In the past few weeks I’ve been slowly raising my mileage up again after quite a dip in my running. The past few months I have limited my runs to warm ups and cool downs after weight training sessions. Prior to September I was doing a few 10km runs per week and since then, I have yet to log a 10km run.
I am unsure as to why I haven’t thought about this sooner but I think I have been “lazy” as of late with my running because I have not really set out a goal. For August, my goal was to cut weight for the wedding. I trained hard and reached my goal of 175lbs the day prior to the wedding. Since then I haven’t really been taking my training too seriously. How could I? There was nothing to really keep me too motivated. I hadn’t set a goal.
Well, that changed pretty drastically about a month ago when I was on my ass sitting and watching television with my wife. To say that we watch a lot of television is the understatement of the century. We really use television to unwind after our work week. To think of it, it’s somewhat surprising that we aren’t more unhealthy. When I say a lot of television, I’m talking like we follow 10+ shows-PVR is the bane of a gym member’s life.
Anyways, back to the story. While watching television it is inevitable that we will come across a set of bulging biceps, washboard abs, and broad shoulders. While watching a new superhero television show, lo and behold, there they were. Mountainous biceps that had death defying peaks and valleys. Shoulders that could put Atlas to shame. Rippling abs that could do a whole months worth of laundry and then some. I wasn’t really awe inspired by this-I have seen such physiques before. Quite frankly, I think I’ve almost been desensitized by recent filmography like 300, Immortals, and the countless superhero remakes. But, there lies my problem. I have become desensitized. Sure I admire those guys work ethic and I can appreciate a super toned and ripped body, but that’s where it stops. Admiration but not envy. Well, that was until my wife’s face lit up each time one of these muscle robots popped up on the screen. I thought to myself, why can’t I be like that.
Jealousy and selfishness are not in and of themselves bad, in this case. Those two things can drive you to have that killer instinct. It constantly causes you to ponder the question, “Why not me?”. And that single question is what I need to play and repeat in my head over and over again to motivate me. To fuel me.
I know that upping my mileage is only the first step. I kicked up the mileage about two weeks back and this past week I decided to do something kind of stupid. After a few training days of back, biceps, and triceps, my upper body was blasted. Naturally, I moved on to another body part-doing any more upper body work would have rendered me as useless the next day at work. So, I decided that my workout for the day would consist of a run followed by leg work (squats, single-leg leg presses, calf raises, etc.). Mile one passed, and I felt ok. I decided to pick up the pace and finish off a 5km run. My legs were sore and a bit tight-so I stretched. Then I moved on to the squat rack. I dropped to a weight a bit lower than my usual as I haven’t done much leg work prior. I kept my form prestine and completed my desired rep and set count. I did this for the rest of my exercises. I really pushed myself quite hard because of that one little motivational question, “Why not me?”.
On the ride home I could really tell that the lactic acid mob had really decided to attack my legs. They held my muscles hostage an were merciless with their stranglehold on oxygen. The shower didn’t help. My trees felt like a gummy mess. Getting out of the raised tub was difficult! The next day was worse. Quads and hamstrings were screaming out angrily at me telling me that I was an idiot.
Now it is the third day after my workout and I am just beginning to heal. I did a recovery 5k the day after the workout, which I think helped a bit.
My conclusion, it’s fine to reach for the stars but remember stars (of the hollywood type) are manufactured…over a period of time.
Push yourself but train smart.
Rome was not built in a day.
Onward and upward!!!