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May 1, 2019: Not So Random Acts of Kindness Reconsidered

I’m coming to the conclusion about something most everyone else seems to know. The greater our displays of altruism towards others, the greater their displays of altruism towards us. Of course, there are exceptions. My being altruistic seemed to have the opposite effect when dealing with a local Icelandic Horse breeder. He just got meaner and meaner. To this day, his actions mystify me.

I am persisting in being altruistic. That I should continue to do this has been driven home (beep beep) repeatedly these past few months. What first comes to mind is my experiences in taking the wilderness first responder class and sitting in on the WEMT class. Dorothy, the teacher, was a good role model for me because she was always so attentive to the needs and concerns of her students. Watch, listen, learn, internalize.

Alys biking in Moose Range
Alys biking in Moose Range

Now today I had another wonderful experience. I had my appointment with Kate Arnold, who is a fitness coach at Active Body. I’d asked her a few days ago if we might talk about my fitness program, specifically as this related to my interest in resuming running. I’d given it a go but hurt my hip, so I am now sidelined.

In short order she came up with a very comprehensive and detailed plan. She first had me get on the treadmill and then did a gait analysis. She said that my stride was okay, but that I was hitting the running surface rather hard. We then talked about the postural changes that I should consider while running.

Kate next went over my stretching program and suggested some additional exercises that are specific to my situation. She rightly deduced that I have strong adductors and weak abductors – makes sense when I think about my most common form of exercise, which is horseback riding. The outer muscles are getting a workout, but the inner ones are not.

Kate then (with pen and paper in hand) outlined a running schedule for me. It is for three week intervals throughout the summer and includes times and distances. In all my years of running, no one has ever assisted me in putting together a schedule nor even broached the topic of interval work. What’s most interesting about this schedule is that it’s based on the concept of long slow distance. This is because I’ll be training for distance events. If my hip gets better, I could see doing 100 mile runs.

Kate repeatedly said that she’s excited for me and that I have potential. No coach has ever said that. I guess it’s never too late to hear such things. Talk about a motivator. I’m going to have to figure out a way of building this workout stuff into my trip plans.

Ever since I can remember, I’ve wanted to have access to a “real” running coach/personal trainer and now this has materialized.

As Kate talked, I found myself thinking that this sort of conditioning would be useful in working with horses. I have some figuring to do – I think on our trip we’ll just be taking it easy for the first month. It’ll be fun to experiment.

I wish it was still January and that I’d had this meeting sooner. Had we then met and talked, I would have begun my workouts then and my hip would be better. But my successfully returning to running after having injured myself is going to be quite an accomplishment.

I am now wondering what I might do for Kate. This is how reciprocation works.

Next: 120. 5/2/19: Shop Until You Drop

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