Saturday, December 31, 2016


Very lovely flow class at Bliss. Gonna run and do yoga tomorrow too, and work on my book both days - don't really believe in New Year's resolutions, but in practice it is perhaps mildly useful to start as you mean to go on. Decided yesterday on the plane to Cayman that I was overdue for 30 days of no alcohol and that it could start right then, I'm not keen on Dec. 31 as a drinking holiday! Feeling optimistic about what 2017 will bring, not least because of the incredible relief of having a couple hours of quiet work on my book earlier today - reminder that I really don't do so well when I let that go....

1hr flow yoga!


Trip to Cayman yesterday went smoothly (flight was not quite as early as usual which makes it a little less overwhelming). I am determined to make this next month a great running month! Just did :40 easy as the sun came up - Brent's schedule runs very early and it is possible for me to piggy-back on that when I'm here. Gonna do my longer one tomorrow - it's warm for sure but there's a breeze too, not terrible....

:40 easy

Thursday, December 29, 2016


Yesterday was unfortunately a write-off: I got up with a reasonable amount of time to spare, dressed in running clothes and just couldn't make myself get out the door! (Day of too many moving parts and family obligations.) Had a good hour of PT in the afternoon but didn't get home from family dinner till late and it just wasn't an option by that point.

Today I delayed and delayed - it was very dark and rainy - then finally realized if I waited for it to stop raining, it could well be after dark in any case. So I got out, and after a while it did stop raining, really very nice and deserted too (and fairly mild). Just did 1:10 very very easy.

Skipping lifting today, too much to do before early am travel (though I have missed my chance for a last library visit, arghhh....). Waiting for notification that prescriptions are ready, and some more organizing and packing to do at home obviously too. Ready to leave town for a bit and have no human contact except with Brent! (Will miss cats tho....)

Tuesday, December 27, 2016


Really nice mid-afternoon run with Lauren (I was in a terrible mood this morning - I think the holidays are just too taxing, I like routine much more than I like special occasions!), made me happy, then a good lifting session too. Lungs were feeling very tight earlier but seem fine now. Still haven't done back exercises, in theory I will do them when I get home but I can see it would be better if I'd do them earlier in the day (the best was doing them before a morning run).

Josh has us building work capacity currently.

(1) 5 x circuit: (i) floor DB press x 20 @ 20 (ii) face-pulls (cable) x 20 (iii) front raise x 20 @ 5 (by end of this shoulders are really burning)
(2) 5 x 5 ring rows (eccentric pull-ups for others)
(3) now that you're already knackered, the work set: 3 x 6 bench with 0-3-0 (hold for three seconds three inches above chest)
(4) 100 dips with bands

1hr easy run
1hr upper body

Monday, December 26, 2016


Ah, it was good to be at powerlifting again, but I went straight from the gym to family dinner and all things considered I just don't think I had the resources to do both - I am at home now, 10pm, and feeling utterly knackered (and puzzled about how I am going to make it through the next few days intact!).

:30 back stretches first

Then about 1:20 lifting: main work set 6 x 4 @ roughly 80% (set conservatively for now at 181), this was good; 3 x 8 squats just with kettlebell (26lb); 3 x 20 step-up each side; 3 x 20 banded hip thrusts.

Gonna not even think about priorities for the morning, I am good for nothing!


Just :30 easy - feeling much better, energy levels seem more normal and lungs more stable, but still full of phlegm!

Thursday, December 22, 2016


:30 easy. Lungs not so good! Also didn't get enough sleep last night. Had very good PT first session at Fusion - I'm optimistic that I'm going to get some significant improvements, not just re: sore back while running but in terms of weaknesses in my squat! Running with Liz tomorrow regardless of lung woes, we'll just have to take it really easy....

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Lung ailment!

Ugh, I'm so vulnerable to these - I took yesterday totally off, just did :30 easy this morning and will do the same tomorrow unless I am feeling markedly better. Not a cold as such, just minor viral bronchitis - had inflammation in lungs already last week, exacerbated by cold intense long trail adventure Saturday and emotional stress of memorial - not surprising I caught an infection.

:30 easy

Monday, December 19, 2016

Misc. update

Had a glorious but INSANE trail run in Marc Taylor's memory Saturday morning in Virginia - there was an ice storm, many potential runners bailed, in the end it was just me and four of the guys from special forces! My knees (and a patch on my bottom where I periodically just slid along the trail because it was safer than trying to walk) are insanely bruised, but it was well worth it. The memorial gathering was so great too - really, really glad I went, though I'm still feeling a bit knackered from the whole thing. Couldn't run Friday before I left as it was too cold (and probably not a realistic plan anyway), took Sunday as recovery day (got home around 3:30, not bad).

Today seems to have gone on for a very long time! My lungs weren't feeling great last week, but today it dawned on me that really I am getting an ailment. Temperature still in the 20s by late morning so I cabbed it to the gym and ran on the track there - much preferable IMO to running on the treadmill, I feel self-conscious as I am going so slowly but the time passes way more quickly. Seventy-five minutes. Showered, fueled, then lifting session: 1hr (did back stretches first). Then I had an insanely good "medical massage" (they do it on-site) - walked out feeling all warm and happy and smiley. Anyway, the day seems to have ended well, we will see what kind of a cold (if any - maybe massage fended it off?) I wake up with tomorrow morning....

75 minutes run
1hr lift (3 x 8 deadlift @ 161, 3 x :30 squats with 20lb kettlebell, 3 x :30 step-up each leg)
1hr very beneficial massage!

Thursday, December 15, 2016


Easing back into it. Just did the bar for my 4 x 8 squats, then a nice tempo deadlift set of 3 @ 50% (I did 131) with 3 seconds up, 2 seconds hold, 3 seconds down. Then did back stretches as I needed to leave promptly at six (last dinner sitting at G.'s new assisted living i s 6:45!).

1hr lower body and warmup/stretching

1hr treadmill run

It got really cold, my lungs are already feeling a bit dodgy over last few days so I thought I'd better head for gym and treadmill. Next time I will remember to bring music and headphones!

1hr slow TM

Wednesday, December 14, 2016


That was pretty good. Quiet evening at home last night (reading in bed). Got up, wasted time on the internet, did my daily writing session and then got out the door for my run not too long after. One big complaint: sore back! Gotta get more aggressive about getting it fixed - logistics of PT are a little daunting, but I've scheduled a medical massage at the gym Monday after my lifting session and will think about what else I can do....

1:20 - 20:00 easy, 10 x (1:00 faster, 3:00 easy), 20:00 easy

Tuesday, December 13, 2016


Ah, yesterday I was an idiot for leaving my writing session so late in the today. Today I was an idiot for not exercising till the last possible moment! Met a friend mid-morning for breakfast, something I don't usually do, then had my writing time, but after that all I had vim for was to get into bed and doze with cats. I may be having a bit of seasonal affective disorder - I really feel like bed is the only place to be in daytime. Anyway I did drag myself up ultimately, by that time it was a question of running down to the gym immediately pre-workout (fine on an upper-body day, also we're just at the start of a new training cycle). By about 20 minutes into the "run" (so slow it is more like a powerwalk I fear) I felt much, much better. Resolution: run earlier tomorrow!

1:06 slow run
1hr upper body (mostly superset circuit-type stuff, but there was a nice set of 3 x 20 bench @ 65 - seems easy at first, last five reps are amazing tho!)

Monday, December 12, 2016


Josh is back and the powerlifting team was out today in full force! So fun - I have really missed working out with these guys. Just an easy first day back: 10 x 1 deadlift @ 181 (lowball of 80% of max, as meant to be pretty easy), then 3 x :30 squats for reps - just did air squats as I thought bar would probably be too heavy. Then I did my back PT stuff - I think on lifting days I can do it post-workout, that gives structure...

1hr lifting and stretching!

Short run

An "everything is slightly broken" day - tender tight back, very very stiff right lower calf, nothing felt right! Staggered halfheartedly through :30 easy, couldn't motivate to do the hill intervals I was supposed to do yesterday. Weekend heavy on family and friend commitments, I am honestly just done in!

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Intrepid run!

Wintry definitely but less windy than yesterday. Sore back is the only thing making me grumble! 1:35 easy (turnaround at the Intrepid).

Friday, December 9, 2016


Quite nice too - sunny and colder, I should probably have had another windbreaker-type layer on top of long sleeves and gloves. Fortunately was running into the wind on the way out and with it at my back as I turned and headed home. Still haven't started doing back exercises but it was somewhat better today - tight and a little tender, but not sore as such (advil and heating pad clearly help).

1hr easy

Thursday, December 8, 2016


Just :40 (was supposed to be :45 but I spaced out on turnaround and couldn't make myself do extra at the end). Sore back! However happy exercise chemicals start chugging along around the twenty-minute mark, all good.

Wednesday, December 7, 2016


Belated update - I thought I had the perfect amount of time to do my full run, shower, eat and make it on time to 2pm teaching panel discussion, but really in this case as in most others "the perfect amount of time" meant just barely enough - I microwaved a meal while I was in the shower and shoveled a few bites of it into my mouth while also trying to put on shoes, but had to leave most of it behind (stuck it in a kitchen cupboard - thought it would be more palatable a couple hours later at room temperature rather than refrigerated and re-nuked, but didn't want a cat to get it on a counter!).

The teaching discussion was fun anyway! Though I note that the new haircut I got last night that looked so good yesterday is not reproducible without blow-drying, which I refuse to do....

Right lower back quite sore and more so as I ran longer - something on right hamstring-glute not quite right either - I think what I really must do is take up my old PT back exercises again and see if that helps. Otherwise very nice - it looks wintry at this time of year from inside a warm apartment, you have to slightly force yourself out the door, but really as soon as I'm running it's pretty great - I like overcast, low 40s, sprinkle of drizzle.

20:00 easy, 10 x (1:00 hard, 2:00 easy), 20:00 easy for 1:10:00 total. First interval seemed a little much so I reconceptualized as "smooth carriage, fast light feet" which seemed to go better, though still makes my back a bit sore....

