Lesson learned: Cross-training is important
Now that my Achilles has healed, it’s time to start building up my strength. Trying to run after eight months of inactivity will be brutal, so I’ve decided to ease back into running by walking every morning briskly for 45 minutes. I won’t lie – I find walking boring, but I’ve accepted the fact that I must walk before I can run. Luckily, I have a fabulous friend, Francene, who actually likes walking and has offered to keep me company at 5:30 a.m.
I know that in addition to walking, I need to start cross-training. When I got injured, I was running 40–60K per week, but I didn’t have time or make time for any other physical activity except for running – probably another factor that resulted in my injury.
I stopped going to the gym, because I don’t like lifting weights, doing burpees, sit-ups or hearing guys grunt. I thought, who needs strength training? Clearly, I do.
About the same time, I also stopped going to hot yoga. I’m not sure why, because I love it. In retrospect, the stretching from yoga probably helped me stay injury-free for my first four years as a runner! But foolishly I had thought, who needs yoga? Obviously I do, because a few months after I stopped, I got injured!
I have no excuses now, because I’ve paid in advance for a personal trainer and have a one-year membership to my favourite hot yoga studio.
This week, I also dusted off my bike and went for a 5K ride. I didn’t want to venture too far in case something seized up (on the bike or me). During the ride, I daydreamed about finding my perfect biking partner. The hard part was to finding him or her. I decided to post a compatibility test for my friends on my Facebook wall (gotta love the power of social media). Here’s was what I posted:
If you answer “true” to at least 6 of these points – text me for a bike date:
- you only use 2 gears out of the optional twenty-one
- you stop peddling going down hills and enjoy the cruise (maybe even brake for fear of a wipe out)
- you cheer “hip hip hooray” when you manage to peddle up a big hill
- you would consider putting a playing card in your spokes as a noise maker
- your first bike had a banana seat and streamers on the handles or was a BMX
- you daydream of the days when you had the courage to bike with no hands or helmet – but now you follow the rules of the road
- your bike costs less than $500, doesn’t have a kickstand and it’s only custom feature is the seat and handlebars go up and down
- you think 10K bike ride is a workout
- you let me draft
- you don’t talk too much
Within minutes, I had a number of texts for bike date proposals! Today, my friend Chris and I went for a 20K ride. He fits all my criteria and even pulled some pop-a-wheelies to make me laugh. It felt great to sweat again.
I’m scheduled to start running in about a week – I can’t wait!