Saturday, May 31, 2014


The ride home was ridiculously arduous - I was riding into a c. 10mph headwind the entire way. Also, of course, I've just been pounding my legs this week with training. Did double spin at Chelsea Piers - first hour is fantastic, second hour is hard to stay focused for when you're tired as it is a much easier class, but I figure at this point it's still good just to do the long ride with the second hour mostly Friel zone 2. I am all tuckered out!

(Heading to Philadelphia in an hour, just for overnight - friends and family visiting - home tomorrow, but flying to Cayman Wednesday, so coming days need to serve more as recovery than anything super-crazy.)

2hr spin, :50 round-trip bike

Friday, May 30, 2014


Aside from all other good things about it, it was an authentic swim-bike-run day (well, the swim was more of a token, but that's OK). Only problem now is that I still have a full day's work to do - may have to take a nap first!

Went to Viveca's 10am class - it included some of the strength stuff I liked so much the other day, only unfortunately this was adulterated with evil trampolinage! It is possible that I will like it better when I get the hang of it, but really it doesn't make much sense to me - may have to find another class to substitute. Then I did a shortened version of my assigned run workout (I got a coach - I am very excited!) - I think I was OK nutritionally and energy-wise to have done more, but I slightly miscalculated the need for transition time, and I had to stop in time to eat something (2 hardboiled eggs and a powerade) before 12:30 spin class. Spin was great - I have taken the plunge and acquired one of the wretched Myzone belts the club has moved to (I liked my Suunto better!) - but good to have the HR data up on the screen in front of the class, it keeps you honest. Then I went to the pool and just had a very quick session of kick - one of the nice folks in spin class had a terrible bike accident last year and has just had shoulder surgery to repair the damage, he is looking at a 20-week rehab and is understandably feeling very low about missing the whole season of racing and having major training deprivation, so I thought that doing a mini-kick thing with some body position thinking would be good for morale. I am not a particularly good swimmer myself but I love swimming and am fascinated by it, so in lieu of better coaches I am always happy to provide advice and thoughts!....

1hr "Precision/Jumpsport"
:35 run/walk - 1mi warmup, then 6 x 100m @ 5K pace, 300m recovery
1hr spin
400 yards swim (150 free, 250 kick)

Thursday, May 29, 2014


Very good midday workout. I was going to go on to do my run workout (had eaten a Luna bar before spin to make sure I'd be sufficiently fueled), but realized that the strange feeling along my inner thigh was because my pants had split down that seam. Both decorum and FEAR OF CHAFING meant that further exercise was contraindicated!

:45 spin

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Rest day

OK, that was four good days in a row. My lunge muscles are amazingly and beautiful sore today, and I think it is time to take a rest day and get on top of a long list of work-related tasks instead! Back in full force tomorrow.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014


I've had my eye on this Tuesday morning class, but for some reason never got to it before. I thought it was very good - obviously really one should just be properly lifting in the gym, but that is something I am curiously unable to make myself do on my own! The instructor is very good - this is the class description (unforthcoming!).

1hr strength, :50 round-trip bike to Chelsea Piers

Monday, May 26, 2014


That made me very happy. There is something pleasantly sedative about doing large amounts of exercise - swimming especially has a very soothing effect on me. I am now entering the three months of my year that are effectively MY OWN - the crucial thing is to read and write, but I have a lot of time to exercise too, it is very good...

Rode bike down to Chelsea Piers (holidayers induce misanthropy on crowded bike path). Started early for Joanna's spin, rode 1:05, then had a short swim. Rode home.

:50 RT CP
1:05 spin
1000 yards swim (200 swim, 200 kick, 200 pull, 2 x 100 IM (1st drill, 2nd swim), 2 x 100 free (1st RaLaCuBa, 2nd swim)

Sunday, May 25, 2014


That was GLORIOUS! It was also incredibly slow, but I really don't care - just glad to be out there. This has been a very good year for me both personally and professionally, but fitness suffered from an almost comically copious series of setbacks (and of course there is a cascade effect in that the less you are running the more easily a subsequent setback prevents you from running at all!): 3 10-day bouts of bronchitis in December and January; a winter so cold that asthma prevented me from exercising outside (i.e. running, my most time-efficient form of exercise) and limited my ability to get to Chelsea Piers; an extremely demanding workload; a major parental health crisis; conference and other lecture travel; the death of B.'s father, necessitating another emergency extra trip; and, bathetically, a series of extremely painful foot blisters - TMI! - from the liquid nitrogen freezing the podiatrist used over half a dozen meetings to blast plantar warts....

1hr extremely easy (4:00 jog, 1:00 walk), c. 4.8mi

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Sublime double!

The respiratory infection lingered, and as really I know that going back to exercise too soon only triggers a relapse, I tried to refrain. Had a busy end of the week with work stuff so that was helpful. Cannot describe how happy I was to be back at double spin today - Joanna was teaching both classes, which is the best thing ever. Obviously I'm pretty much out of shape, but I suppose I've been doing endurance sport for long enough that I have a decent base: 2hr spin was enjoyably challenging rather than a slogfest.

Have various thoughts on exercise for coming weeks, but the immediate goal is just to get moving and do whatever!

2hr spin

Monday, May 19, 2014


I'm home, I'm jet-lagged and a minor respiratory infection is preventing me from doing proper exercise! Went for a walk as a gesture of good faith towards health and fitness. Hoping I will do better tomorrow, but there is no point digging myself further into the hole, I should be more patient!

