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October 29, 2012 / fionarwbl

Battening Down the The Hatches, Equinox Massages, and MGP Miles

Wow – nothing like a #frankenstorm to liven things up a little, is there? Last year Irene in NYC felt like a big hoop-la over nothing, but when we were in VT this summer, it was very apparent just how destructive she was as she moved inland. While a weather apocalypse makes for great CNN viewing and a day of working from home, I really hope we don’t get slammed the way VT was.

While we’re talking about Sandy impact, huge congratulations to Laney, Steph, and Theodora for battling some tough conditions at the Marine Corps today. Definitely not ideal out today, but they did amazing!
This week was a good week for work to kick off in crazy way, and for running to take a back seat. No choice but to taper.

(Ok, this is not true. If I had really wanted to run, or if I had had to run, I could have woken up at 4.30am, or run at 9.30pm. There is always a way; it just depends on where things fall in terms of priorities.)

After an ill-advised sprint finish to our last 10 mile run last week, I had a pull feeling in my hamstrings, and extremely tight calves. Taking into account the new style of running shoes I’ve been using this training cycle, I scheduled a massage at Equinox. After some twitter advice, I settled on Equissage, and I sprung for a 90 minute session – extravagance!

My therapist was Paul, and he made sure to ask me immediately if there was any areas he needed to focus on. I said “calves, and everywhere that runners need”. He didn’t ask me any other questions, apart from injuries, but got to work immediately on my calves, both front and back. It was mostly relaxing, with the occasional jolt of pain where he located some pressure points and knots. After spending some quality time on my calves, he moved into a more traditional massage. One thing that was new was a lot of gentle “rocking”. This was surprisingly relaxing, and from what I can tell from the website, was to realign my body and loosen my muscles. You know what? I think it kinda worked. If nothing else, it was incredibly relaxing. He then did a more traditional Swedish / deep tissue style, working my back, shoulders, and quads. I could really feel the tension melting out of some sore spots I didn’t know I had in my back, but surprisingly enough, I didn’t feel anything (tightness, tenderness, or otherwise), in my hamstring. I think that the few days I took off from running (thanks Euro-time meetings!) eased it up. He then went back to my calves, and worked them up again, so clearly they had some more tightness in there. My right calf was sorer than my left, which surprised me; normally my left feels tighter in yoga, but who knows anymore? My ankle was also super clicky, and my feet were understandably sore and inflexible, which he worked on as well. Quite the lower-leg workover.

The thing I find about massages is that I don’t usually enjoy them 100% while I’m having them; I guess my mind keeps running so much and thinking about whether I’m enjoying it, whether something is tight, whether something feels right, that while my muscles relax, my mind does not. However, as soon as I walk out, my whole body feels light and more easeful. This was especially true of this massage – I literally felt about an inch or two taller walking home.

Just on a side note, I was not impressed with Equinox’s spa set up. I was given too-small shower shoes; the robe felt a little tired; and the waiting area was pretty minimal with a serious lack of magazines. I know it’s a small thing, but equinox charges as much as bliss and other spas, so should consider the whole experience.

I have run a couple of times this weekend to make up for my lost miles this week. I guess it must have been the weather, or the adrenaline, but my legs would not slow down. 6 miles yesterday and 7 miles today, all at marathon goal pace, and a 5 miler early in the week made for an okay taper week. Now it’s batten down the hatches time and sit out this storm.

 

Look at that rain coming in

One last storm related thing: I used the crazy weather as excuse to buy the Partly Cloudy app – isn’t it gorgeous?

 

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