Whatever nasty little bug has grabbed hold of me, still has one leg firmly in its grasp. The good news, is that my fever is GONE! The bad news, is that I still have little or no appetite and a general feeling of malaise. Yesterday, I took a complete rest day. No running, no biking, no lifting, no walking, and no kayaking. I curled up on the sofa next to my Grandmother and together, we watched “Little House on the Prairie” re-runs until she was snoring loudly, and I was bleeding from my ears. There is just something about the vocal intonations present on most Hallmark Channel programming. It is just a little too soft with cloying, sickening, and sacharrine like sweetness. It strikes me as being intensely phony, and as such, most days it makes me want to hurl a shoe at the idiot box to just make it stop. My Grandmother is old school and pretty much anything more risqué than the aforementioned television purgatory ruffles her feathers in a bad way. Somehow, I managed to suffer through and survive the day.I woke with the alarm at 5 am. Today is a gym day.No fever is present and I take this as a good sign; although I do have tremendous difficulty trying to choke down breakfast this morning. Agggggh. Oh well, off to the gym I go!
Splashfit Torture of the Day
1 plyo (hand clap push up) 9 regular push ups 15 Fitness Band Squat Rows 10 Bench Dips Sprint 100 yards Stairs Jog 100 yards Stairs Lather, Rinse, Repeat x 5 Jog Back to Gym Superset x 3 Jumping Pull-Ups 21,15,9 Dumbbell Thrusters 21,15,9 Superset x 3 Rear Deltoid Flye x 10 Plank to T-Stand x 10 each side 200 Meter Row Elbow Plank 2 minutes Seated Knee Ups x 30 aaaand, Done!
I struggled through my entire workout today. My heart rate was running hotter and higher than it normally does. My recovery time after hard effort was much more sluggish than normal. My perceived effort was off the charts. I continually fought the waves of nausea that hit me like a ton of bricks, ever intent on bringing me down. Our Warrior Race is just one month out from today; the heat is on! I continued to put the ladies through the paces, but I had to back off of my own effort ever so slightly. I really really really did not want to vomit on my new shoes.
In an accomplishment oriented society, it is not always easy to give myself permission to take a down day.
As I mentioned earlier, yesterday was a complete REST DAY for me. So, here’s the deal, in the day following an intense session of athletic performance, a period of rest will allow your muscles to adapt and improve. A day off once a week will refuel your muscles’ glycogen stores, build muscular strength, and reduce overall fatigue. Without rest days, muscular transformation might seem evident in the short-term; however, in the end it will not necessarily give favorable results. This time, I chose to take the day off because I was fighting a virus of some sort, but truth be told, I REGULARLY take rest days. I do this in a couple of different ways. I have inactive rest days where I do absolutely freaking nothing even remotely resembling exercise, and then I have active rest days. On an active rest day, I might do an easy 30 to 45 minute bike ride, take a 3 mile walk at a moderate pace, or do a nice relaxing paddle in the kayak. The key to incorporating activity into an active rest day is lower intensity. It allows my muscles to keep moving and not seize up. It also allows for some of those “feel good” brain chemicals to enhance my activities of daily living. Hard exercise itself causes micro tears in your muscle fibers. It is during rest and recovery that the body repairs these little micro tears and becomes stronger. So how many rest days do I take each week? Usually one full blown, no activity rest day. I usually take another active rest day. Statistically, most sports related injuries come from overuse. A day of rest or lighter activity may eliminate the necessity of a long term forced vacation from your workouts due to injury.
The thermometer on the outside of the garage is registering at near one hundred degrees fahrenheit. I threw on a swimsuit, grabbed my swim bag, and as a special evil thrill, I added a floating pool chair (complete with head and foot rest) to the mix. We arrived at the lake, and as my partner took off on a long distance swim (somebody who does NOT know how to take rest days), I sat on the beach, huffing and puffing to fill my little red plastic oasis with air. I notice that it warns to fill only with cold air…. Hmmmmm… the temperature outside is near 100 degrees… Just how do I manage that feat? I waded out into the alkaline waters of Little Soap Lake, pushing my red inflatable barkalounger in front of me. I grasped the cushy arm rests and lowered myself into the water. Ahhhhhh! I laid my head back on the delightful inflatable neck rest, pulled my visor down low over my face, and sat there lazily spinning in the light winds. I watched the little damsel flies lighting on my skin. I’m not sure that I want to know exactly what they are doing when they are linked up and connected in a row sitting on my various body parts, but as I floated beneath the hot sun, feeling nearly weightless, I felt certain that I could feel my body repairing itself.