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Work, work, work it out!

So 2010 is here and it’s looking rather, well, I’ve seen better days and I’ve seen worse. I have still been having pain in my knee on occasion and it’s tender to the touch, but I have been implementing new workouts into my routine and I feel that this is really helping it allow me to still run when need be. So the new workouts do include swimming, and I have to admit, I do not like getting my hair wet that often, and I have too much hair for a swim cap to keep it completely dry, but overall, I really do like swimming. I was skeptical that I would feel like I was getting in a good workout, but it just works out different types of your body and I really like that. I can feel my back and arms getting stronger when I swim as well. Though I love running, right now my knee is just not cooperating as I would like it too, so mixing it up is really helpful to me and giving my knee a break.

That being said, I’ve been working out a decent amount since 2010 started. I had to switch up my training plan because of my new part-time job, tutoring in English, I switched my rest days to Monday and Wednesday and I will be working out on both weekend days. I actually am okay with this since I’m pretty tired at work if I work out almost every day of the week. Therefore here are some of the workouts I’ve done this year thus far.

New Years Eve was greeted with a mini triathlon in the gym. If there is time, I really could work out for a long time, alas time is fleeting and I’m usually limited to an hour. I luckily had a few extra days off and got in some stellar workouts. I am not the biggest fan of the gym either, but if I’m in the zone I can just pump iron with the best of them. Yea, not so much, but hey! It’s an attempt! So I ran one mile in 7:24 on the old treadmill, biked as hard as I could for three miles on the stationary bike, and then decided that I would attempt to swim. I swam about 1500 m, which is a lot for me and it felt great. I really focused on using my arms and when I swim, at this point, I don’t kick at all really. I was pretty exhausted after this workout but felt really good. I made my last 50m in under a minute because I wanted to see where I was if I timed myself.

New Year’s Day was another mini tri in the gym, and this time I added weights because I wanted to see how I would swim if I really wore my arms out first.  Ran one mile, faster than the day before, at 7:13, biked 3 miles at a higher level to try to kill myself and then opted to hit the weights. Now, me hitting the weights is basically me doing the cable cross machine, sit ups, and bicep dips over my shoulder. So we are not talking heavy lifting. So I did my three sets of 12 on each of my given weights and then did 150 sit ups and went out to the pool. I swam 2500m and felt great. I just kept going back and fourth back and fourth. Also, it helps me to count the laps by thinking in my head the entire time about what lap I’m on. If I’m on lap six, I chant, six, six, six, six, in my head the entire time. Weird, but it works out really well. That was a LOT of swimming, but I worked a lot on my breathing and engaging my arms and pushing myself through the water. Then I wanted to beat my time from the previous session and made my last 50m in :54 seconds! I am becoming a dolphin!

Sunday was a rest day, along with Monday and Tuesday was my first day back out strictly running. The small break I had given my knee seemed to be helpful and it didn’t start hurting until mile 4 of my 5 miler run. BUT, it was a great run because of my new schedule I get home much earlier and can still run in the daytime! Hooray for not getting attacked or ran over by cars! So I ran pretty quickly yesterday, because I wanted to be home before dark and made it just in time. I iced my knee and everything seemed to be okay for the most part. It’s been a little tender, but I’m making sure it’s mobile and I walk around a little at work.

Yesterday was another rest day since I had to tutor at night after work, which I’m okay with. I really like having my rest days during the week actually. That being said, tonight after work is another gym sesh and my swim coach is going with me to see how I’m improving. He came to one of my little workout sessions when I swam and told me that I had improved a ton and that he was very proud of me for swimming so much so quickly. When swimming I really focused on my breathing and going slow. Sometimes for some reason I feel like I have to speed around the pool like Jaws on the hunt, but swimming is more about relaxing and just repetition and focusing on making your arms work for you.

So 2010 is starting out on the right workout foot, and I plan to keep it up, especially as I get ready for Surf City the first weekend of February, exactly one month from today.


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  • Reply Felice

    Great start to the year! I see you’re getting on with the “living vivaciously” right away. Way to go :-)))

    January 7, 2010 at 8:29 am
  • Reply Kelly

    You are doing awesome!! Keep up the good work.

    January 7, 2010 at 8:30 am
  • Reply Amy

    awesome workouts! And that’s how I count my swimming laps, too, so I think it’s perfectly normal! For me, engaging my legs and arms AT THE SAME TIME while swimming is the biggest challenge, I think. Well, that and doing more than one just the freestyle.

    January 7, 2010 at 8:32 am
  • Reply Vic

    Your workouts sound intense, and awesome! I’ve had a tight IT band since my last long run and your alternative cardio workouts give me hope!

    I haven’t been able to run since Saturday but I am able to use the stationary bike, so, that’ll do for now.

    January 7, 2010 at 8:33 am
  • Reply Joe Run For Dom

    Good for you Danica! Keep listening to that knee. Take it from someone who knows the frustration of being on the shelf for awhile – so frustrating! I’ll be getting in touch after these two spring marathons as I transition over to Triathlon training – I’m going to need some help with the swim for sure.

