Thursday, October 30, 2014

Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday Oct 29

I'd love to tell you that I'm wallowing in the pain of losing on Saturday. I'd show you my still bleeding scars and yellowing bruises and say "Here, here is my pain.".

I have to repeat myself at this time. That. Isn't. Me.

I got my helmet on and went to work on Monday. I stretched and rolled ahead of the day. I got my kids out and to school on time. Life goes on. It does.

After my day as a father ended, I got a run in. I keep making the length longer. I'm trying to get my Nike+ account to a nice round 2000 by the end of the month. I want to get my weight loss for March under way. I want to regain some of the hardness I've misplaced over the last 18 months. Running seems to be one of the easiest ways to regain that.

Of course I've got wrestling on the brain these days, too.

In any case, Monday I did my morning stretching and rolling recovery work on my legs, back and shoulders. After that I got to work and then later on I got a 4k run done.

Tuesday I got my morning stretching and rolling recovery work done on my legs, back and shoulders. After that I got to work and then later on I got a 5k run done.

Wednesday I got my morning stretching and rolling recovery work done on my legs, back and shoulders. After that I got to work and then later on I got a 4.5 k run done.

I'm sensing a pattern here. I keep thinking of the lines:

The drop of rain
maketh a hole in the stone
not by violence
but by oft falling
                    Hugh Latimer

I'm making a hole in the stone by oft running. Same thing, different flavour.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Saturday and Sunday Oct 26

Saturday was a rugby day. One day I will find an acceptably done version of the song on Youtube and post it to all the various social media.

In any case, I'd love to tell you all the stuff I've done in the last few months got us to the next level, but that would be wrong. We lost the deciding game in the promotion tournament.

Now ... you would think that I would be howling with lament and punching stuff. I did see a few of my teammates getting emotional, but that isn't me, man. That just isn't me. Why not?

Well, it's a secret. If you lean into your screen I'll whisper it to you .....

Are you ready?

Here's the secret .... "There is always more rugby."

There may come a day soon that I'm not the choice to be on the pitch for a First XV game on Cup Day. I've already had that happen, but when it happens next, I'll be sad. I'd rather be playing some stomping good rugby. However, I will still play on other days. I'll play with older people. I'll make sure I stay in shape and get out of the house.

I hope football players can say the same thing when they are 45.

In any case, we lost and I stayed married. It's all good.

I posted "Rugby season is over. Bring on Wrestling" to my facebook profile on Saturday night.

I also stretched and rolled Saturday night and then went to bed.

I got up early ... and stretched and rolled again.

then I went for a run later on in the day. In the change room after losing, someone said "The next season starts tomorrow." I wanted to make sure that I started tomorrow.

Which is why I'm posting this:

Finally, I'd like to punch myself on the shoulder .... this is my 900th post on this blog.

Wednesday and Thursday and Friday Oct 24

I hit each of the three days with early morning stretching and rolling. Of all the habits I've ever had, this one seems to be the most healthy. At least my legs have stopped being brutally painful in the morning.

Friday I was going to do a float at Float Toronto but realized that I was needed at home.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Monday and Tuesday Oct 21

Monday I was still sore. I had intended to run, but it wouldn't have been a wise idea. It's too close for the big game on Saturday to pull something ... so I took it off.

I still stretched in the morning and made sure my day started off right, and I did have a second stretching and rolling session in the evening ... while the kids were in bed ... but man, I was still sore.

Tuesday was a training night .... lots of scrums and some line outs, ending with some contact work. I fell really lucky to be a part of this team right now - lots of guys out to training makes things more efficient and just better.

After, of course, I did my 5 x 30m sprints for three rounds while the rain fell on me...

Saturday and Sunday Oct 19

Saturday was a rugby day ... it was a short rugby day for me, only getting in a half. When I was subbed off, we were winning by 7. When the final whistle was blown, we won by three.

Just sayin'.

In any case, you might think that because I only played a half, I'd be less sore ... but you would be wrong. My legs might have been less sore, but my neck more than made up for that. It was a few days until I could check my blind spot while driving, let me tell you ...

Sunday was a stretch and recovery day. I didn't move very much at all. Basically, I couldn't move very well. I still had to be a dad, but at least I had a gym and some time for a stretching session ... twice.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Wednesday and Thursday Oct 17

Wednesday ... started off well .. I didn't feel I'd slept enough ... and I guess I hadn't. It's really a struggle to get things done and into bed on time these days. I'm not having a tough time falling asleep, but just merely getting into bed.

In any case, I got my rolling and stretching done in the early am. I'm really enjoying the feeling AFTER the stretching. Walking from my bed to the garage isn't the most fun at all.

In the PM, got a 4k run done. Lots of sweat, as it was a nice warm evening.

Thursday was a rugby night. Still got 35 players out for training. Unreal. Had almost two full packs healthy enough to work on scrums and lifts for this weekend. Shame we can only dress 22.

