Saturday, June 25, 2022

Grinding It Out


Let's just say it was a week filled with all kinds of grit and grinding.

We're talking random aches and pains, and an out-of-the-blue series of unfortunate events. As always, there's much to be said of having a positive attitude and a willingness to smile when things are sketchy. It is also most beneficial to embrace gratitude and celebrate one's blessings.

After all, our mindset is our own choosing, even when our circumstances are compromised.

Before I dis on the deets, welcome to the Weekly Run Down!

 I love hosting this link-up with Deborah (from Confessions of a Mother Runner)! If you write a fitness-based blog, you're invited to join the party. The link-up opens at 8:00AM (EST) on Sundays and remains open through noon on Monday. We love reading about everyone's weekly fitness endeavors, training highlights (or low lights) and race recaps. We ask that you link back to both hosts, and we encourage you to read/comment on the other linked blogs as well...please don't link-drop & dash ;-)


So, here's the scoop on what went down, in my little corner of the universe, this week: 

A very sunny (and warm) Sunday...
Prior to Sunday, I'd invested a good 8ish hours of vigorous garden work...lots of stooping, squatting, bending, and crazy yanking and pulling (of weeds and wayward grass). To say that my achy-breaky back was a mess would be a drastic understatement. I started the morning with a therapeutic 3-mile walk, amidst the sunrise, and felt much better. We spent a few hours, over lunch, in celebration of Father's Day (along with my parents and two of our kiddos). I also enjoyed a late-afternoon nap (it was horribly hot and humid, which compounded my exhaustion), and took a nice 2-mile walk after dinner (by then, the humidity had broken and the temps were rather pleasant). 


Never Miss a Monday!
Feeling much rested, I got out Monday morning for a 5K run. Something I don't think to do is to alter my route(s) and cut through some alleys. Wow, I seriously need to do this more often...the gravel is much kinder to the body and the traffic is drastically reduced (duh!). Later, I got in a couple of 1-mile walks at work. By quitting time, the temps had risen almost 30-degrees since sunrise...topping off at 93F, with the feels-like hitting 100F! I did a 2-mile "walk & talk" (via  my cell), and was glistening and glowing like crazy by the time I made it back home.


An early morning Tuesday 2-fer.
The morning started with a stack of upper-body strength workouts (outside, on the deck). Then I grabbed Gustavas...remember him, my mountain bike? With Krystal currently side-lined (awaiting a replacement bike tire), it was Gustavas to the rescue! Poor guy, he'd been sadly neglected since last Fall, so it was great to take him for a quick 5-mile ride before getting ready for the office. I also got in another 1-mile walk, at work, before the temps got too uncomfortable (we came oh-so-close to setting a record high temp for the day).


Double workout Wednesday.
It had been a couple weeks since Barb and I were able to swing a #5at5, but we made it happen Wednesday morning. Yikes, the temps had gone down (mid-60F's), but the humidity was still sky-high.  By mid-morning, though, the humidity had leveled off a bit (so, a couple of co-workers and I were able to do a couple of 1-mile walks without melting). Oh, and let me add that a random "crack" on my left heel decided to split open, somehow (?), overnight. Thankfully, it didn't hurt (much) running, but walking was a much different story of torture if I was wearing anything other than my hiking sandals.

After work, it was time to hit the hilly bike path with Amy. Even though I'd gotten my tire back from the bike shop (and the hubby had put it on my bike), I felt an overwhelming urge to take Gustavas out to the lake instead of Krystal. Keep in mind, he's a mountain bike, so he weighs a good 30+ pounds more than Krystal (who's a hybrid, and very light-weight). We had a good headwind going out, but that transpired to a decent tailwind coming back. In other words, this ride went much better than anticipated! It had been a good two years since I'd ridden him on the path, so it felt good to get in some extra resistance-training on those hills. I rode a few bonus miles, after returning to town, for 16 total miles. Then, I took another 2-mile walk...just because.


