Lots of strength work! I actually stared the upper body exercises from The Cool Impossible book about 4 weeks ago and added the lower body exercises 2 weeks ago. I basically just follow the book pic by pic. Have not developed the strength/stamina yet to start the advanced exercises, but plan to start the stability disc this week...that should be interesting!! I can easily do 2 full reps of lower body without losing good form. I can just barely now after 4 weeks do 1 full rep of every basic upper body exercise. HOLY COW! I have ab muscles!!! I got ready to hop in the shower this morning and looked in the mirror and noticed em for the first time! Not just individual ab muscles..which is way cool, but I can see muscles between my ribs and my back that weren't there a month ago! Nice to see evidence of effort!!!....cuz I don't particularly look forward to the strength work! More than that I can FEEL the effect. My running feels stronger, I can't really explain that one in more detail. I just feel more stable when I run, less upper body motion maybe? Like I'm running more as one unit, upper and lower body, not independent of eachother. A tip for anyone who has shoulder problems out there like me...I notice if I don't lock my elbows, my shoulder will twinge...as soon as elbow is locked, the shoulder is stable and pain free. There are some exercises that require you to bend the elbow and I just have to be cautious and focus on using the muscles of my back and abs to stabilize...which is the whole point of the exercise...and NOT try to compensate by loading that shoulder. Also keeping my arms where they are supposed to be...not too far out.
So running...Just 2 weeks in. I had some R heel and R achilles stiffness/pain that was post Leadville and lingered on through rest/recovery. Starting back up I was worried it would get worse. The opposite seems to be occurring. It seems to be melting away a little day by day. I think the gradual start up and the more intense focus on strength has been key. I am pleasantly surprised. And surprised that I am surprised. This has been tried and true over the past 2 years with various aches or pains that crop up. Oh! AND...I got to do my first TRAIL run!!!!!!! Woot! And it was a sloppy, slickery mess of a run, lol!! It was a blast! Snowy, icy, muddy, rainy trails. Heaven.