Sunday, July 29, 2012

Windy Weighty Fit Women

And of course, the women in question are definitely not weighty, dunno if they've been on the beans jet propulsion diet but they're most certainly as fit as they come.

In reverse order !

Just finished watching the women's road cycling race, which was pretty awesome. After yesterday's men's race was a case of the Brits saying they'd won the race before the start and then all the other teams leaving it to the Brits to chase down the getaways, the women's race today was far more exciting.

The attitude of the field yesterday was pretty disappointing. There'd been an early getaway of a reasonable group of riders. Usually, the field would chase them down before the gap became decisive. However ... due to the form being shown by the Brit men and their declared aim of pushing Mark Cavendish to the win, everyone left it to the Brits to chase down the breakaway. That's like saying : "We're more interested in you NOT getting a medal than we are in getting a medal ourselves". Self inflicted wounds and it made for a not particularly exciting race where most of the field was there just to make up the numbers.

The women's race today was completely different. We were seeing attempts at breakaway attacks all the way through, where small groups attempted to get away from the pack. Each time it was "can they keep the gap, will they stay away?" and that kept on going right until the last climb of Box Hill where a group of 4 managed to make a decisive escape.

Including a Brit girl - Lizzie Armitstead. Go Lizzie !

And you can probably guess that the excitement level here was ramping up considerably at the prospect of us getting our first medal of the games. The gap kept on stretching gradually, even after the group of 4 diminished to just 3. Would they keep the gap ? What order would they finish in ? Would our girl get a gold medal ?

I won't put the result here but I will say - the group of 3 kept their advantage all the way to the finish and Brits have their first medal of the games. Great stuff.

Fit ?

The stiffness and damage from Wednesday are wearing off :-) Legs are still a bit stiff but I'd consider them ready for action again. The back needs a few more days though. Because of the way my body is set up, I'm suited for explosive stuff instead of endurance. My endurance is actually not that great, except when the stubbornness kicks in to let me block all pain and Not Give Up. Anyway - that explosiveness setup means my muscles produce a lot of lactic acid, which is where the stiffness comes from.

If I've not been running around for a while (I blame British Summer!), it can take around 3 days for my legs to get ready for action again. I'm not 100% yet but they're pretty close. At this rate, if the cricket skipper phones me up on Thursday, I'll be able to play :-). Depends on my back and the impact damage on my thumb.

So yeah - damage that meant I was in lots of pain on Thursday and Friday is diminishing to the point where the rational "you're too broken" is struggling to contain the hyperactive "I WANNA RUN" :-)

Weighty ?

One comment from Wednesday's game was that with the heat, I should have lost another stone from being under the helmet all the way through our fielding. Yeah - it was hot and I sweated buckets, so much it was getting into my eyes (ugh). There's a team picture out there with me under the Pink Hat, no way I was getting photographed without a hat having sweated that much !

But - if you're on an exercise based diet and you get on the scales after exercise to find that you've put weight on, Don't Get Discouraged. Instead of losing that 1 stone over the game, I actually gained about 5 lbs. And (I think!) it comes from that lactic acid I mentioned up above. It took a few days for that to get metabolised but now that it has, I'm back down to 12.5st.

Exercise and sweat does not necessarily mean loss of weight. For me, I'm much more careful now with my pre and post match intake so that sweat thing isn't a factor. I've injured my legs a huge amount over the years with cramp, so I make sure my water intake balances the sweating to reduce the potential of damaging cramp.

So - you're trying to lose weight, you do the "right thing" of exercising, you get on the scales to find out you've gained weight. Don't Be Discouraged !!!!! Our bodies work by very rational methods, there will be a good reason why the weight has gone on. With me, it's because the lactic acid gets in my muscles and makes them heavy.

Weight loss is not a battle, it's a long war. If you're exercising, you're helping yourself out in that long war. Keep it going. It'll be worth it. And you'll feel better for the exercise too.

Windy ?

I've switched over to the sailing - at the moment it's a Star race. That's with a 2 man boat, big sail still because they have a keel and the guys appear to be hanging more off the boat than on. I've always been interested in sailing, since reading Anne McCaffrey writing about it in Dragonsong (Julianne Regan is my voice of Menolly). Sailing is a battle of finding best advantage out of something invisible and barely predictable - the wind. Which ever sailor picks the best place to be to gain the most out of unpredictable air currents will win the race.

Always been interested but not had the chance to give it a go. I'm looking forward to the next Vendee Globe single handed non stop round the world race too, that was fascinating last time round.

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