Hi everyone! I hope you are doing well. It’s Sunday and I’m joining Kim and Deborah in the Weekly rundown link-up, to talk about the week of fitness and training. I enjoy doing this, to document my own fitness journey and to get inspiration and input from others.
This was the week when I wanted to start a structured get-back-to-running program, using an app on the phone. The success has been… mixed. The actual running has been good! The apps, not so much.
Here’s the summary of my week. I didn’t take any photos during my runs this week. Oops. But I had nothing new to show, I guess.
- Monday – Running & walking, 3,84 km in total
- Tuesday – Gym day
- Wednesday – Rowing 15 mins
- Thursday – Running & walking, 4,68 km
- Friday – Gym day
- Saturday – should we call it rest day? Yes and no.
- Sunday – a fabulous core, ab, and glute strength session
Today was the day I’d get started with a structured running program. It almost happened. I downloaded the Galloway app for walk-run-walk intervals a while ago, but couldn’t get it to work, and thought maybe the app didn’t work as I thought it would? I ended up deleting it and installing another app instead. That new app looked good, you could choose between different programs, start one, and get sound instructions when to start walking or running.
But… the beginner program seemed a bit to rough for me to begin with. It started with 5 minutes walk, then 1 minute run, but then to 1 minute only walk before running 1 minute again, and so on. I decided to switch it off and do my own intervals because I felt I wanted to walk a few minutes before getting back to 1 minute of running.
I chose a distance between a spot down the hill and a specific crossroad, it’s about 3 km to get there and back. But some more structure would do me good, so in the evening I downloaded the Galloway app again on which you can set your own interval lengths, and it turned out I’m just having problem with the sound on my phone. Better luck on Thursday?
Tuesday was gym day as usual, and it was a very good session.
- Squats with barbell, increased weight to 35 kgs – yay! This felt good.
- More squats – this time combined with overhead shoulder presses, 5 kg dumbbells. Hard work.
- Tricep pullovers, 1 dumbbell 12,5 kgs
- Flyes, 7 kg dumbbells
- Dumbbell row, 12,5 kgs
- Inclined chest press, 9 kg dumbbells
- Shoulder front raise, 4 kg dumbbells
You know how I wondered on Friday if I possibly could have done another rep of chest press? Today I really pushed myself but still I could only do maybe 6-7 (of 12) reps. I wasn’t happy with that. On the other hand, after heavy flyes and dumbbell rows, I was quite worn out, and at least I did my very best. My coach was happy with it, so maybe I should be too.
What made me happier were my 35 kg squats – just yay! Last week my quads felt tight and sore around the knees so all squats, deadlifts and the likes were tough. It started getting better on the Sunday after a lot of stretching, PT exercises, and warming up, and today my legs were back in action.
I was sore all over the place, but started the day on the rowing machine. Always a good start of the day! This time instead of listening to Gillian Welch, I started an old concert with the Tony Rice Unit from the 1986 Strawberry bluegrass festival on YouTube. Tony’s guitar style certainly was something! I didn’t particularly enjoy it in the past because of the jazzy influence. But about a year ago, I joined a guitar class on Zoom to study Tony Rice just for the challenge. Then I discovered more of it, fell in love with many elements of his style and I’ll go back to practising those tunes soon. Listening to Tony’s playing while rowing gave a major inspiration boost!
Just for the craic… here’s the guitar solo I’ll re-start working on (just FYI, I do NOT play it at that speed). Even if I don’t get into my previous practice routine, playing this piece alone will give me practice of both technique, fretboard fluency, timing, and whatnot.
Flatpick guitar is my other 100% passion in life and that’s that! I’ve started collecting John Henry themed songs, and this is one of them – I consider all “Roll on buddy” “steel-driving-man” sort of songs in that category. Yes, I’m geeky and I’m proud of it.
