As I sit here, I am recovering from a brutal strength training workout. I mistakenly thought that I was in fairly good shape. I mean, I HAVE been walking everywhere non-stop, this is NYC, you have no choice AND I have actually been getting up at the crack of dawn to go to spinning classes at the gym. These efforts did very little to prepare me for my sports doctor’s fitness workout on Thursday evening.
I have been doing very little running lately because I have hamstring tendonitis and the running tends to aggravate it. This is a nagging injury that has been bugging me for over a year and I finally decided to see a doctor about it. The injury does not bother me when I am actually in the process of running, cycling or working out but it flares up after I work out. Mainly it hurts when I walk, which is not good because again this is NYC and I walk everywhere! The first doctor I went to see dismissed my sore knee and didn’t really take me seriously. My x-rays were fine and since I wasn’t an “elite” athlete he told me I should just treat it with advil and ice. Right. I am no doctor but I am pretty sure that this would not help me in the long run OR help me go for a long run. So, after leaving Dr. Arrogant, I was fortunate to have a friend refer me to a wonderful doctor/surgeon who even though regularly treats professional athletes and is an ironman himself, made me feel like I actually mattered and that I should be able to enjoy recreational sports and walking pain free.
Anyhoo, after a trial in physio, Dr. Ironman (Ron objects to me calling him Dr. McCutie!) assessed my hamstring and told me the cold hard facts- I needed to do some serious strength training and that was the only way that this injury would go away permanently. Right. No way around it, I would have to start building some serious muscle to help support the running and cycling that I love to do. Dr. Ironman runs his own strength training workshop once a month where he offers a class to his patients. He leads the class in various exercises that are designed to help athletes avoid injuries through strength training. He suggested that I attend his next class to get started on my muscle building journey.
So, on Thursday I headed to Equinox in the Village to attend this class. I was very nervous. I knew it was going to be a tough workout and I had survived many bootcamps and cry or puke moments in the past but this guy is an Ironman!!! And, I was NOT disappointed. This was definitely one of the toughest classes I had ever attended. The class was full of extremely fit people including a kid who would be attending Yale in the fall on a full basketball scholarship!! Gulp! There was a lot of abdominal torture, plyometrics, burpees, mountain climbers and weight work. There were many moments when I was tempted to just walk out and quit. Instead, I stayed and did the best I could.
It was an eye opening experience for me. I left the class exhausted, I was definitely not in as good of shape as I thought I was. I have been making choices to eat healthier and be more active but I also need to work on those little things called muscles As I inch closer and closer to the big ahem, 4-0, it seems to be a bit harder than when I was younger to be strong and active but not impossible. I am actively choosing to be strong and not just on the inside. I have signed up for a cycling class tomorrow morning but I am also going to make time for a wee bit of strength training too. That is, if I can lift my arms over my head by then Right now I am going to limp over to a nice hot bath and relax… ouch… those forgotten muscles are reminding me not to forget them again!!!