30 October 2013

weights | walk

I'll admit to being a tad sore this morning... It could be from weights Monday but more likely it was stairs yesterday.

I went and saw Neal Goldberg at FootWorks PT again today just to check in. I feel like I'm treading water here. On the one hand I want to let my IT band heal and on the other I want to do something so that when I can run again it isn't such a shock to the system. Knowing you are supposed to be resting one part of your body while trying to stay active and not knowing the most effective way to accomplish this is the kind of thing that drives me crazy. CRAZY.

And I got what I wanted!

Neal explained that running is mostly eccentric muscle contraction and there are ways to work this without actually running. He prescribed some heavier weights in the gym and suggested I lift the weight with both legs and then lower it slowly with one; repeat to failure. He also suggested some single leg stepping (lowering actually) exercises and since I am able to tolerate some impact currently, some hopping exercises as well. Hopping around is okay because it does not last as long as running.

He told me that cycling, although great for cardio, is concentric muscle contraction so won't help me run per se.

Once again, I have my rehab work cut out for me. This is good in that I like moving forward with purpose but god am I getting tired of doing stuff other than what I really want to do. I know, pity me.

29 October 2013

Howe Street stairs | bike commute | cardio

Gosh, it's been a while. But fall is here and for as many years as I can remember that means Howe Street stairs time.

Yesterday I got an email from my good friend Jim Kodjababian - who I have been doing these stair workouts with for years - telling me, "It's time." So I figured today I would take them for a test drive so to speak in hopes that next week when I hook up with Jim I don't suffer a heart attack. I passed, and so did my IT band thank goodness.

I managed 10 flights. After about four I kept expecting my left knee to complain but it didn't so I just kept on going. I was just walking them today but that was still big progress for me. here's hoping I can manage a runner or two next week.

28 October 2013

weights | bike commute | Expresso exercise bicycle | hot yoga

Big Monday! Or something like that. Fitness, fitness, and more fitness. Yeah fitness. Yeah me. Yeah positive self-affirmation.

Expresso_2013-10-28

26 October 2013

Grand Ridge + Duthie Hill

Yes!

Even after taking what feels like a lifetime off the bike (not to mention mountain biking) I can still ride. This was a blast! Thanks to Greg Kauper for the invitation.

The pace was mellow, I did not fall down while riding in Duthie Hill and my fitness was totally adequate. My skills? Let's just say they got better the more I rode. :)

And it was beautiful out. These giant, red, yellow and orange leaves were everywhere. Did I mention that the trail conditions were epically good? All we had to worry about were some wet wood bridges. In fact, the fog was making the paved roads around here pretty wet while we were nice and dry all day.

The bike I'm on is heavy, the gears are not quite low enough and it has 26" wheels. NONE OF THAT MATTERED. I had fun.

25 October 2013

weights

Ha! Who would have thought that Martin would be lifting weights again? I so feel like I'm treading water here and so figured I might want to do something about all the strength I have lost these last two months. My doctor said it IS okay to do stuff that does not hurt so I used some very light weight and had at it.

You know what? It was sort of fun. And boy am I weak. I should do this a bit more while I'm letting my IT band recover.

24 October 2013

treadmill run | bike commute | massage

Figured I would give it a whirl again, running that is. The verdict? My IT band still is not healed up. I felt 100% for 20 minutes and then my left knee started to make itself known. This is getting OLD.

At least the effort felt really easy.

On the way home I stopped off at Rain Fitness for a massage with Tucker Roy. Damn this guy is good. To be a bit more specific, he understands athletes (because he is one and has worked with many at a high level), he's strong and he really has a bunch of skills/techniques that he can bring to bear. Good stuff.

23 October 2013

core | hot yoga | walk home from bus stop

I woke with my alarm but was SO tired and by the time I finally drug myself to the gym I had very little time so had to skip a few core exercises. Still glad I went.

After work I went to Breathe Hot Yoga and I think I finally got it right today. Per Shelley's urging I took it easy, did not push the bends and stretches and something the instructor said clicked with me today and I also engaged my core and legs/glutes before moving and everything felt much better. Nice.

Walking home from the bus I took a new route, directly through the pedestrian/bicycle tunnel this time. I am really digging this urban exploration. As long as it's not dumping rain, I love walking.

22 October 2013

cardio | Expresso exercise bike | walk home from bus stop

Back to the elliptical trainer for me this morning and I had a reasonable session so bonus.

