Monday, May 3, 2010

Biking and Barefoot Walking

For the last 4 weeks I have been a good girl and have not gone running. However I am not one to just sit around and feel sorry for myself (okay I did do that for maybe a week) so I decided that since I cannot run I would try and take up biking again. Before I had my daughter, back when I was living in the land of endless summer (Miami, Florida) I would pack up my bike and go to Shark Valley every weekend. Shark Valley is a 15 mile paved loop in the Everglades where many people go for a nice ride and to check out the wildlife. I would usually pack a lunch and a good book and have a little picnic while I was out there too.

Since having my daughter, I have not really been on the bike much. I have taken her out to Shark Valley once before we moved (Had to see it one more time). And then in the last couple weeks I have taken her out on a couple rides with me. I am always nervous when I have her on the bike with me; I tend to ride really slow and am over cautious so it is not really a workout at all. But it has been nice to get back on the bike nonetheless.

Most of my biking in these past few weeks has been at the gym. You see I live in the land of HUGE HILLS. And I am very intimated by these hills, so I decided to ride at the gym. However after several weeks stuck inside at the gym it was time to move outside and give it a try. So yesterday I took off for a 12 mile ride. WOW, those hills really did hurt. I thought I was doing hills on the bike at the gym, well I have to say it did not compare to the real thing. My legs and tushy hurt so bad it was insane. I have never hurt so much after a bike ride in my life. When the ride was finally over and I got off the bike I was walking bowlegged. And then when I got home and had to climb the stairs to take a shower that first step was greeted with a pain wrenched howl as I attempted to ascend those steps. After several hours though the pain started to fade and I decided that the bike in the gym is just not cutting it so I must get out and ride more often. I also am thinking that if I keep this up after I can run again that I will have to invest in an actual road bike in the hopes that it will actually make it easier. We will see.

In addition to the biking I have started barefoot walking in the hopes that it will help my feet adjust faster when I can run. For those of you who thought I was joking in my last post let me assure you that I was not. I really think the barefoot running is my answer to running injury free, and I totally plan to give it a shot. I have been out three times so far each time for a 2 mile walk. I now have blisters on both feet and think that I am well on my way to getting calluses in all the right places. I am also trying to vary the services that I am walking on. I am switching back and forth from asphalt and concrete as those will most likely be the two services that I will be running the most.

My first two mile barefoot walk I took my daughter and she was very concerned that I had lost my shoes. Pretty much the whole two miles she was on the search for mommies shoes. Her excitement when I finally found them back at the car was a little amusing to say the least.

My second walk went really well and I found the concrete surface to be a lot easier on my feet. Although I sill came away with a blister my feet were not sore at all from this walk. The third walk however was back on the asphalt and my feet hurt the whole way this time. I also ended up with blisters on both feet after this one. I am still very optimistic and feel that I will be thankful for these walks once I start running barefoot.

So that is pretty much what I have been up to these past few weeks of not running. I have to say that this time around being injured I have kept the most active and although I truly miss running it has not affected me as bad. I think having the biking and walking to distract and keep me busy has really helped me not feel so sad about not running. I highly recommend starting a good cross training routine when out on an injury; this has helped me really get through this.

What keeps you from going crazy when you are out with an injury?



jill said...

yay tracey! i'm so glad that this is working out for you, and that you managed to keep your spirits up and your focus on getting back to running.

this past injury resting period (only 2 weeks for me), what helped me not lose my running desire or my new fitness groove was focusing on what i plan on doing once i'm back at running, otherwise known as "having a goal". i'm not normally good at setting goals. (my goal - run a marathon. lofty!) i think your goal (barefoot running) has helped you avoid the mental downswing that happens during an injury rehab.

can't wait to hear about the BF running..oh, and that bit abt amanda looking for your shoes - SO CUTE!

Anna said...

Biking in the that sounds like fun! Hey can u recommend a bike seat?

Paula (Adventure Junkie Mom) said...

Glad this is working out for you. I am sure you have read Born to Run, and Chi? I cannot wait to be barefoot again after Ironman.
Love the pics of you and Amanda on the bike. And her looking for your shoes, is so adorable!
Keep up the great work, and stay injury free!!