Sunday, September 12, 2010

Fall Fitness Challenge...Day 1

So, I'm typing this sort of mostly with my left hand because my right hand...well, I'll get to that part of the story later.

Day 1 of The Challenge. 

What happens:
  • A lot of standing around and waiting. 
  • Filling out paperwork. 
  • Getting weighed. 
  • Getting our "Before" photos taken (which, if I'm not mistaken, will be posted for the entire gym to see...) 
  • More standing around. 
  • An orientation meeting. 
  • And then off to a high school track for the fitness test.
The interesting thing is that there are a lot of different people at various fitness levels taking part in the challenge. I'm surprised to see a wide variety of body shapes and types among the participants. Some folks don't look at all like they need to drop any weight.

"Yeah, I agree," says Chris over dinner. "It was actually nice to see people who seem kind of fit taking part because it makes this feel more like an actual 'Fitness Challenge' rather than 'Fat Camp.'"

So we get to the track - there are probably around 40-45 participants (again, all different shapes and sizes) and the head trainer of the challenge - W - gets us spread out on the track to stretch. Once that's completed it's time for our fitness test: a one-mile run (or walk for many of us) around the track.

Four laps.

Doesn't seem so bad. I usually do two miles on the treadmill.

I'm in the back of the pack with the walkers. Figure that it'll probably take me anywhere from 18 - 20 minutes to walk my mile. I start at a pretty good clip and manage to stay pretty consistent for each of my laps. I'm breathing hard, but I can still talk and don't feel like I'm going to pass out. This is good.

Although I'm definitely among the slowest of the bunch, at the end of my mile I am surprised when my trainer tells me that I completed my mile in 15 minutes and 9 seconds. Considerably faster than I had thought. Not bad. Not bad at all.

I head back to the finish line after a minute of cooling down to cheer on the last of the walkers.

"So, what happened to your hand?" you ask.

OK, so we get back home and have some lunch. Then do some house stuff and get on the computer. After a few hours it occurs to me that I've only done 15 minutes and 9 seconds of exercise today. I feel incomplete. So, I decide to head back to the gym for some more cardio figuring I'll do the treadmill or the elliptical.

But when I arrive late in the afternoon to finds the gym almost empty it occurs to me that I can grab my gloves and head back to the heavy bag area for some boxing work. Which I do.

It's a new heavy bag and, consequently, much more hard and firm than the old bag. I adjust my punches accordingly so I don't hurt my hands. Or so I think. About 15 minutes into my session I throw a right hook and - BLAMMO - intense pain in the knuckle of my right-hand pinkie.

So, I try to walk it off and shake it out.

No luck.

I pull off the glove and undo the wrap to discover a very swollen knuckle already starting to turn black-n-blue.


So, back home to ice the thing for several hours with a bag of frozen edamame. (Our cat Cecil greatly enjoyed me sitting very still on the couch during this time. She claimed my lap and passed out.)

The swelling has gone down a bit. The pinkie finger of my right hand is now taped to the ring finger of my right hand in what is apparently called "buddy taping." I was able to hang our laundry with quite a bit of discomfort, but picking up the laundry basket - no go. And now here I sit clackering away awkwardly on my laptop.

My dad (a physician) told me that if the swelling goes back up overnight I should definitely get my hand x-rayed to see if there's a stress fracture.


Since I can actually use the finger and I'm not in agony, I'm going to be optimist and assume that I just bruised the crap out of the knuckle. That if I rest it, ice it and buddy tape it for the rest of the week that I'll be back in fighting form in no time.

Everybody keep your fingers crossed for me.

I'd really rather not go through my 10-week Fall Fitness Challenge with a stress fracture, thank you very much!

So, Day 1 down...sixty-nine more days to go!

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