Well friends, my old hamstring is getting better. Or maybe the pain of my broken rib from Lake Powell(and you thought I was joking about that!) is just overshadowing it?
But thanks to the joys of long stretching sessions and lovely ice baths I am hitting the road every other day.
Years ago one of my running buddies told me , “You’ve got to stretch or your years on the road are numbered.” How I wish I’d listened to her then!
But if you too are among the uptight, please trust me! Streeeeeeeeeeeeetch so that you don’t end up crippled and sore like me. I ordered the book Staying Supple:The Bountiful Pleasures of Stretching(yeah, the title makes me giggle too) but never read it until Ben picked it up and started quoting from it; he’s converted me.
Ice baths are part of a runner’s repertoire, the cold really penetrates the muscles and cuts down swelling. In the past I’ve reserved them for really long runs(16-20 miles). But my friend Chelle said if I want to get better I have to do them after EVERY SINGLE run. Oh the pain!
Since I’m now putting myself through this self-torture 4 times a week I’ve developed a method:
Take a quick shower first. You don’t want to go through the torture of an ice bath just to take a hot shower and diminish the effects.
Line up some treats for yourself. I pull the comics from two newspapers, mix a bottle of Crystal Light and grab two Dove chocolates.
Dump in all the ice you have in the house.
Now jump in. ARRRRRRRRRRRRGH! It hurts, oh man it hurts and you won’t be able to catch your breath for several minutes. Fifteen minutes is the minimum but if you’re a good girl and stay in for 20 you can eat the second chocolate.
Kitty finds my ice baths fascinating. I’m sure it’s the screams of pain that bring her into the room but she hangs around and checks everything out. She hasn’t fallen in yet but she is certainly pushing her luck.
Your legs will be bright red when you get out but it’s a happy, frozen popsicle sensation.