Tuesday, December 6, 2016


I did run my 30 minutes yesterday morning, just forgot to log it here. Skipped powerlifting as by the time I finished getting my allergy shots downtown I was on the verge of total meltdown, seemed much wiser just to come home! Woke up at 5, did a huge spate of hard work (typing up notes for next Austen chapter - only, frustratingly, the two chapters that had slightly muddled identity really do seem to be one long chapter in need of streamlining, so though I finished one set I still need to tackle the other before I can get the chapter notes into decent shape). I think fatigue in general produces very negative emotions, but the fatigue of travel and especially jet lag does this to me very strong - I should have gone out for my run, it was 10:30 or so and I had plenty of time before a 2pm doctor's appointment, but instead I huddled in bed and dozed and felt awful. Got some lunch (Greek omelet, bacon) at a diner before seeing the doc and then took a cab directly to the gym - was determined to run as well as going to the lifting session, which is not proper lifting this week as Josh is in Thailand on vacation and we're just doing minor mobility work and exercise for the duration. So, all good, SO nice to see my team members again and exercise was good - I did my run first, 1hr easy (underdressed - forgot a long-sleeved windbreaker or gloves - but do really prefer to run outside if possible), then went more or less straight to powerlifting club. It was fun, I enjoyed it, only suddenly around 5:50 I felt very queasy during one of our last exercises - I think I might just have run out of fuel, I thought I'd be OK without a sport drink/sugar calories but this was clearly wrong! Had a few appetizers at the member party that happened to be taking place in the cafe afterwards, then walked a very rainy mile back to 7th avenue for a 7pm haircut that has significantly improved morale, then sashimi and edamame before getting on the subway home. Have big grocery delivery coming tomorrow, it takes days to get settled back in!

1hr easy run
1hr misc. exercise (shoulder and hip mobility work; Bulgarian split squats, 8 x 4 with 5lb weights; pushups [others did weighted but I felt that was surplus to requirements], 6 x 4 concentrating on speed and power going up; 30 on 30 off for 3 x medicine ball (a) slam (b) side (c) other side. I think that's it mostly?

Saturday, December 3, 2016


Ah, I will be glad to be home but this really has been a ridiculously perfect stint in Oxford - I love it here! Final 90min run along my lovely route through Christ Church Meadow, across Folly Bridge and along the towpath to and past Iffley Lock. Damp, overcast, low 40s - perfect!

Friday, December 2, 2016


Nice final session with Sy - a bit of everything. Did a good set of 4 x 4 @ 50kg on the bench but failed on the first rep at 55kg, I think it was too big a jump up...

1hr lift


A little short - the loop naturally comes in at :33 at current pace, and I found myself much more eager to get home for my day with Brent than to add on a little extra leg! Very nice running weather, damp and a little warmer - my lungs like it a lot better than the dry cold version...

:33 easy

Thursday, December 1, 2016


:32 easy. It was FREEZING this morning - but really I also needed to finish my lecture, get it printed and make handout, etc., so it was fine to leave it to the last bit of daylight. Must shower, make myself respectable and go off to acquit myself of final Oxford responsibility! (If you don't count returning library books.)

Wednesday, November 30, 2016


:43 easy. Chilly but sunny - gorgeous, really, but not as gentle on the lungs as when it's wet and in the 50s. Fully immersed in putting together tomorrow's lecture, combination of running and writing (and then lunch with Brent) is fantastically enjoyable....

Tuesday, November 29, 2016


Didn't get out in the morning before 10am appointment at the Magdalen College Library, managed to do it just before (very early) dusk. :40 easy.

Monday, November 28, 2016


(Omitted to blog it earlier, was in a hurry to get on with work things. :30 easy on an implausibly sunny nice day. This is a recovery week now, that's good - got my first of two lectures later this afternoon, that one's easy as it's already written, but the Thursday one is still needing frantic assemblage!)

:30 easy

Saturday, November 26, 2016


1hr easy. Waiting for Brent to get here now! Ready for a rest week I think, various minor aches and pains, nothing terrible - but I was out and about in nice shoes for 2 longish sessions yesterday and my feet really wanted to be bare and resting on a couch!

Friday, November 25, 2016

Long run!

Actually quite closely approaching to blissful - a true running meditation. It's beautifully sunny this morning albeit colder, that may have been a factor: the days are so short here at this time of year, add that to raininess and I think I am genuinely physiologically suffering from light deprivation. I took a sleeping pill last night, I was just DONE, which meant I slept from maybe 9pm to 7:30am, woo-hoo! (It's not as good as "real" high-quality sleep but there are times when it is worth the tradeoff, last night was one of those!) I was well-hydrated but didn't need to pee, my back didn't hurt and at the 1hr turnaround I met the most hilariously friendly dog who frolicked with me for some time following. Brent is getting here tomorrow! Anyway, good mood all round.

2hr easy

Thursday, November 24, 2016


Worked on all three lifts as we were down to a single session this week. I'm really happy with some minor technique tweaking we've done on the deadlift.

(Then in the locker room afterwards as I was putting everything together I realized - not entirely with surprise, as I was in a scramble today out of my usual routine - that I hadn't brought my house keys, and had a complicated trudge around town to find a spare copy at the porter's lodge, which is not particularly close to my actual flat....)

1hr lifting


I have been grumpy all week about how my own choices have thwarted actual desires! I put aside Austen book at the end of last week in theory to switch over to writing the second lecture for next week, but in fact I've barely worked on it at all as I had three library appointments, two daytime talks, an evening workshop - also three letters of recommendation I needed to write - anyway, it's just sorta one of THOSE weeks! And when I have a 10am appointment, as I did today (unavoidably given other priorities i.e. 2pm trainer session at the gym), and when it is so dark still in the morning, it is somehow virtually impossible for me to get myself out of bed and out the door in time to run before first external commitment. Anyway today it worked out OK. Had a great session at the Balliol archive, came home and organized the stuff I'd looked at, then ran - have eaten small lunch, won't shower, will head over to gym shortly so I have plenty of time to stretch and warm up pre session. Today's run was a little short (should have been 50) but close enough.

:43 easy

Wednesday, November 23, 2016


I am feeling very overwhelmed by the world and the week, didn't have time or vim for intervals once I'd snoozed alarm excessively (really must hop into shower now and get across the street for 11am meetup for an out-of-town excursion to Unnamed University to see a Canadian eighteenth-century colleague give a lunchtime talk on - I am hoping? - Austen!), but once I'd been out for 10 minutes I did feel better. Did a compromise 70 minutes easy so that it was at least a LITTLE more than the default but didn't strain the system unduly - I know from experience that when I am really feeling at the end of my tether like this it is very easy to tip over into illness/injury.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016


In general I have been very good on this trip about running in the morning before I do anything else, but today it all just sort of fell apart. It was a longer run with intervals, and the (a) very poor night of sleep (b) cold driving rain (c) need to write 3 letters of recommendation before going to a lunchtime talk combined with (d) the knowledge that (unusually) my trainer had canceled our afternoon session made me justify prioritizing letter-writing and hoping rain would clear up by afternoon. It did, and I had a fairly pleasant 1hr easy, which was written on the schedule for tomorrow - hoping I have vim to do today's original workout tomorrow not long after I get up....

1hr easy

Monday, November 21, 2016


Really tiring weekend travels. I got up this morning and ate breakfast and pretty much just went back to bed to huddle, it was wintry and stormy outside - but grudgingly admitted to myself after a while that (a) I wasn't falling back asleep and (b) I really would feel better if I would just get out the door and do my run. Fresh air was helpful and the weather wasn't as bad as it seemed from indoors. Then I had a very good afternoon session at the library, and I think I'm going to take the rest of the evening off and read a novel or two (possibly a chapter of Gibbon as well if I feel like it). Grateful for the fact that running and library work both ease my soul when I am feeling dispirited or negative! Also grateful for the fact that this week I do NOT have to celebrate Thanksgiving! It's never been a holiday I'm keen on - I don't like the food much, it comes at a horrible time in the school year, the iconography and the occasion are also historically discredited - and it is a boon to be missing it completely!

1hr easy

Saturday, November 19, 2016


When I set things up right it makes me feel like a genius - I was thinking as I waited for the elevator in the hotel lobby that though I could probably work harder in my thirties than I can now, I got a lot smarter about how to get things done without undue effort. I am a creature of habit, I like intellectual exploration of all kinds but I am not a geographical adventurer, it is INCREDIBLY comforting to me that I'm in the same hotel and had the same run route and the same breakfast from Pret a manger (2 HB eggss and a smoked-salmon sandwich if you are curious) that I had when I was here a few weeks ago. I AM A GENIUS or at least have greater self-knowledge than in prior times!

1hr easy

And that's 440 for the week by my count, 7:20 - hoping David will let me have an eight-hour week this coming week, then Brent's here a week from today and I will be lazy for my last week in Oxford and eat cake!

Friday, November 18, 2016

Wintry long run!

Feeling good about that, and about finishing my chapter first - was inevitably tempted as I came towards the :30 mark to turn around and just do the 1hr today and leave 2hr for tomorrow in London, but it was much better to get it done properly today and have a more modest goal for tomorrow near King's Cross before getting on the train to Cambridge.

2hr wintry run!

Thursday, November 17, 2016


Very good session at the gym.


Gorgeous weather again - I feel so lucky to have had this time here. :45 easy.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016


That was glorious - it's an incredibly beautiful day, sunny and clear and mid-50s but with a hint of wintriness in the air. I moved around the days as it makes most sense to put the easiest and shortest run earlier in the day before I squat. Juggling logistics for a weekend trip to Cambridge, which has to be routed through (two different train stations) in London; I think I am going to London Friday afternoon, seeing a friend, staying in the same hotel near King's Cross that I was in a few weeks ago and then doing a run in the morning along canals there before getting train to Cambridge for lunchtime. Undecided whether to do long run Friday morning here or Saturday morning in London, but leaning towards the former, it seems more realistic.

90 minutes with some unstructured faster running in second half (really I am not an unstructured person, and the terrain isn't at all variable, so call it 5 x 2 minutes harder, 3 minutes easy!)

Tuesday, November 15, 2016


Good session with Sy. Continuing to work on activating the glutes for deadlift - it is very interesting, I think I'm making progress.

1hr lift


That was a particularly nice one. Very mild damp weather, pretty much ideal for running as far as I am concerned. Also it doesn't take much willpower to do thirty-second intervals.

1:05 as 20:00 easy, 12 x (:30 faster, 1:30 easy), 20:00 easy

Monday, November 14, 2016


Slept horribly and felt really out of sorts this morning, did some essential work then got back into bed for "ostriching" (i.e. where you are not actually asleep, just unable to face doing anything else!). However at some point it became clear that I should just give in and get up and run, and that was good - very mild rainy day outside, nice....

1hr easy

Sunday, November 13, 2016


1.25hr hot power yoga. Good start to the day.

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Long run!

Only slightly marred by back pain (sharply sore in specific spot during minutes 30-60, after that more diffuse and generally tight but not so sharp - possibly also the mental ease of being homeward bound?). Mild drizzle, lots of puddles - beautiful running weather.

