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.)