Tag Archives: YWCA

Running with a Newborn

Running with a newborn in the winter has proven to be a little difficult.  First you have the lack of sleep and continual state of exhaustion.

Then you have the whole timing issue.  I did my first run when she was about 2 weeks old.  My in-laws were hear, Christy was feeding Nadia and on Thanksgiving evening, I just decided to go for a run.  I wasn’t super exhausted and we had extra support.  It was 8pm.   Before Christy went back to work, I could have gotten up in the morning for a run but was tired and 6am was hard enough to get up and get ready for work.  I was able to sneak out on the weekends a little better, but I needed to do my share of the load around here too and that meant letting Christy sleep. Now the alarm goes off around 5am and Christy does her thing and I’m on duty by 6am.  Yuck.  I guess I could get out at 5am, but its been cold.

Yes, the issue is confounded by the Minnesota Winter.  Remember this -15 morning? Not really conducive for pushing the jogging stroller.  Though if it warms up past 30 I might get out there.  Sure we have a wind and waterproof, fleece lined, arctic bundler, but I’m not brave enough to risk having the cops arresting me for child endangerment!

Ah, a perfect solution I thought. Run at the Metrodome. So I asked regular attender @steveinaspeedo if I could bring a jogging stroller.  He found out that I could bring the stroller inside the Dome, but I’d have to leave it at the front table.  I doubted the security guards at the table would take care of Nadia while I ran, so scratch that off the list.

One last chance, our YWCA.  Their baby philosophy can be found here.  And works out for us.

Infants Under 6 Months Old

Children ages 0-6 months are welcome at the YWCA! At 6 months, infants can be added to your family membership; can use the babysitting service and when they get a little older can attend classes with parents! Until that time, there are options for your baby:

  • Workout Next to Baby: Infants can be in car seats on the fitness floor next to parents who are using fitness machines. For safety, we ask that infants are not in the free weight areas.
  • Walk Baby in Climate Control: Stroller walkers are welcomed to walk the Midtown track Mon.- Fri. 5:30 am – 4:00 pm; and Sat-Sun 7:30 am – 12:00 pm. For safety, we ask that infants are not carried on the track in any type of carrier.
  • We’ve done this once and it worked really well.  But you can only do cardio and during peak times only 30 minutes.  So I’ve made it a few times.  A final confounding factor is that we only have one working car!  So it is quite a pain to haul Nadia in her car seat the several blocks to the bus that will take us to the gym.  I need to suck it up and do it!

    Do you have any tips or places we could run together?

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    Most of my experiences with massage were the post race variety where a student (most likely) gives your legs a 5 minute rub down to help with recovery.  The first post-race massage I remember was after the Bears of the Blue River 5/10k.  Having just raced hard and placing in the overall standings I was quite tired.  My calves and lower back were in a fair amount of pain, so I lined up outside a white tent with a lone masseuse.

    On this particular occasion she owned a local private massage therapy business and was donating her time to help sweaty runners recover.  Surely there has to be a less dirty form of marketing. Nevertheless, I got up from the chair feeling much better.  I thanked her and she gave me a business card and told me to call and schedule an appointment for a full body massage.  I laughed to myself knowing that I wouldn’t be driving an hour just for a massage.

    Fast forward a few years and I’ve now had quite a few professional massages at a few different places. I always felt a little nervous about the idea of massages, the idea of taking all your clothes off and laying in such a vulnerable position was a little scary.  My YWCA offered massage so that seemed like a safe place to start! I haven’t regretted getting a massage since.  They actually helped me get through both marathon training cycles and help to make life a little more enjoyable.

    Here are a few tips I’ve gleaned along the way…

    Make sure you get a sports masseuse. There are a lot of different types of massage techniques, but for an athlete you want someone who knows sports massage techniques.  Just like a sports doctor, they will know a little bit more about sports related injuries and muscles plus the techniques to loosen them out.

    Try a few places out. Don’t be afraid to try out a few different places before settling into one.  Unless of course you feel the first place is a perfect fit! They are providing a service and like any service provider you should feel comfortable and well taken care of. Each place does things a little differently and have different feels to them.

    Each masseuse is different. My wife and I both started out at the YWCA, same building, different masseuses, and very different experiences.  Mine was excellent – he made me feel relaxed throughout the entire time I was there.  Her’s not so much.  He made her feel a little awkward and wanted to talk to her the whole time – not the most relaxing experience.  I went back to the same guy throughout my first marathon training cycle.  I let a few months go by and when I went to schedule my next massage he was gone, so I tried out the new lady.  She was fine, but not quite as good.  So I  moved on!  Again, they are providing a service to you and should make you feel comfortable.  Massages should be a relaxing experience!

    If you are nervous go somewhere like the YMCA/YWCA.  If the idea of a massage make you feel a little nervous then get one from a place you already know and trust.  Some place like the YWCA or your chiropractor’s office.  You could also talk with your doctor or physical therapist and see who they recommend.