2hr "running meditation"

Friday, November 11, 2016


Currently we're doing Friday as a longer run with intervals and then Saturday as a 2hr easy "running meditation" - I really prefer the latter to the former, I have to admit! Beautifully sunny day this morning; forecast is bad for tomorrow, but rainy meditation is fine too....

1:20 as 20:00 easy, 10 x (1:00 faster, 3:00 easy), 20:00 easy

Thursday, November 10, 2016


Ah, such a good session - I was feeling really awful before (cold, sleepy, a bit headachy), but took a caffeine pill and some advil beforehand and then had a really, really cheering session of work on the dreaded squat. Felt great afterwards, stopped at mini-supermarket and bought way more food than I intended and not quite of the ideal sort (hungry person's shopping), came home and made two donations (one to the NAACP, the other to the Southern Poverty Law Project) and in general am just feeling much less out of sorts with myself. Had good production of quota session this morning despite temptation to wallow in misery. Life is quiet enough here that I really can't afford to let myself stay out of sorts, gonna focus on getting myself really back into good spirits - going to curry night at the funny place next door tonight with my neighbor, will do yoga Friday, Saturday, Sunday, 2 hard/long run workouts on calendar for tomorrow and Saturday, Balliol concert night Sunday. All good!

1hr high-quality strength stuff!


A run is a good start to the day. My legs were tired yesterday and today (deadlifting I think) but it is good to be out there - nice sunny morning too, not too cold. Just :35 easy.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016


Ah, I had a bit of a tough day. Woke up to use the bathroom at 5 and couldn't subsequently stop reading news on my phone. Had good blinders-on work session on Austen in the morning, as I was having a hard time concentrating yesterday afternoon, and basically felt that I was still so upset about Marc's death and Diana's bereavement that I had no energy to spare for election-related woes! (Also, Brexit prepared me, I was sorry but not shocked.) Then I took a deep nap and woke up very groggy and dispirited around 3:45 - it was tough to drag myself out of bed, and even tougher to disrobe in FREEZING English flat and put on running clothes and get out the door - but I did, and I do feel a lot better now (and also have eaten a tuna melt, didn't have lunch because I thought nap would just be brief and then I'd run...)

1:05 very slow rainy dark run....

Tuesday, November 8, 2016


Ah, I like working with Sy so much, he's really knowledgeable and smart. Not doing anything heavy, just some deadlift technique work and bench similar. Cable face-pull and hip thrusts to finish. 1hr work.


It was a particularly gorgeous one, frosty and sunny. I have lost three friends in the last few months, one to a drug overdose and one to aggressive cancer, but I think the last was the biggest shock of all - my dear old tri-blogger friend Marc Taylor died unexpectedly over the weekend. My heart is breaking for his wife Diana - having seen what my mother has gone through over the last year after losing her husband gives me all too keen a sense of how hard the coming months and years are going to be for her. Anyway, certainly appreciating the precious and beautiful and precarious nature of life....

1hr easy

Saturday, November 5, 2016


Ah, so good - I should be doing more of these "hot power" classes, they are great! I can do about 90% of it pretty decently and then there's about 10% that my body just isn't shaped for (standing splits, the thing where you sit and hold the folded knee in the two elbows). ALL GOOD THOUGH. Also - if only hot 26 was in a room exactly THAT hot rather than maybe 8C hotter!

1.25hr hot yoga

Long run!

Very nice too, though getting chilly towards the end. Enjoyable end to a "down week."

2hr easy

Friday, November 4, 2016


This Friday evening class is very nice....

1hr yoga

Rainy run!

I think the 1hr easy run might be my favorite of all possible runs. Weather here has been glorious and is now glorious in a different way, a mild rain, I love that so much! Forced myself to do a hard spell of work in early evening yesterday that left me utterly tapped out, so I took a sleeping pill and woke up earlier than usual - good to be getting on with things so early in the day (heading out shortly to avoid the housecleaner who comes on Fridays and is extremely chatty).

1hr easy

Thursday, November 3, 2016


A good session with Sy. Arghhh, my squat is so inadequate, the first part of the session was a bit discouraging - but there is no point worrying about it, nothing I can do but keep working on it and trying to make it better!

1hr misc. lifting with squat focus


Just :30 easy. The weather and terrain here are so utterly perfect for running!

Wednesday, November 2, 2016


Beautiful sunny day, colder. Feeling rather tired and lazy after days of socializing, and seeing the point of Coach David's insistence on a week of short runs!

:30 easy

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Run, lift

I did run earlier but I must not have logged it - was in a bit of a hurry to make sure I wrote quota before needing to leave to meet my mother. Thirty minutes easy. Just got home from absolutely lovely lifting session at the gym! I love this sport so much, I have to keep doing it - this trainer is amazing.

Work sets: deadlift, 4 x 4 @ 80kg; bench, 4 x 4 @ 42.5kg

A few other minor things, but henceforth I will do the warmup mobility stuff on my own so that we can have the whole hour for work. Wrote it down so that I would remember properly, and have obtained band and ball (wide green band).

(1) use lacrosse ball on glutes
(2) hip openers (45-60 seconds in each hold on each side, moving around a little):
(a) band from rack around back leg just below hip, tuck hips under;
(b) rotate 90 degrees (to the R for left leg, to the left for R), move back and forth from midline;
(c) banded back leg comes forward, arms to lizard pose, back knee raised and back foot flexed on ground
(3) downward dog/cobra, downward dog/half pigeon, 3x each

Monday, October 31, 2016


Very nice one too - I got further than yesterday and was tempted to continue till the path ended, but really I have already let the run eat into my writing time.

:45 easy

Sunday, October 30, 2016


Just :30 - I'm in London for 2 nights (met up with my mother who flew in from Philadelphia and we are doing massive amounts of family visiting, it's strenuous!). Had what turned out to be a cockamamie idea that I could run across town from where I'm staying right near King's Cross to Regent's Park, but it must be that I was staying blocks further west the last time I did that (can't remember exact location of hotel but it would have been for the conference at UCL). Got about 1 block in and the throngs of people on the sidewalk were so overwhelming that I was just hating humanity. So turned my way back towards canal path - mildly thwarted, neither direction seems to let you go very far without having to go back out onto roads, but I did get in my :30. Then bought delicious breakfast at Pret a Manger - English ready-made food currently doing much more for me than USian (esp. the Marks and Spencer prepared foods - edamame salad!). Smoked salmon sandwich with butter on wholemeal bread, "protein pot" (2 HB eggs on a rather pitiful bed of spinach leaves), mango with lime. Gotta shower now so that I don't lose my precious hour of work time - hahahahaha, I should really come back to London again in a few weeks to see a few dear friends but I am strongly leaning towards holing up in the Oxford bubble and hewing to my regular routine!

:30 easy

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Long run!

Very nice too, though I was ready to be done before the end (could not stop thinking about the chicken and bacon sandwich I was going to assemble and eat when I got home!). Ran into my neighbor as I was leaving (she was walking to yoga) and walked with her for a bit off the clock, then started running/clock once I got to the meadow - thought I'd adjusted turnaround point appropriately, but clearly not, as I was near home at the 1:45 mark and had to overshoot to add on last bit. That always takes willpower, better to do a true out and back!

Going to London shortly for two nights with a lot of family visiting, but will have short run and production of quota tomorrow and Monday (coming back to Oxford Monday afternoon) because I will be in a better mood re: human contact if I do it that way!

2hr easy

Friday, October 28, 2016

Very nice yoga

It's taught by teachers in training, this one was extremely good (I would not have imagined she wasn't experienced). 1hr vinyasa.


:42 easy. Was saved from my worse self by the fact that when I stopped at the Alternative Tuck Shop post-run to acquire a YumYum, which I have decided can only be a Friday treat, I learned that the YumYum delivery for the day had not yet taken place!

Thursday, October 27, 2016


A really good session (I mean, I'm not good at squats, so it's important to work on them regularly). This time we got to work out in the rugby gym which is pleasantly deserted and chilly - much preferable to warm crowded powerlifting room! I'm really happy about having finally got this set up, it's going to be good - given that I can't work out with Josh, this is definitely the next best thing!

1hr lower body


Such a nice run with Liz! A good new route through Port Meadow and then back along canal through Jericho. Was avidly noting streetnames in hopes I can find my way over there again...

70 easy

Wednesday, October 26, 2016


I did write quota, but I didn't do enough other work today, after this family weekend in London and my mother's visit I'm going to buckle down. Very nice yoga anyway - 1.25hr hatha, stretchy. Was feeling fairly sore (pleasantly so, but still) after yesterday's strength session, afternoon nap plus evening yoga is a good remedy! Running with Liz in the morning too, and training again with Sy at 2pm....

Run of bliss!

I am having a ridiculously nice time exercise-wise - I feel it is slightly irresponsible, but not entirely so given that sabbatical is not just for getting new work done but for restoration and recovery. :20 easy, 10 x 1:00 faster, 2:00 easy, :25 easy: 1:15 total. A little soreness in hamstring in that post-deadlift tendonitis-type way, but nothing big. In general feeling very sound.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016


Hahahaha, I am an idiot, I like too many things too much! Just running and doing yoga make me think "Oh, yeah, I could just do these 2 things all the time and it would be great" - but I did finally lift properly again today and it felt absolutely amazing, I can't give that up! (Not to mention strength-training now is probably the single thing that has the best long-term health input on carrying-groceries-up-stairs-in-your-80s type stuff). It took a bunch of emailing to find a trainer, it's a university gym rather than a commercial one so they're not set up to take your dollars so eagerly I think - but I believe that this guy is absolutely perfect, couldn't have done better! I'm signed on for twice a week, but it might be tempting to add a third session (I can't do Monday next week, so I am forced to hold off on that till I see how it reintegrates with more running).

1hr good stuff! Lot of stretching and mobility, then tested some bench and deadlifts - did I think 3 x 4 @ 105 or so on bench, pulled a couple singles at 220 or so (weights are in kilograms and don't lodge with me) - this is going to be so great!


I took a proper rest day yesterday - if I'm going to be running more, I need to be smart about it. Glorious to be running again this morning though! I love this mild overcast damp English weather so much....

:50 easy (2 laps around Christ Church Meadow)

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Blissful yoga!

Ah, such a good vinyasa class - I really love this teacher. 1.5hr yoga.

Start of week 3

1:30 easy - actually it was a few minutes longer as I had a diabolical plan that involved adjusting my turnaround point and overshooting home so that the end point would be here! It's a bit chilly but I figured with light jacket and gloves I'd be fine to then walk the 1.7 or so miles home. I had rather pictured it being one of those places you walk out of with a huge box of pastries, but perhaps fortunately they were about to close (it was just before 2 on a Sunday) and there wasn't really a lot of stuff - I had a very delicious slice of apricot tart that I ate on my walk home.