Thankful Thursday...
Oh, what a morning! After two rides with Gustavas, I decided it was only fair to rotate Krystal back into the mix. We got in an awe-inspiring 10-mile ride, just as the sun was coming up. That sunrise, though! This is why I have ZERO regrets with my early-morning routine...I simply cannot imagine sleeping-in and missing out on this kind of beauty. There also was some walking (two total miles for the day), and an evening Peloton stack of glutes/lower-body strength work and two more of Tunde's upper-body toners. 

 

Finally it's Friday!
As mentioned in my Runfession post, I'd sustained a nasty burn on my chin (from some wayward pizza grease, Wednesday night). The burn had felt kind of crusty and sensitive all day Thursday, but by Friday morning, it had developed an obnoxious purplish/black scab. I'd also been having some ongoing hip joint/flexor discomfort and it was not in a good mood. The forecast was showing lots of rain for Saturday, so Barb and I decided to take a chance and run Friday morning instead. We met at 5:30, with 5-6 miles on the agenda. My hip issue did feel (somewhat) better after the first few miles, but I thought it best to call it good and finish with four. I made it back to the house only moments before Friday's rain hit.
  

Speed-work Saturday...
The morning forecast was still looking iffy, but I wanted to test my luck with a few miles. It had been a hot minute since I'd seen the track, so I thought it was time for a reunion. The Grinnell College track is just over a 1/2-mile from my driveway, and it's open to the public much of the time. I seldom take advantage of it, though, because I don't have much affection for running in small circles (all in the same direction, none the less). That said, I know there are many benefits to running on a track, the least of which (for me) is building mental strength. 

Here's what happened:
**1/2-mile warm-up (getting there)
**4 x 400m (with 400m recovery)
**1/2-mile cool-down (the return trip back home)

My pace splits were 7:04 / 7:29 / 7:35 / 7:33. Nothing  grandiose, but it gives me a baseline. It was my best effort on a slick track (overnight rain), mega-muggy weather conditions, and a tired body (with still some hip issues at play). My best effort is good enough for me, LOL. And, I almost beat the rain...it didn't start sprinkling until I was about two blocks from home.


What's on tap for Sunday?
We're headed out, Sunday mid-morning, for a long ride with our friends, Mike and Amy. I'm staying out of the running shoes, but plan on a sunrise walk before we load the bikes and hit the road. That said, I'll most likely be a bit tardy reading/commenting on the blog linkers, but I promise to be caught up before bedtime. 

All in all, it was a decent week in terms of fitness, but it felt like I had constant non-running-related discomforts on the daily. Thankfully, the annoying heel crack is almost healed now and the chin burn is looking (and feeling) much less scary. The hip joint/flexor isn't any worse, but I'm going to keep my eye on that so I don't aggravate it further (I have a July 4th 5K and a 10K a few days later). I kept the running conservative (15 miles), while biking saw 33 miles, and walking had 17 miles. For strength work, there was one lower-body session, and two upper-body sessions. Plenty of core, and daily planking, leg lifts, and push-ups. Onward!

In case you missed out, here's what else went down on the blog:

In other news:
Friday Fashion Flair. I have had this flowy, pailsey-print top for many years, and I just cannot let it go. I love the color combo of the light teal with brown. I love the jeweled "medallion" detail below the v-neckline. And, I love the style of it...it can go casual or dressy depending on what I pair with it. Do you have any wardrobe pieces like that?


Here's another peek into my garden...
While I love the bright colors of my annuals (I'm looking at you, impatiens and geraniums), there's something special about the subtle splash of color from all the perennials that reoccur each year. This year, though, it seems that most of those perennials are blooming sooner than usual and not staying in bloom very long. This week's highlights...the purple cone flowers, the first of the many hostas, and achillea the pearl (brought from our Michigan house, 20 years ago!).


So, that's another wrap of another week of action. Can you believe we're closing in on the end of June...already?

How did your week play out? Any training highlights? Any struggles? Any races? 

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32 comments:

  1. I hope all of your little aches and pains feel better quickly! My training highlight of the week was my century ride on Tuesday. Yesterday's gravel grinder was very fun, too! We're headed out for a ride with a new-to-us gravel group this morning!

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    1. There's a lot of gravel grinder rides nearby, but I don't have an appropriate bike (not sure if Gustavas would be up for the challenge?).

