Rolling with the foamies

A bead of sweat trickles from my forehead and quickly rolls down my cheek, as I scrunch my eyes, squinting through the gentle, but harsh shooting sensations of pleasure and pain. My arms are desperately attempting to prop up my weary and shattered body, and a slight quiver through the tops of my triceps ascends into my shoulders and then down through my elbows. I delicately rock myself, thrusting back and forth, manoeuvring to find the sweet spot, all the while balancing carefully and gingerly. The ensuing sensations are unpredictable, and send a shocking shiver up from my stomach. This only makes me want to stop. As I rear my head back in my sadistic state, I close my eyes and re-position myself, angling into just the right spot, but causing my elbows to dig into the cold hard floor. I can hear the bones crunching, as I bear my heavy weight back onto them. It’s a hot date with my foam roller, and it’s the perfect mixture of pleasure and pain that always keeps me coming back for more. 
Over the last few weeks of training, my muscles have become extremely tight and sore, and I’m about as flexible as a steel pole. I am absolutely guilty of not stretching enough, and I know this by the looks of disapproval from my chiropractor and massage therapist every time I see them. No matter how many times I tell them, “Oh yea, I’ve totally been doing the stretches you showed me last week,” they always see through my lies. The thing is though, I don’t really know why I struggle with this part of my training. It’s like I have no problem dedicating two and half hours on the spin bike, but hashing out fifteen minutes of stretching afterwards is like asking me to do 100 pound dead lifts. I moan and groan all the way to the mats, and I count down the seconds like they have been split in half. Sometimes I just kind of throw my body parts around like wet noodles, rock my head back and forth a few times like a ninja preparing for battle, then reach my hands for the sky, take a sip of water and flip back on my jacket and sweats. Fast forward to the next morning when I’m stuck in my office chair at work and the pain starts to set in. There I am wriggling around like a 5 year old child who can’t sit still. It must be amusing to my co-workers when I hobble down the stairs like a feeble grandmother, shamelessly pull up my pant legs at my desk to massage my calf muscles, constantly and randomly stand up in the lunge position, or struggle to “find” my legs while walking down the hallway.  Of course, I curse my stupidity to skip the stretching from the night before, and promise to never skimp out again. This is where the painful, yet pleasurable hot dates with my foam roller come in handy. Like the hands of my massage therapist, it digs into my stiff muscles and elicits the same squirming response. I know it sounds horribly raunchy, and although I probably look like a struggling sea creature experiencing dry land for the first time, it provides some much needed relief. 
I have definitely learned that crawling out of bed barely able to walk after a good workout might be the DOMS setting in, but struggling to get through a day of work without popping hip joints or cramping calves for days on end is not normal. From here on out, I am dedicating myself to that extra fifteen minutes of post-workout stretching, and here’s to more hot dates on the living room floor with my bright and pretty orange foam roller. 

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Highs and Lows

As I zipped myself from head to toe in spandex, and clipped myself into Red Lightning for a short 45 minute ride, I felt stupendously ready to pedal for hours. The sun was shining through a scattering of fluffy white clouds, and the warmth was invigorating. Clearly, I was blissfully unaware of the torture I was about to endure. Continue reading