I really am serious about this Rock the Ridge 50 in May! I have six weeks in Rome in February-March when I think running will be either my only form of exercise or nearly so (will hope to find some yoga I can get to easily), and sabbatical year is a good time for a project like this....

1.5hr easy

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Glorious run!

A lovely sedate one, with intervals - I was slightly dreading them beforehand, only (a) if they really are horrible, you are doing them too fast and (b) if I accept that they might only be ONE gear higher than my regular sedate pace, it will go very easily. Have acquired hydration belt but also it wasn't as hot today - 50F and overcast, my absolutely ideal running weather (it is silly to talk about ancestral climate preferences but I do feel that my body does best in exactly this sort of weather!).

1:40 as :20 easy, 12 x (1:30 faster, 3:30 easy), :20 easy

Friday, October 21, 2016


Such a good class, and genuinely relaxing - "slow down Friday flow" - did what it said! Now I am going to eat soup (having slightly mismanaged meal content and times earlier) and read a novel, since I also produced quota/finished the draft zero of Austen chapter #1 and read my Gibbon quota for the day. Routine of bliss!

1hr slow flow yoga


:55 easy - should have been 70, but I dragged my heels getting out the door & need to shower and get ready now for a 10:30 coffee meetup. Will make up the minutes elsewhere!

Thursday, October 20, 2016


Gosh, that was a tiring day - and I am sorry to say I did not produce quota as that slot was instead given over to writing my remarks for presentation at the very nice "Bruce's brunch" at Balliol! But I finally made it to the gym to lift - had a date with a training partner, she sent a message to say she'd be half an hour late but you still get the benefit of knowing you need to get there. I'd written down 3 sets - one for each lift - and got all three done though with slightly lighter weights in several instances than I'd projected; I'm very conscious that I haven't been lifting regularly for the last 5 or so weeks and should take it cautiously as I get back into it!

Anyway about 1hr total with work sets as something like this:

Squat: 3 x 8 @ 30kg
Deadlift: 4 x 5 @ 65kg (or it might have been 70)
Bench: 2 x 8 @ 35kg, 1 x 6 @ 40kg (didn't have spotter and didn't want to chance losing it on the last few)

My request through the gym site for personal training information has not been answered, but I got a couple of business cards from the front desk and I think I will pursue this, I would like to lock it in and then just forget about the rest of the time!


No, I didn't get up quite as early as I should have, but it was still a minor miracle - did my full hour easy and it is just coming up on 9am. House cleaner's arrival is imminent and I am giving an informal talk at 1pm that still exists only loosely speaking in my head, so I need to get a move on. It's dark here still at 8am!

1hr easy

Wednesday, October 19, 2016


Very enjoyable. Sweatier than I expected for a gentle hatha class - should have had towel as well as mat!

1.25hr yoga

Glorious run!

Obviously part of it is the ideal climate and the sabbatical phenomenon (I am far more than usually insulated from the needs of others, the balancing of which against my own needs and preferences continues to be the great struggle of adult life), but I am wondering how much is also the fact that I haven't been lifting - it is possible that yoga and running go together much better than lifting and running. That said, I am happy to report that I found a training partner and have 4pm lifting dates for tomorrow and Friday - optimistic that this should work out well (I put out a plea on the women's powerlifting group and one of the young women who did the induction with me last week is similarly in need, this should be good!).

20 easy, 10 x 1:00 faster, 3:00 easy, 20 easy (plus a bit extra - missed my proper exit from the meadows)

1:25 total

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Hot power yoga!

To be more precise, it was the ominously named Hot HIIT yoga (with music), but really it wasn't bad, though I did feel a bit too hot at times. I am both frustrated and relieved not to be lifting - I haven't heard anything back from my request to the gym about personal training, so I probably should venture in on my own sometime in the next couple days and see what it's actually like....

1hr hot power yoga

Run of bliss!

It is a ridiculously perfect climate for running at this time of year here. Cannot get over my good fortune!

1hr easy

Monday, October 17, 2016


Just a short one - :26 easy (said :20 on the schedule but that's the time there and around one loop of the closest park).

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Week 2 run 1

:37 easy. Turned into a really beautiful day....

Hot power!

This studio has a genius online registration system that comes with very stern warnings about bad things that will happen if you sign up for a class and then don't show up (you can cancel in advance through the online system). I had horrible insomnia again last night, it was after four I think by the time I finally got to sleep and only light sleep thereafter - I was registered for a 10am "hot power" class, but at 9 when I grudgingly got up I thought maybe I'd cancel and try and get a bit more sleep. My first attempt failed (the system had already logged me out), and by that time I'd had second thoughts - yoga is a good start to an underslept day. It was pouring rain at that point, but it lightened up and I felt happy as soon as I was out of the house and en route to the studio.

The class itself was great - I suppose they do hot power at 35C whereas proper hot ("hot 26") is 40C, crucial difference for me!

75 minutes hot power yoga

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Long run of bliss!

Exercise chemicals still currently making me high, but - PEAK HAPPINESS! Got a good long sleep, headed out not long after getting up (it was almost noon by that point) for a glorious sedate beautiful long run along canal towpaths. The weather has been gorgeous this whole week - I was wearing gloves (plus short sleeves) but I really wouldn't have needed them.

Two very pleasant minor exchanges.

First, as I was coming up to 1hr turnaround point and had left towpath for a cycle route through fields, 2 little boys on bikes very politely asked for me to give them space as they passed - as they came up to me, one of them said, sounding extremely impressed, "Have you come all this way? We saw you all the way back there!" It can't have been much more than three miles, but it brought a smile to my face.

Second, when I passed Iffley Lock around the :40 mark, I vaguely noted that it looked like there was a hutch selling drinks and ice cream, and figured I'd stop there on the way back for a cold drink (should really have been carrying handheld, but couldn't quite be bothered). When I did get back there around 1:20, I investigated and realized it was just a sign advertising a pub elsewhere - I asked the keeper of the lock if there was anywhere nearby I could buy a cold drink, and she very regretfully told me that there wasn't, then took me under her wing, brought me to her little private kitchen and poured me a pint glass of water from the tap! So kind - put me in a great mood for the last forty minutes home.

Don't know that I'd dare photograph swans on land as they are a little scary albeit quite dramatic, but here is a quieter snapshot of non-scary bird life in the last stretch back through Christ Church Meadows:

Friday, October 14, 2016

Hot yoga!

GRUESOMELY hot yoga in fact! Hahahaha, it's always awful after a layoff - I haven't done a hot class since the end of the summer, and even then it was mostly the 1hr abbreviated class, ugh....

Anyway felt very queasy by halfway through the standing sequence (indeed I would guess I came closer than I ever have before to actually throwing up - only narrowly averted I felt!). Better after that was done. The walk home has pleasantly cooled me down, but I am really torn on whether to go back for more or just do the regular-temperature yoga which seems a lot more manageable! I like how I feel after this one, though....

(Jogged over too though I don't think that was what tipped me over. I am on track for 7hr this week as long as I do the full 2hr run tomorrow!)

:14 easy run
1.5hr overly hot hot yoga!


:40 easy. The weather here is ridiculously tailored to my exact preferences - mid-50s and a little overcast. Perfect running weather!

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Happy yoga

Really it's like coming home - I would feel the same way if a cat suddenly showed up to live in my apartment! I think I will be doing quite a few classes there - this one was exactly what I like. (This is the studio, and I'll do a hot class in the early evening tomorrow.)

1hr vinyasa yoga

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

OUPLC induction

Very pleasant preliminary session getting shown around. The folks seem extremely nice and it will definitely work for me (also my ID arrived today and it was easy to get gym membership with that in hand), but I am having terrible homesickness for my Chelsea Piers powerlifting crew! This will be a different sort of set-up - it's a tiny space, with limited equipment, so the 2 training times I've written down are more like "drop in for advice" sessions, everyone trains on their own time and there isn't particularly shared programming. I'm going to go back through last fall's blog and do a version of that training cycle for myself - if I don't find good training partners it is going to end up more in the way of minimum maintenance than a true build, I think, as I traditionally have not much enjoyed strength training on my own. That said, there will be people around to ask for a spot, which is important too, and maybe I'll be able to slot into a routine that suits me?

1:15 induction (light lifts on all three lifts for technique)

Run take 2

And it was glorious! This was what Liz sent me - but on top of my nonexistent sense of direction, I'm not a keen smartphone user, and I don't have an international data plan, so that once I went off-route it could still show me where I was on the map but it couldn't tell me how to get back to my original route.

I drew an extremely simple representational map today and ran clutching the folded piece of paper, which is very much more my style than running with a phone! And it was lovely - that will be my regular route I think. I only had time for :50 due to sleeplessness last night but I see I could continue indefinitely along the river towpath, how nice. I did get to the same bridge yesterday, but by a much worse route....

:50 easy

Tuesday, October 11, 2016


Liz has given me a really good out and back route! I did make one wrong turn, corrected it pretty soon but forgot to adjust turnaround point accordingly, so a little short of an hour.

:50 exploratory

Monday, October 10, 2016


The jet lag is dug in pretty deep, I was horribly awake 2-7am and then had an overly deep nap in the afternoon - but I did get out for another really beautiful 1hr run.

(David, who is a very good coach, urges me not to undertake overly ambitious plans I cannot execute, and suggests 5hr/week as a wiser goal than 7 - he is pretty certainly right, but this week doesn't have any powerlifting and I don't have ID/library card yet so it is kind of perfect for a bigger week, then I will fall back on 5!)

1hr bucolic run

Sunday, October 9, 2016


A very nice one too. I made it here (Oxford) in one piece, and the trip didn't even seem that overwhelming - except for the last part (fortunately I had an extremely calm and friendly driver pick me up at Heathrow and drive me to Oxford with large bags - but we couldn't even get the car all the way to the Balliol Porters Lodge because the road was closed for the half-marathon the next morning, and it seemed like mere luck that there was a set of keys for me at all - the flat is in a house on what seemed a very dark and ill-numbered road, though fortunately I was able to find someone locking up his bike who could explain to me where I was really going and direct the car accordingly - a great relief too to finally find a light switch in the incredibly dark stairwell!). Awake for some hours in the night, slept late, fell asleep again mid-afternoon in a jet-lagged way and knew I'd really better get out for a proper run - and it was LOVELY. Did some preliminary exploration that didn't really suit my purpose and then found my way onto more like what I was looking for, platonic ideal of run routine namely an out-and-back on a path alongside water.

I'm here for eight weeks, counting today as week 1 day 1 - goal is to run 7hr/week come what may! That is only about 35mi at current slow speeds but it would be a good base, eh? I am not sure when the powerlifting club will start meeting, will try and find some yoga in the meantime though most important thing is to get my ID card so that I can use library, gym, etc. Some combobulation still needed, though I had a successful foray to Marks & Spencer for provisions today. (When I got in last night, the only thing open was high street newsagent though that did happily sell me an egg sandwich and a few beers!)

1hr easy!

Friday, October 7, 2016

Very very short run

About to explode from stress! Just did :24 easy - too many fits of anxiety about things undone, how I mismanaged my time this week, etc.!


Squats! (belated post)

Arghhhhh, I am in chaos and stress here - have booked a car to pick me up at 5:15am tomorrow and have about one million things that must be organized before that. Did have a good workout last night at the gym. I am going to miss working out with those guys terribly! I am not really on the current program as I just was away for 2 weeks and before that had been in and out, so modified the main set appropriately.

Main squat set was the INSANE 3 x 4-8 @ 80%!!!!! I immediately lowered it to 70%, but when Josh saw me do a set of 4 @ 115 he sensibly suggested that he'd prefer volume at a lower weight and I did, successfully, 3 x 8 @ 85, which was about what I had in me! Bulgarian split squats, 3 x 8 with 5-pound plates; 4 x 12 band hip thrusts; a few rather haphazard sets of hamstring curls. Remembered to bring my squat shoes home from the gym so I can take them to England with me - they are essential! On which note, had better start trying to de-squalorify apartment and make preliminary packing foray....

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Short run

Ugh, this week feels like a disaster - I am absolutely tapped out and yet I have done hardly any of the things I need to before leaving town very early Saturday morning! Oh dear - and though sinus infection is receding, I think I am having fall allergies, or at least something is making me feel as though eyeballs are covered with sandpaper plus general pre-travel knot-in-stomach anxiety!

I didn't make it to powerlifting Tuesday because I had to pick up the cat from the vet (and was also a minor nervous wreck due to anxiety about diagnosis - cat apparently has early hypertrophic cardiomyopathy?!?), and Wednesday was a disaster - there was a spell in both morning and evening when I huddled in bed and thought about how I should run, but I just couldn't make it happen (I did get up both times, but the more pressing need the second time was to get to pharmacy and pet store to order prescriptions and provisions to cover the eight weeks I'll be out of town).

Today I had a couple tasks I had to complete first (I locked in on too many minor altruistic favors, many of them academic, and it's making it really hard to clear any time for other stuff), but did get out midday. I am squatting in a few hours and also I'm about at the end of my tether so I ignored the schedule and just did :40 easy! Hoping to get in a decent longer one (1.5hr) tomorrow, but really it depends on how I feel!

Tuesday, October 4, 2016


Ugh, not sure about the merits of that, still feeling rather ill.  Anyway, :50 easy, for better or for worse!

Monday, October 3, 2016

Deadlift day!

In a minor miracle I DID run very early Friday morning in Australia before we left for the airport (:30 with 6 x 1:00 easy), but a sinus infection was already descending upon me and I became runnier and runnier about the nose as the flight progressed, ugh.....

Jet lag plus sinuses meant no run Saturday or  Sunday, which just made me feel miserable, and today I didn't run because I was saving vim and lungs for lifting, which really was a good choice I think.  I will run tomorrow daytime for sure.  

I love lifting with my team so much, I am going to miss them horribly over the coming 8 weeks at Oxford!  

(Hopeful about Oxford powerlifting folks, only I see from their schedule that their central midweek workout overlaps with my one obligatory weekly evening Balliol obligation, so I don't know how it's really going to work out.)

Anyway, sets as follows:

(1) 2 x 2 @ 70% one-rep max deadlift with 4-second eccentric tempo (171), 2 x 4 @ 171

(2) squats (felt good I got this one done properly):

2 x 3 @ 62.5% (103)
1 x 2 @ 70% (115)
1 x 1 @ 75% (124)

(3) 4 x 10 banded hip thrusts with 3-second hold

1hr lower body, very enjoyable too (the deadlift is my favorite lift for sure). Ready for this cold to go away!

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Thursday run!

A nice one in the rain.  I was rather shooting for a 1.5hr one easy, but was thwarted in desired turnaround (big construction along waterfront path), and hadn't brought water or money with me - couldn't quite persuade myself to do another out-and-back when I got so close to my hotel & thought of breakfast and WATER.....

1:10 easy in the rain

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Wednesday run!

So I did manage to run on Friday and Saturday, but by the time I went to bed Saturday night I was so exhausted and underslept that I realized I'd better not set an alarm or even think about running early Sunday.  This was the right choice as I felt considerably more human after a night's sleep, but if you don't run first thing it becomes decreasingly likely it gets fit in later.  In summary-

On Sunday I was defeated by tourism (whale-watching!) and late lunch.
On Monday I was defeated by letters of recommendation - had a productive but slightly grueling morning work session and had no vim for anything but lunch by the time I finished.
On Tuesday I was defeated by tourism for a second time (early departure for day trip to the Blue Mountains!).

Today, though, it is a lovely lazy day of lounging and I had a great almost 1hr easy run before breakfast.  Woo-hoo!

1hr easy

Friday, September 23, 2016

Meager run update!

I was glad I had finished with my "100 in 100" project as this week of travels really was impossible for exercise.  I am gradually coming to terms with the fact that as a bad sleeper and an anxious traveler, I really just am not going to have even a short run on a day when I've left home very early for the airport - one of my online run teammates had an amazing tale of having exercised in an airport by running up and down stairs with her backpack and all, but that is frankly NOT ME!  So, in the way of excuses or explanations:

Monday: only slept about 3 hours, left home c. 5:30 for 8:30 flight from JFK to LAX (7hr).  Brent's cousin kindly picked me up at the airport and drove me to Anaheim, we had food and drink, by the time she left I'd already had several drinks and also it was 8pm east coast time and I was just DONE - took a sleeping pill and went to bed.  (Oh, and I was greeted at airport in LA with message from Phillips Lifeline about B.'s  mother, who'd had a couple falls - upshot was one more fall later the paramedics took her to the emergency room and she was being transferred to respite care for broken ankle.)

Tuesday morning: should have been able to run as was up early but we had complex calling around to do about status on B.'s mother and I just couldn't make myself do it.  Checkout time at hotel was 11, we went to LAX and after a slightly complex check-in procedure then spent about 10 hours in the flagship lounge waiting for 10:55pm flight to Sydney.

Wednesday didn't exist as we were on a plane for fourteen hours and date line meant we arrived in Sydney early Thursday morning!  Amazingly we WERE able to check in to our hotel even though it was only 8am or so, that was a blessing.  Got some sleep on the  plane but really again it was just unrealistic to exercise, I didn't have it in me.

Friday: set alarm for 6 but jet lag is killing me - I was awake at 4, lay quietly in bed for a couple hours and finally just got up before the alarm went off and went out for a very lovely run along the harbor.  :45 easy.

Saturday: set alarm for 6 again but it took me so long to fall asleep and then I couldn't STAY asleep either, around 5 I turned off the alarm because I was so tired and frazzled I thought it was more important to try and get a bit more sleep (friends are visiting from Melbourne for the weekend and activities will be required), but since I still just couldn't sleep at all I grudgingly got  up around 6 and went for a run - pretty nice of course but I am just horribly tired, my eyeballs feel as though they have been rubbed with sandpaper!  :30 easy and then 6 x :30 hill on the very good hill leading up  to hotel entrance for a total of about :40.

There is a decent gym in the hotel and I want to be lifting as well but it has so far been incompatible  with other arrangements, in particular timing of tourism and meals - I am reconciled to that, the daily run is the most valuable thing I think.  But I could really use a night of sleep!

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Short run!

Sheepish that it was such a short one, but really this whole week has been overwhelming, I don't see clearly how I could go back and do any of it much differently.  Had not even started packing, organizing work stuff etc. when I got up today (a friend is staying here with the cats, so also wanting to get apartment sorted out properly for a visitor), and couldn't risk doing the long run before making headway on other things, especially given that I was already so tired that all I wanted to do was cower in bed!  Finished up reasonable facsimile of work and packing by around 8pm and just went out for :30 easy.  It is still disgustingly warm and humid, I am looking forward to being in cooler places in coming weeks and months....

:30 easy

Saturday, September 17, 2016


Ah, that was nice - my black-tie event last night was fun but tiring, and inevitable result of being out late and drinking alcohol was that I couldn't fall asleep till 6am, arghh!  :40 easy run is a very good way to shake out the cobwebs....

Friday, September 16, 2016


This week has been completely overwhelming - have been sleeping horribly/barely at all (too much work socializing in evenings, plus anxiety re: this midweek vet episode and things to do for coming travels), spent yesterday afternoon and an hour or two this afternoon just huddled in bed trying to regroup in order to go back out in the evening!  Didn't exercise at all yesterday to my chagrin, I used up every ounce of willpower writing a long letter of recommendation, but today I figured I'd better get out there for SOMETHING at least.  Didn't do the full run assigned for yesterday but had a good compromise that should set me up for being able to survive the third evening this week of mega-work socializing!  

:43 with 10 x (1:00 harder, 1:00 easy)

Wednesday, September 14, 2016


A very good session with Josh downtown.  I am really finally making progress - the Olympic lifting shoes were the last piece of the puzzle.  Took a single at 165 and really felt I could have gone higher, though we stopped it there - nice to have a new PR up on the board!  (Current total now 560.  600 is in sight!)

Having mildly harrowing interactions with vet re: cat I dropped off this morning for dental work - pre-exam detected a heart murmur, they won't give anesthesia until cardiologist has checked it out, only cardiologist isn't available till Tuesday at which point I'm en route to Australia.  Going to go and retrieve cat now and try this again when I'm home at the end of the month!

1hr lower body
1hr bike

Tuesday, September 13, 2016


Ah, such a nice run!  The weather at this time of year makes me really happy (at least when it is not FREAKISHLY HOT AND HUMID).

12:00 easy, then 8 x 3:00 as (2:00 hard/purposeful, 1:00 easy), 12:00 easy


Monday, September 12, 2016


That was good.  Main set: 10 x 3 @ 67% (166) with eccentric tempo descending on final rep of each set.  Deficits: 3 x 3 @ 72.5% (but I think I may have switched out the 2.5s for 5s rather than 10s, which would make it 171 rather than 181).  Goblet squats: 3 x 8 @ 22.5.  3 x 10 stationary lunges.