At lunch I got on the Expresso Exercise bike for a crazy entertaining ride... it was called 'Odyssey' and I was riding through a land filled with giants, sea monsters (which were battling the giants!) and Minotaurs. It was cool.

On the way home I went up and over my new favorite set of stairs again.

Expresso_2013-10-22

21 October 2013

stretching | hot yoga | walk

No core, cardio or bike commute today. I got to the gym and wasn't feeling it so just did some stretching. As usual, I needed it.

After work I went to Breathe Hot Yoga for another practice, obviously I am enjoying this although I feel like I'm not getting any better yet. I wonder sometimes why I am in such a rush to improve? Not only am I not getting any better, today I feel like I messed up my back.

I was doing some transition and went much too fast and suddenly I was in pain. I had to back way off for the last 20 minutes of class. Sigh.

On the way home I found a new set of stairs that climb up and over the ridge directly on top of the I-90 lid. Awesome. There is so much to explore!

20 October 2013

May Valley + Newport Way on a single speed | walk

I had so much fun yesterday and this foggy fall weather is so cool I decided to do the same thing today.

Today I decided to get away from the cars and headed out into May Valley. I almost turned on the auto pilot which would have taken me up McDonald's hill until I thought this might not be very fun/possible on my single speed so took a more gradual route up to the valley instead. I think it was a good call.

Music was my friend again today, man is it fun to ride with tunes.

There were a couple of sections today where I got on the drops or rested my forearms on the tops of the bars and maintained a good pace. Not 'hard' but not taking it easy. It felt good.

When I got home Shelley and I went for another neighborhood walk. These are a great time! We get to talk, enjoy the scenery and I just love getting out of the house.

19 October 2013

around Lake WA on a single speed

Nice.

I've been riding my commuter bike so long I forgot how fun a real road bike is. it's FAST. it's EFFICIENT. And I'm not wearing a messenger bag. Good times.

I love my Kona Paddy Wagon. Single speed bikes are a blast. If you're seriously training you could argue that single speeds let you coast too much but I'm not training so having fun was paramount.

Bike + iPod + beautiful fall day = mission accomplished

I've just about run out of my favorite liquid food powder - Perpetuem - so I used Recoverite instead. I figure it's close to the same recipe, right? What do I know. It works.

18 October 2013

core

Made it to the gym this morning and had a good core workout. It's been a while since I did this workout so perhaps yoga is tiding me over? Nice to feel good regardless.

17 October 2013

bike commute

Too funny. After my inspired day yesterday I was too tired today to do much of anything. It's part mental as well, I'm not 'training' for anything and am still 'recovering' from my IT band injury.

Still, I rode to work and back home. Staying active is good.

16 October 2013

cardio | bike commute | Expresso exercise bike | hot yoga

Today was one of those inspired days I referred to a while back. One of those days where you try to fit in as much 'stuff' as you can. For me, 'stuff' usually means exercise.

Ready, set, go!

Expresso_2013-10-16

15 October 2013

cardio | bike commute | hot yoga

Today I did make it to the gym for some delicious cardio. And I increased the incline AND the resistance just a bit over the last time I was here.

And for dessert I took the long way home for a change. It sure has been a while since I did that. I avoided the big hill coming out of the Ballard locks so as not to aggravate my left knee.

Since I Had to leave work early for a dentist appointment, I had time to squeeze in more hot yoga at Breathe Hot Yoga. I think I am starting to like this.

14 October 2013

bike commute | hot yoga

We're back home and I'm back to Breathe Hot Yoga for more stretching and strengthening. This has got to help me, right...?

Today I rode from work straight to the yoga studio and let me tell you, it's pretty tough to put your cycling clothes back on when you are this sweaty. And stowing a yoga mat in my messenger back took some thought.

I did not have any desire to hit the gym this morning. All this rest is making me tired.

13 October 2013

walk | cruiser ride

We are on vacation!

I did the little loop again this morning and even jogged some along the train tracks. Technically this is still verboten by my doctor but I couldn't help myself. Thank goodness it did not hurt my knee.

Later in the day we all (Daren Doss, Lisa Chadbourne, their daughter, Shelley and I) hopped on some full on jalopy bikes and rode into 'downtown' Astoria.

First of all, riding these bikes was a blast. Crabon is overrated. Secondly Astoria has lots of fantastic beer. I drank too much. Then we rode back home. Naturally. Third, I was not so drunk that I didn't try to record all of these activities with my GPS. It's a sickness. Fourth, something crapped out on the ride back home obviously. Thanks for nothing Garmin. [That's the alcohol talking there Garmin...]