2mi, :40

Friday, May 16, 2014

Unorthodox non-workouts

I am having an amazing week in Israel, only Tuesday was altogether consumed with an ambitious rota of sightseeing, and on Wednesday I was working hard to finish getting ready for my lectures at the university in the afternoon. Yesterday we went to Jerusalem, where I had what is perhaps the most extraordinary stair workout imaginable - the Ramparts Walk in Jerusalem! It must have been about two hours of really quite vigorous walking, with elevated HR and lots and lots of stairs (the downs are harder than the ups, as the steps are quite deep and you have to concentrate to keep your footing), and my quads are pleasantly sore today, so I think it's fair to log it as a workout....

I had hoped to run this morning, but I had a bit of a sore throat last night and this morning, and it's clear that I have an impending minor respiratory infection, so I decided not to. Instead I walked down the beach promenade from my hotel to Jaffa and back. Will log that too: c. 5.5mi, 2hr.

(May go for an easy swim later depending on how respiratory ailment develops.)

Monday, May 12, 2014

Tel Aviv swim!

That was glorious! When I first read about this swimming pool, I was filled with enthusiasm, only in practice pools often turn out to be hard to get to, only open peculiar hours, etc. However this pool is less than ten minutes' walk from my hotel (really almost next door): a glorious 50m outdoor pool, with lanes and everything! AND - this is remarkable - a swimming-pool cat, a nice calico with food and water tucked away beneath a deck chair to the side. Didn't stay in too long as I am really ready for lunch (I walked over to the pool and didn't have enough money to pay the entry, had to come back to my room and get more - hadn't brought wallet as I didn't want to leave it unsecured poolside), but it was lovely. I don't think I've swum since the Mercuryman Aquabike in January - looking forward to being back in the pool a lot in coming weeks.

(Last week just completely eluded me as far as exercise goes - B.'s father died on Wednesday, and so instead of having 48 hours at home to sort myself out before the Israel trip, I finished my last meeting on Thursday and then basically had a crazy session of packing and cleaning & went to the airport for a flying trip to Ottawa. I feel very guilty enjoying myself abroad while B. is dealing with stuff in Canada, but it's a work trip, really, and I didn't see my way to canceling it. Beautiful walk along the sea this morning, and I am hoping to get up early enough tomorrow to get out for a run. It's not as hot as I feared, though I think it will be hotter again later in the week - but with this pool, I shouldn't go too short of exercise, and there is also a gym with spin and yoga classes on the same site, schedule permitting.)

1300m (50m pool is LONG!): 200 free, 100 back, 200 free, 100 3-3-3 down back back, 200 free, 100 breast, 200 free, 100 back, 100 easy free swim down

Monday, May 5, 2014

Best-laid plans....

I good-samaritaned my way out of a workout, arghhhh! Not sorry about it, of course, but it's a bit discombobulating. I was riding my bike down to Chelsea Piers and as I came to the 96th St. underpass from my bit of the park to the greenway, I thought for a split second "What an idiot that guy must be to have decided to change his flat right in the blind spot where a cyclist is passing from sun to shade!" A moment later I realized he'd just come down very hard off his bike; his face was very bloody, and he was quite shaken up, though he hadn't lost consciousness. He wasn't wearing a helmet, but he has promised to do so in future - definite wake-up call.

I ended up walking with him, wheeling bikes, for a mile or so to where there was a bathroom he could clean up in - I think really what someone needs after a shake-up like that is a calming interval with company and regular assessment to make sure everything's OK. He was planning to ride his bike slowly the rest of the way downtown and then walk it across to where he lived on the East Side, which seemed a feasible plan (his nose may have been broken, but he hadn't broken any teeth and I don't think he had more than a few scrapes and bruises otherwise - definitely no broken facial bones or head injury, and only minor scraping on his hands); I was making sure to remind him, though, that he could leave the park there and put the bike in a cab if he felt shaky and didn't think he was safe to ride!

By the time I left him, it was in any case too late to get to spin class, but this sort of situation always gives me an adrenalin spike and wheeziness, so really I just rode home and will get on with my work day. Might try and get to hot yoga later, or else perhaps just go for an easy run (in theory I will run tomorrow morning, but in practice my first meeting is at ten and history suggests, at this point in the semester, that I do not have a great record for getting up early enough to fulfill night-before resolutions....

Sunday, May 4, 2014


I was feeling terribly inertial today - really just lay in bed for an hour in the afternoon, not even sleeping, due to end-of-semester fatigue! Also I think spring allergies are taking a toll - eyes and nose very itchy and watery, skin terribly itchy, etc. However I finally got myself out the door by promising that I could run as little and as slowly as I wanted....

(Beautiful, beautiful running weather by the way, though a bit windy on the way south along the river. Sunny, breezy, low 60s - it got nicer, earlier it was more overcast.)

Much looking forward to the semester being over & myself liberated to WRITE and EXERCISE as much as I like!

c. 4mi, c. 46min (5:1 run-walk)

Saturday, May 3, 2014


It is such a struggle to get out of the house in time on a Saturday, but I rode my bike down and was very glad to be there - good class as always. West side path is a nightmare on a beautiful spring day - two different fundraising walk events, way too many dogs and kids on scooters and sightseeing cyclists and wayward pedestrians!

It was a terrible week for exercise - I am thinking a lot about how to have a good reset over the summer and set up some habits that will be more durable under the pressure of semester work. In theory I could have exercised on Wednesday, I think, but the weather was so utterly dreadful that it proved impractical!

:50 easy bike, :55 spin (9min seated climb, 9min standing climb, 9min as 3 standing, 3 seated and 3 :30 recovery :30 sprint)