Entries have been sparse since the SPC partly as a result of apathy but mostly after being bombarded with schoolwork and other meaningful life content.
I've kept up with my training in a somewhat standardized schedule. I've been doing more running, less lifting and swimming. Until recently, that is.
I went for a run on Monday and ran hard. The run to the gym was fine, and I got on the Elliptical to do my usual three miles in less than 30 minutes. I usually run the first two miles pedaling forwards, then pedal backwards for a half a mile, then finish out going forwards again. As I approached 3 miles I decided to power through the last quarter of a mile. I was pounding the machine and felt fine, even though my heart rate spiked up to about 180. I finished the three miles and had a brief cooldown by lowering the resistance. I finished the three miles in a little under 28 minutes which is not quite as good as my previous times, but still good.
I went and did my usual pullups on the bar, and the Back Extensions while stretching my lower back. After those I went to the mats and did some comprehensive isometric stretching routines to loosen up my calves, quads, back and abs. I'm noticing improved flexibility but I need to do the isometric stretching more regularly on running days.
I felt good leaving the gym and made it back to my apartment with no problems. Soon thereafter, however, my left knee began hurting. It was a sharp consistent pain which felt like a weakness in the joint but not exactly bone grinding on bone. I hobbled on it for a while before finally icing it down for a couple hours. I had to go to class that night, and the walking to campus and the steps on campus were awful. I iced it some more that night, and resolved to get something for it. I went out the next day to a Walgreens and picked up some Glucosamine/Chondroitin. I read some official research conducted by the NIH which was resoundingly inconclusive yet not supportive of the hypothesis that these supplements help regrow cartilage in arthritis cases. I decided to give it a shot anyway and bought some of the "Advanced" variety. I took it that day while keeping ice consistently on my knee. Walking to class was not enjoyable, but less painful than Monday. Wednesday saw my knee much better off than the previous two days, and I continued to take the Glucosamine. Yesterday it was fine, and I took the Glucosamine again just to solidify it. I'm not sure if the pills had a significant effect outside of the placebo and the ice, but it was worth trying. I'm going to take it again today just for consistency. Once I start training again I'll stop taking it to see if there's any significant change. I'm not interested in becoming dependent on a supplement for something as important as joint health.
As a result of my knee being in recovery from an apparently overly strenuous session, I've been doing more of my Strength training (sans Weighted One-Leg Squats).
I changed the routine a bit.
I warm up with varied types of pushups since it's evidently better than jumping jacks or other kind of aerobic movement. I haven't noticed a huge difference but it's convenient since I've been working my pecs more in my workout anyway.
My pullups are now weighted. I strap a 20lb Kettlebell to my waist and am able to do five of each kind (overhand wide grip, thumbs facing me, and chinup).
Plank for 1:30, then 15 crossovers with each leg.
Set of pushups (20, rest, 15).
Russian Twist with 20lb Kettlebell.
I'm not sure if I'm doing these right; they start to hurt in my waist at the pelvic joint after about a minute, and I don't feel like my abs are being worked as much as they could. I'll have to refine my technique.
Kettlebell Rows (30, rest, 20)
Standing, leaning over with legs straight. Bring Kettlebells up from floor to chest, lower and repeat.
I'm still taking the protein mix, and am going through it quickly.
Tomorrow is Ruckus Boston. I'm hoping that my knee will be back to 100% so I can go all-out for this event. After having done as well as I did at SPC I feel like I can really be a competitor at Ruckus and I'm going to give it everything I've got. This time I'll be sure to bring the protein shake mix for quicker recovery and a change of clothes for a more comfortable ride home.