And it really helped.
Oh, all those people who suggested it? Right.
So last week I started using the elliptical trainers at the gym. Maybe it was the week before, but last week was when I really got serious. (I hope y'all read my sense of humor into that...lately my humor has been too subtle or 'off' so I'm just checking ;-) ) My physical therapist and I had discussed this piece of equipment before. We both agreed that going backward would really help strengthen things that are weak...things that start messing me up when I run. Twice last week, I went backward for 4 minutes and forward for one minute for a total of 25 minutes, and then I hopped on the treadmill for a little bit of sort of running.
This week I stepped things up a couple of notches. 55 minutes on Monday. Wowza. For the first time in I don't even know how long I had a deliciously sweaty and invigorating workout that did not hurt. Did you read that part? Did. Not. Hurt.
Then on Tuesday I decided to go run for a half an hour, and the strangest thing happened. It didn't hurt. Not only that but I was running paces similar to last summer and fall for my runs of similar intensity. It just felt easy and relaxed and fun. And I started to just about cry. My eyes did, in fact, well up with tears. And I was smiling very, very broadly. Part of that might have been due to the music that was playing... and what I now associate with that particular song, but it was largely the familiar-ness of the way I was running. It felt like the good ol' days.
Wednesday I hit up the elliptical again...this time for an hour. Dripping sweat again, and oh-so-satisfying. I may or may not have done the whole singing out loud thing...ummm...yeah, I did it. So embarrassing for everyone.
Thursday I decided to run a hill while my son was at soccer practice. I tried to time it correctly, but I managed to return literally 2 minutes late and the field was empty! I freaked...until I saw him and two other kids goofing around at the far end.
Pretty residential street on the beginning, gentler part of the climb.
Where the steep starts to kick in.
Right before the top.
Today's run elevation profile...
...uphill also discussed here.
Distance: 4.20 miles
Avg. pace: 10:25 min/mile
By now some of you might be thinking...Geez, woman...you run so rarely and so slowly and you're always showing us these crazy hills like you're some kind of something... and if you're thinking that, you may be excused from the table :D And no dessert.
I am so heartened by my workouts this week. It feels amazing to begin to feel like myself again. And this extends to all areas of my life. All of them.
And it's about time. This girl and her siblings deserve a happy, healthy, feeling-good mom. And my husband deserves that 'me' as well.