    Hydrate.  As with everything in sport (and life) proper hydration is important.  You’ve got to be careful with this one, you don’t want a full bladder while laying on the table.  Holding it doesn’t create a relaxed body!  But after a massage they will have released a lot of toxins that your muscles were holding onto into your bloodstream.  Drinking lots of water will help flush them out.

    Be prepared to TIP. I never tipped at the YWCA, maybe that’s why the guy left.  Every place else we’ve gone there has been a suggested TIP sheet next to the counter/cashier.  Plan on 15-20%.  Remember a TIP is based on the service provided.

    This article from About.com answers a lot more questions about massages.

    I’ll leave you with this story from my first real massage.  I was chatting with the YWCA Associate at the front desk when I checked in for my first massage (30 minutes).  We were chatting about how it was my first one and she’d never had one before.  After my massage, which felt amazing, I walked back out and she was still sitting there.  She noted that I looked super relaxed.  I felt almost like a new person I was so relaxed!

    Go, get a massage.

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    TCM Training Week 2

    Last year I raced the USATF 5000 meter track race at Hamline.  I am glad it wasn’t part of the circuit this year! It also served as Foto Friday.  Over the same weekend last year was a heart-wrenching 3200m for Nicole Cochran of Washington.  You may recall the story, she won the race but was DQ’ed after the fact and then after reviewing some video footage of the  race she was eventually reinstated as the state champion.   From two years ago, I wrote about running at Westwood Park in New Castle, IN.

    Last Year’s Mileage

    Run: 26.9 Miles
    Bike: 67.0 Miles
    Swim: 500 Yards

    Monday I went to the YWCA for a short weight session and swimming.  I know Higdon’s plan calls for running an easy 3 on Monday, but for now I’m going to keep using it as a cross training session.  Maybe as time goes on I’ll switch to running, but I think right now this is good.  I used his suggested 6 strength exercises (forgetting 2 of them), which are bench press, lunges, curls, overhead triceps, sitting row, and crunches.  I did light weights since it has been a long while!  Then I swam for about 300 yards.  Towards the end I kept getting water in my mouth, so I just stopped.

    Tuesday I did a 30 minute tempo run along the Greenway.  Once I got warmed up my foot stopped hurting.  I ran a pretty solid workout getting 4.13 miles in during the 30 minutes (7:17 pace) and easily hitting tempo pace.  It was 46 and overcast so a nice morning to run.  Today was 8th grade graduation promotion at work and I was on my feet running around for most of the day.

    I woke up Wednesday with some of the worst pain I’ve had from the Plantar Fasciitis in a long time, so I opted not to run.  I got really discouraged throughout the day and at one point even thought about quiting running altogether.  I waffled between whether I should run Thursday’s pace workout or not and finally came to the point of saying I’m not going to run again for awhile.  I’m tired of my foot always hurting so I’m going to do what I should have done almost 2 months ago – REST.

    It is hard knowing that I should be training for the marathon which is now 16 weeks away, but I realized that the chances of me making it through 18 weeks of hard training with a nagging injury are pretty slim.  I managed to get through the half-marathon training program, but it seems silly to keep pushing and injuring my body more and more.  All that being said though, the MDRA offers a fall-marathon training class which starts June 23 (pdf).  So I know I’m not completely dropping the ball – unless I’m still experiencing pain at that point – which I’ll probably just charge right on through if I do.

    So a little reassessment mid-stride! I didn’t do any cross-training this week really – just my bike commute – unless you count the Wii Fit.  On Tues, Weds, and Fri and I “played” Yoga, Balance, and Strength games.   This sounds almost ridiculous to say but some of the things are challenging and really have worked my core/stabilizer muscles.  Stop laughing.  You should try it sometime and see.  You can’t really rely on the feedback about your “Wii Fit Age” because it fluctuates so much – one day I was 40 and then the next I was 26.

    Weekly Mileage

    Run: 4.1 Miles
    Bike: 37.5 Miles
    Swim: 300 Yards

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    Week in Review

    Lake Superior - Landsat image

    Image via Wikipedia

    Happy Monday! As I write this I’m relaxing at home after a fun-filled weekend of camping along Wisconsin’s “North Coast”.  That’s Lake Superior for most of us.  We wanted to get a last fall camping trip in before the really cold weather hit.  It got cold but our campsite was right on the lake which was perfect!  The campground we stayed at was primitive and Lake Superior was cold back in the summer time… so I didn’t run at all over the weekend but we did bike 17 miles and hike around a little bit.

    On the running side, I doubled my mileage from last week… all the way up to 7 whole miles!

    On Wednesday I did an easy 3.5 miles around Powderhorn Park.  The weather was pretty near perfect, just at 40 degrees.  It was a nice relaxing run.  On Thursday morning before we left I ran just over 4 miles while I ran some errands downtown.  I had left my YWCA membership card at the downtown desk, so I ran there and picked it up.  Then I ran to the AAA office to see if they had any information about Bayfield, Wisconsin or the area in general.  I then had the interesting task of running home while carrying a Tourbook.  It was another beautiful morning and a nice run.  I probably got some weird looks while running home and I know the lady at AAA was wondering why I was sweating.

    Weekly Mileage:

    Running – 7.5 miles

    Biking – 24 miles

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