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On the road again . . .

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Re: On the road again . . .

Post  mul21 on Tue May 15, 2012 9:56 pm

^^^^^^^^^

Yup. What he said.
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Re: On the road again . . .

Post  Tom H on Thu May 17, 2012 6:01 pm

Frustration level is climbing with the medical community. I called the Doctor's office again today and the imaging center STILL had not gotten the MRI report to the Doctor's office! I did find out from the nurse that the Dr. had already written up a referral for me to an Ortho doc, so there MUST be something there! Heck, just the fact that within 24 hours of the x-ray I had a pre-approved (insurance-wise) MRI tells me the x-ray saw something requiring further investigation. But the nurse said she'd have to get the MRI results for the Dr. and THEN have the doc call me.

OK, on the fitness front. Yesterday was another swim/run day, except I decided to switch out the run for the elliptical so I could put more minutes of work in as I felt a little niggle on the right ITB. AM was the 1000 yd swim and then in the afternoon it was to the gym for a HR workout on the elliptical. Did 60 minutes while monitoring HR, starting out with higher resistance to get the HR up (took about 10 minutes to hit the 143 target) then adjusted the resistance downward over time keeping the HR between 135 and the 143. When I was in peak aerobic condition, at the 60 minute mark I'd have adjusted down to a resistance of 6 (whatever that means) but this time I had to drop it to 5 at the 50 minute point. Felt really good though; it has been a while since I was able to wring (literally!) the sweat out of my shirt after a workout. The ITB is still niggly today, so a rest day is called for - Pilates only.
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Re: On the road again . . .

Post  Tom H on Sat May 19, 2012 9:29 am

Finally heard from my Dr. I have two sprained ligaments and one torn one in the left wrist. Now it is to an ortho hand surgeon to get his read on the severity of the injuries and determine treatment options. I said to the doc, "Well, I guess the good news is that there are no fractures." To which he replied, "Not really, fractures heal relatively quickly." No smiley face here.
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Re: On the road again . . .

Post  Michele "1L" Keane on Sat May 19, 2012 11:59 am

Sorry to hear about the final diagnosis - yup, a break might have been better, but it will heal in due time.
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Re: On the road again . . .

Post  Mark B on Sat May 19, 2012 12:25 pm

Definitely no smiley face here, but Michele is right: either way, you will heal in time.
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Re: On the road again . . .

Post  Tom H on Sun May 20, 2012 3:24 pm

"Time heals all wounds" Hmmmm, maybe the title of a new blog. Since Eugene last year, seems like it has been one injury after another - some running related, some stupid, some mysterious. At this point, I'm just glad to have a diagnosis so that we can get on with the treatment aspect. Altready thinking ahead to the worst Sad , IF surgery is indicated FOLLOWED by casting to hold things in place for some period, what casting options are available these days? I've never had one, but understand that they can be pretty itchy/stinky if you sweat in them a lot, and I plan to sweat. Any thoughts?

Yesterday was back on the elliptical then up to visit the granddaughter (which took up the rest of the day, I'm happy to say!). Followed the same protocol on the elliptical, 1 hour, HR not to exceed 143, increased resistance at the beginning (after a few minute warm up) to get the HR up or it takes a long, long time. Felt really good and never got below 6 on the resistance setting this time. Added in some incline at periods during the workout to vary the step. At least on the elliptical I am less likely to fall on my hands and further injure the wrist . . .
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Re: On the road again . . .

Post  Joel H on Sun May 20, 2012 11:00 pm

Sorry to hear about the sprain. Glad to see you are still going at it though but be careful. You need to get healed up before ramping up into another training cycle.
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Re: On the road again . . .

Post  Tom H on Wed May 23, 2012 12:59 am

OK, had my Dr visit today and nothing but good news:

The cortical buckle - he took more x-rays and determined that while there is buckling there is no underlying fracture

The ligament sprains - bad but not seriously bad. He used a lot of in-depth medical jargon explaining it all, but the gist was it'll be OK and likely take two more months to completely heal.

The ligament tear - I'm not quite so clear on how this isn't worse, but as tears go this one is a meh.

Doctor's orders: no restrictions except for pushups or weight lifting with a bar that will force the wrist into a fully bent open position. Running is OK but he suggests I wear my wrist brace with steel reinforcement top and bottom just in case I'm not over my klutzy phase yet. The general guideline is to listen to the wrist; if whatever I am doing causes pain, don't do that.

One word - Woohoo!!!

