Where do I rank the C-2 rowing machine as an acceptable, dare I say 'fun' method or instrument of exercise? Just one pull ahead of rehab swimming, which I think is the worst. There are very few things quite as frustrating as thrashing around in the water while going absolutely nowhere. One of them is thrashing away on an ergometer, cranking like a madman. Is it exercise? Of course. Is it effective? For sure. Is it fun? No no no. A better option might be to get a kayak and lug it down to Buffalo Bayou about a mile from here, and get a real rowing workout. Complete with murky brown water all around you, floating trash, snakes, hordes of mosquitoes, assorted airborne pollutants and gun-toting trigger-happy landowners just waiting for you to set a foot on the riverbank. I think I'll pass.
Yesterday though, I had no choice. It was the rowing machine or nothing. I literally could not make it down the drive-way to the road which leads out of our townhouse complex. Even the slowest of plodding jogs was uncomfortable. Clearly a cortisone shot in the painful area (apparently an ITB issue just below and to the outside of the knee) and a 7-day lay-off are not doing the trick. I am continuing with regular daily knee rehab and stretching/strengthening exercises, but it looks as if the hiatus from running might end up being a bit longer than anticipated. At least Kathleen is getting her regular daily quota done, completing a solid 7-mile pace run (9:07) and a 10-miler today.
On the movie front, some early Oscar contenders are starting to show up such as 'The Kids are all right' which Kath and I saw today at River Oaks. The story revolves around an aging gay couple Nic and Jules (portrayed by Annette Bening and Julianne Moore) and how the dynamic of their marriage is impacted by the arrival on the scene of Paul (Mark Ruffalo) the biological father of both their children. There's plenty of laughs, some tender and some bitter-sweet moments, and the whole is made thoroughly watchable and enjoyable by excellent acting. Bening is brilliant in what is likely an Oscar contending performance. Moore's natural quirkiness befits the role, Mia Wasikowska delivers a beautiful low-key performance and Mark Ruffalo is impeccable as the erstwhile sperm donor who stirs up a hornet's nest of emotions. Go and see it. But do mind the 'R' rating; strong language and some very graphic sex scenes.