Thursday, May 27, 2010

Elliptical - I don't get it

I had tried an Elliptical once before and hadn't liked it. But I had this idea that it would make a good substitute for running. So I tried again on Tuesday.

I still don't like the Elliptical.

I talked to the gal who manages our gym at work about it and she said they can be tough for shorties like me. I found my feet kept moving forward on the plates until the toes were smashed up against the front and I was sure I was going to fall off. I also couldn't deal with the arm pole thingies at all. They just jerked my arms around and I couldn't get them to move as far as they needed to either. My arms aren't long enough.

They are nothing like running to me either. I tried very hard to do "running" with POSE form. All I got was a sore right knee. They really put you in a heel strike position and I think it's a bad idea to practice that.

But I was able to go 2.25 miles with only mild discomfort in my calf near the end. So I was thinking I'd give it another shot. Until I woke up sore and stiff on Tues. and am still in pain on Wed. So it didn't hurt my calf directly at the time, but it hurt my calf indirectly. Just as much as running, if not more.

No more elliptical for me! I'll have to think of something else, I guess.

In the meantime, I didn't swim yesterday due to my monthly support meeting and I didn't bike today even though I brought my bike (and my trainer in case it rained) all the way across the bay. I had to stay at work and get something done before I could leave.

Plus, it's my 21 year anniversary today so even though we're doing the date thing on Sunday, I wanted to spend some time with Mr. Mac on the actual anniversary day.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

That explains a lot

I just read this article about smart snacking and in the middle of it was this:
Is it that time of the month? Women are most likely to binge or overeat in the two weeks prior to their periods if they've ovulated (most women on the Pill do not ovulate).

Menstrual flow is triggered by the secretion of progesterone, which is thermogenic, or calorie burning. Thus, without so much as lifting an extra three-pound weight -- or finger, for that matter -- your body burns more calories than it does during the rest of the month, and your hunger kicks in to compensate.

In a study at the University of British Columbia, women ate an average of 260 extra calories a day when they were ovulating.
As I read this, the light blub went on! That's why I have a "feeding frenzy" every couple of months or so -- always around when I'm supposedly ovulating -- where I frequently end up eating about 200-250 more calories than my online food journal says I've burned, yet I don't gain any weight.

No wonder I'm hungrier and eating more. I'm burning more.

It doesn't happen every month but I'm pretty sure I don't ovulate every month. (At my age, I probably shouldn't be ovulating at all. Which begs the question: is this why a lot of women gain weight after menopause? Because they aren't burning an extra 260 calories a day for a week or so every month?)

On a related note: Can you imagine how much more effective their programs would be if places like Weight Watchers gave you more points the week you ovulated? Instead of having all these women beating themselves up about how "weak" they are because they can't stop snacking during that time, they'd be able to take advantage of what's going on to either lose extra weight (not eat the extra points) or to indulge themselves a bit so they don't feel so deprived.

I wonder what other crazy things our bodies do each month that aren't accounted for in the current theories of calorie processing and weight management.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Cottage Cheese Test - 20 months

I've been feeling like I can eat more lately. In fact, I know I can. So I was worried that my sleeve had grown too much. Except, once in a while, I will not be able to eat any more than I could eat at 6 months out. It was confusing.

I decided to do The Cottage Cheese Test to see if my sleeve is any bigger.

Friday, May 21, 2010


I've been feeling frustrated lately. This was the month that I was supposed to heal up my calf. But I still can't run. It's exactly six months to my Ironman and I can't run more than a mile at a time. Plus I have only two PT visits left until August 1st. I'm starting to panic.

I find swimming makes things feel better. Biking is neutral. But running hurts. I don't really want to keep running but I'm supposed to do small gentle running to test things out.

At Track on Tuesday, I was doing exactly that -- taking it easy, running slowly and interspersing my running with lots of walking and -- boom -- something went wrong with my calf. It felt like when a spring breaks in a couch. I walked back to my car and I thought I wasn't going to make it. I was cursing up a blue streak in my head and convinced I had done major permanent damage to my leg.

But as soon as I got off my leg (sitting in the car) I felt much better.

That's the way this injury has gone. I run, I hurt really badly, I stop running and two hours later I hardly hurt at all. Okay, I hurt, but not like when I'm running when it feels like I've done horrible things to my leg.

Then again, I've had discomfort through pain all week. Usually my running pain only lasts a day or two.

At least my calf always feel better when I swim. And not too bad when I bike. It's everything else that hurts it.

I just don't know what to do. Obviously, what I've been doing isn't working. And I need to get this taken care of or my Ironman experience is going to be total crap.

Thursday, May 13, 2010


We all need some. Okay, maybe I shouldn't overgeneralize. I need it.

I mostly get it from logging my food at My Fitness Pal. Some people like something a bit more public ... like posting what they eat every day on a message board or on their blog. I consider blogging my food to be too boring to read and logging on a bunch of web sites too much work. I've already got three places I log my exercise and three places I log my weight on Mondays. God forbid I end up with several places I log my food as well!

Last week, I went through a period where I didn't want to log my food. Now, I don't always log as it is. I won't do it if I'm at of town and have poor access to the internet. I figure doing it in those cases is a bit obsessive. I do write down what I eat though. Sometimes, when I get back home, I'll log it after the fact, but a lot of times I won't bother.

But this was different.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Rehab month

My June race fell through and I haven't actually put down the money for Barb's Race in late July so my PT said to stop training for races and start concentrating on healing up my calf. Sounds good to me!

I keep worrying that I'll lose all my fitness and not be ready for my big races if I don't train. So I've been trying to "train smart" and do what I can without aggravating my calf. But I know I keep going overboard, especially with the running.

This month I am supposed to take it easy, only run to discomfort, not failure, and don't do anything else that hurts my calf. It sounds like a good month to work on my swim stroke and take easy bike rides. I did that in Dec. and it really helped with the calf.

Of course, this means my #1 position on the Trips for Kids/Synchros leader board is in jeopardy for May. I think somehow I'll manage.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Wildflower Weekend - For real

I have so much to talk about that I don't where to begin. How about:

I finished the Wildflower Long Course! I am Half an Ironman!

But before that lots of stuff happened, some cool and some not so cool.