Real Exercise Names are Boring

I’m supposed to be driving down to Carlsbad to pick up my bib right now. Instead I’m sitting here writing to you. Drinking my seventh (third) cup of coffee. Not being sad or depressed about a missed once-upon-a-time goal race. Because it’s just running and my health is more important and I’m looking at the big picture!

Look at me being all stable and even-minded during injury! Everyone! Look at me I’m a god-damn example of mental health and logical thinking!!! High Five!

But really, my consolation during all this comes from the satisfaction of dealing with recovery well. When I’m missing those ego boosts from “way to knock out those repeats!” “under goal pace!” “killed that tempo LIKE. A. BOSS.” I give myself a little pat on the back and commend my commitment to Air-humpers* and my positive outlook from the injured reserve. Egomaniacs need a fix wherever they can get it, folks.


* air-humpers, aka (less fun) “hamstring bridge”

The small amounts of running I have been able to do have been… nice. A good mix of “for fun” and “with intention.” The logic of active recovery is faulted if you work so hard the area is being compromised and needs to recover from the workout on top of the injury – the sweet spot is getting the area warm and blood pumping, without doing any additional damage. Fine line to ride.

I go VERY slow, trying to keep my heart rate completely in control as a measurement of the “stupid easy effort” I’ve been prescribed to stay at until the pain is completely gone. I also pay attention to light footfalls and picking up my knees to hopefully train my legs into less of a shuffle when I do start really running again. While at the bottom might as well take care of fine tuning all those little things, too!

Another point Dr AJ made was to run alone through this whole recovery phase. At first I kind of scoffed like, “My friends will run slow if I tell them I have to! It’ll totally be fine.” but last night I got a taste of where he was coming from, and the unforeseen challenges that come with having to run completely solo.

Here’s an illustration which I don’t think requires any explanation. If you run, you get it, and can surely guess what happened next…



I am ashamed to admit I couldn’t resist the urge to chase them down. But! Once I felt my breath getting shorter and my hamstring tugging a bit I immediately slowed to a jog, and then a walk to let them pass and get out of my sight so I could continue on alone.

Hopefully they thought I was doing intervals and didn’t fall victim to leapfrog suicide.

Anyway, that’s my story about running for the week. And just to prove I exist in non-stick figure form, here I am doing my “gas pedal pumpers” after my 1.5 mile run Tuesday.


real exercise names are so boring.

Sarah OUaL

15 thoughts on “Real Exercise Names are Boring

  1. Your exercise names are good. I’ll never be able to do a glute bridge again without thinking of “air-humpers”!

    I give a lecture to our medical students every year called “The Pathology of Reproductive Development.” This year, I renamed it.

    I now get to talk for an hour on “The Pathology of Sex.”

    Much better.


  2. The solution to my (different) injury has also included air-humpers, which is what I will now think of when I do them before every run. Thank you.


  3. Haha I like the adjusted names better I can never remember the real ones. Also I totally fall victim to the chase on long slow runs. I should probably work on that.


  4. My husband does not understand stupid easy runs. He’s always like “I did what you said, I stayed in zone 2″ (meaning, his average HR was 1 under zone 3”). Sigh. And I have trouble not chasing him down too. And I’m calling those air humpers from now on, that is MUCH better than bridges.


  5. I’m also working on heart rate, recovery and my cadence and running alone is definitely the only way to do it! When I run with friends my heart rate spikes when I tell and story and naturally drifts higher without realizing …. Also I completely forget about cadence. BUT it’s also more fun so I’m ok with that sometimes!


  6. Why is it so hard not to chase someone we come across that is also running?! I’m trying to heal too so I understand the torture!! Hope you get back to normal quickly!


  7. ahh. the air humper. I did/do a lot of those. But now with one leg extended. one legged air humper? yep. I definitely still shuffle….maybe I need to do some high knees. Love that you are handling this in a smart way and NOT over-doing it!


  8. I just started doing more core work and I’ve been snickering to myself every time I have air humpers on the schedule. Thank you for relieving core boredom. A great public service!



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