Howdy, physical fitness fans -- long time, no see!
Well, I finally pulled the trigger, so to speak, and made the big jump into semi-retirement. No more public school teaching for ol' John Henry -- praise heaven and pass the mashed taters, please.
And to celebrate, I started today on the first section of my buddy Shawn Francis' three-month training program for pole vault. Depending on what happens with my left knee (which has ranged from bothersome to nearly crippling over the past eight months) when I go to the doctor Friday, I plan to be a lean, mean, jumping machine by the end of summer.
Today, I headed down to the local park with my new 100-foot tape measure and stop watch. I was supposed to do some initial testing first, but wasn't going to have time before I had to high-tail it somewhere for an appointment, so I just went through the work-out, but I did time myself the best I could in some sprints.
The first part of the workout was a warm-up that had me huffing and puffing, tested my coordination a little with a couple of the movements, and hurt a little bit with others. Then, it was on to an acceleration workout, with three 10-meter sprints, three 20-meter sprints, and three 30-meter sprints. Balls to the wall on the sprints, according to the instructions. I timed myself at 4 seconds in one 20 meter run, then 3.7 seconds on another one. For 30 meters, my hand-held times were: 5.68 seconds; 5.21; and 5.84 (I think I was a little late hitting 'stop' on that last one).
The purpose of the acceleration workout is building speed on the runway -- something I sorely need. So, it will be interesting to see how much those times improve in the next three months.
After that came a multi-jump routine, with eight different exercises, including several that hurt the crap out of my knee. I should have iced it when I got home, but didn't have time, and by the end of the day, it was really uncomfortable, so I got a bag of ice from the corner store and took an ice bath for 20 minutes. That helped quite a bit.
Tomorrow, the workout calls for some gymnastic stuff: rings and high bar, which I should be able to manage without much knee strain, if any. Then, a general strength routine has a couple of moves that might hurt some, but I think I'll be able to mostly get through it OK.
Hopefully, I'm not going to need surgery on my knee, although it was really hurting this evening during my shift working front desk at the gym. No, I wasn't sitting at the front desk for four hours, but walking around emptying the trash, doing lots of cleaning and other assorted duties. My knee was not real happy, but hopefully it will feel better after some sleep.
CLICK HERE to check out "Finally Fit," my book about learning to pole vault for the first time ever at 60 years old.
More tomorrow ...