of being tired. I have a doctor appt for Thursday to try and sort that out a bit. We'll see.

Total time: 48:51 for 6:06/km with average HR 149.

Garmin data here.

Saturday, August 10, 2013


This morning I had a treat - more company for my 10K! Steve, age 14 but already an accomplished racewalker (has won his age group at Junior Olympics several times), joined me. He and his family recently moved to Utah from Texas. His PRs are quite similar to mine, so I figured he'd be a good workout partner. His dad drove him to meet me for a walk on the Jordan River Parkway followed by breakfast.

My legs were a little tired today, but not too bad considering I did a short track workout yesterday. They felt much better than during my workout on Wednesday, which was a relief. I started off pretty easy, not wanting to push it at all. Steve started to get a bit tired around 4km, so at 4.5km I left him for 6 minutes, doing the last 0.5km out and back by myself and picking him up for the 4.5km back to where we started. I promised him I wouldn't tell his dad that the "old lady" beat him, and I didn't (I'm assuming his dad does not yet read my blog!). I did go a little bit slower because he was with me; I figure my total time would have been about a minute faster if I'd been walking alone, though that's hard to guess accurately. I do know I could have gone faster without pushing too much.

Total time: 1:03:52 for 6:23/km with ave HR 137. The two 500s I did alone were 2:56 and 2:57, so like I said, I'm sure I could have gone faster. But this was fast enough to accomplish its purpose.

Garmin data here.

Friday, August 09, 2013

cross-training, 3K fartlek

Yesterday: Too tired to think about racewalking. My legs were just not going to go there. So I did an hour on the elliptical instead. Why that is easier than RW is beyond me, but it is. I enjoyed reading and catching up on Runner's World magazine.


Today: 3K fartlek. My legs felt a lot better today. I warmed up in 9:38 for 1600m with strides, did my dynamic flexibility drills, and got started. The weather was lovely - felt nice and cool - about 67F (19C) and clear and dry. The fartlek went about like last week; I didn't feel as strong as I did last week, but my legs carried me through pretty well and they've felt reasonable the rest of the day so far. I did 2:46.0, 2:49.4 (fast 1km - 500m splits), 2:58.1 (medium), 2:43.5 (fast), 2:59.0 (medium), and 2:43.5 (fast) for a total of 16:59.4. Average HR was 157 and max 169.

Garmin data here.


Afterwards I cooled down at the gym with 15 min elliptical, and I also rode my bike to work for a little extra cardio (22 min, all uphill).

Wednesday, August 07, 2013

cross-training; 10K

Yesterday I cross-trained, doing 45 min elliptical and 15 min on the stationary bike. I enjoyed the 1 hr to myself to read (Harry Potter #5, newspaper) and think.


Today I tackled 10K and was pretty much beaten up. I started off feeling great for 3km or so, but then my legs just had nothing. My HR was low but legs wouldn't move. At one point, I almost started to cry out of sheer frustration. I want to do more, but just can't.

At least the weather was lovely. It was about 70F (21C) and clear with a slight and very pleasant breeze.

Total: 9.8km on the watch (missed 0.2km that I actually RW - turned off watch and forgot to turn back on) in 1:03:31 for 6:29/km with ave HR only 138. Grrrr :(. Well, on the positive side, I can still racewalk even if it's not as fast or far as I want to go.

Garmin data here.

Monday, August 05, 2013


My legs were still a bit sore this morning from the hike on Friday, but I know I need to get back to RW and try to start training again. I'm strongly considering doing the national 5K in Kingsport TN on Oct 5th. I know I'm not 100%, but I really want to do another national race this year. It keeps me motivated, and right now, my motivation is a bit low. It's tough to keep strong mentally when you feel tired all the time and want to sleep in rather than train. Maybe I NEED to sleep rather than train, but I don't WANT to. Frustrating.

Anyway, I slept a bit later today because I took a sick day from work to care for the kids, who couldn't go to camp today (swimming for most of camp, and they can't do that in their current state). So I started walking at 8 am and it was already 26C (79F). I did OK, but my legs were definitely heavy and tired, and by 3km I knew 6km total would be enough for today.

Total 39:23 for the 6.26km (6:17/km) with ave HR 141.

Garmin data here.

Sunday, August 04, 2013

Hiking, rest day, and cross-training

Friday: My brother, an avid mountaineer, was in town. So I took the day off and we went hiking, of course! He originally had planned for us to do Lone Peak or Twin Peaks, but decided those were too hard for Erica (his wife) and I to do, so he switched our hike to Pfiefferhorn. It was still very difficult! If I'd been in better shape to start with it wouldn't have been as hard as it was, but even so, the class 3 scrambling with exposure was pretty scary for me and I doubt I'd do it again. I'm glad I did it, but...yeah...scary.

It was about 15K total (actually a bit more, at 9.5 miles or so), with 3800 feet (1100m) of elevation gain and then loss on the way back. Wow. But it was very beautiful hiking through forests, past alpine lakes, through meadows of profuse wildflowers, and then over boulders on a knife-edge ridge. The summit views were spectacular, showing us the Salt Lake and Utah valleys, Little Cottonwood Canyon, Mt. Timpanogos, and more.

On the way down, all was well until about 12k, when my right IT band pulled its usual hiking stunt and started to hurt. The last 3k was a slow slog for me, but I made it. My quads are seriously paying for the adventure now, but oh well. It was worth it.

Here are all of the photos. Here's my Garmin data.


When I got back into cell phone range, I was stunned to have a message from the camp director of the summer camp my kids are in. I discovered that they were BOTH at the hospital (thankfully with my husband Loren) from separate accidents at the roller skating rink. Calvin fell first, bracing his fall with his arms and fracturing his radius and ulna. They set the fracture with him sedated, and he is doing fine now, though in some discomfort. Just after the camp director got back to the skating rink, Grace fell and split her chin open, requiring 5 stitches. They took her over to be with Calvin and Loren at the hospital. By the time I got back from hiking, they were almost ready to leave the hospital, so I didn't go. I was quite relieved to be reunited with them and they are going to be fine.


Saturday: rest day. I needed it, after all that excitement!


Sunday: quads still hurting a lot, and calves too. However, I need exercise! So I decided to try the elliptical, and it was fine. I did 40 min elliptical in my swimsuit and shorts, and then peeled off the shorts and jumped into the pool for 20 min of laps. That felt quite nice after the elliptical, and gave my legs a rest.