Thursday, April 30, 2009

Getting Better

It’s been 4 days now since I last rode the bike and 9 days since I last ran. I’ve kept my training to just swimming and have focused on resting this week. I now feel like I’m starting to recover both physically and mentally from the last few months of training. Just a recap…I put myself on a forced recovery week to get over a bit of hip flexor tendonitis. This was probably one of the smarter things I’ve done. My body really needed some rest. I was so exhausted that I was really grumpy at work and wanted to beat my boss up. I’m going to continue to recover for the rest of week and reassess whether I’m able to run again next week. I’ve been icing my leg every night, stretching, and taking some ibuprofen.

This week is the Tour of the Gila, a bike stage race in southern New Mexico. I’ve done this race a few times before. It’s by far my favorite bike race though it’s by far the hardest bike race I’ve ever done. I’m a bit sad I’m not doing it this year because Lance Armstrong, Levi Lepenheimer, Chris Horner and Floyd Landis are racing in the category 1 race. I’m a category 3 racer, so I wouldn’t race with them but it would be fun to see all the hype around these sports figures. My training right now is so different than what’s needed for the Gila. I wouldn’t even dare try…it would be too humiliating. I’ve learned that runners aren’t bike climbers, and this is a bike climbing race. I have a few friends driving down to the race to watch Lance. I’d rather spend the day with the family than in the car driving to and from Silver City.

This week I was able to do something I’ve not been able to do in years: I touched my toes while stretching. It’s silly but I’m so stiff I haven’t been able to touch the toes in years. I’m certain this is the primary reason I get hurt so much while running. My muscles/tendons are too rigid. I never stretch…it takes too much time. When you’re strapped for time and you have to make a choice between running for 45 minutes or running for 35 minutes and stretching for 10, the former generally wins. Bike racing doesn’t require much stretching. But, running necessitates stretching almost daily. I’m learning this lesson, so I’m trying to make a real effort to stretch. Stretching is so painful. Oh well….what ever it takes!

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