The weather had turned cold again. Around 10 am it was warmed up to 5C, and I went out for my run/walk session. This time I used the Galloway app, which was more to my liking than the other one. However, I didn’t find the UI helpful when I wanted to change settings in the middle of the session. I ended up switching it off and do my own thing. Seems familiar? LOL. My next plan is the guided beginner program on Runkeeper.
It was a lovely run and walk, I went down towards the beach but turned around before the very steep decline. In total I did 4,68 km and felt good. While I followed the app, I realised 30 seconds is VERY short. Most beginner programs start at 1 minute running, and I can certainly do that. The Runkeeper beginner program starts with 1 minute running and 3 minutes walking, so I’ll try that next week.
In the afternoon I went with my camera club friend to a nearby beach that I had never heard of until a few weeks ago. I couldn’t help but think “why are people keeping quiet about this place?” It turned out to be the most stunning beach I’ve seen. I’m not particularly interested in tropical beaches with perfect white sand. Instead, this is the type of beach that tickles my fancy. Fascinating rock formations of all shapes and sizes scattered around, waves rolling over smooth rocks, shells, patterns and textures on exposed rocks (this is low tide), etc etc.
The best thing of all – this beach is at walking distance from my house. Why didn’t we know about this before? Unbelievable. This will NOT be the last time I talk about this place!
Another Friday, another strength session in the gym.
- Sumo squats, barbell 30 kgs
- Romanian deadlifts, barbell 30 kgs
- Good mornings, barbell no weights
- Tricep pullovers, 6 kg dumbbells
- Flyes, 7 kg dumbbells
- Inclined chest press, 9 kg dumbbells
- Seated shoulder press, 5 kg dumbbells
Today again I didn’t do great with the chest press, and my shoulders had some trouble too. Can all my body parts ever work properly at the same time? Very frustrating, but my left shoulder has always been troublesome from time to time. It’s a guitar disease, I think. I’m not worried about it (only annoyed) and it will certainly get better with more training and with better posture during my work hours.
This was the first weekend since October that we don’t go for a long walk. We simply didn’t have the time, with a big load coming from IKEA. We shop most of our furniture and similar from there, like true Swedes.
This is the reason I’m hopeful about my shoulders:
I finally have a proper stand-up desk in my home office. I’ve wanted this for months but didn’t want to spend the money. But when I’m in the office in town where I have a stand-up desk, I feel great and I miss it when I work from home. And yes, that’s the cat litter box just next to where I work, lol. I told you this is a very imperfect house! The cat barely uses the thing anyway.
Although I really try to keep a good posture when I sit down working, since my eyesight is really bad (I need to get new glasses asap) I’m too easily tempted to get too close to the screen, crunch my back and tense my shoulders. All bad. I’m going to love being able to stand up and move around in my home office.
So was Saturday a rest day? Not exactly. Along with this desk, we also received countless Kallack shelving units for the bedroom, and spent all day assembling and organising. And that’s not all, we need to get more! But it will be fabulous when we’re ready.
Since my foot injury I have this pleasant habit of doing a bodyweight strength session at home on Sunday morning. Like last week, I did plank variations including my big favourite side plank with a twist, single leg glute bridges, leg raises, push-ups, Russian twists, reverse leg lifts, squats and more. I threw in some lower leg exercises for runners. My husband noticed that my push-ups are getting deeper so that was a very positive thing to hear after this week of unhappy shoulders and poor chest press performance.
If all goes well (with the pandemic still with us alongside other nasties going round, I don’t believe anything until I see it) we’re going to Spain soon. My in-laws have a house there and we haven’t visited them there since 2017. I’m really looking forward to it and I’m keeping all my fingers crossed we’ll get there as planned. I don’t expect the weather to be fantastic, but who knows? It should at least be a bit warmer than here. Their weather forecast for the coming weeks says it could be 18+ degrees C some days. More fingers crossed…
How was your week? Do you have any fun plans coming up? Have you used any running apps for guided runs? Which do you prefer and why?
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