Thursday, January 7, 2010

Food, Running, Protein, Heat & Muscles (not necessarily in that order)

A few things to update on today.  Firstly, I want to thank everyone for their tips and suggestions over the last few days for various things.  I truly appreciate it all and will slowly work through everything until I work out what works for me.

Lets start with last nights run.  I REALLY did not want to go.  Although my muscle soreness had reduced a bit throught the course of the day, my legs were still tight and fatigued.  Add to that it was hot - still 34 degrees at 6pm - I was tired, and my deep seated inherent laziness was telling me that staying home on the couch was the thing to do.  But - and here's the kicker - I couldn't think of an excuse to blow it off that you guys would buy, so I figured I had no choice.  :o)  So off I went.  40 minutes with 5 x jogging intervals, all 60 seconds.  My first interval was painful, slow and painful (yes, I know I said painful twice).  The 4th interval was the strongest.  The last one felt like 10 minutes, not 1.  But my goal was to get up to 5 intervals, and I did it.

After dinner I took Mel's advice and had a long hot bath.  It felt weird soaking in a hot bath with the air conditioner on in the next room, but geez it made a difference.  I could literally feel the tension in my muscles fade away somewhat.  This will definitely become part of my routine.

When I got home there was a lovely surprise waiting for me.  A belated birthday pressie sitting there from my friend in NT.  It was a gift basket filled with lots of yummies (unfortunately I pulled it apart before taking a photo).  So many goodies.  I really am spoiled.  The good thing is that most of the goodies are in small packets, so when I open them and share them with Ross, they won't do too much damage to my calories.  I just need to keep the packets closed until I have days with spare calories.

I was starving by dinner time so wanted something quick and easy.  Ross wanted meat so I was on my own.  I heated a drop of oil with some cracked pepper, parsley and oregano and saute'd some mushroom and lightly friend some tofu slices.  I served it with sliced avocado and cottage cheese.  It was so delicious!  And amazingly filling.

I actually got through yesterday meeting my protein target, without needing protein drinks or bars, which I was really impressed with.  I know that some days I will need the help, but I really want to aim for more days where I can get enough protein from my food alone.  It is definitely possible.  Thousands of vegetarians do it every day.  I just need to find a way to do it that fits in with my calories and suits me.

The forecast for the next few days is between 36 degrees and 41 degrees.  The hottest time of day here is around 5pm, the time I leave work and normally do my exercise.  So this morning I decided to get up an hour earlier and do my bike ride at 5am instead of 5pm.  Oh my...

Getting up wasn't too bad.  Getting on the bike was okay.  But...  There were some positives and some negatives about riding at this time of day.

*  The air was beautiful.  Crisp and clean.  It was about 17 degrees which was lovely for a ride.
*  No traffic on the roads.
*  My exercise for the day is done and the hours after work are now my time.
*  Don't have to ride in 36 degree heat.

*  I am not quite awake when I head out.  I got up at 5, had a glass of milk for some calories, some water, got changed, and was on the road by 5.20am.  I can not eat that early so a glass of milk is all I can manage, and it probably wasn't enough as my energy was lagging.
*  Too dark to ride on the bike paths until I was about half way through the ride so I had to stick to streets (I won't ride on bike paths when it is dark - too dangerous)
*  I struggled to get my HR up.  Now I am not sure if this was because I wasn't fully awake, or because I hadn't eaten, or because it had only been 11 hours since last nights run and I still wasn't recovered.  But I did 3kms less than I normally would in that time and my AHR was only 130 and it is normally around the 145-150 mark.

So I guess there is good and bad to it.  In saying that, doing a slower ride/run at 5am is better than getting to 5pm and being so drained from the heat that I do nothing.  And who knows, maybe as I get used to it I will improve.

As for my muscles today, they feel ok.  A bit fatigued, but ok.  That bath really worked wonders last night.  Tomorrow is my rest day - YAY! - so hopefully by Saturday morning when I have a 1 hour walk planned, they will be back to normal.


Emz said...

Mmmm, that dinner looks fantastic. Will have to grab some mushrooms and tofu at the shop so I can recreate that meal!!

Woah, 5am!! You go girl, that's amazing!! I've only ever done early morning exercise before (early meaning before 8am for me!!) and it's felt great to have it done early in cooler temperatures, but I know exactly what you mean about not feeling quite awake. I felt like I wasn't able to put 100% into the workout because I was a bit fuzzy headed still from sleep. But I suppose that's something that goes when you adapt to early morning wakeups!

Good job on getting your protein target. That dinner alone would have been high in protein! It's hard to try and reach all the nutritional goals without blowing out the calories!!

Em xo

Emz said...

PS Have you seen Julie and Julia? Apparently the secret to cooking great mushrooms is "don't crowd the mushrooms"! Otherwise they won't brown! I thought that was a cool tip.

swayerm said...

I know I am probably giving you the sh!ts with this, but with your glass of milk in the morning, it might be an ideal time to chuck some protein powder in. Will help with your muscle recovery during the day too.
Otherwise, well done on the 5am! The only time I manage exercise in the morning is when I ride to work, I get up at 5am anyway, and getting up at 4am just for an hour ride before work just does NOT turn me on... lol.

Linda50 said...

Hi Kylie
Good on you for doing it so early in the morning, especially if it is not the "norm".