In any case, I'm playing 1 and throwing the line outs. Should be a good one.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Tuesday and Wednesday Oct 15

Forty at training

Tuesday was a training day. I did get up and get my stretching done early. I'm rather enjoying that time to myself. Well, at least most of the time I get it to myself. Today, I let the kids sleep while I got stretching and rolling done.

Of course I got to rugby. And a lot of other people got there, too. We had almost forty people at rugby training on Tuesday. It's October... that never happens. Has never happened in my ten seasons with the club. Seriously. We had the luxury of two full packs, so we worked on full contact scrums for fifteen or twenty minutes. Fully opposed lineouts. Full contact sandbox drills, too. Serious work indeed.

 After training, I got my three rounds of 5 x 35m sprints done. I had intended to then go for a short three k run, but shot that idea down as I was pretty sore. I got home and rolled and stretched and then had a epsom salt bath.

Not nearly as awesome as the Float Toronto ones, but still, I felt pretty decent the next morning.

By the way, before I went to bed on Tuesday, I set out clothes and the rowing machine for an early morning rowing workout on Wednesday morning.

This actually happened today ... a 20 minute easy rowing tempo row at 6am. I am not kidding. It actually happened.

I got a row in with a training partner in tow who liked to steal the timing device and hide in the corner with it. I will have to come up with either better ninja skills to escape and evade his tracking me into the gym or another iDevice to let him play with while I do my training.

Later on, at the end of the day, I got a 4k run in, too. That felt good to get done, too.

Sunday and Monday Oct 13

Sunday was a recovery day. I still did some stretching a rolling, just a lot more of it. I hung out with my kids and wanted to get a run in, but I kept on having to be a dad.

Monday was my "Go eat food day" twice. That was not a lot of fun and required me to wear my fat pants.

But I'm glad to say that I got home and everyone that I'm related to got home, too. I just got a lot more birthday cake than I wanted to bring home.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Thursday, Friday and Saturday Oct 11

Thursday was another training night under the lights. At least this one was drier. Still no pics of it yet though.

Still ... I got my lot of fitness done after training. The rugby session was basically fitness with some ball handling added. I think the coach thinks I don't know that all we do is sprint, really. But at least we have a ball and we pass, too, so I guess it qualifies as rugby. Still with the 3 rounds of 5 x 30m sprints after too.

Friday was an off day at work ... that is to say I got it "off" but I had to show up and do a great deal of sitting. I was so sore from the week of training, I knew I had to get a float in, so I asked my wife if I could take another late night Friday soak down at Float Toronto. Before I did that I got a chance to get a walk in before dinner. That was a nice way to try and relax, but it really didn't work.

Later on, I felt that it was a good soak for my body ... I left there with the right physical feeling ... but not so much with the mental side this time. I have to put that down to my own errors before getting to the tank. I had way too much on my mind to truly let it all go and just be present.

To be honest, kind of a drag to let myself do that. Ah well, my legs didn't hurt.

Saturday was a rugby day ... but this time I was at a rugby tournament in nearby Waterloo Ontario. I spent the day playing rugby without warming up, eating badly and being quite silly while watching others make bad life choices. Meh, I had fun playing rugby in four or five games.

I was so sore that night ... i had to just sit and ice things. Not a lot of contact in the games, but some rucking and a lot of running. The no warm ups didn't help me either.

Monday and Tuesday and Wednesday Oct 8

Monday was another start to a great week of training. I got up early, as I normally do and got my rolling and stretching in. I am also slowly building up my changing area in the garage for winter runs and such.

Monday night was a 4k run. I liked it, man ... but I need to also invest in some running goo again.

Tuesday was a training night, except it was pouring rain. We are not getting as much light these days, and so we are now training under lights right beside the rugby field. Seriously it was top dressed and rather long and they let us train on it. It was so soft, too. Squishy even.

In any case, after training ... which was mostly just fitness ... I got my three rounds of 5 x 30 m sprints done.  I did not take a pic, as I didn't want to get my iPhone wet. I left as soon as I was done and went home.

Wednesday I was sore in the morning. So sore. I got my rolling and stretching done, however.

Wednesday night I went and I did another run. I can't say I will be able to run this much when my lovely wife gets back to her healthiest and goes back to her training as a swimmer ... time will tell though.

Saturday and Sunday Oct 5

Saturday was a great day ... no rugby, however. A rare week off in my world ... I could have gotten in a game somewhere, but ... it's a long season.

I took the weekend and worked around my house. Lawn cut, roses prepped for winter, back yard patio stones removed and the grass between them removed and then stones replaced... I even got the television out of my garage gym and into the basement. I'll have to get a cheap dvd player down there.

In any case, I got running on Sunday night, too.

Monday, October 6, 2014

A pause for a shout out: Float Toronto

Today was weird but good.

