The Ice Bath
Wow, I look a little crazy in that picture, don't I? It's fitting, I guess, since I was about to hop in my first ice bath.
I suppose you're wondering why anyone in their right mind would sit in a tub of ice...as you should be. They claim it's good for recovery. It stops the inflammation caused by a hard workout and speeds up the recovery process.
I filled the tub with cold water, dumped my bag of ice in and then grabbed a copy of Marathon & Beyond so I could read the article about running an ultra marathon in the scorching heat of Las Vegas.
You would think the worst part of an ice bath would be....you know. But it wasn't, really. The whole thing is equal torture and it was so friggin cold at first I could hardly breathe. Talk about a shock to the system. It was clear that reading was out of the question. Remaining conscious was the new goal.
After a minute or so, you basically go numb from the waist down so the initial shock goes away. And that's about the time you realize you forgot to find out an important piece of information: How long does one sit in an ice bath? A minute? 10 minutes? An hour? I decided to wait until the ice melted, which probably took about 5 minutes but it's hard to say since I may or may not have blacked out.
So why did I need an ice bath in the first place? Cheri and I did 2 laps around the arboretum, our last big training run before the Madison Half Marathon in 2 weeks. The arb loop is a great training run for several reasons. 1. The university created a 10K route around the arb and marked all of the miles and quarter miles. 2. It's kind of hilly - no brutal climbs, but it's non-stop rollers with a couple of decent climbs. 3. Very little traffic. 4. Lots of runners.
There were quite a few runners with water bottles and fuel belts and you got the feeling that everyone was out there preparing for the marathon. My plan was to run 5K at my long run pace (about an 8 minute mile) then 10K at race pace (about 7 minute mile) and the last 5K at my long run pace. The run, I figured would take about 1 hour and 36 minutes. Cheri said she was going to go at a slow, comfortable pace so I should take a magazine to read while I waited for her. I figured she would be out there for about 2 hours and 5 minutes.
My run went well, although I struggled a bit in the middle, and I finished in 1:33:19. Cheri finished in 1:55:30. Pretty impressive for someone running at a "slow, comfortable pace."
After dinner, we decided to go to a movie. We wanted to see Run, Fatboy, Run but it wasn't playing anywhere. So we went to go see Forgetting Sarah Marshall. Based on the previews, our expectations were really low, but we figured we've seen a lot of bad movies so chances were that this wouldn't be the worst movie we've ever seen. Not the best reason to see a movie, but we felt like going to the theater.
This was one of those rare cases when the previews don't do the movie justice. It was hilarious. One of the best comedies I've seen in a long time. Lately comedies are so lacking in material they give you the good stuff in the preview and then the movie is a complete disappointment. Some of the scenes in the preview weren't even in this movie. Go see it.