Melancholy workout

I am trying not to be a drama queen, and trying not to live in the wreckage of the future, but it looks as if my sports era will come to an end very soon.

No, I am not going to sell my equipment; I plan on using it as long as it benefits my health and doesn’t harm it. And I will probably have to order a new set of bands as I broke my second one today. And I’ll be looking for new goggles and swim suits as swimming seems to be doing ok.

BUT: so much of my life, I wanted to either run faster, run longer, lift heavier, do more reps, etc. But now I need to focus on what is good for my health, and that means being risk adverse in my training and *always* leaving something in the tank.

I get my MRI tomorrow AND see my primary care doctor for my prostate and hopefully, finally some answers. What lies in store I do not know.

My guess: a benign enlarged prostate (which might contribute to the “swollen” feeling I sometimes get in my left pelvic/glute area) and some sort of bulging disk impinging on a nerve affecting my left side. (L-5?)

But it could be anything from piriformis/gluteus medius strain/tear, to broken pieces of disk, to prostate cancer, spinal tumor, etc.

The physical therapist says it isn’t spinal stenosis as my McKenzie press ups are way too high.

My symptoms: left leg, tingles down the side, full feeling when I do something like banded walks, some discomfort upon standing still for too long and walking: onset of glute pain after 15-20 minutes if I am stretched and warmed up, 5-10 minutes if I am not. Tingles in the left lower leg/foot at night if I don’t stretch first..knees bent is more comfortable.

Relief: stretching; McKenzie press ups, Open book, yoga pyramid, revolved triangle, triangle help relive it almost instantly; bent forward twists help too.

Ok, there is still a lot I can do, and I can enjoy doing what I can. So what did I do today? I did all of my physical therapy along with:

pull ups: 10, 15, 10, 10, 10, 5 wide, 5 chins (strange I am 206-207..too heavy..but pull ups are going very well??? Improvement on my back?), push ups 30 sissy, 30 feet elevated, 30 sissy, 10 deficit

weights: 10 x 134, 5 x 156, 5 x 156, 10 x 134 (feet elevated)

4 sets of curls with 50

deadlifts: taking care to keep a flat back and use the glutes, hamstrings and quads:

10 x 134, 10 x 184, 10 x 224 (these went well)

high handle (8 inch) 5 x 260, 5 x 280 (heavier belt) Rule: leave a lot in the tank. Can’t strain the lumbar.

The post lift McKenzie press ups had none of the warning left leg pain that I got when I did too much low handle or tried to arch when bench pressing.

Then a 1 mile walk; not my best as I got symptoms at .7-.8 miles but I got a mile.

Other tidbits: cutting back greatly on caffeine and spreading out my Naproxen dose (1 pill upon waking up, 1 after) and I have an oh-so-slight whine in my right shoulder.

I use an orthopedic cushion at games (watched Bradley softball split with Evansville yesterday with no ill effects)

2019 in review

Here is my 2019 in review. I posted photos that are meaningful to me. The first one is collage of “friend” photos.

Here is the “where” (many of the “wheres” anyway)










The TBK Bank Quad Cities Marathon




Some photos

Just drinking my coffee..getting ready to run. 6 miles with a faster segment or 9 steady/ I do have a final exam at 2:30 pm.

I got the photos from last weekend’s 5K

My time was 27:12 which equates to about a 23 minute 5K for a younger person. The age tables suggest that I might be able to work down to just under 26. So, I need to get to work and stay patient. Recently I hurt myself with a slow 20 lb. weight gain, and I need to spend some time at my current weight and train up.

And there is no denying that I took a big hut after my last (2010) knee surgery.

Note: I can race a 43 year old woman on equal terms. I don’t know why I thought to check on that.


My weird final exam schedule allowed me to make the Drake vs. Bradley MVC softball game. I saw yesterday’s game, a 4-0 BU victory over Indiana State. But this time BU faced no. 25 ranked Drake and their all-America pitcher who threw a perfect game and struck out 18 over 7 innings. Still BU hung tough and was trailing 1-0 going into the 4’th inning when the BU catcher hit the pitcher with a hard throw as a Drake runner was attempting to steal. The ball went into the outfield and allowed the Drake runner to score. The BU pitcher was not the same after that and had to be relieved and eventually the dam broke and Drake won 7-0.

It was simply a matter of Drake being a strong team with an excellent pitcher.

Then I got to see Illinois State’s 1-0 win over Bradley. The lone run came on an home run in the 3’rd. ISU made it interesting in the top of the 9’th when they loaded the bases, but BU escaped the threat. But the Redbird reliever shut BU down in the 9’th. It was a honey of a pitcher’s duel on a great day for baseball. I just wish Bradley had won.

Softball treat

My final exam schedule worked out so that it is very “late loaded” (first one is Saturday) so I could make some of the MVC softball tournament.

