May 12, 2012

Today I'm 44

Funny thing about this back of mine. It feels better when I move. At least the lower part of it does. The upper back is stiff and tight in a growth sort of way. Stretching is helping that, but moving not so much. I worked my shoulders and upper back hard, painting the ceiling. The lower back feels damaged, but it's not new damage. This is an old and familiar pain, most likely due to inflammation. It should go away after a few days, providing I don't aggravate it too much.

I still wanted to get my sweat-once-a-day in today. Having some familiarity with this pain, I decided to test it with a walk first. A walk down to the grocery store and back was about a mile and a half, and proved moving would not be detrimental. The pain actually went away, for the most part, while I was moving. Running was out of the question, but a walking workout was plausible. I happened to have two treadmill walking workouts I wanted to try.

This is the stress test, which increases incline by 2%,
while at the same time increasing speed by 1mph
every 3 minutes
This sets the treadmill at the highest incline from the get go
and increases speed by .5mph every 5 minutes
The stress test kind of scares me. I think it's because both speed and incline increase at the same time. I opted to see how well I could do the 15% incline workout.

It. kicked. my. ass.

I was only able to do 20 minutes. Note to self: it is less important to follow the workout to the letter, than to get a good workout in. I made it to and through the 4mph section, where I found myself running at this insane angle. I probably could have done at least another 5 minutes at that speed. I could not at 4.5 mph. Instead of cranking it back down to 4mph, I simply got off the treadmill at that point.

I likely wouldn't have been able to do the 4mph section if I hadn't been holding on to the treadmill. The stress test info says you're not supposed to do this, and I can tell why. It was definitely more difficult when I was not holding on to anything. Again, getting through the exercise as written (up to and through the 5mph portion) should not be as important as doing the workout well.

This exercise got my heart rate up to 176, which using the rule of thumb equation means today I'm 44 (220 - 176 = 44). I still don't think that is my maximum heart rate, but it's as high as I could get it today, and higher than I've seen it thus far. I'm still curious to see where it will be when I'm not fatigued and injured. I may not be super thrilled with this particular heart rate monitor, but it certainly is giving me new data points to ponder, which is making my workouts exciting and new. I'm pushing myself harder, just to see what I can do. I like this, a lot.

No comments: