Training Log: Keeping Myself Focused On My Mountain Goals


October/November/December Fail

Oh, Lord have mercy!!! I totally fell off of the wagon of documenting my training and then fell off of the training wagon. I’m not in the mood to beat myself up, I do enough of that on a normal basis and will instead give you a run down of what has been going on and what my plan is from here.

So, I got a little overly focused on my trip down to South America, mainly the visiting of the orphanage portion of it. While I was trying to mentally and emotionally prepare for that, researching on what I could do to get information about my adoption, researching the status of the orphanage I was at, I lost track of training, but I was training. Once I got to Bogotá, I was so busy with school and I have never felt so paranoid in my life. Everyone telling me to be careful about where I go, when I go, what I have with me (specifically my camera and cell phone) and that I shouldn’t take it out in public…it made me terrified of everything and besides walking up and down the hill to get to and from my hostel, there wasn’t  much going on in the way of training for a week and a half.  I eventually started to gain a sense of my neighborhood and felt safe to do my usual training.

Once I got to Quito, I was walking around a lot with my AirBnb host and we went camping and hiking the few days leading up to Cotopaxi. Cotopaxi turned out to be something I felt I wasn’t prepared for. Whether it had to do with me getting pretty sick the day before or not, I felt that I needed to do more with my training and target specific areas of my body, focusing on gaining strength. While on Cotopaxi, I felt as though my legs tired out way too quickly. I was definitely in unchartered territory wearing new mountaineering boots and trying to move properly with crampons, while being roped into two other people and using an ice axe. If it had been a week of acclimatizing and moving from camp to camp, no problem, but the up and down in two days just felt like more than I was ready to tackle.

I loved getting lots of practice on the glacier, getting comfortable in crampons and having a better idea of what it’s like to be roped in and how to move safely, but I will definitely need more practice and more experience to feel like a confident and capable mountain person (not ready to call myself a mountaineer). I’m proud of myself for trying and now I have a much better understanding of what I need to do to be ready for the next time. I will never give being on the mountains up. I love it way too much even when I’m so miserable. With more practice and training I hope the misery lessens and the enjoyment increases exponentially. Without a doubt, this will forever be a happy place of mine.

September 2017

This ankle thing is highly frustrating. It bothers me after activity, but not all the time. It bothers me after rest, but again, not all the time. It makes no sense and I think I’m deciding to get on with it, and build up my low impact training over the next week. If I wait too much longer, I’m worried I will not be ready for my mountaineering trip in Ecuador in a few months. It’s uncomfortable at times, but nothing that I can’t power through? I desperately want my time at the top of Cayambe and Chimborazo and this kind of sport has it’s share of being uncomfortable, so I’m going to roll with it, and hope it doesn’t get worse. Incorporating stretching, ankle strengthening exercises, ice, and acetaminophen when needed.
9/1 Feeling pretty sore today, not just ankle, but all over from my Storageland training yesterday. Loaded van for Storageland today. Iced ankle.
9/2 Storageland…need I say more.
9/3 Last Storageland training session. Ankle is feeling better, was on it again for most of the day, bouldering in storage again, a few times I over did it with certain movements. This girl is sore. It’s hot and will continue to be this week.
9/4 rest day, but did 30 seconds of sa plank, not modified!
9/5 sa plank 50 seconds (3x)
9/6 sa plank 50 x3, walking around running errands, no problems with foot
9/7 storageland training strikes again. Thought I’d be done for a few weeks, but had someone wanting to buy my drafting table. The drafting table buried in storage. A few hours later it was loaded into my van and my storage space was better organized. I’ll be sore tomorrow. 30 minute walk with Jo and the fur kids. Felt good and we even got rained on for a few minutes.
9/8 Ankle bothering me a today, too much with storage, but had to be done. 3 min sa mod plank
9/9 same
9/10 same
9/11 same
9/12 same
9/13 3.5 min sa mod plank
9/14 2 min sa mod plank (2x)
9/15 15 min standing ab workout screenshot
9/16 girls meetup, fell off the wagon, 2 nights out on very little sleep
9/17 2 min sa mod plank (2x)
9/18 sa plank 1 min, elbow  plank 45 sec, 5 min toned arm screenshot
9/20 3.5 min sa mod plank, walked 4.8 miles in DT Seattle, feelin good
9/21 1 min sa plank
9/22 1 min sa plank, frustrated with ankle, feels fine then doesn’t, not necessarily due to activity
9/23 1:05 sa plank
9/24 1:05 sa plank
9/25 1:05 sa plank
9/26 1:15 sa plank
9/27 1:15 sa plank
9/28 15 min standing ab workout screenshot, 1:15 sa plank, 3 sets of 25 leg lifts
9/29 Proud of myself for doing a plank after a night out with some new friends and wine, lol 1:15 sa plank
9/30 Volunteered all day at Rainier National Park planting native plants in areas that had been destroyed by visitors going off of the trails to get photos. Got very dirty, got a nice little work out making my way up to our spot from Paradise and digging holes, and enjoyed a beautiful day at one of my favorite places in WA. 1:15 sa plank


July/August 2017

How has it been a month already??

Since making my training plans known, I continued with Zumba and hiking for the remainder of July. I switched to Zumba to do something different and give my mind a bit of relief from the bore that walking can be. Sometimes, all the music and podcasts can’t motivate me enough, and I need a break. So, for a while I was dancing hard, and it felt great. It was every single day, for 2-3 hours. The last day of July fell on a Monday, so I decided to get back to my regular training regime which was walking with a fully loaded pack. I decided to start a little lighter than what I had been carrying on hikes which was 30-35 lbs.