1hr lower body
1hr easy bike

Sunday, September 11, 2016


Just :30 easy - that was what was on the schedule, I'm sorry not make up one of the intervals I've missed on very warm recent days but I left it late enough that I have more vim for dinner than for running longer, although it is the most gorgeous evening (still high 70s mid-evening, but low humidity and altogether sort of like living on a different planet compared to what it's been like the last few days).

I have one more week at home before our Australia trip, and then one week at home again before heading to Oxford for the fall term there - feeling a bit scrambled re: too many different work imperatives (and in practice external obligations to write letters of various kinds will probably impede my ability to get much done on my own two nice projects), but it is all good really....

:30 easy

Saturday, September 10, 2016


Just did 1hr easy, I have no vim for intervals until the weather reaches more reasonable temperatures!  I waited almost till dark to go out, and it probably wasn't as bad as the last few days have been - certainly humidity was a bit lower than when I was out doing errands, gruesomely, this morning. Let it be cooler soon!

1hr easy

Friday, September 9, 2016


It is so grotesquely warm and muggy that I almost talked myself out of doing any run at all, only I know really it makes me feel good afterwards.  Just did :35 or so easy rather than the scheduled hour -  I have a hot subway trip downtown and family dinner still to come, need to survive all that too!

Thursday, September 8, 2016


It sort of turned into one of those days (I blame heat and humidity in part!) - after the vet visit mid-morning (they make house calls!), I was lazy and dozed and read things on the internet instead of doing my real work.  Finally got myself into gear mid-afternoon (I need to make progress on book planning, and I have an overdue promotion letter), texted Josh to tell him I couldn't come to powerlifting this evening (hate to do that, and it was entirely my own bad time management) and had a work session so enjoyable that I wonder why I procrastinate.  Then had 1hr rather unpleasant very slow run along the river - heat and humidity such that the air feels as though it has the properties of human blood.  Off now to meet up with Liz for Justin Vivian Bond featuring our friend Thomas Bartlett!

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Short run

Should have been an hour, but I didn't quite have it in me - I don't think I hydrated sufficiently earlier either pre- or post-workout (the 10mi biking is easy effort but certainly you're losing fluids).  Started out shuffling fairly happily (a bit of general fatigue but no specific soreness except for the right spinal erector which was tingling in its occasional imitation of a phantom hot dog bun along the back), was aware that I was appreciating running in the shade of "my" bit of the park but didn't want to risk doing two loops there instead of the longer out and back (hard to stay motivated for second loop).  But as soon as I came into the direct sunlight of the river path, my mind roundly rebelled and told me "NOPE!"  Shuffled home instead, it's fine...

:30 shuffle


Hard to pin down one single cause, but the combination of changes (squat shoes, one-on-one sessions with Josh, some other technique tweaks and warmup hacks) has led to great improvement in my squat - it is still my weakest of the three lifts, but not nearly so far out of whack with the others as it was six  months ago.

Some quality singles at 115
4 x 10 with safety squat bar
Single-leg step-ups with 22.5s

1hr lower body
1hr RT bike

Tuesday, September 6, 2016


Feeling rather tired - I usually get "enough" sleep but it's often low on quality, I think.  Anyway a good session at the gym.  My highest one-rep max in the past year was 275, but that's almost a year ago and I think at the end of the last training cycle I was more like 251 - had to recalculate my working weight after doing a first set at 80% of the higher number and realizing it was just too heavy for current strength/fatigue levels!  I also just haven't been lifting that regularly over spring and summer - too much travel.  Josh is giving us more discretion on numbers these days (I think because Certain People were ignoring him and lifting heavier weights than they were supposed to, he threw up his hands!) which for me is good.

6 x 2-3 @ 80-85% of max (I did 2 @ 220, 3 @ 201, 5 x 2 @ 201)

Deficit pull: 3 x 3 @ 60-65% of max (161)

3 x 8 goblet squats (22.5lb)

And a few lunges - back was twinging a bit and really I just felt tired, so I called it a day. It was a good workout - we now have real deadlift platforms and are using bands over the bar on the initial 5, 5, 3 warmup set, focusing on getting the bar taut against the band before surging up - it really then feels like it flies up when you take the bands off!

Gloriously windy run!

It's very strange weather - we still haven't had any rain, but it's quite windy and the water in the Hudson is turbulent and high.  I felt speedy on my way south with the wind at my back and then adventurous as I battled into the wind on the way home!

12:00 easy, 10 x (1:30 hard, 2:30 easy), easy cooldown

Sunday, September 4, 2016

Long run!

2hr time-on-feet run.  Blessedly low humidity, though it's pretty hot still in sun.  First hour blissfully enjoyable, second hour slightly marred by minor aches and pains but particularly by painful sports bra band chafing!  Off to shower now - I think there may be some (TMI) fungal infection along that stripe, will spray it down with chemicals after I'm clean!

2hr easy (over to Central Park, upper five, then back across 106th St., into Riverside Park at 95th and homeward bound thereafter)

Saturday, September 3, 2016


Ah, that was fantastic - I really think a one-hour run is optimal, short enough that it doesn't feel onerous but a little more substantial than these short ones I've been doing.  It's 70F and overcast - quite humid, so not a beautiful running day as such, but cooler temperatures are a blessing!

1hr as 15:00 easy, 10 x 1:00 faster, 2:00 easy, 15:00 easy

Friday, September 2, 2016


Just  :40 easy, which was just as well as my quads are SHREDDED from Wednesday's workout with Josh - I hobbled down the stairs into the park one at a time and was still making faces later on as I walked down campus stairs....

(A most beautiful morning, low 70s and low humidity - reminds me that we are about to come into the best running season of all.)

:40 easy

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Upper body

I may have slightly overdone it today, either in over-exercising (haven't slept well this week) or in under-fueling - also got completely soaked to the skin mid-afternoon on the way to getting my allergy shots, with no spare clothes to change into (I was just wearing the workout gear I rode down in & would wear for lifting), so I was shivering in the cafe with hot tea and a strong craving for sugar (that I resisted satisfying).  I did an adequate but uninspired job with the workout - my triceps started out already really sore from Tuesday's workout and it kinda went downhill from there! - and the bike ride home seemed so arduous I wasn't sure I was going to make it!  Have inhaled cheese and dried fruit and feel significantly more normal now, so I do think it was fueling - will be more careful in future....

:45 upper body circuit: 5 x 1:00 tempo medicine ball, 3 x 10 flat db press on bench @ 22.5 (I had NOTHING!), 6 x (30 alternating triceps miniband pulldown, 20 pushdown).  Called it there as I knew I still had to ride home and it wasn't going to be pretty!

Bike to swim!

Ah, that was really nice - had one of my favorite lanemates (good personality and good match on speed) and a nice coach, very enjoyable.

Warmup: 200 free waiting three strokes off the wall to breathe; 12 x 100 with first four as 50 back, 50 free, second four as 25 back, 25 breast, 50 free and final four in theory with paddles and buoy (I missed a 50 as I obtained paddles).

Main set: only had time to go one full round on this.

3 x 50 as fly-back, back-breast, breast-free
2 x 100 with paddles (negative splits)
200 with paddles and pull buoy (I did it "plain")

Then we did the first bit, an extra 50 of back-breast and an easy 50 swimdown.

c. 2250 yards - very enjoyable too.

:30 easy bike
1hr swim

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Less bang, more whimper!

Ah, I had grand plans for run 100 especially when I was still miscounting and thought I would be doing it TOMORROW morning - but even after a nap and some rehydration and an energy bar, it seemed clear I'd better be moderate in my conclusion!  Just did :30 easy in Riverside Park - right knee/hamstring and lower back are quite tender and tight, so I am going to take Coach Dave's advice and take tomorrow off from running!  That's it for the summer - 100 runs in 100 days, VERY slow and some of them very short, but I am really hoping I'm going to look back and say "That's the summer I made myself into a daily runner!"


Hahahaha, may have SLIGHTLY overdone it given that I still need to do proper run later!  Rode bike down to Chelsea Piers for a lovely session with Josh, at the end of which my legs were trembling with fatigue but I did make myself get out for run #99 (:15 at a gait and speed that probably resembled walking more than jogging!).  Then refueled and rode bike home. Thinking about going back to bed now - slept very poorly due to cats pestering me for attention!

Main squat work set: 4 x 10 @ 65, working on technique.  Did a deadlift set with bands over the bar (we now have real deadlift platforms!) concentrating on pushing chest up initially before surging up with the bar - would have been 4 x 10 but we split the second 2 tens into 5s as my back was very tight.  Ended with 3 x 20 goblet squats with 12-pound kettlebell.

1hr bike
1hr lower body
:15 run

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Short run/upper body!

Incredibly happy to be back at home with my lovely powerlifting team!  It was a workout of much chat and catch-up, took a lot longer than it should have and as I needed to be at G.'s for dinner at 6:45 I left before completing the whole thing.  What I did:

main bench set: 4 x 6 @ 95
dumbbell press on bench: 3 x 8 @ 22.25
hammer curls: 3 x 15 @ 12.5
band lat pulldown x 100

:15 run, 1hr upper body


Tired and slightly melancholy as a result, but VERY happy to be back in NYC!  :30 easy in beautiful Riverside Park.

Monday, August 29, 2016


Ah, that's an early start for a Monday.  My flight leaves early afternoon, will get a move on now, get sweaty things in the washer, etc. and prepare to reenter real life in NYC...

:23 run, 1hr yoga

Sunday, August 28, 2016

(Catch-up post)

(I see I forgot to log a yoga-run yesterday - 1hr flow yoga, :10 jog home which I am taking the liberty of counting!)

Short run

Just :20 easy.  Day 97, run 95 - 3 more days, 5 more runs, eminently doable though with travel tomorrow knocking out the second run possibility....

Long run!

Feel good about getting that one done.  2:05 easy - was out the door by shortly after 5am.  The trouble is I am just not a good sleeper - knowing I have to get up for something I consider important pretty much kills my ability to sleep soundly, I woke up to pee around 3 and I just didn't properly sleep again after that, I was popping my head up to check the time every ten minutes.  I do better in climes and times where I can get up when I get up and run in the middle of the day!

Saturday, August 27, 2016


Alas, total failure of willpower - I had alarm set for 5:10 and meant to do my 2hr run this morning before it gets too hot, but I hardly slept on Thursday night and when I was briefly awake around 4am I thought - I JUST CANNOT BEAR THE IDEA THAT I HAVE TO GET UP IN ONLY ONE MORE HOUR - and reset alarm for 6:30, which seemed more reasonable.  So I have just done :40 easy and WILL do my long one tomorrow....

