Sunday, March 13, 2011

Running in Hanoi

So my crazy internet issues followed me from Paris to Hanoi, where I could only get internet access sitting in the hotel lobby, or with my laptop sitting in an open window in my room.  Delightful.

However, that didn't mean I wasn't running!

I didn't run on Wednesday as originally planned, because we got into Hanoi a bit later than I thought, to the hotel a bit later than we expected, and then our rooms weren't ready.  So by the time I went to take a nap (I didn't sleep one wink during the two flights of a total of 13 hours), it was 3pm.

So I slept until 9:30, and went back to bed at two.

But Thursday morning, I woke bright and early at 6:30.  Since I was up, I thought I'd check out the gym - I knew that if I didn't go for a run pretty quickly, I would just skip them all.  I managed to find out what my assigned run for the morning was (3 minutes running, 90 seconds walking, five minutes running, 2 1/2 minutes walking, 3 minutes running, 90 seconds walking, five minutes running).

Despite the jet lag, I was able to do it - and it actually made me feel much less tired.  I found that to be true the whole time I was away actually; sweating really made me much more awake and energized.  Who knew? ;)

My schedule this week was pretty jam packed, so I knew I'd need to get another run in on Friday at some point.  And I realized that I wouldn't be arriving back in the states until 11am on Monday morning, so I really should try to get another run in on Sunday as well.

Friday's run was another good one - really tiring, but it made me feel great.  I worked out all three days at the hotel gym rather than running outside.  The hotel had a nice running trail on a map in the rooms, but I'd have to cross the street to get to it, and if you've ever been to Hanoi, you know that one of the most treacherous things you can do is cross the road!

So instead, I opted for the gym treadmills, which worked fine (though I could tell the first day that it was a bit easier than what I had been doing outside).  I put on my music, plugged in my workout, and off I went.

However, because of internet trouble, I didn't know what the first workout for week 5 was supposed to be.  Instead of skipping it altogether, I did week 4's workout again, and figured I'll just delay week five start until Wednesday.  I don't lose time because I still ran, but I don't want to try to jump right into day two, week five, since day three, week five is that sneaky 20-minute run.

It actually was a good place for me to get exercise, Hanoi.  I was staying on the second floor of the hotel, and there were stairs to get there, so unless I was carrying something heavy like a suitcase, I almost always took the stairs.  We also walked around a lot, and on Saturday afternoon, we headed to a village on the outskirts of the city for an hour-long bike ride through the rice paddies and village.  It was fabulous, and no small workout (parts of it were uphill).  So between that, and my limited diet there because I'm so picky about eating, it was a good trip for me healthwise.

Unfortunately, I still didn't get nearly enough sleep.  The hotel in Paris was super uncomfortable for sleeping, and the hotel in Hanoi was much better, but I didn't always have the time.  So I'm planning to sleep on my second flight tonight - I flew from Hanoi to Kuala Lumpur (about 2 1/2 hours) and the next flight is KL to Charles de Gaulle, about 13 hours.  Then, I still have one more flight to JFK before I am back in the states! I'm tired just thinking about it.

It was a great trip, and if you'd like to read more about the travel part, my blog posts are over at  But I am looking forward to being home, in my own bed, and running in some (hopefully) good weather!

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