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So … for the last two months I thought today I would be writing my first 5K recap, basking in the glow of victory.  Things change.

Instead, I slept in and enjoyed a quiet morning with Eric, Ella, and a few friends.  I originally thought I’d still go to the race, but decided against it a few days ago.  Eric sweetly agreed to walk it with me, and at first I thought that would be the perfect compromise.  But the more I thought about it, the more I realized it would just bum me out.  Another 5K, another day, and I would love to walk with Eric.  But this particular 5K … I have been so focused and so excited about it, I knew once I got out there I would just want to ruuuuuuuuuuuuun.  Once I decided against going, I was ready to jump into my next challenge.

STRENGTH TRAINING!  :)

After our quiet morning, we went to the gym – well, gyms, since Eric decided to switch to a different one a few months back because it’s closer.  I pouted a little this morning about him going to a different gym now that I could use a weight-lifting coach, but was mostly kidding.  Mostly.  Anyway, I put on my big-girl pants and stepped way outside my comfort zone and into the (dun, dun, dunnnn) weight room.  I know girls lift weights, too, but I felt so weird – it was just me and eight overly muscular dudes.  Eek.  I resisted the urge to walk right back out and grabbed some dumbbells instead.  Here’s a rundown of my workout (I didn’t write things down as I went, so I don’t remember the weights I used on the machines):

  • Military press, 2×12 (10 lb DB – hey, I’m just a beginner)
  • Curls, 2×12 (10 lb DB)
  • Bent-over rows, 2×12 (10 lb DB first, then 12.5 lb DB)
  • Deadlifts (OY!), 2×12 (25 lb BB)
  • Seated dip, 2×12
  • Hip adductor, 2×20
  • Hip abductor, 2×20
  • Seated machine row (name?), 2×12
  • Ab extension, obliques, 2×25 each
  • Ab extension, lower back, 2.25
  • Seated cable row, 2×12
  • Leg extension, 1×12 (getting tired!)
  • Pilates roll-up, 2×12

I tried to do some V-sits, but couldn’t lift my legs off the ground because my quads were SHOT from the deadlifts.

So, overall a pretty decent workout.  I am totally new to this, so I am still figuring out proper form and appropriate weights.  I tried to use weights that would make my muscles feel like jello by the 10th or 12th rep.  I planned to do two or three circuits and/or jump on the elliptical afterward, but the deadlifts (only my fourth move) KILLED my legs and made them so shaky!

I think I’ll try to break up my workouts, doing lower body and upper body/core on different days.  I think I need a solid plan similar to training for a race, rather than just a vague Immagonnaworkoutsome mentality (which was my problem before).  I’m going to study strength training moves and learn yoga to incorporate into the mix.  I may develop something more specific than this after a while, but basically I plan to do cardio 2 – 4 times a week, upper body twice a week (on the same days as cardio), and lower body once a week (on a different day).  I only plan to do lower body once a week since I generally get a good leg workout with cardio.  And I’ll bring a little notebook with me so I can track the weights I use.  Once again, I’m a newbie, so it’s only up from here!

As far as my back, I’m happy to report it’s slowly improving.  I’ve taken it really easy the last two weeks, and have been careful to stretch it and not push myself too much.  I’ve upped my water intake (discs are 80% water, and dehydrated discs are more prone to bulging/tearing) and upped my vitamin intake.  It seems to be working!  And don’t worry, I was very careful today.  Basically, my back feels the same as it did before the workout, which is a great indicator I’m healing.

So, yeah, sometimes we can’t do the things we want to do.  It’s good to push our limits, but we need to be smart about it.  I told Eric I didn’t want to keep running just to end up bedridden.  And it’s okay to be sad a while.  But, at some point, we need to adjust our expectations and embrace new challenges.  I came back from the gym today pretty pumped about this new stage.

Maybe, if I’m lucky, someday I can look like this…

Yep, she's the real deal.*

Juuuuuuuuuuuuuust kidding. ;)

*Source

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