Friday, August 26, 2016


Day 95, run 91 - gotta put in some doubles to catch up!  Had mistakenly counted Thursday next week as final day but really it's Wednesday, that's actually a better day for me to do a longer one in the evening (hoping to put in 100 minutes as celebration of 100 in 100).  Never did make it to the gym yesterday afternoon for a treadmill run - will try again for that today.  Anyway :23 easy, then POWER YOGA!  It makes me feel a bit clumsy, the vinyasa will jump very quickly into warrior 1 and then back to chattaranga and I am always a second behind, but it is a very good and very enjoyable class, with helpful adjustments from the teacher.  I had a very sleepless night but it was so much so that I figured I might as well get on with exercise things - might see if I can take a nap now once I've showered....

:23 run
1hr power yoga!

Thursday, August 25, 2016


Very good way to start the day, though I cannot seem to get out the door quite early enough to do a full thirty minutes before 6am yoga.  Anyway :23 easy and 1hr very challenging yoga!  (Mark was teaching, that is a very good class - I will hope to get it it again tomorrow....)

Wednesday, August 24, 2016


Timed that slightly wrong, just :23 run and then 1hr power yoga.  I think it is wiser after I've been running in a warm climate not to do hot yoga!

Tuesday, August 23, 2016


Not sure I hydrated sufficiently yesterday and this morning - run was fine, but I felt pretty queasy at a very early point in the standing sequence at hot yoga, had to sit quite a bit of it out.

:30 easy
1hr hot yoga

Monday, August 22, 2016


I felt slightly eccentric, but I went out for my second run after B. went to bed, then stopped at the grocery store and walked home - fridge very bare.

:25 easy


I had ambitious plans for early early morning run and yoga, but was having an utterly sleepless night - at 1 I finally reset the alarm from 5:10 to 7:45.  Did get adequate sleep I suppose in the end, the run was hot but the yoga was superb!

:22 hot run
1hr flow yoga

Sunday, August 21, 2016


That was nice - Brent picked me up after, but really I should jog home, it's only half an hour even if it's hot (for swim safety it really needs to be fully light IMO).  Gonna try and do that a couple days this week - I am registered for this crazy open-water swim thing in September and have told myself I only am allowed to do it if I can swim 3+/week between now and then!

:30 easy run, :40 easy swim (about 1.5K)

Friday, August 19, 2016

PM run

:20 easy.  Day 88, run 84.

Hot yoga!

Very good too.

1hr hot yoga


This climate is too warm for me - every day I snooze the alarm a little bit longer and then regret it when I'm out in blazing sun.  Anyway, got it done, holding out hope that I am going to have some lovely cool running in October and November in Oxford as a reward for heat slog now!  B. will be home tomorrow which is also helpful, he is on a very early schedule and doesn't mind "tipping" me if my night-before self requests it with appropriate specificity and conditions....

:30 easy (day 88, run 83)

Thursday, August 18, 2016


Can't say I was feeling the love for that one, either beforehand or indeed during.  The heat and humidity here are unrelenting!  But it had to be done....

:30 easy


1hr "yin" yoga.  Very enjoyable.  Rented a mat because my own is so heavy and hot to carry, but also discovered that they have mat storage space upstairs - I will take advantage of that.


Good start to the day.  I didn't run - I had psychological need of a day starting without an alarm, meant to do :30 treadmill after my strength workout but forgot to bring running shoes, which is fine - I can fit it in at the end of the day before sociable dinner with G. and E.

(Tend to default here to yoga rather than strength - it is less fun working out without teammates - but in fact I am about 2 minutes walk away from an excellent weightlifting gym, and Josh has sent me the week's workouts, so there is no good excuse!  Having usual Davidsonian difficulty of "too many good things" - I really should be swimming also as I have signed up for a [current-assisted] 5K in September....)

Deadlift work set: 5 x 6 @ 165 with 4-second ascent, descent (Josh requested mini-bands but I didn't have wherewithal for that)

Bench: 3 x 8 tempo (6-second descending) @ 85; dumbbell floor press, 3 x 10 @ 30; 4 x 10 lat pulldowns; 4 x 12 front raise, lateral raise @ 5

1hr strength

Wednesday, August 17, 2016


Just :20 easy.  Didn't go to the Stroke and Stride after all - logistics/transportation were always a bit offputting, but I also got an upsetting piece of news this morning that made me not want to be sociable with strangers!  Day 86, run 81.

Hot yoga!

Either my spot was cooler or the room was cooler, maybe a bit of both: also the 1hr class is significantly more manageable than the 1.25hr.  Do rather wish I'd brought some short shorts - I avoid them because I don't want to walk to and from yoga in the world in them, but they really are more suitable for that particular climate and context!  Sweat evaporates better off the bare legs....

1hr hot yoga

AM run

:30 easy.  Was a little later out the door and it was noticeably hotter - it's been overcast the last couple days too which really helps.  Day 86, run 80.  I am thoroughly enjoying this - it's sort of like the feeling of coming to the end of a long first draft of a book manuscript!

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Evening run

:30 easy.  Day 85, run 79.

Hot yoga!

As always after a layoff, hot yoga was - VERY HOT!  Good, though.  And not absolutely overwhelmingly too hot, just queasily occasionally too hot...

1.25hr hot yoga


I woke up in a timely fashion and had my morning run before the sun was too high in the sky.  Good way to start the day!

Day 85, run 78.

Monday, August 15, 2016


:30 easy.  David and I are conspiring to get me back on track with numbers for "100 in 100" - week will have a lot of 30/20 doubles!  Day 84, run 77.


but I'm going to log it as one - I need to take a few liberties here to catch back up!  Often I am lazy in Cayman about getting to the grocery store.  It is a hot exposed one-mile walk each way and I can just about squeeze by with, say, the mixed berry protein shake at the cafe for breakfast, spinach and cheese omelet at Cimboca for lunch, dinner at one of the places nearby - but really I am determined to have good nutrition this week.  So - $200 later (island prices + healthy eating =  devastating combination!) - 2 warm miles grocery trip.


Sunday was a wash exercise-wise - I was up at 5:45am, flight slightly delayed but not horribly so, got to Brent's around 3pm without having had real lunch or proper meals on Saturday either and fell into bed for a nap - when I got up a few hours later, it was clear that dinner was a much higher priority than a run.  Now I am even further behind!!! And since Brent isn't home till this coming Saturday, I don't get the early-morning boost/tipping that usually help me run early here - that's gonna have to wait for next week.  Anyway, will see what can be done....

1hr flow yoga

Saturday long run!

Writing later afternoon from slightly sordid airport hotel - I made it here safely! Did manage to complete my 2hr "time on feet" run earlier - it was excessively hot, and I should have gone out earlier for logistical as well as climatological reasons - I like to do out-and-back if I'm on the west side, but the path is so much more exposed to sun after 59th St. that I turned back around :40 and had the horrible challenge of being AT HOME, basically, but still with 40 minutes to eke out.  Anyway, I managed it, I wasn't physically in extremis - just having escalating stress about having time to get apartment ready for arriving family of five Germans, who did indeed get to NYC earlier than planned!

2hr very warm very slow run

Friday, August 12, 2016


I let heat psych me out yesterday, and then by later in the day I really had been affected by heat enough that it was no longer feasible - but I was determined to get the workout done properly this morning.  Didn't get out early, and it was pretty darn hot, but I did the best I could - in these conditions, it's less like "fast" and more like "trying to keep cadence and knees higher than they are during the default shuffle."

12:00 warmup

12 x :40 faster, 1:20 easy

4:00 jog regroup for purpose of convenient counting

5 x 2:00 faster, 3:00 easy


1:20 total

Wednesday, August 10, 2016


Just :30 easy.  I was kinda waiting for it to cool down; then I looked at the hour-by-hour forecast and realized it was a doomed enterprise!  It's going to be disgusting again tomorrow, I am considering doing my longer/intervals run on the track at Chelsea Piers....


Very good workout with Josh.  New squat PR at 145, I can do better than that!  Got drenched on ride home.

1hr lower body
1hr bike

Tuesday, August 9, 2016


I note that despite sinus infection I am currently at PEAK FITNESS!  Very enjoyable albeit purposeless - enjoyable for its own sake I think.

(1) circuit x 5: (a) 20 face pulls (b) 10 front raise with band  (c) 10 rows @ 37.5
(2) 8 x 3 bench @ 80 with six-second eccentric descending
(3) circuit x 5: (a) 20 mini-band triceps (b) 20 triceps pulldown (c) 15 lateral raise (5lb plates) (d) 20 abs with band

10mi bike
1hr upper body


Ended up modifying (assigned as 10 + 8 x 1:00 + 10) as I am really feeling sub-par.  Minor complaints but cumulatively irksome - mostly it's just that the minor sinus infection after spreading from right to left side of face has now turned into a cold with raw-ish lungs and postnasal drip, which has a tendency esp. in heat and humidity to make me feel queasy while exerting myself outdoors.  Did about 12:00 easy, then gave first one-minute hill a try and felt sickly.  Jogged easy back to the start and instead did 8 x :30 strikes on a gentler hill in shade.  About 40min total.

Monday, August 8, 2016


Best day of the lifting week IMO.  Started with a warmup circuit x 4 (10 x hamstring DB curl @ 37.5, 20 x shrugs @ 52.5, back-leg hyperextension), then 3 x 3 @ 206.  Very nice too.  4 x 10 goblet squat @ 27.5 (sub for front squat with bar), 100 abs with band.

1hr lower body
10mi bike

Long run, better late than never edition

Blessing and curse of flexible schedule: easy to procrastinate as you still CAN do the long run on Monday.  Should have gotten up and out the door earlier, it was pretty warm (not terribly humid, but it's a sunny route), but mostly enjoyable.

Jogged over to Central Park, entered through the 7th Avenue path and did the upper five, then left the park, ran across on 108th St. and down Riverside Drive and into the park at 96th, then home along my usual last bit of park.

2hr time-on-feet run

Sunday, August 7, 2016

Morning of bliss!

About 100x better than yesterday, not least because though it's hot, the humidity is more normal and less extreme - phew!  Also when I woke up this morning I found that though the minor sinus infection is still in evidence it has NOT turned into a full-blown cold.

Rode to Chelsea Piers where I met Joanna for a lovely run!  Hot but very nice - ran down the west side and then back up, finishing near Chelsea Market where we had a post-run snack.  Rode bike home - underhydrated now but in a very good mood.

