I have found a new form of torture. Struggling to put in a decent run over the past three weeks due to my hip I decided that after Interstate I would re-attack the run with a vengeance - I need to push through that discomfort and come out the other side. So that was the plan. Shame my body didn't agree with my head though and decided to get sick and both head and body flew home on Saturday and spent the rest of the weekend sleeping.
So, yesterday. Tuesday, is my run day. Still easing back into it, I am on medication and not back up to speed. So when your not feeling so great maintaining fitness is the goal. Up I get, runners on and out the door. Gently start I tell myself, and off I go. And...STOP. OUCH...YIKES what is wrong with my back? Okay lets try again shall we? Gently, gently catch a monkey. And off I go. And...STOP. Ye-ouch! Now I can take a LOT of pain but this was unbearable discomfort across my lower back and any form of jogging was completely disabling. I stopped. Hands on Hips. Think Emma, THINK. What do I do? (And don't you dare say go back to BED!)
Do I swim? Last time I was unable to run because of discomfort like this I turned to the staircase at home. Back then it was a last resort and yesterday it was again my last resort.
It is all well and good plunking in an extra swim but it is not what I need to to. What I need to do on a Tuesday is blow my heart-rate sky high. And swimming no matter how hard I try will not do that.
So back home (2mins later). Fetched a water bottle, iPod and went to the stairwell.
I live on the 20th floor. Right to the very bottom is 22floors. It is hot in the stairwell no real air..bit like training in a sauna so the bottle of water I left at the top was needed in between each set.
Set the watch, ipod on and off I go, down the stairs. The thought process was take it easy at first still not totally steady on my feet from the tummy bug. I forget my splits the last time I did this. And I knew the litmus test would be climbing back up - would I be able to bear the back pain?
At the bottom, touch the wall (anal I know) and back up, power up them stairs. At the top I am gasping for breath. My muscles are popping and legs are wobbly but my back...ZIP, no pain at all - RESULT.
Quick drink and off I go again. Lets start to push a little shall we? And so I carried on for an just under an hour the time it took me to do 8 sets.
This mornings brick ride hurt, still slow and my calves and quads from the stairHell were very ouchy. There was worse to come though as I checked with the powers that be and apparently I was doing a very good thing. Great workout. Which meant today after my 2hour ride, YUP I did a brick StairHELL. Only 30minutes today but this time I ran up the stairs. Well, jogged. OMG boy oh boy I think it is the toughest thing I have put my heart through for a long time - it was AWESOME.
I am hobbling round at the moment because my calves and quads are so sore, but that will go away. I am kind of hooked on the stairHELL training I think, sure it will go away and I hope it is not for too much longer as I may develop a rather weird running style (Yes, I know I already have a weird style, thank you very much)!!
The lesson I learnt? When all else fails and you think you can't...there is always a way to get the benefits without compromising your health and safety. Unless of course you go and fall arse over tit when running down the stairs!