homeward bound

I am finally on my way home and can’t wait to sleep in my own bed again! I heard the weather was nice over the weekend but the forecast predicts rain all week. Guess that means I’ll either be logging gym time or sloshing through the mud. Either way, I’m looking forward to moderate temperatures.
Today I made use of the Mapleton YMCA again and did a light workout on the bike and in the pool. I seem to have pulled or slightly strained the top of my right hamstring on yesterday’s hike so I took it easy.

The workout:
Roll out on foam roller
• this is almost as good as a massage (and it’s free!)
• I use it either to warm up muscles or to stretch after a workout
Core exercises
Warm up on bike
• 7 minutes starting on low resistance and adding more each minute
Swim 450 yds or 10 minutes
• mixed strokes, easy pace


I awoke to another gorgeous Colorado morning and decided the day called for a hike.  We did the Mt. Sanitas loop, which is supposedly just over 3 miles but felt much longer!  Between the red mud, ice and loosing the trail a few times, the hike was an adventure and we were definitely in the minority hiking without a canine companion.  The trail is part fire road, part scramble and hours later, my hamstrings are still feeling the burn!

The workout:

Mt. Sanitas Loop 3.1 miles, elevation gain 1,300 ft

core exercises and stretching

alt. workouts:

find a moderately difficult 3 mile trail in your area




snowshoe or crosscountry ski if the snow allows

1.5 mile brisk “climb” on elliptical or escalator stair climber, 15 min low resistance high rpm on an exercise bike

Boulder Creek

I missed another day of training today… spent most of the day driving and in meetings, eating way too much and enjoying the Colorado sunshine. I thought I’d write about the run I would have like to take had I been feeling motivated to run.

Boulder Creek path was one of my favorite rollerblading trails growing up and as an adult I have run or walked it a few times. Last year I did so in the snow on a crisp, icy and beautiful morning. The pavement ends partway up the canyon and the trail continues for a ways. I recommend beginning at the library where you can finish with a snack from Wild Oats across the street and, in the summertime, soak your feet in the creek.

The workout:
4-6 mile run
•1 mile easy jog warm up
•1-2 miles steady but mild incline
•1-2 miles back down
•1 mile easy jog cool down

classical inspiration

I finally slept well last night!  January Trio season is over and I had a night all to myself in a wonderful B & B.  I approached my workout at the Mapleton YMCA this morning feeling fresh and strong, and decided it would be a good day for a bike-swim brick.

I made use of my time on the exercise bike to do a little musical studying via YouTube on my iPhone. (don’t I sound like an advertisement!?)  Francescatti’s 2nd mvt of Mozart violin concert No. 4 is gorgeous!   My legs felt the work but not my lungs- a good sign that I’m used to being above sea level (and also, perhaps, that I’m not really working hard enough!).  I went directly into the pool and did my usual half mile, thinking about form and upper body strength.

The workout:

20 minute bike, level 2 “random hills”, 90-95 rpm, 6.6 miles

900 yd swim

-200 yd warm up, mixed strokes

-100 yd kicking drills

-300 yd swim

-4 x 25 yds sprints on 00:30

-200 yd cool down

16 minutes

core exercises

packing list

It is 8 am and I’m somewhere between Santa Fe and Denver. Today will be a rest day for me because I am feeling exhausted and my back is aching. One of the most important aspects of training is listening when my body tells me to stop!
Since there will be no workout logged today, I’m making a list (another favorite traveling pastime)
Running shoes – They are almost always on my feet because they take up the most space if packed.
Water bottle (Earthlust, 13oz) – I like to have water with me at all times and hate buying bottled water. I generally end up gulping whatever is in the bottle before security, then refilling it before boarding. Staying hydrated is one of the best ways to maintain good health on dry airplanes.
Barley green (Nikken jade greenzymes travel packs) and Tea bags (jasmine green tea) – The health benefits to both are numerous. I’ve recently added a travel mug to my tea stash so I don’t have to use to-go cups anymore.
Inflatable travel pillow – I stash Earplugs and a tea bag in the case for each flight. Noise cancelling headphones and an eye mask are essential for red-eyes.
Sunglasses, Running hat (or stocking cap), Sunscreen – Even on cloudy days, the rays can damage skin. My polarized shades are necessary to reduce strain so I can focus on all those little black notes come rehearsal time.
YMCA membership card and Combination lock – I love my gym membership and frequently use the “away” privledges.
Workout clothes (and swimsuit) – I pack layerable items of thin, wicking fabric, which are not only small to pack but dry quickly after hand washing. I try to get a sense of the workout conditions before arriving somewhere… outdoor temp, hotel gym facilities or neighborhood, nearby YMCA, etc.
Watch or Armband for iPhone – Sometimes I travel with my heartrate monitor strap but often just the watch. The other option is bringing along my phone for music and GPS. One cool free app I’ve found is MapMyRun. It’s tends to work best in less crowded areas and will show distance, speed and route.

This seems like way more than necessary and I don’t consider it “traveling light”. That said, I packed for 10 days with temperatures from 30-70 degrees. It all fit with my music stand, performance gowns and regular clothes in my carry-on suitcase!


I awoke in Santa Fe very early this morning after a restless night.  The dryness made breathing difficult and the several pillows surrounding me in bed had uncomfortably upped the temperature.  By the time the sun rose I had brewed myself a cup of tea using the in-room coffee maker and was debating what else I felt like doing before our 1pm rehearsal.  My first choice was a morning soak at ten thousand waves, the luxurious Japanese bath house on the mountain, but alas, they are closed until noon on Tuesdays.  Luckily Julie sent me a text about exercise and we made our way down to the La Fonda’s fitness center.  We were dragging and feeling winded from altitude so the purpose of today’s workout was simply to get the blood pumping.

The workout:

15 minutes easy bike set to “random”

15 minutes brisk walk on treadmill, steadily increasing the incline

I enjoyed a few minutes in the hot tub after a late afternoon nap and took advantage of the heat to do some stretching.

early rising

I made the decision to set my alarm early this morning so I could fit in a swim before our outreach.  I opened the hotel windows to the glittering gulf water and Texas sunshine.

The key to cramming in a workout earlier than I want to be up is having everything packed up the night before. My shorts and long sleeve were still drying from the hand washing after yesterday’s run and the swim suit, cap and goggles went in my bag. I packed a lock and flip flops, and put my room key and rental car keys in the bag too just so I wouldn’t forget anything in my morning haze.

Walking outside, I hated making the decision to drive rather than walk to the Y but there were time restrictions: I woke up at 7:30 and needed to depart for the outreach at 9:15… in that time I wanted to fit in a swim, return the rental car, shower and stop by the coffee shop to buy one of their adorable travel mugs.

Almost every city I visit has a YMCA and more often than not, they end up being walking distance from my hotel. I love the old school Y pools. They are usually in the basement, surrounded by stone or bricks. The Corpus Christi Y pool was empty except for me most of my workout. Only three lanes wide, the temperature was perfect for a short, easy swim. My mantra of the morning was slow and steady and my goal half mile without breaks.

The workout:

100 yds freestyle

100 yds breast stroke

100 yds freestyle

100 yds breast stroke

50 yds back stroke to open up my chest and shoulders

repeat entire sequence

total = 900 yds = 1/2 mile

17 minutes

The swim this morning stretched out my back and gave me a no-impact workout before sitting on planes for the rest of the day. I meant to do some core exercises before bed but ate way too much, too late.