I've been making it a regular thing again going to the gym in the morning. Today I really increased my workout time up to 1 hour but divided it up in 3 parts to avoid overdoing any particular muscle group: 20 min. on spin bike, alternating increasing tension and standing; 20 min. on elliptical, this time getting my heart rate up in the 150s and increasing strides per minute (it helps to be warmed up first!); 21:45 in the pool, one half mile swim. My swim is okay, but of course not as fast as before, but I expect that will come soon enough. I'm not worried about my swim as long as my shoulder and back do not bother me. Keeping it easy and short should be okay until I build up more.
I also have physical therapy this morning, so it remains to be seen whether I can swim and do PT on the same day. I'm pretty sure though this will be my last day if I have anything to say about it. The exercises are becoming routine and mundane and I am resenting the time I have to spend there. Its been okay up until now, but I do think I am past needing monitoring. I am more than willing and perfectly capable of doing my own PT. If they would give something to follow and then schedule me for a followup in a month, that would work for me. Then, if anything arises in the meantime, I will have somewhere to go for advice.
Part of my workout plan is geared to start running again. I'm willing to wait the 2 months as initially recommended, but I find it hard to believe I need to wait 3. If I were a pro or world class athlete, maybe, but the reduced schedule I plan to follow should not be harmful to any further recovery. In the meantime, I am concentrating on getting my heart rate up higher than I do with a walk, getting out of breath to force the lung recovery, and extending my workout time--all to make it easier to transition back into running. I am hoping this will keep me from feeling like I will die on the first real run.
As far as short-term goals go, I got an e-mail yesterday about signup for the indoor tri I did last year. I figure I can't do any worse than last year (even though I got 2nd in AG), but do know the competition has increased, and it won't be much longer before my friend Jan is in my AG. EEk! She will make it impossible for me to beat, but she will give a couple others a run for their money, and I do mean run. That's where she is likely to shine.
One big decision about winter training is how much do I want to do outside, if any? I am a little concerned about slipping and falling on the ice and messing up something, and I know I don't want to go through any more rib healing, so I am leaning toward the treadmill and elliptical. But past experience has led me to realize too much treadmill running causes me feet problems, and I want to avoid that whole mess again if I am able. But according to all the tri-geeks here and runners, you are only considered a "real" runner if you run outside all the time no matter what the weather. While that would be preferred, I suppose trial and error will lead me in the right direction.