Monday, May 21, 2012


One great thing of many great things about finally being allowed to run outside again will be no longer being in thrall to my gym's schedule and the uncertainty of how many others will want to use the recumbent bike there. And now that the Alter-G is in the mix, my training schedule (if that's not too lofty a phrase for it) has gotten even more ridiculous.

Don't get me wrong: I am NOT complaining about having access to the Alter-G. But after this crazy morning, I do feel compelled to complain about SCHEDULING the Alter-G. See, it's not like I can just march in there, pull on the crazy shorts and get myself going any time I want. I have to have a physiologist on hand to help me get into the thing, and to track my progress and monitor my pain while I'm on it. There are three physiologists I can work with. And their working hours....pretty much correspond with my working hours, or the hours I'm with my kids. They don't have 5 a.m. kids-aren't-up-yet work's-not-open-yet appointments, or 8 p.m. kids-are-in-bed I'm-off-work appointments, or weekend husband-home-with-kids hours.

This leads to days like today. Here's how it went:

4:30 a.m.--I wake up, dress, sneak through the creaky-floored house and drive to the gym.

5 a.m.--The gym opens. I find a recumbent bike (had I arrived an hour later, this could have been a problem) and get my 45-minute interval/hill workout done. The sessions on the Alter-G just aren't long or hard enough for me to start scaling back the bike yet.

5:50 a.m.--After changing out of my sweat-soaked pants, I stretch my pissed-off piriformis and foam roll.

6:05 a.m.--I head home.

6:15 a.m.--Arriving home, I gather up the milk delivery and the newspapers and go inside. My son Will bursts out of his room about a millisecond after I open the front door. Dan and our daughter Ruthie are both still asleep.

6:30 a.m.--Will and I eat breakfast. Dan gets up. Ruthie is still asleep.

6:45 a.m.--I take my shower. At 7, Dan wakes Ruthie up.

7:10 a.m.--Dan and Ruthie eat breakfast. I start some tea for the road.

7:25 a.m.--I leave for Boulder, clutching tea, backpack, water bottle, and purse.

8 a.m.--Traffic was bad, but I arrive at my library when I wanted to. On Mondays, I'm the opening reference librarian, which means I get the reference desk ready for the day by changing out the newspapers, starting up our circulation and catalog software, printing the desk schedule for the day (damn!, I said on seeing today's schedule--I'm due on at 10 a.m.!) and noting any phone messages. I do this an hour earlier today than I usually do, because I couldn't get an earlier Alter-G session.

8:45 a.m.--I head over to Boulder Center for Sports Medicine. My appointment isn't until 9:15 a.m., but I'm hoping to get on earlier. Double damn! My physiologist is with an earlier client when I get there, so no early start for me.

9:15 a.m.--Jaclyn comes to get me. I change into the Alter-G shorts as quickly as possible, and we get the machine going. My tailbone feels a bit uncomfortable, but I'm happy to be at 80% body weight this time (up from 75% last Thursday). I also jack the incline up a little, settling at 3%. But with that 10 a.m. reference desk shift looming, I have time for only 20 minutes. I cut my warm-up short and do some "intervals" at 8 minutes-per-mile to get more for my money. Thanks to this, I'm able to get my heart rate over 150 by the time my limited session is over.

9:45 a.m.--I climb off the Alter-G, get out of the shorts and shower quickly. I throw on my work clothing, forgetting to put on my earrings.

10 a.m.--Lucky thing BCSM and the library are close to each other. I just have time to dump my stuff in my cubicle in the office and grab another cup of tea and some crackers as the morning's first library patrons climb the stairs and approach the reference desk. My first shift there is two hours. Thanks goodness for those crackers.

Now, it's my lunch break...and I'm s-l-e-e-p-y. I'm also g-r-u-m-p-y. Things I normally take in stride on the desk, like the incessant ringing of the phone, made me want to kill someone today.

