Saturday, January 30, 2010

Return to the Road

After being confined to a treadmill for the past 10 days whilst on our holidays it was time to bite the bullet and get back out on the road. I had planned to get up and out early on Friday to avoid the hot weather, but my body had other ideas about sleeping in so that went out the window. Instead I had to go out after work when it was still HOT! I wasn't looking forward to getting back into WHT (world's heaviest trainers) - I'd been running in my Nike free runners while overseas (as they're a nice light option to pack and good for walking around in) which was ok on the treadmill but not enough support for longer road runs so it was back to my proper running shoes. Just did a short (30 min) easy run which was ok and I was glad I had been doing some training while away! Yesterday (Saturday) I went out for a long run (1 hour) which was hard work in the heat (even at 9am) and not only did I have the extra weight of WHT to contend with but also had my water belt on (no way I could go an hour in this weather without water). It was ok- ish, definately got easier as my water bottle got emptier! I had a couple of walking breaks on the second half back and it was a slooooow run, but that's ok, glad to have got out and done it before MC next Tuesday. Pouring with rain today, hope it clears up before tomorrow's public holiday when I have a short fast interval run planned - could do with it being a bit cooler though.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Holiday Work Outs

I'm back! Home from the holiday, back at work and trying to hold on to that sunny  lying around by the pool or sea feeling. Suffice it to say we had a fab time, the resort in Phuket, was, well, mad! It deserves a blog all to itself really, the funniest part is that we got it on a timeshare exchange and the week we own is in a small motel in Turangi which is great for us for skiing, but I can only imagine the shock and horror of someone who owned a week at the Phuket resort if they swapped a week and ended up in Turangi ... they probably wouldn't quite believe it! Just to summarise briefly about the resort (and then I'll shut up about it and get on with the real subject of this blog!)
- Our appartment was roughly the same size as our house (I'm not kidding...)
- The daily room service included the creation of small animals made out of towels (Thai take on origami ?) - I decided to return the favour but not sure mine were quite of the same standard....
- There were 3 swimming pools just in case you couldn't manage the 100 metre walk to the sea
- When you arrived at aforementioned pool(s) the pool staff would bring you towels and iced water, which they topped up regularly, and occasionally bowls of fruit
- The onsite gym was better equipped than the one I'm a member of here in NZ

So on that note (the gym) you'll be delighted to know that the holiday wasn't all about lying on the sun and cooling off in the sea or pool, we did actually get some workouts done too. BIP couldn't afford time off training for hockey masters and I thought it would be rude to make her train alone so we got to the gym 5 days out of our 7 in Phuket and I did a variety of treadmill runs and a few weights. They also had hot/cold plunge pools in the changing rooms which I took advantage of on the last day, but should have checked there was no one else around before jumping into the ice pool the first time as I realised halfway through some rather choice language that I was not alone....!
We also had a gym in the hotel in Bangkok so even got a workout there too. I therefore feel somewhat virtous and it's nice to get back from a holiday not totally fearful about having to get back into running from scratch. Having said that I'm sure next Tuesday's marathon clinic will still be a killer.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Hay hay hay!

There's nothing like throwing a few hay bales around to get a total body workout, cardio and all sorts of muscles, some of which you may never know you had. I got home at 4 yesterday to the joyous sight of our hay being baled (weather had been up and down all week so it had been a bit nerve-wracking). BIP was due home at 5.30 and her older brother was also coming over with the car trailer to help out, so I was prepared to do nothing until they all arrived. Until I looked out of the window. Enormous black clouds were brewing and all heading straight for our paddock, uh oh! So I raced out and at 4.30 began loading up our little farm trailer and dumping bails into the hay barn. The small trailer can carry about 7 bales comfortably and our mini four wheeler can manage to tow that quite well. I was on load number 7 when BIP got home and took up position in the hay barn as stacker so I could just dump each load and head back to the paddock. By now the sky was seriously black and loud thunder was rumbling all around. After 10 load BIP's elder brother arrived with the other trailer and between us we got in the last 50 bales in record time, there were 9 left in the paddock when the heavens opened and between us BIP and I managed to balance all of these onto the small trailer and persuade the bike to tow it up to the barn - phew!! It was a realy downpour and I was drenched - as were the dogs who'd been running round their pen barking like fools at all the activity rather than staying dry in their kennel.  So all gathered in in record time, and I'm surprisingly not that sore or stiff today, I suspect it will hit me tomorrow. The good (and somewhat amazing) news is the spa pool is finally in, delivered, installed, filled and (as I'm sitting at my desk typing this) heating up. I don't care if it's not hot enough when I get home, if necessary I will put my wetsuit on to use the darn thing as I'm determined to get at least one use of it before we head off on holiday tomorrow morning! Oh yes, btw I'm off on holiday, so blog posts will be few and far between and mainly along the lines of - spent the day lying on the beach..... you have been warned.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Weekend Activities

