Thursday, 3 February 2011

5am start - the early bird catches the worm

Today I awoke at 5am to get to the gym at work with plenty of time to spare.  The doctor said I can do any sport that doesn't hurt my knee so I decided to try cycling on the exercise bike first.  I did a solid hour at a good cadence, keeping the resistance not too high and felt very good.   That burnt around 700 calories according to the machine, and my heartbeat was somewhere between 120 and 130 most of the time.

After a quick break in order to clean down the machine I hit the Concept2 rower.  I had considered to do an hour on this, but since the longest I have done yet is a 10km piece, and since I had already cycled on the static bike for 1 hour I decided to do another 10km.  I started off at a reasonable pace, faltered a little in the middle and then finished strongly.  The sprint finish was so fast actually, that when I finished I had to go to the toilet and "relieve my nausea" in the nicest possible terms.  But after that I felt fine again.  Final time was 42 minutes and 15 seconds.

Then I did a good 15 to 20 minutes of stretching, especially important considering the physio told me my hamstrings are very short and tight.

Tonight I feel fit as a fiddle and not an ache or pain in sight.  I read quite a few posts on the internet that rowing is a great compliment to running as its works a lot of the opposing muscle groups, and can help to resolve running related problems.  Actually I did notice in a picture of me running in the Geneva half marathon that I had much bigger quads back then, and at that point in time I experienced no knee pain at all.  But of course the knee problems could be a result of the increase from half marathon to full marathon distance.  Time will tell.

Tomorrow I have my 2nd appointment with the physio, and am hoping she gives me lots of exercises to practise at home.  Homework so to speak.  I am 100% determined to overcome these temporary setbacks, to strengthen my body and to kick ass in the Marathon des Sables next year.

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