Yes, I am very lucky to have access to the Alter-G, and yes I will continue to jump through hoops to use it. But yes, yes, yes.....I'm really looking forward to those mornings (they will come, won't they?) when I merely open my door, step out into the morning's cool and start putting one foot in front of the other.


  1. Holy Moly! That is more before noon than I have going on in my whole day! I can only imagine how badly you want to be on YOUR schedule instead of someone else's soon! P.S. 8:00 min/miles...nice speedy!

  2. Yes, those mornings WILL return where you'll be able to step out your door and go!  No scheduling hassles - you will control your timing destiny.  :-)  I can imagine your frustration as I would be chafing against such a time crunch.  Hang in there!

  3. Dang! A day in the life...i don't know how you do it. I think i need a nap after reading this. Those mornings will be here soon!

  4. You are a very busy lady!  I guess I am bust too but I don't think that I run around as much as you do!  You will be back to running outside in no time from the looks of things.  I am so happy for you!!

  5. That's what I struggled with when I first had a kid - how things have to be scheduled in order to do them.  I can't imagine this crazy scheduling!  I'm glad you work so close to the alter-G so you CAN do it!  You're up to 80% body weight now - that's awesome!  Think of it this way, you're in that last 10K of the recovery marathon.  You'll definitely be back to stepping out the door, because you're dedicated and strong enough to heal properly and do it!

  6. you have every right to complain.  the alter-g sounds great but a hassle!  i hope you're back on the roads soon :)

  7. Oh man! That is crazy! Good crazy though. :) I am so glad you have the Alter G available and that you are getting so much exercise time in. Yay!!!

  8. That's a crazy schedule for sure -- I do admire your dedication. 

  9. it is busy but you are lucky that it is possible for you to leave the house before the kids get up and get something done.  I could not do it,  Bill leaves at 4 or 4:30 am.  My gym opens at 5.  your discipline and dedication  will pay off, I know it will.

  10. I don't think I have ever gotten in a workout before 6am, and am so impressed with those of you who can crawl out of bed so early! (I see why that sleep goal is especially needed!)  Hope that day comes soon, when you're able to hop out the door and run!

  11. Pack a little to the morning why don't you? :) 

    Yes it will come. 

  12. I'll remind myself not to take squeezing in a quick run for granted. 80% and faster - I'm loving all this tangible improvements!!

  13. I got tired just reading your post.  I don't think I've ever darkened my gym's doorstep before work, never mind when it opens.  Having said that, I am up at the moment (randomly woke up and couldn't get back to sleep) and it's 4 am, so should i go for a run?  Ha, incredibly unlikely.  Hell is not ready for ice skating yet. ;)

  14. One of the reasons I run, and always run outside, is the pure simplicity and independence of it. I walk out my door and I run. I even hate driving anywhere to run - too much fuss-and-bother. But I do remember having an injury during a period in my life when I was VERY competitive and lived for running - and I dragged myself to the stupid pool every morning at 5 a.m. After a while I did get into a routine with it, but that first mile back out on the roads was utter bliss because it was just so simple. Keep at it!

  15. UGH, 4:30?  That's brutal. But we do what we gotta do to get our workouts in if they mean that much to us.  I have a feeling I will be putting in a lot of early morning workouts once Beavis gets here.  

    AND YES, one day, you will be free from all that alter-G running and you can just step out your front door to run and the run will mean that much more to you because you will remember what it was like when you couldn't do it.  

  16. you have home milk delivery? wow, have not had that since i was a 4-5 year-old. who does the delivery?

    do you have a library science degree - if so from where? i have been thinking of some Masters programs in this of late.

  17. As you know, I've already commented via email, but I wanted you to get that comment count up.  And let you know I got it working.

  18. Rockstar -- I think that describes you to a tee! This really helps me realize that I'm not the only one with a crazy schedule sometimes. It can be hard, but it's worth it. (And I know you've got it tougher than me juggling those kids on top of everything else!)