Everyone around here is all in on weather talk. I can't find anyone who doesn't mention how hot it is outside. That's because it's full blast in-your-face Summer heat time in Florida.
I don't mind the heat, but when the temps reach "feels like" numbers above 100 degrees it's time to rethink workouts. Recently, I traded in my long runs for garden projects.
You may wonder, if I'm still outside in the heat, how is gardening better than running? The difference is I can take plenty of breaks, go inside, and sit down and rest as needed.
So, cross-training projects became my workouts the past couple of weeks.
Cross-Training Project #1: Dig a Trench
I dug a trench. I pulled our circa 1960 axe out of the shed and swung it for hours. When I was done I had a hole that was 6 feet long and 3 feet deep.
Why did I dig a trench? Because my neighbor has bamboo. It's along the fence line next to one of my border gardens. The bamboo likes to sneak underground and pop up on my side of the fence.
I looked out my kitchen window one day and saw a huge 4-5 foot bamboo stalk in the middle of my plumbago border. Yikes! Closer examination revealed there were 5 more stalks.
I did research and learned that the best remedy was to dig a trench so new shoots were seen right away. Now, if a shoot comes out I can cut it off before it crosses the trench. It should only happen a couple of times a year. Fingers are crossed.
The trench digging was in a shaded area, but it was a sweat fest. It took me a couple of days to complete. I added safety trellises at each end of the ditch so no one falls into it.
Cross-Training Project #2: Create a Butterfly Garden
While I was digging my bamboo trench I decided I wanted to add another butterfly garden bed to our yard. Putting in a garden is an excellent upper body workout.
I created a 10 x 15 foot garden. You can see it in the photos above and below. I dug up existing turf, worked the soil, and laid a short walkway and rock border. Then, I installed 50 butterfly-attracting and host plants.
Now, when I look across the side yard I see more beautiful flowers and butterflies. This garden, like the trench, produced a sweat-fest. But, I feel stronger and more tolerant of the heat than I did a couple of weeks earlier. I consider yard work a major contributor to my fitness.
Now, It's Time to Run Again!
I'm happy to report that my first run after my cross-training week felt great! Next up is some virtual RACING for my Air Force Marathon Fly! Fight! Win! Half Marathon Challenge next week!
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