Another beautiful sunny weekend, hard to drag myself off the sun lounger, but got a little too much sun Saturday lunch time so thought I'd better get into the shade for the rest of the weekend. Saturday arvo I wasn't feeling too energetic but managed a few free weights in the garden (the shady part!) - although there's not too much I can do with the dodgy shoulder there are still a few things I can work on, and I also gave my abs a bit of a work out too. On Sunday BIP decided she should try a longer run for her stamina training (she's usually doing shorter faster runs) so we went out together for an hour. I'd forgotton how annoying I find it running with BIP, despite not doing anything longer than 40 mins generally, it doesn't matter how much training I've been doing she always pootles alongside me without a care in the world and can generally finish faster - putting me in a really really bad mood! Hmph. I got over it. The amazing news is that the spa pool is finally being delivered this afternoon!!! So then just got to get the electrician to do the wiring and the handover person to come and show us how to do the chemicals and it will be all go. We might actually get to use it before heading off on holiday on Thursday (watch this space....) The only dilemma I have now is weather to leave it up and running for the house-sitter while we're away, which would be the nice thing to do, but only if we get to use it first!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

To Round off the Week, DBT

I've had one of those really frustrating weeks. You know the kind where everyone and everything seems out to thwart you... well that was my week. I decided to vent my frustrations on the treadmill with a lunchtime treat of death by treadmill.It did the trick, I no longer have the energy to vent or rant at anyone and have been reduced to a zen-like state of phlllrrrr-ness (if that's how you spell it). I even had to take the lift back to my office once I'd dragged myself up the hill!! Yes, the lift!! Not just any old lift, the lift of doom which is forever trapping people for hours on end in it's evil clutches. Given the week I've had I'm amazed I made it out so effortlessly. Now I just need to summon up enough energy to get over to the library and bookshop this afternoon .... this could be a long trip.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

It's Rude to Stair

At some point this week I had the great idea of resurrecting Thursday morning stair runs. BIP is on a major fitness drive prior to the start of Master's hockey next week so was keen and hence this morning I had to drag myself out of bed (and it was a drag as I'd already been up once at 4.30 to move a bellowing calf back to the right side of an electric tape - which wasn't even on!) for 40 minutes of evilness. The route is a 5 min easy jog from the gym up the hill to management buildings then 5 repetitions of jog down the hill round the corner up the slope and then up the stairs - first set big strides 2 at a time second set small fast steps, then try and recover along the flat bit and go again. Stairs are uncompromising and quick to pinpoint lack of fitness and particularly lack of strength in the legs. By the second set I was convinced my legs were made of jelly - or more probably mince pies, xmas cake and alcohol! I will leave you to imagine the state of loveliness we were both in by the end, needless to say the 10 min cool down around the playing fields involved several bouts of walking.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Taking it Easy Ain't Easy!

Lynny was back at running last night as was Stumpy, which took our running group number up to 5 which was better than last week's pitiful 3! Lynny was complaining about how little running she'd done over the xmas break and how unfit she was feeling, which in all honesty was music to my ears. However I failed to take into account that when Lynny is feeling unfit she doesn't slow down at all, just takes occasional walking breaks. I realised this after 10 minutes as Stumpy and USA Pete got further and further behind and I was in iminent danger of collapse. A new game plan was needed so I dropped back and ran mainly with Stumpy (USA Pete was still struggling this week) and after each walk break would do a few minutes with L and M. We finished the run with a killer hill, short but nasty, and with just 10 mins to go I forced myself to up the pace and finish in the front group. Ugh, the words 'tomato face' and 'dripping wet' spring to mind - isn't it lovely to run on hot sunny nights?!
Today I opted for a lunch time circuit. Actually it wasn't really a circuit as with my shoulder the way it is (don't get me started on that!) I can only use about 20% of the circuit machines, so I just alternated between seta of weights and 2 mins of cardio (5 on the spin bike, 5 on stepper and 5 on the mini-trampoline) which was quite enough for a lunch time thank you very much. Then I went to the bank and had to restrain myself from slapping the really really annoying clerk who gave me totally incorrect information yesterday and blatently lied about it today - hrmph.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Sea Air & Walking = Tired!

We spent the weekend at the beach and had a great time walking, swimming (well, getting into the sea screeching at how cold it was and getting out again), lazing in the sun and generally enjoying ourselves. It was the first time our youngest dog had been to the beach and he was quite bewildered by the sea which kept creeping up on him unexpectedly and getting his feet wet! By the time we got home on Sunday night we were all exhausted, and I didn't get out of bed until gone 9 on Monday morning which is very unusual. I still felt quite wiped out and it was a major effort getting out for a run - not helped by the strong winds that were whipping around the place. At least it wasn't another scorching hot day (I had planned to run at the beach but it was really just too hot) but it was still a struggle. After about 25 mins I had to slow to a walk for the turn around before bucking myself up for the run home. Definitely no speed or distance barriers getting broken, but at least I got out and got it done.Hopefully I'll have a bit more energy this evening for marathon clinic, and hopefully a few more people will show up this week!