Yesterday was a swim day (and yes, the Doc specifically said swimming was OK Very Happy ). Distance was 1250 yards with HR in the 120's. Today was back on the elliptical for another hour long session that mirrored the last one. Good results and working on pacing the workouts to slowly build endurance and aerobic base while avoiding injury. At some point I'll have to pick a race to train for, but I'm not there yet.
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Re: On the road again . . .

Post  Mark B on Wed May 23, 2012 11:15 am

Woot! cheers cheers cheers

Very good news, Tom! And good for you for specifically asking about swimming this time. Wink

I'd say you have plenty of time to build up, and plenty of races in the future. So there's no need to rush it. Build slow and easy, and see if you can reach a high level of fitness without hurting yourself or burning out.
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Re: On the road again . . .

Post  Tom H on Wed May 23, 2012 1:28 pm

@Mark B wrote:Woot! cheers cheers cheers

Very good news, Tom! And good for you for specifically asking about swimming this time. Wink

I'd say you have plenty of time to build up, and plenty of races in the future. So there's no need to rush it. Build slow and easy, and see if you can reach a high level of fitness without hurting yourself or burning out.

I've come to the same conclusion on the slow and easy, just not sure if I can pull it off. Not having a goal race is a good start as I know that would give me a specific schedule that I would push to follow even if not feeling 100%. I think incorporating the cross training will also be beneficial as it will use the muscles in different ways and use different muscles, hopefully helping to avoid any repetitive motion-based injuries. Just have to figure out how I can get back on the bike now; I always have the option of a stationary bike at the gym but find that 100x worse than running on the TM.
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Re: On the road again . . .

Post  Tom H on Wed May 23, 2012 8:51 pm

Fun times today. Started out with my 1250 yd swim, and the swims are getting easier which makes me believe the base building is bearing some fruit. This afternoon couldn't help myself and got my bike out and sat on it with my wrist brace on to see how that would work. Much to my surprise it worked amazingly well. The brace has steel bars top and bottom that are absolutely rigid and have a slight bend right at the heel of the hand and comes up about 1/3 of the palm. This allows me to rest on the top of the bars, on the horns or even in the drop. So I decided to kit up and give it a test drive. Went on a 10 mile quick ride to try it out and while it was not as easy or comfortable as riding with no wrist issue, it is possible if you accept that you won't be able to necessarily push as hard as you used to (not a bad thing).

The "fun" thing about the ride today was the wind. I knew it was breezy; I didn't know how breezy. My ride took me down the top of the levee to the SF Bay. The wind was blustery when I started out and kind of mixed in direction. The nearer I got to the bay, the stronger it became and it was squarely in my face. I kept dropping the gears and it was all I could do to stay above 10 mph . . . but then I turned around. Started shifting up and kept doing so until I had no more gears to go to. Speed was climbing and I kept waiting to stop feeling the wind at my back. This didn't happen until I exceeded 30 mph on the dead flat path and got up to a top speed of 33 mph. That was quite a rush! I got home in time to tune in the local news and saw that the wind was 31 mph with gusts to 51 mph! Wow. Just in time for Obama's plane to land at SFO! The weather weirdness continued on the report when they said that it may SNOW up in Tahoe on Friday!! Whoda thunk?

So, there's the answer to my question about riding. Looks like I can get back on the bike for modest effort rides. Here's hoping the cross training pays off.Cool
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Re: On the road again . . .

Post  Mark B on Wed May 23, 2012 9:03 pm

33 mph! I used to race cars off the line at stoplights, but I don't think I've ever got a bicycle up to that speed. Glad you didn't have a squirrel jump in front of you and your steering-impared hands!

Actually the number 33 brings to mind a good strategy: LP (Let's see if our younger readers catch the reference, though it's off by 1/3 rpm ...)
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Re: On the road again . . .

Post  Tom H on Thu May 24, 2012 2:00 pm

@Mark B wrote:33 mph! I used to race cars off the line at stoplights, but I don't think I've ever got a bicycle up to that speed. Glad you didn't have a squirrel jump in front of you and your steering-impared hands!

Actually the number 33 brings to mind a good strategy: LP (Let's see if our younger readers catch the reference, though it's off by 1/3 rpm ...)

Steering not a problem, nor surprisingly braking. As for a hapless squirrel, at 30+ mph whether he gets hit or not is completely up to him: affraid . Yup, that emoticon expresses that situation quite well.

