Heyo Crazy Ass Fans! Seriously sorry for the long delay. While it’s been awesome to be back training again, one of the disadvantages is that I have waaaay less time to fulfill the aching, ravenous needs of my DOZENS of fans. But, I’ve finally succumbed to the pressure in my brain and wrote and update, behold! (I also answered all your comments on my previous post, thank you so much for the awesome support. I promise to answer comments on this one ASAP!).
I’ve decided to title this update, the Good and the Bad. Yes, there are some aspects of my recovery that I’m not stoked about, which unfortunately stay in the forefront of my mind most of the time and bum me out. During those times, it’s hard to remember that progress has been made, and in the big picture, things are ok. So when I’m feeling down, I try to balance my Bad with my Good, to remind myself that I’ve come a long way, and while I’m not where I want to be yet, I’m progressing. Ultimately, that’s all that matters, and that’s all that you really can expect from your body. So here it is, in no particular order, the Good and Bad of 18 weeks Post Operation.
Good – My foot is getting a lot stronger. I’ve been hopping, box jumping, calf raising, foot scrunching, crazy 4 dimensional balance boarding and everything else you can think of like a crazy ass fan screaming for Jesse Bieber. I can see lots of progress, it’s obvious, and I’m getting really really close.
Bad – But…I’m not running, or at least not consistently, yet. This obviously, is the only real bummer of the blog. I’m at 18 weeks, and was hoping I’d be running by 14 weeks or so. 10 days ago, I was feeling great, hopping and bounding up stairs pain free, etc. I got the ok to try 5 x 1 min run with 1 min walk recovery. I tried, and it hurt…It hurt enough that I decided it was best to stop at 4. I went in to Rebound Performance Lab and did some test exercises with Jay and sure enough, he said it just isn’t strong enough yet. The pain isn’t from anything related to the injury I had before or the surgery itself, it’s just still weakness and pain in my posterior tib tendon, which is taking its damn sweet time to get stronger and free of inflammation. It’s amazing to me that you can be so strong and pain free doing almost anything, yet running still makes something hurt. NUTS! It just shows you why so many people hurt themselves running, the forces on your body are ridiculous, and really can’t be simulated by anything else.
Good – Running is super close, and let’s just say that I’ve done my first run. I retried the same 5 x 1 min run with 1 min walk recovery on Friday (9 days later), and while it wasn’t completely pain free, it was definitely better…and didn’t get worse. In fact, it was good enough that I was comfortable completing the set. I’d go as far to call it my first run, 5 x 1 min at about 9:00 pace. Booyah!
Good – I’m back swimming 100%. In fact, more than just swimming pain free, I’m swimming at a level that is at or near what I did in the middle of season. It’s cool to see that the years of consistency are backing up, and that I can be at a pretty good spot after just 6-8 weeks of semi consistent swimming.
Bad – Putting my hair into a swim cap has become an extra session every day. Seriously, it takes me 10-15 minutes and makes my arms really, really tired. Is there a secret, ladies? It’s getting ridiculous. Why do I keep it, you ask? Because freaking Jude loves to grab and play with it, and I’m scared that if I cut it he won’t know who I am.
Good – Just like the swim, I’m biking 100%. In fact, I’ve ridden about 30 hours in the last two weeks! And more than just racking up volume, I’ve done some workouts that I would have been happy with in the middle of the season – including solid climbs, double ride days, and some decent trainer sessions. In an act of surprising intelligence, Coach Matt has given me the same workout 3 times over the last 7 weeks on the bike (6×5 min build, then 3×14 min strong but controlled), and it’s been a great barometer to see my fitness increase. Because I’m a super dork, I plotted the results for you all to see. Progress!
Bad – It kind of sucked to watch 70.3 Worlds. Don’t get me wrong, it was awesome to see some of my friends in the sport do really well – I was particularly psyched for Joe Gambles, Leon Griffin, and Tim Reed, all great guys that had awesome races. But it was hard to watch guys that I was with at the beginning of the year do so well and not wonder about lost opportunities. Obviously, I don’t doubt my decision to have surgery and put everything off for a year, and to a certain extent it just added fire to my motivation to come back, but if I’m being super honest with myself and you, it was tough to watch it and bummed me out for a few days.
Good – I am an Elliptigo Beast. Seriously, I do it a lot, and I think it’s great cross training for running, probably the best there is. Bonus is that you get to turn heads everywhere you go, especially if you dress like me.
Bad – I honestly can’t think of anything else bad. This is a gap filler bad.
Good – I’m riding my MTB a lot. Since I’m just getting back to running and racing this season looks like a long shot, I’ve used the opportunity to put a lot of miles on my mountain bike. Not only is it super fun, but I think it’s going to pay some dividends down the road (or trail? oh my god so funny). It works your legs in a different way, requiring big bursts of power and speed that a TT or road bike just doesn’t require. I think it’s making me stronger in new and improved ways. It’s making me the iOS Version 7 Jesse. Watch out world!
That’s it Crazy Ass Fans! Oh yeah one last announcement – I’m headed to Kona again next week. I’ll be there Monday through Sunday. I’m doing some bike rides for Specialized, some demos and appearances for ROKA, and some “man about town” reporting for Triathlete Magazine. I’ll be the guy with huge hair in aviators. More details to come, but if you’re in town say hi, I’ll likely have some Picky Bars with me. Laters!