I've been a terrible running slacker for the most part for the past couple of weeks... between the cold weather and the Los Angeles trip and then coming back and feelin' lazy... meh. I've been running maybe 3 days a week, and my hip is killing me again (blah).
Anyway, I haven't been TOTALLY lazy. Get this. I met a guy who owns a bouldering gym (!) and this gym is only 4 blocks from my apartment (!!!). So I've been rock climbing my face off. It's a co-op gym, where people pay a fee and then get a key and can go climb anytime they feel like it. This guy's been letting me go for free, and he put up a few easier problems for me to work on. The people there are super-cool... it's mostly guys in my age group (I have yet to see a girl there, but there are at least 7 of them who are members), and lots of them are grad students of various kinds (some med students). The owner is really talented and designs and makes his own climbing holds, and sells them across the country. He and the other climbers there are incredibly strong badasses. I have witnessed some unbelievable feats of strength and maneuvering and am very jealous.
Omg though, rock climbing is so awesome. Talk about stumbling into a hidden-away secret of a gym, and right by my apartment, too. It's in an old garage with no signs on it or anything so you'd never know it's there. And it's a really, really good gym... tons of walls, and they're changing the holds out all of the time so it's always new and different. The floor's covered with old mattresses and these pads you can drag around for underneath spots you want more padding in case you drop off.
The first few times my arms were absolutely blasted afterward... like to the point where I could hardly grip anything. I think I'm already getting a little bit stronger, but now the limiting factor is the skin on my hands--it's raw, and ouch. Hopefully this will turn into callouses soon. Last night I went climbing from like 1130 - 1:00am (yes that late...after an evening nap I was wide awake) and I had to stop before my arms were fully tired because my hands were a wreck. I seem to have a blister in addition to the raw spots. Blah... I want to climb more!
So I'm obsessed with building some upper body strength and learning more about some climbing maneuvers and getting better at this. It's an incredible workout and uses your legs and abs too.
Somehow I have to balance this with running and not just do my usual thing in which I become totally obsessed with some new feat of awesomeness at the expense of all others. Heh. But I ran Saturday and yesterday and I'm about to head out now... and tomorrow night is the thursday group run...so I'm still runnin'.