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Paleo/Primal FITNESS

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

I suspended running at the end of November due to an awful respiratory infection that required 18 days of antibiotics, finishing off with Cipro. Cipro can weaken tendons and muscle fibers leading to tendon/muscle ruptures. I wanted no part of that! So, I rested.

As I'm investigating the ideas behind Paleo/Primal fitness, I'm shocked to discover that my horrible repeated sinus and respiratory infections all these years might NOT have been because I'm a miserable weakling... I might have been stressing my lungs and immune system with my beloved running. I always had a policy of not running with a cold, but that meant... one week. I've had a policy of not sleeping until my work was done, too. And the work is never done.

I decided that I'll focus on strength and walks and sprints as is suggested by Sisson, Wolf, Fragoso et al. I'd like to run again, races, because I truly have felt JOY with that. But I'm going to test the idea that I can have more fun, shorter runs, and perhaps races, just by jumping into them when already all-round fit and strong. I want to feel my way to strength this winter with this alternative approach and see what happens to my sense of strength and power. Maybe I could go on a run end of January and see how fun it is.

That illness scared me. I'm willing to try something different. I've been a "runner" for 32 years and truly had a joy with it. Not a grim resolve to "get my run done." I pretty much NEVER felt relief at the run's end, but disappointment that the fun was over. But I think I was pushing too hard because I wasn't respecting sleep or nutrition. Sleep, nutrition, strong , healthy and happy muscles, THEN I'll see if I can let myself have a treat and take off running like a lunatic through the woods. The thought makes me happy. But first things first.
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  • DEC2DEC
    I'm doing modified Crossfit. I can't handle the most dynamic of the moves -- like burpees -- and I can't do some of the strength moves -- like handstand push-ups. I've worked with my trainer for a year, and she is gradually making more and more of my workouts "real" Crossfit. I'm still too limited to join a class though. I hope by the end of this year I'll be able to handle all of Crossfit.

    Crossfit posts the workouts-of-the-day on the Web site, and there are lots of resources to show you how to do the movements and how to modify them, if you can't do the whole thing. They don't actually want you to do a Crossfit workout every day -- just a couple of times a week. You may be able to do a lot of it at home.

    I'm kind of scared of sprints too. I'll probably start on the treadmill -- or just outside in the driveway! Regardless I need to get the weight off and teach my body to handle the cardio stuff first. Interestingly, I can do a HEAVY weight session and not be sore, but a cardio-heavy Crossfit workout will leave me hobbling for days!
    3070 days ago
  • SAVANNAHZMOMMA1
    I have not tried Crossfit, although I've been aware of it since a fellow I dated a couple years ago told me about it. I don't have the time to go to a Crossfit gym, because of the long work hours and the need to care for my young child in the hours before and after work. HOWEVER, I am adopting the idea of muscle confusion and varied workouts partly due to the inspiration of the CrossFit ideas, yes!

    I'm a little scared to do the sprints, keep thinking I'll pull something and fall over! :-) I might jog for a minute or two to see how the muscles feel...

    Mark Sisson had a tri-athlete on his blog recently (Swedish fellow), so clearly the long runs CAN be done. I'm going to feel my way through this. I love to move, so I'll learn. I think your plan to build the foundation is the best there is. If you are doing CrossFit, you are already kind of sprinting with your whole body, right?
    3070 days ago
  • DEC2DEC
    I hope your plan works out!! There are Paleo/Primal people who still run, even if they try to avoid what they deem "chronic cardio."

    Have you tried Crossfit? Although it can be too extreme at times, in my opinion, it can often be a fun challenge. It would work both strength and endurance.

    I'm in the opposite boat from you. I don't yet have an endurance foundation. I have strength, but I've never been good with endurance. I'm doing cardio then, rather slowly, 5x a week. I want to instill that foundation and get some of this weight OFF, and then I will switch to sprints.
    3071 days ago
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