Monday, December 31, 2012

Grumpy new year's eve update

Well, insomnia kept me up till 4 - I was so tired I really couldn't go to sleep - and it also gradually dawned on me that stuffed-up nose was really another respiratory infection! It seems very minor, and I am hopeful that if I take the day off from exercise it will recede, but it is making me very grumpy that I know I shouldn't go to the midday spin class at Chelsea Piers. On the other hand, my energy levels seem irritably high and I have a lot of errands I need to get done today, so I guess I have my work cut out for me...

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Long run!

It was very good to see Liz and also just to get out there and get it done, but it must be said that it felt arduous from start to finish. And wintry! I remember at the 6-mile mark looking at my watch and thinking, Gosh, it is a good thing we are only doing 11 miles rather than 12, that means we are more than halfway done.... We walked most of the uphills on the second loop and it still felt epic when we were finished.

The good thing about the human brain is that forty minutes later, having devoured omelets and fresh OJ and coffee in a warm restaurant, it was impossible to remember how arduous it felt!

(My legs are tired from spinning, I think. Total training hours for the week: 7:33, all spinning and running. That's pretty solid.)

1:59, 11.12mi (10:45/mi.)

Saturday, December 29, 2012


It was hard getting out of bed and out of the house, but spin class was well worth it. It is good, I was panicking mid-December at the feeling of not having had at all sufficient time to enjoy Chelsea Piers and winter running before leaving for warmer climes in early January, but now I feel properly topped up on Joanna's spin class and nice outdoor running. Will run long with Liz tomorrow in Central Park.

1hr spin
1hr restorative yoga

Friday, December 28, 2012


Yesterday I was so tired that it was subjectively indistinguishable from depression, and decided I had better take the day off (exercise can contribute temporary mood lift but will just dig me deeper into the fatigue hole if I am not careful). Today I felt much more myself. Ran down to Chelsea Piers - beautiful day, low 30s but very little wind and gorgeously sunny - and then went to spin class. It is good!

51:00 run (c. 5 miles)
:45 spin (2 x 11min climb)

Wednesday, December 26, 2012


Very nice run on Xmas day at my mom's house - down to the Schuylkill and along the path that runs along the river. Only problem it is then a very steep uphill coming up Midvale Ave. home!

Conveniently today I got a ride back not just to NY but directly to Chelsea Piers. Did the midday spin class. Now ensconced at home (a nap may be in order) in a thick snowstorm...

6.13mi, 1:02:52 (10:15/mi)
:55 spin

Monday, December 24, 2012


Used up all remaining willpower on end of semester work. Submitted last grades this morning.  Very glad I had time to hit spin class at Chelsea Piers before heading to Penn Station.  Train has just started moving in direction of Philadelphia, where I will hope to have a nice run tomorrow morning.  Happy holidays!

1hr spin

Sunday, December 23, 2012


Beautiful run down to Chelsea Piers, then did Delores's spin class with Lauren, who is in town for some days. Lovely. Three days in a row of good exercise plus quiet time at home has me feeling much less unsettled than I was earlier in the week. Done with one set of grades, still need to read the other set of student work (but no comments needed for those ones, so it's less strenuous). Good chance I can finish it all before I need to leave tomorrow morning.

5.07mi., 51:38 (10:11/mi.), avg HR 146
1hr spin

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Long run!

Wonderfully wintry blustery arduous long run through Liz, with interesting urban landscapes - we ran around the outside of Prospect Park, then over to and around Greenwood Cemetery, going through neighborhoods in Brooklyn I don't usually see (Kensington, Sunset Park), and then back into Prospect Park for the final bit. Brutal winds slowed us down (I forgot my Garmin at home, but Liz measures distance at 10.07mi), and there were even flurries of snow at a few points. I love winter running! And now for a hot shower - long ride home on subway in sweaty clothes is chilliness-inducing, even with extra layers (left coat and bag at Liz's apt. for the duration of the run).

1:50, 10.07mi (10:55/mi.), felt like comfortable zone 2

Friday, December 21, 2012


I was finally released from jury duty late yesterday afternoon, which was a relief, but am feeling rather flattened at this point. Went to Chelsea Piers for Joan's gentle yoga class and Joanna's spin - both very worthwhile. Need to regroup now to try and get through the necessary grading...

1hr gentle yoga
1hr spin

Wednesday, December 19, 2012


I was determined to run today if humanly possible, and I thought my best bet would be to wear running clothes to court and tuck everything extraneous into the invaluable GoLite, then run home: I have work stuff 5:30-8:30, and I figured as long as the judge let us go by 3:30, I'd have plenty of time. (It takes an hour on the subway anyway, so it's really a good use of the time - only about 20 minutes slower to run than to take transit.)

