Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Struggling to Add Fitness to my Commute

This week I have been trying to get more use out of my bike. Its half way through day 2 of this experiment and it is really not working out that well so far. Normally I drive and park at the bus stop, ride the bus, than proceed to walk to the office. My great plan for this week is to ride my mountain bike to the bus stop, put bike in bus bike rack, than proceed to ride my bike to the office. With a plan that simple, nothing could go wrong. Well, I'll tell you what could and has gone wrong.

Monday Day 1- Bus does not have a bike rack so I ask the driver what she wants me to do. She tells me to go to the far back of the bus with my bike. I am now blocking 5 seats and as more passengers fill up the bus I can feel that I am irritating the already very irritable early Monday commuters. After what felt like an eternity, the bus finally arrives at my stop. Somehow I was able maneuver through the aisle with my bike without injuring anyone or anyone injuring me. I than proceed to start riding to my office but soon realize that my tire pressures are still set low for riding in sand. When I finally get to my office I am out of breath and my legs are burning. The day ended good though when I was able to get air from a coworker's air compressor and the bus on the ride home had a bike rack. So I was optimistic for this morning.

See how much fun I am having?
Tuesday Day 2-Ride to different bus stop. The bus that arrives doesn't have a bike rack. The flashbacks from yesterday started flooding in and I freaked out and took off riding as fast as I could. After I had calmed down I headed over to my plan B bus stop. After sitting on the sidewalk for half an hour in 30 degree weather at the new bus stop, the bus arrived and had a bike rack. Which I was grateful for because I did not have a plan C.

Yep, like I said. It is not working out very well so far.

On a better note, I am excited for the Apple Valley Turkey Run 5k/10k this weekend on Nov 30th. It was actually supposed to be on the previous weekend but the rainy weather caused them to reschedule it. I was looking forward to running a 10k last weekend though so I ran the distance around town in the rain. Even though there are a couple long tough hills and my wet shoes were heavy I ran it in a fast for me, 57 mins. So I am confident of getting a PR this weekend.

Other things going on this week is I am going to have two Thanksgiving meals because my Wife and I don't want to choose who's family to celebrate with. Besides, who can have too much Thanksgiving. The downside of course is that according this article the average Thanksgiving meal is 3,000 calories. So I logged into my lately neglected Myfitnesspal and found out what I would have to do to burn off the equivalent of two Thanksgiving meals.

Activities that would equal 6,000~ calories
-Run for 7hrs or 42miles
-Walk for 21hrs or 63 miles
-Swim freestyle for 10hrs
-Household cleaning for 28hrs.

Looks like my week just got real busy.

What do you do to make your commute more healthy?
 Maybe I could try butt clenches on the bus ride. :)

Admin note- I have fixed the comments. If anyone is still having trouble leaving comments let me know at captain.speedypants@gmail.com

Monday, November 18, 2013

Bleeding Man Nipples

I feel your pain Andy. (The Office)

Let's talk about an embarrassing but not so uncommon issue for men, the bloody nipple. The cause of this very emasculating infliction is the friction of the shirt and the nipple. Usually and especially in my case, sweat and duration of the run can make the issue worse. So I will share my triumphant story of overcoming this issue and share some tips that I have learned along the way.

It was a little over a year ago when I first came home after a long run and had some bad bloody nipples. It was kind of freaky and it was painful. My shirt was sanding down my nipples for over an hour using salty sweat as lubricant. After that first time, it started happening with clockwork precision at exactly 6 miles into my runs. I tried a few different products but eventually what ended up working for me is just giving my nipples a break. I had stopped running for a couple weeks because I started to get IT band issues and when I returned to running my nipples didn't bleed anymore. My nipples were able to heal completely and were a little tougher and less sensitive than before.

A few products or tips that may help.

1. Run shirtless. This is a sure fix to the issue if you are confident enough to do it.
2. Wear synthetic or tech t-shirts. These materials are lighter and help wick away moisture and sweat.
3. Wear a tighter/looser shirt. If you are having the issue with a tight shirt than try a looser fitting one or vice versa.
4. Anti-chafe products. These work by reducing the friction.There are many out there, Bodyglide being the most common.
5 Nipple covers. These work by covering and protecting the nipple. NipEAZE is one I recommend but band-aids, tape, super-glue, mole-skin, and many other products have been found to work.

Here are a couple articles that I have found on the subject.

Runners World
NY Daily News

The trick is to just keep trying something until you find something that works. Good luck.

This is NOT a sponsored post. Actually with all the nipple and 
lubricant talk I probably will never get advertisers now.
 All thoughts, experiences, and opinions are mine. 

Friday, November 15, 2013

Blogger #Fail

Hello again. I am totally failing at being an awesome blogger by not posting for awhile. I am going to pretend that perhaps it was a planned "cliffhanger" to keep all you readers wondering what and when I am going to post again. As witnessed by the hash-tag in my blog post title, I have been starting to get the hang of Instagram and Twitter. So if you want more and quicker Captain Speedypants updates than you can follow me on those unsocial media sites as well.

My training has been going really well. I have been getting some running, swimming, mountain biking, stationary biking, and some strength training in. Although I still haven't been able to drag my butt to the gym yet. I have no idea why I dread going to the gym so much.

Here is a list of how my fitness training has been going.

Saturday- long run, currently around 8 miles and going up in half mile increments. (11min/mile avg)
Tuesday- moderate run, usually 4-6 miles with hills at a fast but maintainable pace. (9:30 min/mile avg)
Thursday- Speed run, 8X400's or 4X800's (7:20 min/mile pace or better)

I hope running near  power lines doesn't cause cancer

My swimming has been sporadic but am trying to get a schedule in place. Eventually I would like to try to get to the pool 2-3 times a week.

I love smelling like chlorine

Mountain Biking
This is just for fun but would like to get one ride a month in. My last ride was a little over 8 miles and I discovered that running fitness and biking fitness do not transfer over. I was really struggling to get up the hills. I believe it took me over an hour to make it up to the highest point and then it was a very fast but fun 10 minutes back down. The ratio of 6/1 between pain and fun almost doesn't seem worth it.

Stationary Biking
Monday- 30 mins
Wednesday - 45 mins

Strength Training
Have been mostly just doing pushups at home. Nothing fancy but I figured it works out my core and my neglected upper body. My family makes fun of me when I do random pushups during commercials of the shows we watch. So at least I've been entertaining. I no longer have the excuse that I can't find my weight bench in the epic adventure known as my garage because I finally have it cleared out. Hopefully I can get some other strength training started soon.

As you can see I am back up to a full week of fun and activities. Everything revolves around my running. I am really flexible with everything else and go by feel. If I am having an off day than I will cut back, If I am having a good day than I usually increase my workout. It is all about finding a good balance and doing what you enjoy when you can.

Do you go by a strict schedule or do you do what you feel?

As you can see, I do not go by a strict schedule. I go by a general plan for my running and everything else kind of falls into place.