Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Missing: Lats


I am incredibly lucky -

So much, that I can't believe that I'm about to write what I'm going to write.

Additionally, I am one great-big happy camper.

Here we go!

(And keep in mind - this is not complaining. Just a statement of the fact).

I am SO sore. I can feel my soreness resonating throughout my body. I am aware of every little movement, every little step, every single breath that I take. The arms, lats, chest, legs, abs - everything is one red hot level of OUCH!

It started Monday, when Physical Therapist Jonathan told me we were going to work on arms and abs.

It sounded suspicious, like conditioning work. I was assured that was.

"You're at the point in your recovery," he began while pulling out the bosu ball from under one of the benches. "That we can start getting your conditioning back. We can do specific strenght work, as long as it helps your back and doesn't hurt."

Then he made me do a million pushups.

Just kidding, sort of. It was actually 3 X 15 pushups off the inverted bosu ball. And later I did another 30 pushups off the Swedish Ball. Do me a favor: don't do the math.

And that was pretty much how Monday's physical therapy went. It was hard, it was work - and I loved every minute of it.

I may have left my pecs and lats at the PT Office, but it was a great session.

Additionally, I was given the "All Clear" to start biking FOR REAL. After bringing in my ISM Adamo Saddle and explaining the mechanics of riding a bike, Jonathan decided that I could ride for up to (but no more) than two hours per day. The catch? I could ride an hour in the morning and an hour at night.

It's a start!

Again - I floated out of the office (sans pecs and lats).

Yesterday's 4800 yard swim was a turning point. It was one of those challenging workouts where a lot of T-pace work. I sent Jen an email, asking about pace. Her reply was cheerful, a bit too cheerful, if you ask me.

She gave me permission to swim my 100s on a fast XX pace - and I was momentarily stoked. But then I added up the nearly 3200 yards of T-pace work, and my knees begain to quake. Literally.

But I set my goals, decided that I could hold a specific pace and vowed to not dip below that. And besides, the fact that my pecs and lats were sore - what did that matter? I was swimming, I was going to work hard, and I wanted to embrace the challenge.

About half way through my swim, I began experiencing an odd sensation in the lats and triceps. I was pulling as hard as I could, but couldn't quite understand what was happening. I hit the wall, noted my time, and took off precisely 15 seconds later.

Came in again, with nearly the exact same time.

And the workout - the longer sets and then the slower sets were pretty much all off the same 100 split. (Which was 1-2 seconds below my goal - huurah!).

During my final set of FAST 50s, my pace remained the same. It didn't matter how hard I pulled, how fast I flipped, how much I kicked, my body had reached the end of its line. I willed myself forward, grateful for the opportunity to feel this way.

At every flip turn, my abs burned. My lats were gone, left somewhere 2000 yard back. The triceps were hanging in there, but were about to blow spectacularily. And my chest, well, I think it was there. It looked like it was there. But I couldn't be sure.

Almost an hour and twenty minutes later, I flopped out of the water, my first attempt to exit the pool unsuccessful. My arms wouldn't work. I grinned as the guy in the lane over gave me an odd look, and redoubled my efforts. Even though Jen might like it if I spent more time in the pool, after a monster 4800 yard set, I had had enough, thank-you-very-much.

But I was still proud of what I had done, how I worked through the swim.

It was during the short drive home that I found myself thinking over the swim and my physical therapy. I am beginning to feel more and more like my old self, meeting new challenges head on, feeling myseslf push through hard workouts. I'm still not physically the person I was, but I'm getting closer and closer each day.

This morning I am beyond sore. I don't know how I'll manage another "arms and core!" day in PT. But I know that I will. And I'm grateful for the opportunity.

Because that's what my soreness is: a second opportunity, another chance. In no way will I ever complain about the monotony of a workout, will I lament how tired or fatigued I am. 8 weeks ago I was told I would never be able to do the thins I am, would struggle with walking. Yet here I am, able to swim Jen's workouts and do billions of pushups in PT.

(Off the bosu ball, I might add).

And that's the thing that I realize - it's okay to be sore, it's okay to be tired. It's just the attitude with which we choose to look at ourselves, view life that matters. I am grateful for the opportunities, happy to be where I'm at. And while my lats are somewhere in lane 7 at the UWF Aquatic Center, and my pecs are hiding with the bosu ball at the PT studio - the point is, is that I can do these things.

So today as I head off to physical therapy, I'll remember how happy I am. And if I'm lucky, I'll find my pecs waiting for me with the bosu ball. The lats are another matter - but I know they'll turn up sooner or later.


Ryan said...

Guess what made me smile the most?

You trying to get out of the pool but failing to do so on your first attempt. I can see the huge smile on your face when you realized you were too fatigued to do it the first time, while some "dude" is looking at you as some kind of kook.

You're awesome!

Train-This said...

You rock marit! This makes me so happy!

Anonymous said...

Well, I am glad your LATS are SO sore, that means you are swimming right!! :) I am always telling swimmers - it is LATS LATS LATS....!!! This IS great news, Marit!!! :) Jen H.

Ness said...

Marit, this is awesome news! Does this mean have to stop calling you Brokeback Lauterbach???
love ness.

Damie said...

My sister loves that quote "Pain is weakness leaving the body." So, go ahead and get really, really sore. You can do it!

Beth said...

Great news Marit!! Soreness never felt so good huh?! :) So happy for you!

Mel said...

OOOHHHHHHsoreness...great pain...that means you are working it...bring the pain on :)

rr said...

Holy crow that's a long workout!! You will be a swimming machine after this. And YEA for the cycling! Congrats and enjoy it.. too bad we're on opp sides of the country or we could get our legs back together.. have fun!

Alili said...

Goodness, girl you work out more in one day than I do in one week! You rock!!

TriGirl Kate O said...

Oh so happy for you!!!

Bob Mitera said...

Guess who I think is in better shape than I am?

...yes, you!

Mira Lelovic said...

Wow, it sounds like you aren't too far away from being back 100%. I know you are thrilled, and I am so happy for you. Just think of how strong all that soreness is going to make you!

Eileen Swanson said...

nice work, I mean AWESOME work! So cool that you are able to do all of this now. WOW! I knew you would come back quick. Stud!


Anonymous said...

Jen is eee-vil.

Kellye Mills said...

I'm so HAPPY to hear that you are doing so well!! Way to go with all your workouts. You're going to come back stronger than before and kill us all!

BreeWee said...

YAY Marit! You are so close to signing up, showing up, and racing! I can smell you putting on a race number now. Glad you are sore too :)