I did a float in a sensory deprivation chamber in a place called Float Toronto. I will answer the question as to why first: I promised I would. For those who don't know, I work at an Alternative School in Oakville. Kids in my school say they "Did nothing" over the weekend, and as a teacher, I would ask them if they sat in a chamber like this:

Then, of course I'd have to explain what it was. Meh, I decided it was time to go and check it out for myself. As I am a newbie at this, I bought a pack of three floating sessions and booked my first session for Friday night, starting at 11pm.

Why so late? Kids. I have three kids and I needed them in bed along with my wife before I could get out of the house and get this done.

I got to 1159 Queen St W and the lights were off, but there was a guy behind the counter and another sitting inside the glass. I went in. Whispered welcomes and a sign "Please keep your voice down and turn off the ringer to your phone." What can I say, I turned off the ringer and checked in on Facebook.

A few whispered conversations with one or two other customers just finishing off their experience let me know I was in for a cool night. I got into the room and got a few last minute instructions from the attendant. I'm sorry but I didn't get the young man's name. He knew his stuff and was a good fit for the job.

The tank itself was about three meters long, almost two meters high and almost two meters wide. I know that doesn't mean much, but let me explain it another way. While floating, I stretched out my arms and legs and couldn't touch the ends. I put my arms to the side and reached and couldn't touch either side while in the middle. While I was standing beside it, the tank was almost as tall as I was.

The lights in the room were controlled by a dimmer switch and I could control how dim the light was with a single touch. While getting ready, I turned them up high, showered and then turned them down for after I was done. Who likes waking up to bright lights, right?

In any case, I got in and put my head into the water ... and remembered I hadn't put in any ear plugs. I got out and put them in, and got back in and closed the door.

The first few minutes were a little weird. I opened my eyes and saw nothing. I closed my eyes and saw nothing. It was weird not sinking to the bottom of the tank. It was weird that I couldn't hear anything nor really smell anything. Then I kinda went back to my childhood for a few minutes, pushing off of the top of the tank with my hands, floating down to the far end of the tank, then pushing off of that side with my feet. I didn't want to go fast, as I didn't want splashed water in my eyes or mouth. That would come later.

A first I just kind of lay there, thinking about issues in my life. I started taking notes for a to do list and started noticing fish, lit in a faint dark green light approaching me from in front of me and heading above me and to my right. Nice fish, whose mouths opened and closed. I saw a sports car's front driver's side wheel turn right and away from me. After that, a shark, then a T-Rex type of face. All lit with the same faint but dark green light. Then it cleared up and in full colour I thought I saw Dori from the film Finding Nemo.

That was weird. And that was about as weird as it got. I also thought about some of the private issues in my life and spent some time experiencing them again from another perspective.

As time went on, I think I fell asleep, but really I couldn't tell. The warmth of the water was comfortable and the semi-chronic pains in my neck and back started to ease up. My legs, my hip and my shoulders all started to relax and become pain free. In another weird moment, I could feel my stomach growl and then felt the water ripple a little as a result.

At the end of the float, there was some nice music come on in the tank. I was ready to go. I had gotten in at 11pm, and since this was the last float of the day, it was two hours long. With my right hand, I reached over my head to open the door, and promptly got a mouth full and two eyes full of the saltiest water I've ever tasted.

Yeah, that wasn't good. Don't do that.

I knelt down for a second, reaching the door with my left and and opened the door to the tank. The soft light let me see what was where, but the salt in my eyes prevented me from keeping them open. I turned on the shower and started to rinse the water out of my eyes and mouth. It took a few minutes. I felt all salty and so used some good all natural shampoo and kept going with the shower.

As I was in the shower, I became more aware about how good and pain free my legs and especially my calves were. My gastroc muscles haven't felt that good in a while. I dried off and got ready to go. I was indeed starting to feel "Floaty".

The drive home was pretty uneventful, as the traffic was so light. As I drove I reflected on how good my injuries felt and how hungry I was. Can't say I was ever really scared about what I would see when I was in the dark tank, as some people I've shared my experience with have mentioned. The fish and the car's wheel were weird, but that wasn't really what I noticed the most.

I focus my comments on how my body reacted to the float: it felt awesome. When I lay down after a light meal at 2am, I was already quite well rested. I slept quite well and when I woke up, my legs were pain free and ready for a training session instead of a session of stretching and rolling.

I have two more floating sessions to go. I'm looking forward to them and possibly into the next few months. I would recommend floating to anyone who might ask me about it if only for the physical health benefits. Helping me develop a bit more clarity was a nice added bonus.


Friday, October 3, 2014

Wed and Thursday Oct 2

Wednesday I got my rolling done in the stupid early hours of the day. At least my legs and hip flexors are recovering to something resembling proper function. Man, scrums wreck havoc on my body.

Thursday I was up and at them early enough to get a short run in before work. It was a nothing run, just to get the legs working. Still ... it was nice to sweat before work kicked in for the day.

After work ... I found out that I was on for child care duties for the night and so ... just rolled in my garage instead of rugby training. That was kind of shocking, but I'm a family guy. It happens.