10mi bike
:40 run

Saturday, August 6, 2016


I was in a terrible mood all day - slept poorly last night, woke up to realization that stuffed-up nose was not allergies but an incoming sinus infection, the weather is very humid and NYC at its worst.  Got home mid-afternoon utterly overheated and miserable, just lay in bed in air-conditioning feeling sorry for myself!  I was hoping the temperature would have gone down by the evening, but it's still disgusting - however, though the 2hr run on the schedule seemed by that point impractical, it was clear that SOME kind of a run could only improve my mood.  Running with Joanna tomorrow morning in Chelsea so not sure about when the long one will fit in, tomorrow evening perhaps if I can get it to happen?

:40 easy

Friday, August 5, 2016


Just a short one this morning (yesterday's missed :30, not today's :40 with strides) as the water is off at the mains from 10-5 and I wanted to make sure I got a shower....

:30 easy

Thursday, August 4, 2016


Very nice workout.  Main set 10 x 3 @ 95, making sure to hold 1-2 seconds at the bottom - very good workout this way.  Also 100 shrugs @ 52.5, 100 triceps band, 100 abs band.

Still need to do my run for the day, not feeling very motivated!  (Didn't quite have time/vim in the morning.)

1hr upper body

Wednesday, August 3, 2016


The verdict: very slow but very fit.  Beautiful evening.  Felt slightly broken for the first twenty minutes or so but back didn't hurt at all once I was warmed up, and I got the thing done without any drama, though it must be said that the outside observer might not have been able to tell the difference between the "faster" and the "easy"....

1:10 as 10:00 easy, 10 x (:30 faster, 1:30 easy), 10 x (1:00 faster, 2:00 easy), 10:00 easy


This lift continues to be a thorn in my side, but we are working on it.  Had a good long sleep and back felt much better when I got up, to my relief.  Rode bike downtown (most beautiful weather, almost like a fall day!) and had a useful workout with Josh.  Note to self: wall squats, with hands lightly resting on the wall and with PVC "bar."

10mi bike
1hr lower body

Tuesday, August 2, 2016


My back was really sore all day, and I almost bailed on going downtown, but really bench day is easy and I thought I would regret it if I didn't go.  It was a very nice workout (I really, really miss it when I'm not in town!).  We were just pressing heavy singles.  I failed at 125, did 3 singles at 110 and then 2 more at 120.  To some extent I just need to get used to the feel of it being heavy and going up slowly.  Then floor press: 5 x 8 @ 32.5.  Skipped the circuit as needed to rest back more than I needed additional fitness stuff.  10mi RT bike.  Have taken advil and am about to go to bed with heat pack (hot water in shower already made it feel quite a bit better).
Day 71, run 65.  Very nice too.  Back is really sore, worse though when twisting/turning/walking than when running so I'll keep at it.  Busy day with meetings and a dissertation defense in the afternoon, better get on with things...

:30 easy

Monday, August 1, 2016


Very happy to be back in normal life!  Minor complaint: week mostly away from computer/desk really relieved my normal right-side back soreness/tightness, but a tweak on the lower left-hand side has emerged and is really twinging uncomfortably - I noticed it in the last few days at Disney, and it was definitely an issue during my workout today such that I curtailed the circuit and called it a day. Advil and heat pad tonight I think....

Heavy singles!  I felt slight remorse (but not really) about having done my long run earlier.  Got in a good one at 251 and figured that was the place to stop.  Circuit was notionally 6 x (RT farmer's walk, 10 x medicine-ball slam, 10 x goblet squat, 10 weighted lunges) but I only did twice through.  Twingey!

1hr lower body
1hr bike

Long run!

I did do one more short one at Disney (Thursday morning I think), but really it was a disaster the rest of the week!  I was at the airport for seven hours on Saturday and only got home close to 11pm.  Family obligation downtown Sunday morning, then came home and basically slept the whole rest of the day and again from mid-evening.  Happy to be more like back on track now: did yesterday's long run midday today after taking care of a few pressing work things.  It's not pleasant but not excessively hot either, really just pleased to have gotten it done...

2hr (flat/easy) (that's run 64/day 70 - got some catching up to do over the next couple weeks...)

Tuesday, July 26, 2016


Brent ran with me, that was nice (it was EARLY): :25 easy.  Might try and do a longer one tomorrow morning if I can get myself up and out the door....

Monday, July 25, 2016


Just :30 easy as we have a 7am (!) breakfast reservation.  I am hoping I am going to look back and say "this was the summer I really finally made myself into a daily runner" - it makes everything go better....

Sunday, July 24, 2016


Friday and Saturday were a disaster - family obligations and heat wave Friday (plus a late night Thursday and pre-travel necessities), then one of these travel Odysseys that particularly wipes me out.  But I did get up early enough to run half an hour before breakfast - we are at Disney, it is clear that if one doesn't run first thing, it doesn't happen - and I think I can do better tomorrow....

:30 easy

Happy :45 run

Not the brain-bustingly intricate numerological one David wrote for me, as I didn't get up early enough - I will do that one tomorrow!  This morning, just :45 easy - it was hot but there was still a freshness in the air, the humidity isn't terrible.  Have spent the day helping my mother with shopping and prep for birthday dinner, and am writing currently from the cafe at Chelsea Piers - about to lift (upper body) and will then hasten downtown for last-minute arrangements.  It is Jenny's powerlifting team family dinner - my mother asked me who I would like to invite and I couldn't think of a nicer group to celebrate with!

:45 run
1hr upper body

Wednesday, July 20, 2016


I am in a ridiculously good mood - precipitated most immediately by low humidity and sunshine.  Rode bike down to gym and had another great squat session with Josh - new shoes!  Did just a token treadmill run (time and vim were both short) and rode bike home.

1hr squats (5 x 3 @ 95, then 3 x 3 with bar and 4-second tempo 2-second isometric hold, kettlebell squats 3 x 10)
:10 treadmill
1hr bike

Tuesday, July 19, 2016


Very good upper body session at Chelsea Piers - the dynamic of who's working out when and the team as a whole seems to be highly functional just now.  After that I sorta meant to run home but it turned out walking was more realistic!  I am not going to abuse the privilege, but really given that "100 runs in 100 days" is purely for myself I think I can count it instead of a run - that puts me back at parity....

3 x 10 @ 80

close grip: 2 x 6 @ 75

rows: 5 x 10 @ 42.5

100 face-pulls

4 x 15 skull-crushers

100 triceps pulldown

c. 5.2mi walk home (c. 1.5hr)


That was really nice - thunderstorms in the early evening led to temperature and humidity dropping overnight, and this was pretty much perfect summer running weather.

1hr easy

Monday, July 18, 2016


My favorite day of the lifting week.  I hemmed and hawed about the weight but Josh said that though I can make adjustments on volume sets, I need to do the heavy lifting or nothing will improve.  Really I know he's right - I shouldn't second-guess before I start warming up anyway.

5 x 3 @ 206 deficit pulls

3 x 3 tempo @ 165

100 shrugs @ 52.5

4 x 15 band hip thrust

Skipped abs as back was slightly sproingled by that point.

1hr lower body

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Clawing my way back to run parity!

It's slightly eccentric, I feel, running so late in the evening (only a handful of other runners still out in Central Park, and then a lot of people glued to their phones playing Pokemon Go!), but it suits my schedule better than some of the alternatives.  Still very warm but not as steamy as it would have been a few hours earlier.  Jogged to north end of park and did just the upper 5, for total of about 1:20.

Day 55, runs 53 and 54!  Have to achieve parity before  Disney trip as it seems more likely that I will miss one while I am there than that I will fit in an extra one....

A lick and a promise...

A phrase that perplexed me as a very young reader of the Laura Ingalls Wilder books, which often used it to describe what Ma did to Laura's hair in the morning before she went to school - why would you lick someone's hair with your tongue?  Was it like how mothers annoyingly lick their finger and wipe away a smudge of dirt on your face?

Anyway, I have a long one on the schedule, but didn't get out the door soon enough (need to be showered, fed and exited before cleaner arrives at 12).  Just did :30 easy in "my" bit of the park and will hope the humidity's a bit lower in the early evening for a good long one....

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Midday swim, evening run

Met up with L. at John Jay for the 12:30 TNYA "Low Pressure Zone" swim. In fact I didn't end up doing the workout as a second coach was running a butterfly clinic in two lanes, and that sounded more fun!  Thoroughly enjoyable - I guess I will always rather be learning something/thinking about something than simply pounding it....

It has been unpleasantly sultry over the last few days, but the humidity seems to  have dropped this afternoon, and I had a really nice 1hr run just now along the river.  Breezes and all!

1hr swim clinic (fly)
1hr run

Friday, July 15, 2016


Weather is disgusting, but clearly I have sufficient base fitness that the workout can be done regardless, if more slowly.  That is a good one.

:55 with 6 x (1:00 fast, 2:00 easy) and 6 x (:30 fast, 1:30 easy)

Thursday, July 14, 2016


Ah, grotesquely steamy, but it is all about embracing conditions and making it work.  :50 very slow in "my" bit of park (more shade, though psychologically counterintuitive to loop back over same ground that has already been covered - I really prefer the out-and-back wherever possible).

Wednesday, July 13, 2016


Almost didn't happen - I had a meeting with an acquaintance I'm helping with graduate school applications, and I also spent a very hot and sweaty hour mid-afternoon taking over about 12 bags of clothes etc. to the Columbia "Clean and Go Green" donation dumpsters!  And have to leave in about 3 minutes if I am going to be on time for dinner (haven't yet showered).  But - it was good....

:30 easy


This lift has been a thorn in my side - I think at one point last year I had a rather dodgy 1-rep max of 185 but really it was so unreliable and wonky that we retested and left it at a more genuinely controllable 135. Josh and I have been working on it very patiently, and have made some minor tweaks in recent weeks plus one big one - raised heels! Currently with a minor hack, but I am awaiting an order of shoes that I am hoping will let me get rid of the mats. Anyway, a very good workout this morning.

4 x 3 @ 85
singles up to 135 (video below)
3 x 15 @ 2 18lb kettlebells (held)
band curls: 4 x 25

The thing we will work on next: having the bar stay really over the forefoot....

1hr bike
1hr lower body

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Ride and lift

Ah, this is good - the weather is so beautiful right now, it's almost uncanny (I mean, it's still hot, but the humidity is low - very different from normal July NYC weather!). Rode my bike down to Chelsea Piers and had a great workout. Today I finally felt reconciled to the fact of this not being a particularly productive summer, writing-wise - life just has other things sometimes (this is HERESY to JMD but there you go, it is the reality of the situation).

5 x 10 @ 75
100 ring rows
3 x 30 face pulls
5 x 1:00 tempo medicine ball wall bounce, 1:00 recovery
4 x 20 band curls

1hr bike
1hr upper body