Thursday, April 28, 2011

The value of a single workout

Today's workout (elliptical): 25 minutes

What is the value of a single workout? Can one exercise session make a difference? As I wait for Sunday, holding off from my daily runs to protect my knee, I'm thinking about the marginal value of a workout. Whether I ran Mon-Wed this week as planned or rested (as I did), it's unclear which choice would have prepared me best for my race.

My knee is still sore but the pain is abstract. It doesn't hurt to put pressure on my leg but there's enough soreness to remind me that recent damage was done. Earlier in the week I ran through some core exercises to keep active even if I couldn't run. Those sessions were useful but they didn't provide the same satisfaction that I get after a hard workout.

This morning I decided that I'd waited long enough. I spent 25 minutes on the elliptical using one of the lowest resistance settings but I worked up a good sweat and reinforced my aerobic conditioning. Today's session probably did little in terms of helping my fitness but psychologically it was a highly effective workout.

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