Tuesday, the day after my disasterous 1-miler, I chugged water at work. I took my vitamins. I massaged my calves three times throughout the day. I wore gel heel lifts in my day shoes, too.
My calves still hurt. They were so tight. Walking hurt. Stairs hurt.
Obviously, I did not work out.
That night I had an idea for an article. I sent an e-mail to a place called Always Running to see if I could get an expert source.
Two days after the painful 1-miler and my calves felt better, almost normal. I continued to chug water and I took my vitamins, but I only remembered to massage my legs when they started cramping up while I sat at my desk at work.
At 3:30, my cell rang. The number was from Seattle and I suspected it was someone from Always Running calling me back about my interview request. I answered it and I was right, except he didn’t want to talk about my story.
He wanted to talk about my calves. He’d read my blog. Coach Tony Williams fired questions at me about my training and my pain and my marathon. Then, he insisted on meeting with me as soon as possible. Um. Okay.
I met with Coach Tony, found out I had calf strain and shin splints and that one leg is longer than the other, which could be causing my gait problems and foot issues. Read about my meeting with this passionate running coach here.
Friday was my first day to get on the recumbent bike (a suggestion from Coach Tony). Unfortunately, I woke up with a brain-shattering headache at the back of my head. My pillow was actually making it worse, so skipping my ride was not an option. I got up at 5, so I could get to the gym by 5:30 and be back home before 7.
I didn’t take any pain medication because I know it’s not good for you before you work out. I thought the exercise would help.
When I got to the gym, all the recumbent bikes were taken except for one. I walked up to it, set my keys and my water bottle on it and started to get on when the lady on the bike next to me spoke up.
“Oh, that one’s broken,” she said. “They just haven’t put the sign on it yet. But there’s those bikes.” She nodded in the direction of the exercise bikes, but Coach Tony had specifically said recumbent.
“I need the recumbent bike ’cause I’m injured.” Saying that sent a chill down my spine. Am I really injured? I guess I see this new routine as pre-injury. Injury prevention.
Bummed, I thanked her for telling me. I wondered how much time they all had left as I wandered over to an exercise ball for some crunches, my keys, towel, water bottle and new Kindle in hand. My head was pounding. I did 25 crunches, then sat and waited. It was 5:45 a.m. and I was not leaving until I got my workout.
Everyone kept pedaling. I did 25 more, then sat on the ball glaring in the direction of the recumbent bikes. About two minutes later, the woman I had just talked to stopped pedaling and put her feet up on the base of the bike as she chatted loudly with her friend, still pedaling, next to her.
I waited for her to get off, but she didn’t. She just kept talking about some woman that had irritated her at work or something. You’re irritating me! I thought. We JUST talked. Get off the bike!
I gave her a couple minutes to remember our conversation before I got up, put the ball back on the rack and walked over to her.
“Are you done?”
“Oh! Yes. I’m sorry!”
Sure you are.
I set the bike on Cardio, but I think I entered the wrong target heart rate because I could not keep up and felt like I was going to die. Plus, the exercise was not helping my head like I thought it would. It was pounded with each huff and puff. I thought it would explode. I made it 5 minutes and had to try a different setting: Fat Burn.
But that ended up being the same. Again, I think I entered the wrong heart rate. Then I got annoyed because the pedals seemed to be slipping. Since everyone finished their biking a couple minutes after I got on, I had my choice of bikes now.
I switched to a different one that didn’t slip and set it on Random, Level 7. Much better. My head still pounded, but I felt like I was getting a workout, but not going to pass out. I am reading Mansfield Park by Jane Austen, though, and it’s not really a good gym book.
Overall, with the bike switching and everything, I rode for about 50 minutes and went about 11 miles.