Monday, January 23, 2012

Making Yourself Move.

Today I didn't feel like it.  My kids were up at 4:30am.  My oatmeal had spoiled in the fridge.  My husband had knocked the little thing that sprays the windshield wiper fluid on my windshield (versus all over my engine) off while cleaning my car.  And I have PT this afternoon.  Saying I didn't feel like going to the gym this morning seems like the understatement of the year.

But I did.

My workout:

Hip Warmup Stretch
25 min Arc Trainer workout (level 1)
5 min stretch

Today I decided to try the Arc Trainer.  Since I'm using the Elliptical in PT for warmups and I haven't had great luck with the ones in the gym so far, I figured it was a good option.  And I'm happy I did.  I don't know if it is because the machines are newer or if it is just the way they are made, but there is a lot less friction in the movement.  I don't feel as though I'm dragging my feet or the machine through the movement.  That was very pleasant.  And it left me to pay attention to how I felt and my heart rate/exertion level.

My sister said something this weekend while we were reflecting on our progress towards 5K completion.  She said that as long as you were getting in the intervals, your heart would get better as recovering after a strenuous push.  I had thought of the C25K intervals as training your muscles, but I hadn't actually considered that the heart is a muscle and you'd be training that as well.  When thought of that way, the Arc Trainer really did work out perfectly for my interval training.  I would push until my heart rate started to spike (I put that arbitrarily anywhere above 155 bpm) and then I would settle down and let it recover (less than 140 bpm).

I'm no doctor and I haven't done enough research to know that these are the correct or optimal numbers, but they worked for me today.  I felt good getting off the machine and I'm still feeling good now (albeit still more grumpy than those around me would prefer).

Also, a note for history.  I didn't get my workouts recorded at the end of last week.  Thursday was my first PT visit which I will try to write about tonight after my second PT visit.  Friday morning I tried a different type of elliptical and gave up on that machine after about 20 minutes.  Pressure, or maybe tension, was building up in my calves and ankles and becoming uncomfortable.  I switched to the recumbent bike for the last 10 minutes.  I was surprised to find that I could still get my heart rate up just working my legs.  I'm glad that I didn't give up, but I really wasn't happy with how I was feeling after that workout.

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