…but not in a way you could describe as fastidiously. I've seen two physios, one for my hip, another for my shoulder; both have given me exercises and both seem confident that this will sort my shit out.
The hip exercises have been interesting, not least because when I try to do the full set, it absolutely wrecks me. I did them conscientiously while in Vegas in October, and ended the week only just able to walk. Is this highlighting a greater weakness than I realised, or is it just too much on a weak muscle group? I've been breaking them down, doing most of them 3-4 times a week where I can rather than all of them daily. I can feel it is stronger, it's just a slow process. And I do wonder if my not having run since June might be part of the problem.
So I started running. 20 minutes on the road on Sunday afternoon; not fast, not pretty, but also, pleasantly, not difficult. Last night I did 25 minutes on the treadmill. I feel good, and my hip is certainly no worse because of it. No sign of gout or inflammation either in my foot. So far, so good.
Swimming* is still a no, but my shoulder is much better. Need to do those exercises a lot more than I have, the improvement is more obvious there. I suspect I will be back in the pool in the new year, just in time to meet all those fuckers who will try desperately hard to change their ways for a few weeks then give it up because, well, it's just too hard.
That sounded pretty cynical, but I've been a gym user for over 20 years and I see it every fucking year. They swarm to the gym in January, taking advantage of the gym's generous new year offer, designed of course to get those very people in. They work out like crazy for a couple of weeks, maybe a month, never to be seen again.
When I was taking running groups out, back in the day, I used to get people saying to me, 'I'd love to run but my knees won't let me'. Knowing full well they had never done any sport, and had no injuries (we are talking about people I have known most of my life), I would answer 'Why? They're practically brand new. It's not your knees that are the problem…'
I digress. It's going ok, so far. And on a zero carb diet – Fern still describes me as looking like I'm 'melting' – which is proving a fascinating experiment. I feel good, overall, and I'm enjoying the food. Sleeping fantastically, but that's nothing new. And exercise is absolutely fine so far. But in a week or so I will be able to go further, and we will see how I feel then, when the body is truly forced to feed on fat for immediate fuel. I'll let you know how that goes.
*Notice I haven't mentioned the bike. The plan is to get all-weather tires on, so I can start building some outdoor miles through winter when the roads are not frozen. I'll also be buying a cheap back tire for the turbo trainer for those days when it is frozen. But the bike has been the main funk casualty (a phrase I love, because it implies some kind of George Clinton rampage rather than me just feeling shitty), as it sits in the garage, still with the race numbers attached.