Today was a walk the dogs and spend an hour on the elliptical kinda day. Weather is beautiful and squirrels did abound. The dogs noses were going a mile a minute and those pesky critters would tease them by peering around the tree trunk then darting around to the other side - a lot of fun to watch. The elliptical workout was great, 60 minutes @<143 bpm. Kept the resistance up at 8 until 57:30 when I had to push it down a notch. I don't think I've improved that much that fast, I think it was that particular elliptical I was on. I'll use another one next time and see how that works out. Now it is off to lunch with ex-coworkers then late this PM, a session with my Pilates trainer.
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Re: On the road again . . .

Post  Tom H on Mon May 28, 2012 9:25 pm

Life's been busy the past few days, so time to catch up.

Friday - 1500 yard swim, 1 hour on the elliptical

Saturday - 10 miles cycling @ HR, 4.6 mile run @ HR. I must be doing something right as the splits for the run were as follows, and do not differ greatly from the splits I was seeing for a run only:



Split


Avg Pace


Avg HR


Cadence


1


9:05


140


88


2


9:21


142


89


3


9:26


141


89


4


9:25


142


90


5


9:15


143


89


Summary


9:19


141


89
Still frustrated by my inability to hit and maintain cadence target of 90. How can 1 more step per minute be so difficult?

Sunday - Active rest day. Well for me anyway, for my dogs, it was just an active day. A 1.3 mile walk in the morning and a 2.4 mile walk in the late afternoon. I could feel the bike/run combo from the day before, but it was one of those feelings of solidly working out the legs, no aches or pains. Sweet - it's been a while since I felt that.

Today - 8 am 1700 yard swim workout (1x600, 1x300, 2x200 3x100, 2x50), 10 am hour long Pilates class. Then this afternoon a short and easy 15-minute bike ride. The ride wasn't a workout of any sort, I just got some aerobars installed on my handlebars so that I can rest my weight on my forearm, not my wrist, as my wrist heals. I wanted to get a feel for the aerobars to see that they are installed correctly and not slipping. They work great, but it will take a little getting used to. I have them on my hybrid bike, but those are not quite as narrow so inherently a bit more stable.

Oh yeah, I signed up for my first triathalon today tongue
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Re: On the road again . . .

Post  Mark B on Mon May 28, 2012 11:19 pm

Good job on the workouts... and smart to use the aerobars to reduce the strain on your wrist.

Have you considered buying one of those digital metronomes? As a recovering musician, I can't imagine being able to constantly hit the same beat for an extended period without a little assistance.

Tri? Sigh.
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Re: On the road again . . .

Post  Tom H on Mon May 28, 2012 11:30 pm

Mark, I did buy a metronome, but it rapidly drove me nuts. I was able to hit the 90 cadence in past training without too much effort, thus the frustration. But I hear you, and think I might just dust off that ticking torture device and see if I can find a way to make it work for me to get past this speedbump.

On the tri, no sigh. It is a sprint tri which has the swim and run distances well below my training efforts at this point and the bike portion is only 11 miles which is a walk in the park. May as well put my cross training to good use!
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Re: On the road again . . .

Post  Tom H on Mon Jun 04, 2012 12:04 am

Life’s been busy, but in such a way I couldn’t tell you what is taking up all the time. I’ve been able to keep the training going consistently which is really gratifying. With the wrist issue I’ve been banned from the golf course which was taking up 3 days or so per week, so as a result my yard has never looked better and my dogs have never been walked so much! I seem to have sorted out the nagging cadence issue as I'm able to hit and maintain the 90 count on the Garmin now after the first mile warmup. Perhaps the threat of breaking out the metronome was all that was required.

Last week was:

Monday – 1700 y swim, 1 mile walk, Pilates

Tuesday – 2 mile walk, 4.6 mile LHR run, 9:34 avg pace (ugh)

Weds – 1700 y swim, 2 mile walk, 14 mile LHR ride avg 17 mph. First real ride with aerobars and they work great to take the pressure off my wrist.

Thurs – 4 mile walk, 5 mile LHR run with 9:20 pace (better), Pilates

Friday – 177 y swim, 1 mile walk

Sat – 14 mile LHR ride avg 17.2 mph, 4.5 mile LHR run immediately off the bike with surprising results:

SplitAvg PaceAvg HR
18:46141
28:54143
39:09143
49:14142
59:16143
Summary9:02142
What was surprising about it was a) the pace at LHR after a 14 mile ride. Did not expect that. B) The feeling in the legs when first starting the run was really wooden. In fact, I was thinking I must look like one of those badly animated Christmas specials where the nutcrackers are running after someone. In the first quarter mile, however, I looked at the Garmin and was at a pace of 7:25 – but it felt like I was going really slow (I guess after the speed on the bike). I forced myself to slow multiple times during the first two miles, but both were sub-9:00 AND within HR constraints. I fully expected to completely melt down in the subsequent miles but had better performance there than in my run-only days. A little bit of head scratching going on with this one . . .

