I ran for fifteen minutes on New Years Eve. Fifteen consecutive minutes with only a two minute warm-up walk to get the legs moving.
It felt really good and there was no pain.
Funny thing was that I left the house at 8:30am. I was home by 8:50am - and then the real work began.
First thing I did was take a rubber band and tie it to the couch leg. Then I spent about five minutes doing several different leg exercises designed to strengthen my knees and my hips. Pull sideways. Pull at a 45 degree angle. Pull backwards. Etc etc.
Once the rubber band exercises were done I had to stand barefoot and do very subtle things with my feet to work on improving the strength in my arches. I have lovely arches when my feet are in a resting position but, as soon as I put weight on them, everything smooshes down and I become completely flat footed.
Geoff is on a mission to improve the strength in my hips, knees and feet in an effort to thwart off further injuries.
With his consent, I make an orthotics appointment and should receive my new arches on the 9th of January. He suggested I take advantage of my benefits before the end of 2011 to get orthotics but he doesn't want me using them until he sees if I'm able to improve my foot strength. So I'll have them in a box in case I need them.
After the rubber band pulling and the foot strengthening, I then tied the rubber band around my legs (above the knee) and did my funny sideways duck walk across the floor. Another exercise to increase my strength and make the neighbours laugh if they happen to look in the window.
Finally, I sat down on my yoga mat to stretch everything out. Calf stretches, downward dogs, pigeon poses, hip flexor stretches, back stretches - you get the idea. Follow that by some Trigger Point to loosen things up even more.
I rolled up my mat at 10am.
Seventy minutes after I came in from my 15 minute run.
It seems like a ridiculous amount of time to spend on muscle fitness and I have no idea how I'm going to keep it up once I go back to work. But I must say that I felt loose and limber as I bounced up and down the stairs.
I remember reading that people who exercise live longer than people who don't but that all the extra time they get is spent exercising. So, time-wise, it doesn't work out to be any more.
I think the most important part though is not the extra time we get for taking care of ourselves but how good we feel because we take care of ourselves. Taking 1 1/2 hours to do a fifteen minute run may seem counter-intuitive but, when you feel as good as I did when I was finished, it's absolutely worth it.