It was another good night in the pool.

I ended up doing 2800 tonight and again felt wonderful. Even better, I’m meeting Jenny in the morning to go for my first run since surgery. I’m about 95% sure it’ll feel just fine, but she’s willing to walk with me if I need to slow things down.

I desperately need to get back to my routine. I called Jake today about getting back on his training schedule starting next week. I also called Caroline today about figuring out a regular morning for the two of us to run together. Between Jenny, Jake and Caroline, I should get some good mid-week workouts in. Then it’s up to me to make the swims and weekends count.

The plan for this weekend is to swim and do a spin class on Saturday morning and to play some tennis both Saturday and Sunday mornings. All of that activity will tell me tons about where I am right now. I want to get my fitness back, but I also want to drop some weight again. I can tell from how my clothes are fitting that I’ve put some weight back on. That stinks!

I did a whole masters swim workout!

Tonight, rather than do the “fitness” workout, I did the masters workout. It ended up being 3000 meters, mostly in sets of 500s. I was pretty proud of that swim and even managed to do flip turns with no pain. I think I’m finally whole again. I’m so thankful for that.

Swimming, my mind immediately went to Canada. I have 11 months until that race. I would like to break 16 hours this time around. That will be tough on this course considering the difficulty level of the bike portion, but I know what I need to do to get stronger on the bike. I need to spend a ton of time on the bike and vary my workouts as much as possible. I need to make sure I do plenty of hill workouts and work hard at getting comfortable going downhill fast. I can manage that.

I made it to the pool finally.

Tonight I went for a swim at Nitro. Rather than swim the normal masters program, I swam the “fitness” workout, which is both shorter and easier. I ended up doing 2000 meters, which was good for a first day back. Swimming stretched my scar. It didn’t hurt, but it was mildly uncomfortable or at least noticeable. I also noticed that my lung capacity has gone way down. My breathing was labored, which is unusual when I’m in water. Even so, just moving through the water felt good. At the end of the workout, I tried a couple of flip turns just to see if I could do them. I managed, but I felt them, so I think I’ll do open turns for a while until the incision heals a little more.

It wasn’t a perfect swim, but just being back in that facility reminded me of all the training I did towards Coeur d’Alene. I’m excited to get back to that level of fitness and to see my weight drop again. A month of minimal activity and three weeks of basically no activity cost me my fitness and my size, but I’ll get back there again. It would be nice if I could keep the size I wanted on something less than an Ironman regimen, but oh well. At least I know I can get there!

I like the intensity of training for something so far beyond me. It keeps me occupied. This past week, I was talking to a friend of mine via email, and I heard myself tell him, “It’s much easier to train for an Ironman than to understand a man.” It was one of those moments where I didn’t really know what I thought until I wrote it down. But it’s true. I do want a relationship, and I understand when people tell me that my training isn’t helping that cause and that I need to be more social than my training allows me to be. Like tonight, I debating between swimming and going to a bar where I knew there would be some really nice people. I wasn’t sure how the bar would turn out, but I knew I’d feel great coming out of the pool. That’s how I made my choice. Perhaps I should have chosen the bar, but I chose the pool. Bad choice? Safe choice? Maybe. But it was my choice.

I was more at peace with myself this past year than I’ve probably ever been, even though I was also more alone than I’ve probably ever been. I would take the peace and the relationship if I saw a way to have both. Right now, I just don’t see it. So I’ll keep the peace.

I’m almost normal again.

This weekend, Poppe and I went for a 4 mile walk. I labored through it. Poppe barely broke a sweat. I was thrilled, though, to be out and active again, even just for a walk. Then on Sunday, I did a Bikram yoga class. I struggled through it, particularly on the backward and forward bends and the sit ups, but I managed. I think today I’ll try to go for a short swim. I’m not feeling very well, but I think that could help. I’m hopeful that by the end of the week, I’ll be running short distances again.

Now that I know what my goal is for next year, I’m anxious to dive back in and find my sense of discipline again. I know it’s in me somewhere…

I’m going to Canada!

Okay – so while I was in the hospital, my sister tried signing me up for Ironman Canada. But the spots passed too quickly. So then, just this past Monday, I tried signing up for Ironman Wisconsin, but again, no luck. So yesterday, I got an email that more Canada spots would be made available today. So I jumped on it and somehow got a spot! I can’t believe it! I’m going to Canada next year! The race is August 30, 2009. I can’t believe I got in!

Tennis and Canada.

I did end up signing up for a tennis league with Corky and friends. It starts next weekend, though I’m not sure when I’ll actually play. I had a little surgery this past Thursday that has benched me for the time being. I’m walking, but just barely. Mom has been a super nurse, but I can only take so much of being cooped up. I’m home this week and hopeful that by the weekend, I’ll be out of the house. Even if I’m not 100%, I’d like to be running short distances or at least able to drive again. We’ll see.

Just before I went into the hospital, there was an announcement from Ironman that a few spots for Ironman Canada would be made available online on Friday, August 29. I was still going to be in the hospital at that time, so I equipped Caroline with all the information she needed to try to sign me up. She tried, but I didn’t get in. I’m not surprised. I’m sure the demand was great for however few spots they had.

Next week, I’ll be trying to get into Ironman Wisconsin. Keep your fingers crossed for that one. I need to get in, if for no other reason than to be able to quit wondering what’s next.