    Best from Austin,

    January 7, 2010 at 8:38 am
  • Reply tolldoll

    first time poster, long time reader.

    be careful of your knees! I am sidelined for 4 months because I have a chronic case of chrondomalacia patella, and it all started from a tender knee pain and knee pain that is intermittent to a full blown knee injury. I was running a whole lot at that time. I miss it so much, it drives me crazy!

    January 7, 2010 at 8:48 am
  • Reply Lauren

    Nice start to 2010!

    January 7, 2010 at 8:51 am
  • Reply Mary @ Fit this girl

    This is really inspiring because 1) I need some gym love in January!! 2) you are SO fast!! I would love to run a 7:30 mile! and 3) I start swim lessons at the end of the month in prep for my August Tri and the way you talk about it seems really positive! Great Start to 2010 girl and happy workouts!

    January 7, 2010 at 8:59 am
  • Reply Julia

    Yay for a workout filled 2010 so far! I’ve never attempted a gym tri; but it sounds like something I would love to try out!
    Hope your knee feels better soon! I think the strength training, the swimming, and some time off will work wonders!

    January 7, 2010 at 9:06 am
  • Reply alex

    You go girl!
    You totally inspired me to ramp it up this year… I’ve been doing two a days, which is shocking for me, and every time I want to get lazy I say to myself “Dannnnnica is doing it, so yoooooou should do it too!”
    Works most of the time!

    January 7, 2010 at 9:08 am
  • Reply Cory

    I chant also when I swim. Another technique someone told me is to use your flip-flops that you place on the deck. Give one shoe a quarter turn each 50 or 100m. Use the second shoe to mark another increment (200m or 400m respectively). So when both shoes are facing forward again you have done 800m or 1600m, respectively.

    January 7, 2010 at 9:13 am
  • Reply Kristen

    For the few weeks I was swimming that’s how I would count my laps too! Anything to keep going. Keep it up girl 2010 looks like it’s gojng to be good to ya! Hope the knee feels better soon :)

    January 7, 2010 at 9:16 am
  • Reply Morgan

    One month! Wahoo! I am just over 7 weeks til Gasparilla and I’m like, holy crap where did the time go?!?!? Good job crosstraining and giving the knee a break girl!

    January 7, 2010 at 9:58 am
  • Reply Tricia

    Wow, what a great way to bring in the new year!

    January 7, 2010 at 10:09 am
  • Reply Julia

    Oh, and I also wanted to let you know I am having a giveaway from Japan, hope you can swing by :)

    January 7, 2010 at 10:29 am
  • Reply Liana

    Awesome! Way to get it done. I’m with you and have to count my laps to keep me focused. It really helps. I aspire to run sub-8’s this year. Keep up the great work.

    January 7, 2010 at 10:40 am
  • Reply Bridget

    Haha, I used to chant lap numbers in my head when I did track repeat workouts in high school. Whatever works! Your workouts sound beastly…go you!

    January 7, 2010 at 10:58 am
  • Reply rinus

    Thats a good start of 2010!.

    January 7, 2010 at 1:02 pm
  • Reply x-country2

    Keep up the good work!

    January 7, 2010 at 1:13 pm
  • Reply nicole

    I’m so proud of you D!!! Sounds like your kicking butt with the change up and i can’t wait to ‘watch’ you kick BUTT at Surf City!!! love you!

    January 7, 2010 at 1:43 pm
  • Reply Megan

    I was actually just looking at swimming accessories last night on Amazon and ran across a swim cap that might work for you – just type in Speedo Silicone Long Hair Swim Cap. Hopefully that can help you out and it comes in a fun blue color!

    January 7, 2010 at 3:27 pm
  • Reply Alisa

    Sounds like you’ve started the year off right!

    I’ll be swimming tomorrow. I too, hate getting my hair wet, swim caps work to a certain extent but my hair still ends up wet too.

    January 7, 2010 at 4:13 pm
  • Reply Christina

    I am so bad at counting laps in the pool- no matter how much I concentrate I forget once it gets into the double digits. One good tip I heard was to count laps by thinking about the corresponding month- like 1 is January, and think about what happens in January. I never forget now!

    January 7, 2010 at 4:26 pm
  • Reply Joy

    50m in :54! Nice!

    I’ve been trying to kick more along with the arms – I’m completely out of breath at the end of each lap.

    I also keep track of my laps by switching my breathing along with the lap count (i.e., at lap 6, switch my breathing side every 6 strokes).

    January 7, 2010 at 5:24 pm
  • Reply kristen

    I’m so happy your sticking with the swimming. Your so right to focus on your breathing and going slow. When I first started swimming I felt like I had to go fast and everyone kept telling me to slow down. Your doing awesome!

    January 7, 2010 at 5:33 pm
  • Reply diana

    Way to keep things moving. Hope the knee starts to improve. Are you doing any exercises to strengthen the muscles which support it? That may help prevent this again. You are doing great, keep it up.

    January 8, 2010 at 6:33 am
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