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  2. That must have been some really hot pizza! Glad to hear everything is healing up. Hopefully, you'll have a better week ahead. I don't think it's supposed to be quite as warm.

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    1. The pizza grease totally freaked me out, and that was after I'd let it "cool" for 10 minutes.

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  3. Woo-hoo on the speedwork! The biggest thing for me is that I enjoy those workouts so much. I don't have a track but I have a neighborhood park with a flat .75 mile loop so that's my go-to place for speed.

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    1. And I wish I enjoyed those workouts more than I do. I do enjoy being done...I guess that counts for something, right? ;-)

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  4. Ugh. Enough with the random injuries! Glad they didn’t slow you down too much. One benefit of the track is the surface — it’s more cushiony than you may realize!

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  5. Yikes that pizza burn sounds horrible. I'm sure you can't wait for that to heal. Nobody needs a nasty scab on their face. Glad you are listening to your body and giving it rest when it's needed! Yay for the track! I made my first visit there in a looong time and it was painful. Oh well it's a start!

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    1. Thankfully, the worst of the scab came off by Sunday evening, and the battle wound looks much better now (Thursday)...almost not even noticeable.

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  6. Hope your hip is feeling better that one is no fun at all. I think it's time for that pedicure! Did you have the chance to get it yet?

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    1. Ugh, oops! I keep forgetting to schedule that appointment! Even my weekends are busy with bike rides....I know, excuses aplenty, LOL

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  7. I certainly hope that this week is much more comfortable for you in all ways, Kim! I know Summer is your time to shine, so to speak. :)

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    1. I'm trying to shine as much as I can in all the daylight ;-)

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  8. Ha, I notice you covering your chin in the Friday fashion photo! I've had those scabs on my face from weird random events, and it's not fun.
    I'm envious that you have a track so close! I do love a track for speed work, but haven't run on one for years. When I used to, I would always switch directions halfway through the workout. My hips don't like turning the same way for miles and miles.
    Enjoy your bike ride! Onward! (Funny- we both ended our rundowns with that word!)

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    1. I often times switch directions on the track, too. I know it's not good (at least for my body) to be constantly turning towards the left...

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  9. Your poor chin! Hope it's on the mend.
    Nicely done on the 400s. Best efforts is all we can ask of ourselves
    Team gravel forever. I could live on the bridle path happily

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  10. Good work among the trials and tribulations! We had very hot weather in the week, and I was grumpy going out Tuesday night for club run (but I had to as each Run Leader means 12 standard runners can join the run) and Thursday with Claire ("It's only going to get hotter!") and I had to wear shorts both times (waaah) but fortunately it cooled down on Friday and today's run was perfect. Phew!

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  11. I hope all of the various aches and pains make a quick exit. Your chin sounds especially painful :(

    Great job making a return to the track! It's been a couple of years since I've been on one, but it might be fun to try some speedwork again.

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    1. I like speedwork, but the track just ain't my forte, LOL

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  12. Sounds like you made the best of the aches and pains with the walks and biking. I hope you heal up quickly. I love track workouts, especially those shorter ones like 400s. Great job this week.

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    1. I need to learn to love the track...seems like everyone else has a fondness for it...

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  13. arms are looking strong from all the Tunde!

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  14. Yikes on the pizza grease burn! I had this happen to me several years ago, but the grease dripped down my hand/arm when I picked it up. Luckily it didn't leave a scar. Hope your chin heals up soon!

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    1. The grease hit my chin so fast, I didn't even have a napkin nearby! I had a good 10 seconds of panic trying to figure out what to do, LOL

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  15. Sorry to hear about the burn! I'm glad you were able to continue with your workouts anyway! Sounds like a productive week!

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    1. Thanks! We just gotta keep on keeping on, right? ;-)

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  16. I hope by the time you read this your aches and pains are gone! That burn sounds really sore - so sorry you went through that. But on the fitness front, you've done so well and I'm loving all your time on the bike!

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    1. Thanks, Shathiso ;-) The hip thing is still a bit iffy, but I have given it a 3-day sabbatical from running...we shall see.

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