Get in Shape Challenge Day 32 – Friday 16th September

As I write today’s update on my fitness challenge I really am reminded that progress at times can be an exceptionally slow process, one that at times we cannot see when right in front of us but after looking back and by listening to those around us we can have it revealed. These thoughts have emerged over the past few days due to events including our indoor soccer game on Wednesday night, the way I felt about my energy levels throughout the game plus also the reflection other people have had to me since then. I have had most of the guys since the soccer game tell me that they were really impressed with the amount of energy I had throughout the entire game, the fact I just kept on running, my best Mike reflected that my “cardio fitness regime must be going great because I just kept running”.

With all of these things brewing in my mind I headed into the gym this morning for my next cardio session, the first since Monday due to me resting for the soccer game on Wednesday. I started as I have been with a warm up on the treadmill, however this morning I found myself feeling exceptionally tight to the point where both of my hamstrings felt like they were going to snap. I decide at this point to change the routine for this morning to manage my body instead of pushing through and causing myself some serious injury. Instead of increasing the speed every 5 minutes I kept the speed on 7.5km/h for the first 15 minutes of the running period to really loosen off the muscles. At the 15 minute mark my legs were feeling a bit looser so I increased the speed to 10km/h which I kept it on for the remaining 10 minutes.

I jumped onto the ergo not knowing exactly how my legs would cope, they were feeling pretty tired already, I wanted to push myself but to be sensible at the same time. I decided to reduce the length of my row to 5 minutes instead of going for the 2km in the shortest time possible. I pushed myself hard for the entire 5 minutes rowing at up to 37 strokes per minute at one point and with an average 500 m split at one point as low as 1 minute 47 seconds. By the end of the 5 minute mark I had rowed 1,240m at an average 500m split of 1 minute and 59 seconds. Standing up was a bit of an issue after finishing tis row with my legs feeling like jelly, after a short 30 second rest I moved onto the bike for the last part of the session.

The bike I had decided I was still going to push myself very hard for the full 10 minute period. I began the training but after a minute and 20 seconds had to stop and change bikes as the setting kept changing back to level 1 for effort. I restarted the bike and aimed to push as far as I could. Throughout the entire 10 minutes I kept ahead of the 5km in 10 minute mark, my rpm got in last few minutes as high as 120rpm and the power output up to 180kw. In the 8 minutes and 30 second mark I was up over 5km and I wanted to try and make the 5.5km. I raised the the workload and intensity always fighting against the clock. By the end of the 10 minutes I had ridden 5.49km, at an average power of 170kw, I had just missed the 5.5km mark!

My stretching at the end of today’s session was so important to help me recover, all my leg muscles were exceptionally tight and it was only after holding each stretch for 30 seconds that they started to release. I have noticed that since my workout this morning my legs have continued to feel fatigued and have started to stiffen up a bit as well. More stretching will be needed later on tonight to ensure I don’t end up getting injured later down the track.

So upon reflection of all my sporting activities, I have to be nothing but satisfied at my current progress, there is a lot more work to do as I am nowhere near my goal of losing the stomach fat before the wedding day‚Ķbut all seems to be going very well, I have more energy and am a lot fitter than I was a month ago. Bring on tomorrow’s weights sessions is all I can say.

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