In a very happy development, we instead were released not long after twelve, so I am delighted to have gotten a really nice run in and still saved some afternoon hours for essential errands. Serious headwind the whole way, which meant it was a bit slow and arduous, but beautiful running weather otherwise - 45, sunny and very clear.

1:18:59, 7:44mi (10:38 pace), zone 2

Monday, December 17, 2012

Short spin/swim

They let us off jury duty at 1:15 as the judge had another afternoon commitment in Brooklyn - I was hugely relieved to get my afternoon back. Went to the cafe at Chelsea Piers, had excellent couple hours of work (aside from it being a beautiful light-filled Temple of Fitness, it's also one of my best places for non-distracted high-quality work time), then did a short spin and swim. Haven't been in the pool for way too long, need to start swimming regularly again. As I was leaving, caught sight of Lauren in the cafe - schedules didn't permit working out together, but we at least got fifteen minutes to catch up. Back out to the office now in a few minutes - the trouble with jury duty is that all the daytime meetings I should have been doing have to happen in the evening!

:40 spin (2 x 12min z3/4, first alternating 2min seated, 2min standing, second alternating 3min standing, 3min seated)

c. 500 yards swim (100 free, 4 x 50 drill-swim IM order, 100 IM, 100 drill-swim by 25)

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Long run!

A very good one with Liz. In a way it's beautiful running weather (well, anything between 30 and 70F counts as beautiful running weather with me!), though I must confess that by the end I was freezing and soaked! It's rainy, mid-40s. Anyway, that gives me a 23-mile week: not extraordinary by any manner of speaking, but finally back where I think it should remain! Shooting for a steady 25- to 30-mile week, depending on pace (I am slower in Cayman due to heat and humidity, so perhaps a bit lower there).

9.6mi., 1:40:48 (10:30 pace), avg HR 147 (mid-zone 2)

Saturday, December 15, 2012


I didn't get home till shortly before 1am, and it was 2 before I could really go to sleep, so it was definitely the right call not to race this morning. I got six hours of fairly decent sleep (certainly better than I've had all this week), felt OK when I got up and had a LOVELY run down to Chelsea Piers and a LOVELY spin with Joanna. She is not teaching next Saturday, so it really was just as well I went today. And restorative yoga is addictively enjoyable (really it is a form of meditation rather than exercise). Then headed to Brooklyn to see a play with a friend who's had a complicated year, only got home about half an hour ago and am hoping to sleep long and hard tonight. Tomorrow I may run with Liz and will definitely go to an evening meditation class I registered for a long time ago, but I need to get up early and motor through some of this end-of-semester work that has been displaced by jury duty...

:50 run
:50 spin
1:00 restorative yoga

Thursday, December 13, 2012


I had opera tickets for this evening, but really it was not to my taste and we left at the first intermission. Spent the first act pondering and shuffling around options for next couple days. Regretfully conclude that I will not do the 10-mile race Saturday after all. Jury duty means I am thwarted of tomorrow's spin class, and due to a minor schedule mix-up, I am committed to theater and late dinner tomorrow night (it was originally going to be Saturday) - won't be home till after midnight. Instead of racing (which would mean getting up at 6:30), I will instead get up at 8:15 or 8:30, run down to Chelsea Piers and go to 10am spin and 11am restorative yoga. This was a very soothing morning schedule for me last weekend and it will be better for the morale than going and trying to run in a huge horrible crowd of people (the friend who was also registered for the race isn't going to be able to run after all either) - I can run longish sometime over the following couple days, and it will be more relaxing and enjoyable that way.

Short run

Gotta rush now or I will be late - did not get out the door quickly enough to have a full hour, but four miles much better than nothing. Beautiful morning out there, once you get over the shock of it being wintry...

4.06mi, 41:18, 10:06 pace (high z1, couldn't motivate to get into z2)

Wednesday, December 12, 2012


with fatigue and jury duty. Hoping to run tomorrow morning as I don't have to be downtown at the courthouse till 10am. Ready for this week to be over! Got a 15K race Saturday morning, but will dial the pace back to "low zone 2/long run" if I feel ridiculously tired that morning - I think that's a little too long for me to hold sub-9:00 miles at current paces, so really I'll just set a couple different heartrate caps and move from the more to the less ambitious if I'm not feeling great.

Monday, December 10, 2012


Yesterday was hopeless, I was so fatigued that it was clear I should skip exercise altogether, but I did manage to get out just now for a very nice little 4-mile run. It is extremely damp outside - 100% humidity, a light drizzle that left me with a werewolf-like coating of moisture on the fine hairs of the face. Running with my new Garmin - exciting!

4.04mi, 39:37, avg HR 145

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Blissful Saturday exercise!

It is absurd how happy it makes me that I was able to have a blissful Saturday morning of exercise at Chelsea Piers. First time since Sandy! November was a strange month, and being sick is no fun, so I am particularly grateful to be back in (as it were) the saddle. Also very excited about the logistics of locker possession. Locker plus amazing trail-running backpack opens up all sorts of excellent possibilities.

It was hard to get out of bed, as I was fairly late getting home last night after theater and dinner and the whole week has been rather too much along those lines, but I ran down to the gym (c. 5.5 miles?), did Joanna's 10am spin class, took a hasty shower and indulged in 11am restorative yoga. I'm not logging that class as exercise, it's more like meditation, but/and it is very lovely.

:52 run (c. 5.5mi.)
:55 spin (2 x 12min climb)
1hr restorative yoga

Friday, December 7, 2012

Spin of bliss!

I cannot describe how happy I am that Chelsea Piers has reopened post-hurricane and that I was able to go to Joanna's spin class today! I really love that class, it's an ideal workout. I had a smile plastered on my face afterwards; also, I have taken the plunge and rented a small locker there. I think it will be very useful for Ironman training - I don't really like riding my bike down in winter months or after dark, and this means I can leave a set of spin shoes there (I have a pair of proper road bike shoes that I got when I first got my bike but ultimately rejected after failing to adjust to Look pedals; now I have SPD, which I much prefer), plus swimsuit and goggles, and run down there without worrying about carrying anything more than essentials re: change of clothes. It is going to be good!

:55 spin (2 x 12min climb)

Thursday, December 6, 2012


I have sensibly abandoned notion of 21/21 cycling challenge! I need to shed the last of this illness and acquit myself of responsibilities pertaining to final week of the semester. Will do some decent spin workouts as I can, but don't think it seems productive to add it so gratuitously and purposelessly - decided this when I got home yesterday around 5:30 just absolutely flattened with fatigue....


My last one at Columbia for the semester, as I can't make either of next week's. I'm still somewhat affected by residual virus - both yesterday and today I could tell that where I usually have a strong reserve of stamina available for working out just a hair below lactate threshold, I didn't feel good there - I don't think it's lost fitness, just still not being quite 100%. My usual partner was also absent today, and I hugely missed her - I realize I learned a good deal from her, and that it is very much harder to get the same workout with a partner less knowledgeable than oneself! I'm definitely going to keep on doing boxing as my cross-training - I have always thought it approached the ideal in terms of different components of conditioning, and now I have tried it, I do really enjoy it...

1hr boxing conditioning

Wednesday, December 5, 2012


Feeling huge gratitude that I am no longer sick! This run flattened me, but it wasn't so much because of lingering illness as because it was a HARD WORKOUT. Ran over and met Mark at Bodystrength Fitness, then ran over to the north end of the park and did two loops of Harlem Hill together.

about 57 mins. (forgot to start watch after pause at bottom of second hill), about 6 miles

loop 1: 12:24 (8:47 pace - too hard, it's hilly!)
loop 2: 13:03 (9:15 pace - this was better)

Tuesday, December 4, 2012


Well, I was sick for a whole week, which made me grumpy and despondent - on the bright side, not being able to exercise gave me plenty of time to do the vast amount of work that accrues at this time of year. Today's the first day when my energy levels seemed at all returned to normal (and I have also cleared a dissertation defense, some dissertation chapter conferences, huge piles of fellowship applications, etc. etc.), so though I am still dealing with residual phlegm and don't feel quite right, I had an excellent Skype session with Lauren in the late afternoon. A great relief to break a proper sweat rather than the sweat of teaching while feeling rather ill in a classroom with steam heat! Meeting Mark for a run tomorrow morning at 10:15 - it is going to be pure bliss to get back out there...

(Re: number in post title, I think I'm undertaking a "21 cycle workouts in 21 days" challenge from now to Xmas - it counts if I just do 30 minutes easy on the spin bike - I have been really neglecting spinning during the month-plus of Chelsea Piers being closed, and I am doing the swim and bike legs of a full half-ironman in the second half of January, so I need to get the bike time in.)

:55 (4 x 8min work, 2min rest, with work interval alternating 3min seated, 1min standing) (zone 3-4)

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Illness-induced glumness

Ugh, I really am still not feeling well at all - if anything, I felt worse this morning when I got up than I did last night, with sore raw throat and lungs as new symptom. I had been hugely looking forward to the official reopening of Chelsea Piers, and Joanna's spin class (which I have sorely missed), but it was clearly a better idea to go back to bed; indeed I felt a bit more tolerable after several additional hours of sleep, but I am guessing it will be at least a couple more days before I can exercise again. Most frustrating and demoralizing, though in the grand scheme of things of course trivial...