It was chilly and windy and I was..much to my embarrassment, somewhat underdressed. But I saw Illinois State beat Valpo 4-1 (and saw a home run); (final 3 innings) and then I got to watch Bradley’s 4-0 win over Indiana State, which had the potential to have been a much bigger victory. BU loaded the bases in the first inning but a potential grand slam was blown by the wind just outside of the foul pole. In fact, several potential home runs ended that way (one by Indiana State). It really wasn’t that close of a game, but now BU faces Drake who is ranked no. 25 in the nation (and deservedly so).

I plan on going.

Workout notes: weights only; weight 185.5.
rotator cuff, pull ups (5 sets of 10, 1 of 5) bench: 10 x 135, 1 x 190, 2 x 185, 7 x 165 (note: empty gym; I had more reps with 190 and 185 in me), military: 10 x 50 standing, 15 x 50 seated, supported, 10 x 40 standing, 10 x 85 barbell), rows: 2 sets of 10 x 110 machine, 10 x 50 each arm, plank (2:30), side plank, head stand, crow, goblet squats: 8 x 30, 6 x 50, 6 x 50, knee stretches (put the 4 lb. ball off of the mat, more progress), etc.

Some Bradley Softball: unusual plays and grand slams

First, I had to walk the walk..that is, just over 10 miles of walking. It took forever 2:52 but it was done at a leisurely effort, and I got the old cat call from my yoga teacher. That was fun.

I caught 1 game on Saturday (wet and chilly) and part of the first game of a double header and the second game as well.

I got to the first game when it was 7-4 Indiana State and saw Bradley not score. But in the 6’th, fireworks. BU’s bats opened up with consecutive triples and that lead the way to 3 more hits (including one double) and 4 runs; that put BU up 8-7 going into the top of the 7’th.

The opening play was key. ISU got a single …seemingly no problem but the ISU player had thought about trying for a double and then changed her mind. A throw to first was high and got just past the first baseman (off of her glove and a bit behind her..the runner didn’t try to advance but the first basemen threw to second and the ball went into the outfield..and then started to dribble past the outfielder. So the runner ran for second and the throw was just a bit high..but the runner slid off of the bag and was tagged out! Out..due to two errant throws.

Good thing too as the next batter doubled..but ended up stranded.

Then came game 2; it was a pitcher’s duel for a while until BU tied it up with a solo shot. Then came a 4 run barrage …a grand slam, in fact. Indiana State got one run back in the top of the 6’th, but in the bottom the Bradley bats opened up again, this time for 5 runs in the bottom of the 6’th, which was capped by a 2 run home run by the 3’rd baseman, who hit two in Saturday’s game. That made it 10-2, triggering the 8 run “mercy rule” ending.

Yesterday’s game: was moved to 3 pm..and was played just right as it opened up. It was a back and forth affair..each team getting the lead and the other team getting it back. Final was 8-7 Bradley in a slugfest.

Ten miles in the mud


The idea: I was to pace a friend who was planning on doing a slow 50 miles, starting at noon on Friday. The course was 5 ten mile loops in McNaughton Park, near Pekin, Illinois. She changed plans due to the nature of the course; it is a challenging course to begin with (featuring 13 uphill segments per loop; mostly 70-80 foot hills) but spring rains and a lack of drainage turned much of the course into a river of mud.

But I had signed up for the 10 mile even (Potawatomi Trail Runs) which began at 8 pm on Friday, so I went ahead an attempted the event. I wasn’t prepared to compete, so I went out and walked at a deliberate pace…when I wasn’t falling down.

My ruined shoes (they were old anyway)
Yes, even my handheld flashlight got muddy


The course used to be single track with breaks on grassy prairie. Now, with the exception of the initial “almost a mile” meadow loop, the grassy parts looked like narrow dirt roads which were rivers of mud. And yes, the old shoe sucking mud was there in force.
In fact, on Golf Hill (about 4 miles into it..a rope assist hill), my left shoe got sucked into the mud. My trail gaiters were also sucked in..I lost them. I feel 2-3 times (on my butt) and was off balance many more times, but my knee stretching program (part of my fitness) kept me from getting hurt.
Also, the elastic in my headband gave way so I had to use my headlamp as a hand held, and I supplemented it with the above flashlight..that actually worked out very well.

It took me 4:09 to walk this 10 mile loop (I used to finish my 100’s on this course at that pace), but I had a lot left in the tank.

Today: I slept in, did a standard weight workout (light on the bench, 1 x 185, 7 x 165, 10 x 165 incline, usual military, pull ups were good: 5 sets of 10, 1 of 5, etc) and then caught some Bradley Softball (sadly, they lost two very competitive games to Missouri State..1 run each time.)

Babs and me cheering on BU Softball