I probably haven’t mentioned (more than fifteen times at least) that I have a stress fracture. When I was told that I’m not allowed to run at first more than a month ago, I didn’t know what to do…running has been a part of me for over two years now, and it’s how I get out my aggression, celebrate, and think my best thoughts.
I’m still super bummed and miss running so so much. I haven’t put on shoes to head out the door pain free since the middle/end of March. I look at those images above and hope and worry at the same time. I’m nervous for how long it’ll take me to get back to my “normal” paces, and I’m worried I won’t be recovered in time to start building a base and training for Chicago…
But! That’s not what this post is focusing on…though it’ll always be in the back of my head.
What I want to focus on instead is how my dire hatred of cross training has turned into a love for it! I can now fill up an entire week in swimming laps, pool jogging, riding my bike, and doing weights. And instead of dreading doing those things, I’m actually finding it enjoyable.
I swam in high school and played water polo in college, so I’m not having any trouble hitting the pool to swim and run in the water.
Swimming is definitely relaxing, and the fact that there’s no impact makes it less taxing than running. I love that I know what I’m doing when I swim. I know how to swim the strokes properly, though I don’t always feel myself doing it the right way.
Swimming gets my heart rate high when I make sets with challenging paces, and my calorie burn is often near where it would be for swimming. I actually don’t mind pool running, though I know I look a little silly with my tennis shoes on running in the water. And I also really enjoy using a kickboard and kicking.
The only reason swimming doesn’t replace running completely for me is because I’m always counting laps. I can’t completely zone out most days because I like to know how far I’ve gone or how many repetitions of certain distances I’ve done. Otherwise, I finally have reached a point where swimming is something I look forward to again versus feeling like it’s something I don’t only on days when I’m not supposed to run.
And my real love lately? My new bike…
I have spent so many afternoons and several mornings riding this thing around my neighborhoods and on bike trails. I love everything about biking, and it’s absolutely moving into a place of being almost as enjoyable to me as running. Biking is a chance to let my mind wander. When I’m on the road with cars it does scare me a little, so I can’t zone out as much, but when I’m on the closed trails I let my mind go where it wants.
I read in this month’s Runner’s World that you have to bike three times the distance on the bike to get the same effect as a run. The person writing said not to do it more than once per week as a replacement, so I don’t know how much it’s actually going to hold any kind of base for me. Either way, I love it.
And though neither swimming nor biking is replacing running, they’re doing a great job filling in for now. The hidden gem in this tim period is that I’m learning to love crosstraining, which is something I’ve needed for a long time.
And speaking of biking, I’m looking forward to riding tonight. My bike hasn’t been ridden for over a week now, and I can tell she’s feeling pent up. And I’m looking forward to the day coming when I’ll be able to add running back into the mix and then will be able to start triathlons!
What is your favorite way to work out?
If you’re a runner, do you crosstrain?