Adventures in Cross-Training

I appear to have an IT Band Situation. Apparently, it’s caused by running too much on uneven surfaces. Which is my favorite kind of running.

Part 1.
I go see the fabulous Peep PT Mimi, who has the friendliest smile and can contort your body in amazing ways. She is certified in ART, which I’m told stands for Active Release Therapy. I prefer to call it “All Righty Then!” which captures the surprise I felt as my foot approached my ear. All is great until she pulls out a small plastic purple comb that doesn’t have any teeth. I’m not impressed, even as she tells me about the inventor (Grafton) and how this is going to smooth out the bumps in my IT band. She runs it over my leg and it is like hitting those bumpy sound warning strips on the side of the highway that are designed to wake you up if you fall asleep at the wheel. It is really that bad. And the yelp I make is nearly as loud.

Part 2.
Sunday is completely crummy but I am jealous when Andrew, Stephen and Will head out to Umstead to run the Sycamore loop. They returned muddy, soaking wet and freezing. My envy knows no bounds. [Yes, I realize this is a character flaw.] I meet Ann at the Y at 11 to swim and would have bailed if she hadn’t been there (she concurs). We swim for an hour and have a great workout. I had planned to try deep-water running but Mimi already told me how painfully boring it is. I also didn’t want Ann to sit the hot tub alone. On the plus side, the jet on my aching hip flexor totally rocks.

Part 3.
I see Danny and Kerry on the spin bikes as I head out to grudgingly try a Bike to Nowhere. Within 15 minutes Danny actually fakes his own death so he can leave. Kerry and I accost unsuspecting Peeps who happen by, whining about our injuries and begging them to share stories that would lift our dampened spirits. Audrey can hear us yakking over her iPod, 4 treadmills away. Gordy chooses a treadmill even farther away. Soon, we have our own radius of empty bikes and treadmills. But, I actually make it an hour on the bike without bursting into flames. I leave, deciding that Peeps make everything better, even swims on cold rainy days and Bikes to Nowhere.

Part 4.
I go to spin class at 5:45 am after my spouse unwisely stays up too late watching basketball. To my amazement there are a dozen Peeps there. My butt is so sore from Sunday that I sit on my towel. Fortunately, nobody laughs. Rosemary leads a hill workout and I quickly realize that a seated ride is all my ITB can do. I zone out a little because the buzzing of many spin bikes makes it so I can’t hear or talk. I perk up a little when Rosemary skips a song that she says isn’t Y-appropriate, and spend the rest of the class wondering what it is. I make it through a second hour in a 24 hour period on the Bike to Nowhere, which has got to be a record.

Part 5.
After spin class, most Peeps flee while Cheryl, Ann and I head into 30 minutes of Absolute Abs. I like to think I have decent core strength but quickly realize how wrong I am. I should have known I was in trouble as soon as Rosemary tells us to get out the bosu. She tells us to lie on the ball with our hands and feet in the air, perching on our backs like dead bugs. Which is the name of this move (could there be a more obvious warning?). From there, you get to your feet, stand up, go down into plank, stand up again, then sit and lean back on the bosu, assuming the dead bug position. The first time, I sit too far forward, and my big feet pull me down. The second time, I sit farther back. I lean back, picking up my feet to assume the dead bug stance. Next thing I know my feet are flying over my head as I flip over backwards. Fortunately, Ann and some dude I hope never to see again are the only witnesses. Ann laughs. The dude grabs my bosu the minute class ends and takes it away from me.

Part 6.
I head back to Mimi after diligently following her plan of stretch and strengthening exercises that should give me better balance and strength. I do a little foam rolling before our appointment, and am happy to notice that my hip flexor feels better even than it did this morning. And this time my foot really does almost touch my ear as some of the tightness is addressed. Even Mimi seems cautiously optimistic (knowing full well that if she’s too excited, I’ll go right out and do something dumb). I get the OK to try a short, flat, straight run on Thursday. I want to start cheering. See what I mean? All Righty Then!

When I showed Andrew my Umstead marathon splits and asked him what I should do to improve my marathon, he said I should add cross-training and core work. Oh, and sleep like a normal person. Still working on the sleep part. Thanks to all the Peeps and especially Mimi who have offered healing and support!

10 thoughts on “Adventures in Cross-Training

    • Oh, there was plenty of both, Scott, but it wasn’t bloggable. BTW this all took place over the past 4 days and I’ve only been off running for 8 days, 1 hour, and 57 minutes. But I’m fine! Really!

  1. As I sat behind you in spin class I laughed (in my head) that you believed a towel would make your sit bones happy on the bike. Good luck finding flat land on Thursday’s run. Maybe laps of the Home Depot lot?

  2. Oh, what I would give to be able to do a flat run on Thursday, of any distance! I am glad that you are getting better and have enjoyed seeing you and Joanna at the Y bright and early.

  3. Pingback: To DNS or DNF | Running with Scissors

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