Sunday – A well-earned rest day, and a full day spent with my granddaughter. What a super way to end the week!
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Re: On the road again . . .

Post  Mark B on Mon Jun 04, 2012 11:19 am

Sounds like a good week, Tom! You know, if you run out of yard work down there, you're welcome to come up and visit. Wink

I wouldn't stress about your speed on your low HR runs - it looks like you're doing great - and the mystery of the brick performance boost might simply be that your body was fully warmed up by the time you started running. Did you tank up on fuel while you were on the bike? If so, that might have helped a bit, too. Regardless, it sure bodes well for your career as a triathlete!
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Re: On the road again . . .

Post  Tom H on Mon Jun 04, 2012 2:58 pm

Today was a swim only day. Was planning to do a swim/bike, but the left hip is a little past niggly so giving it an extra day of rest and massage. I know, not like me, but maybe old dogs can be taught new tricks after all. So the swim was still a 1700 yd effort, but the first leg of it was a 1000 yard effort, so a bit more in terms of endurance each week.

Mark, i didn't fuel at all during Saturday's workout as I anticipated it to be less than an hour and a half overall. Did make sure I was hydrated, but that was about it. I'm not complaining about the result, just find it curious.
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Re: On the road again . . .

Post  Tom H on Sat Jun 16, 2012 4:28 pm

OK, I'll admit to being quiet of late; there's been a lot going in in the family - good and bad. On the good side, my eldest daughter who had a baby last July is back in running and today ran a 5 mile race at a sub-10:00 pace - which is great for where she is in training right now! On the bad side, my youngest had to have some heart surgery this week, which turned into good news as it was a great success and she will be better than ever. During this time I've kept up with the training and that all culminated today in my first Triathlon, a sprint that I completed in 1:06:03. I'll post a report with more detail. Suffice it to say that a Tri presents a whole different set of challenges, but beating your expectations in one feels every bit as good as doing so in a half or a full.
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Re: On the road again . . .

Post  Mark B on Sat Jun 16, 2012 4:40 pm

@Tom H wrote:OK, I'll admit to being quiet of late; there's been a lot going in in the family - good and bad. On the good side, my eldest daughter who had a baby last July is back in running and today ran a 5 mile race at a sub-10:00 pace - which is great for where she is in training right now! On the bad side, my youngest had to have some heart surgery this week, which turned into good news as it was a great success and she will be better than ever. During this time I've kept up with the training and that all culminated today in my first Triathlon, a sprint that I completed in 1:06:03. I'll post a report with more detail. Suffice it to say that a Tri presents a whole different set of challenges, but beating your expectations in one feels every bit as good as doing so in a half or a full.

Wow, that's a lot going on, Tom. Good news all around (though scary) about your daughters.

Congrats on the tri finish! Quite impressive.
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Re: On the road again . . .

Post  Tom H on Fri Jun 22, 2012 11:53 am

Took Sun and Mon as recovery days. Felt good with no residual aches or pains so on Tuesday got back into the swing of things. Decided I'd shift days to start with a swim day just to give the legs one more day of rest, so here's what the week looked like:

Tues: 1M swim

Weds: 5M run, LHR, 9:36 avg pace but started out at 8:57 and ended mile 5 at a 10:04. Guess legs still recovering

Thurs: 1M swim, 14M ride @ 18 mph avg, 1 hour Pilates. Felt great after all was said and done. What's going on?

Fri: 5.3M run, LHR, same course as Weds. 9:02 avg pace and felt very easy. Lap data as follows:

Lap Data
LapTimeDistancePace/SpeedAHRMHR
108m 52s1.00 miles08m 52s /mile169206
208m 48s1.00 miles08m 48s /mile141144
309m 05s1.00 miles09m 05s /mile141146
409m 11s1.00 miles09m 11s /mile142148
509m 15s1.00 miles09m 15s /mile143146
603m 02s0.33 miles09m 16s /mile143145

That was MUCH better than I had expected, so I'm a happy camper Very Happy

So today will be fun as I get to spend it with my granddaughter. So, off I go!
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Re: On the road again . . .

Post  Mark B on Fri Jun 22, 2012 2:38 pm

Looking good, Tom! Keep it up!

And have fun being grandpa. Very Happy
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