Thursday, October 28, 2010

The Runner's Trainer Dilemma

Apologies to anyone who reads my Athleticore, since this is just a longer version of today's entry. But considering there's like five people on my "allow" list, chances are you haven't seen this yet.

When I first started cross-training, the trainer kicked my butt. Mentally, it was torture. Thirty minutes on the trainer meant thirty minutes of being bored out of my skull and doing the thirty minute countdown. And no matter what I did, I couldn't get my heart rate up and I was never breathing hard, even though my legs were pushing about as hard as I could manage.

Now, the trainer is definitely getting easier. Thirty minutes has turned into...a lot more, and I feel my legs slowly starting to get used to the new exercise. Which you'd think would be a good thing, but it's gotten to the point where, on quality days, I feel like I could repeat the entire workout immediately afterward. I'm probably not working hard enough, but my legs still don't seem to know how to keep up with my cardiovascular system (oddly, the opposite of my running), even though they recover 2 seconds after the interval and never seem to actually get a workout in. Kind of feels like striders or 200s or something...that's about as fast as my legs go, but afterward, it doesn't feel like I got much in. Basically kicking the ass of a quality day on the trainer isn't nearly as fulfilling as kicking the ass of a tough track workout or tempo run, and I don't get that high the rest of the day feeling. I know much of this is related to my legs not being in cycling shape, and some of it is me looking for that trashed feeling you get in your legs from the impact of running, and the rest is probably because I'm doing it on a trainer rather than outside. The final factor is I have a grand total of one cycling DVD (thanks Molly for hooking me up!), and I think my legs are getting used to that particular workout. Oddly enough, my mind hasn't gotten sick of the DVD yet, and I find I prefer it to watching movies (though I'm being a good girl and taking recovery days, even though my legs don't seem convinced they need easy days). But really, I miss running.

Not dilemma related, I'm actually starting to enjoy the trainer. Never thought I'd say that. But now, I'll actually wake up looking forward to trainer-ing, and during the day, I'll have to consciously stop myself from filling in my spare time with the trainer. Not nearly to the extent I find myself doing that when I'm stoked on running training, but moreso than I usually do with cross training.


  1. Becki,

    Hi. I'm trying to bring together a group of people to share experiences related to running etc... via blogging. Stop by my blog and say hello if you get a chance.

    I hope your recovery is swift. I've had my share of injuries and cross-training has been my saving grace-biking mostly.

    Take care.


  2. Thanks for the blog comment! On the 10k training program I did it was 4 days a week and one day cross training. When I started the half marathon program it called for 5 days a week, and honestly I thought that was too much. I've been reading a lot and it all says a day of cross training is healthy! I agree with you, though, I use the elliptical trainer and I get bored out of my skull!


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