Things started out well. I stuck with the training even when the insanely hot weather moved into Washington. I’m talking temps in the 90’s and 100’s. That heat meant I had to be at it early if I wanted to get it done. The wildfire smoke that moved down from British Columbia added another concern of very poor air quality. I probably shouldn’t have been out on some of the days or had the windows open when on the treadmill. Hopefully, I didn’t do any damage to my body that will bite me in the ass later in life. Anyway this is what my days looked like initially:

7/31  2 hr walk on treadmill, 28# pack, increase in incline, 3, 6, 9%, 45 second straight  arm plank
8/1   Same
8/2   Same…already 70 and its only 8:30am, ran last mile, sa plank with 28# pack for 30 seconds. Tough day-wanted to be done after 45 min, but stuck with it and worked on mental toughness.
8/3   Walk at Frye Cove Park with 28# pack, lots of hills, very hot, sa plank 45 sec, another mental toughness kind of training day. Super smokey.
8/4   Air quality really bad from BC wildfires, advised to stay inside, walk with 34.5# pack, 3-9% incline on treadmill, sa plank 45 sec
8/5   Zumba 2 hrs, sa plank 45 sec
8/6   2 hr treadmill, sa plank 45 sec, 34.5# pack
8/7   Zumba 2 hrs, sa plank 50 sec
8/8   2 hr treadmill (little bit of treadmill dancing), 35# pack, sa plank 50 sec, 2 mile evening walk
8/9   1 hr treadmill, 36ish # pack, sa plank 50 sec, up to 12% incline and no less than 3% incline, 1 hr zumba pack was bothering my back

My foot started to hurt after this workout for no apparent reason. So, I decided it would be a great idea to drive up north to walk on in in the sand, over logs and rock, with a heavy pack (sarcasm). I’m an idiot sometimes…well, I’m extremely stubborn. This was of course a bad idea, but getting to see the tide pools full of colorful starfish, anemones, and crab was the such a magical experience. It was worth it. So, the length of time spent on the beaches, with my pack, squatting down to take photos and then getting back up, climbing rocks and beached logs made my foot/ankle/leg feel much worse. I started to get really nervous. So I stayed completely off of it for days, only walking within the house, and icing  it every 45 minutes for 15 minutes for a good portion the day.
8/10 3.5 hrs walking Rialto beach with 35 lb pack, 1 hr walking Ruby Beach with lighter pack 15# maybe, sa plank 50 sec
8/11 Ankle and leg hurt today. Feeling sorry for myself. Head immediately goes to me not going to Patagonia, ugh. Modified ( from knees) sa plank 50 sec
8/12 Worry swirling in my head. Staying off of foot completely. Mod sa plank 50 sec
8/13 Mod sa plank 50 sec
8/14 Mod sa plank 1min (x3)
8/15 Mod sa plank 2:10, today is my birthday and I nearly forgot to get my planking in, minutes to spare before 12am to get it done.
8/16 My foot is feeling a bit better, 30 reps 1 set of: bent over reverse fly/bicep curl/shoulder press/reverse bicep curl/upright row/pullover, mod sa plank 2:10, plus extra one for 1:05
8/17 Mod sa plank 1:05, sa mod to elbow plank and back up to mod sa plank 1:05, elbow plank 1:05
8/18 Mod sa plank 2:30, sa mod to elbow plank and back up to mod sa plank 1:30
8/19 Mod sa plank 1:15 , 1:15 mod elbow plank, 1:30 mod sa plank
8/20 Walk at Farmers Market for 30 minutes, foot felt ok, feeling optimistic, mod sa plank 1:30 (x3)
8/21 Mod sa plank 2:00
8/22 Mod sa plank 2:30 (walked a bit on date, regreted both walking and date)
8/23 Mod sa plank 3:30
8/24 Full plank on elbows 45 sec, 45 sec mod plank on elbows both back to back, 1:30 sa mod plank (ankle not ready for full plank) 😦
8/25 Back sore, didn’t want to strain, day off
8/26 Mod sa plank 3:00, ankle really hurt yesterday, going crazy, just want to do be a person and move around…patience is a virtue
8/27 Mod sa plank 3:00
8/28 Mod plank on elbows 1:30 (x2)
8/29 Mod sa plank 3:00
8/30 Been standing on my feet and moving around a lot the last few days preparing to move to Seattle. Foot/leg feeling good for the most part, still being careful though. Thirty minute walk, very leisurely, feeling ok, thinking 15 minutes would’ve been better, 3:05 mod sa plank
8/31 Storageland workout 1 hr, so sweaty while moving a ton of heavy sh** and “bouldering” to get to spaces in my unit to leave more of my nonsense…wanting to give all of it away after today.

So, I thought I’d share a few of the things that motivated me while training, made me happy, and helped me to finish my two hours:

Mounika and Alex Cruz on SoundCloud, NPR’s Wait, Wait Don’t Tell Me…one was a fantastically hilarious story about Harry Caray, The Moth Podcast (so many great stories, highly recommend, but beware of listening in public: I cried because of them), and endless amounts of iTune purchases…those always got me to treadmill dance.

So, I would brand this month of August a successful failure. I kept with it, but because of injury, I wasn’t doing what I had hoped I’d be doing. I will continue to walk and very gradually add time. I most definitely do NOT want to jeopardize my Patagonia trip/South American Adventure to explore my birth country of Colombia (I’m adopted and haven’t been back since I was a baby). This is a brand new travel development that I hope works out. Anywho, I’m still in it to win it and hope to be ready for a trek in Patagonia (and maybe some climbing outside of Quito, Ecuador come November??)! Will report back in a month. Over and out!


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