Friday, August 2, 2013

Back in the saddle

I took the last month or so "off" from losing weight in that I only exercised when I felt like it instead of feeling the need to get 5-6 days of exercise each week. I still averaged about 4 days of working out during that time so it's not too bad. I was just sick of everything and didn't feel like pushing myself too hard.

During that time, I got pretty burned out about road biking and since that's been my most frequent form of exercise, it was clear I needed to continue with it otherwise I would stop losing weight. But I didn't want to ride anymore! A conundrum, I tell you.

So I took a couple of weeks off from the bike. And when I finally went back to it, I loved every minute in the saddle. I eventually realized that all the rides I had been doing were either balls-to-the-wall or insanely uphill. There were no "fun" rides where I could simply enjoy being on the road on my bike. Riding became a burden.

My first ride back was along the flats near my house at whatever pace I wanted at the time and it was awesome. I eventually returned to riding hills on Wednesdays with a group I'd been riding all summer. And even though we rode straight uphill for 6 miles, I had a blast, as evidenced by my genuine smile in the picture below.

I'm in the middle in the green.

During my break from riding, I did a bit of running to keep somewhat in shape. I went for a run with The Roommie and we averaged a 9:30 minute/mile pace for 3 minute run/1 minute walk intervals.* I didn't ever dread having to run once the walking part ended, which is a HUGE improvement in my run endurance and state of mind. I think I may actually enjoy running now. Eww.

I was also having some knee issues after an unfortunate game of kickball which resulted in cutting back on my exercise. Everything turned out to be fine and my doctor said I can exercise through the pain without messing my knee up any further so I'm back to full force.

In between the MRI scans and doctor's visits, when the prognosis for my knee wasn't clear, I stressed. I was worried that I'd have to either suffer through a season of rugby on a bum knee and thus postpone the hypothetical surgery until November, or I'd have to sit out the season altogether and have the surgery now. Since I've recently begun getting respect from the refs, I didn't want to disappear for three months and lose all that so I was stressing out a lot. I also couldn't really turn down a trip they had offered me to Minnesota since I don't know when that'll come up again. But all is well now.

As they say, "Everything works out in the end. If it hasn't worked out, then it's not the end."

*I still don't like running for long periods of time, so when I do go for "long" runs I turn them into intervals. Instead of running straight for 3 miles, I run 3 minutes and walk 1 minute. This way, I have something to look forward to during the three minutes of torture.

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