12 October 2013

walk | stand up paddle board

What a treat.

This weekend our architects chadbourne + doss invited Shelley and I down to Alderbrook Station for a weekend getaway.

Awesome!

This place is a house on the Columbia down in Astoria. Astoria is pretty cool all by itself but this house is amazing. So comfy and open yet cozy and quiet. Right behind the house is an enormous net shed that was used to repair fishing nets back in the day. Now it's a giant party space and artist lofts. There is also a wood-fired hot tub in back.

Did I mention that one of our architects is a huge surfer? It was so nice we went for a little paddle in the afternoon. The water was glass.

In the morning I walked this fun loop around the bay that the house sits on. Super scenic.

10 October 2013

cardio | bike commute

More cardio for Martin! Today I increased the incline just slightly on the elliptical trainer from 10 to 12. 12 is what I used to call an active recovery workout for whatever that's worth. As a bonus my IT band felt great.

Then I rode to work and back. And today my left knee felt fine on the bike.

09 October 2013

cardio | bike commute

I got a little motivated today.

I go through spurts of this every time I'm injured and can't do the activities I really want to. instead I throw myself into some alternate/cross-training/rehab activity. It usually doesn't last long.

At the gym this morning I did a little cardio on the elliptical trainer and then did it again at lunch. I know, EXTREME. It's how I roll.

The IMA is an incredible facility. After my lunch cardio session I spent some time in the sauna. I would LOVE a sauna at home.

Did I mention that I went to the eye doctor (that's optometrist if you want to impress people at a party kids) this morning? I think I finally need glasses. Just another overt sign of aging! Now I get to be that guy who loses his glasses all over the place as my memory fails as well.

07 October 2013

stretching | walk | hot yoga

I got to the gym this morning but immediately had no enthusiasm to work out so did some stretching instead. As usual, I needed it.

After work I hit up Breathe Hot Yoga again for what was more of an abbreviated Bikram yoga class. Good stuff. I have so much to learn.

On my way home I walked rom the bus stop and during my walk I was actually scared of my knee! Argh... being scared about an injury is no fun.

06 October 2013

walk | hot yoga

An awesome day really, it feel like fall is here.

Went for a walk with Shelley in the morning and then since I can't do the things I currently want to I decided to try some hot yoga in the afternoon. It was great!

Turns out Breathe Hot Yoga has a location at 19th & Madison and they have free parking. And they have a fabulous discount for new members - two months of unlimited classes for $99. Done.

04 October 2013

core

Got to the gym nice and early today but my heart just isn't in this right now. Today I at least managed to go through the motions and check the workout box.

02 October 2013

IT band update

After riding the all too ridiculous injury roller coaster for the last three weeks I figured I need to get a handle on what the hell is going on in my left knee so that I can finally heal up proper.

Last Friday I got a MRI and today I saw my doctor Neil Roberts to discuss the scan. Here is what he said.

  • My problem most definitely is IT band inflammation, that was vividly evident on the images.
  • Since I have obviously been re-aggravating my IT band over and over it was time for a reset.
  • I got another cortisone shot in the bursa of my left knee.
  • Neil also prescribed some topical anti-inflammatory cream.
  • I'm supposed to rest for one week.
  • Then I can do some light cross training for the next week. In this case 'cross training' means anything that does not bend my knee too much like walking, cycling, weights without the full range of motion, elliptical trainer, swimming, etc.
  • After these two weeks I can finally start to run again. Slowly.

On the one hand it's a huge relief to know what is wrong and what I need to do and on the other it's pretty frustrating to have this almost four week delay in my recovery. Especially since it's essentially my fault.

I was still kind of holding out hope to run some races this year but now it appears I will not have any fitness until 2014. So what's my next goal? The Orcas Island 50k next year. It's perhaps ironic that this event is what put me out of action this year and started the (what seems like endless) series of recoveries from injuries. Here's to running this event healthy!

The moral of this story is address shit as it comes up and don't delay.

core

I just ran out of gas today. And by 'gas' I mean motivation to do the same old thing.

I got to the gym plenty early, started to do the plank and after just two minutes was in no mood to continue. I tried to salvage the workout with some other,more traditional ab exercises but even that didn't last and after 25 minutes or so I just called it a day and went home.

Rats.

01 October 2013

core | bike commute

After resting two days I was able to ride to work. The weather didn't even cooperate that much and I still had a great time. I got soaked at the very end of both commutes but it was warm.

I always find it illuminating how fun a stupid little ride like this can be when you are not able to do much else or even this on a regular basis.