Sunday, October 16, 2016

My Trip to Profeet...

So-- I am a wonky runner. gait analysis proves it. My right leg is all over the place on the treadmill. It almost looks like my left leg will hit it (it goes WAYYY into the left side).  I have been ridiculed when I was younger for waddling like a penguin. It is now coming back to haunt me. My overpronation has (IMHO) gotten worse since post RTB. In the video, you can almost see my right big toe from the camera (which is behind me). Thats bad. The coupled with the fact that I lean my top half back naturally when doing any movement has resulted in hip pain which manifested itself in my feet and then finally in my hips themselves.

That right Shakira, the hips don't lie.

To just see how bad this all is, I went to ProFeet in Fulham to get Run Sports Fit. This means I get the classic gait video analysis and also some pressure analysis which is done by running on a sensor pad a few times. This shows where you have more pressure as your foot moves through the movement.  Steve walked (ran?) me through the motions and explained everything as we moved along.

The results were.. interesting.

To the left we have the pressure points for each of my feet during the run. I am assuming the angle is my natural angle (almost 45 degrees).. more maybe that's how ProFeet puts them.So you see the purple line and the black line? They should be in somewhat of alignment. They are not. Especially on the right hand side. I am spending a lot more time on the left side of my right foot then I should be, this has to do with me sweeping my right leg well into the left hand 'side' of the treadmill/area. The left side is a bit more fluid.

My knees also roll inward (knee valgus) when I run, so combined with all my other issues... it's just madness.

Good news? I am a fore foot striker. Which is apparently a good thing (silver lining?)

I knew I was not too flexible, but like many people, one side is a bit more stiff than the other. It was no surprise that my left side is less flexible in the toe/ankle area.

How to Fix? Anyone got duct tape?

I am not THIS bad.. but close!

  • Stiffness -> yoga/pilates
  • Knee valgus -> I need to get my core and legs in sync, meaning core workouts, squats, and the like. There are quite a few classes at the gym to help out. 
  • Pronation -> new shoes with more support. I was really sad to leave my Brooks Ravennas, considering I used them for 3 or 4 iterations. However, I was kitted out with some Asics Kayanos (known to be good for overpronators) and Adidas Sequence running shoes. They provide a bit more support in all the right places to try and help keep my feet in line(ish) when I am running
  • Ministry of Silly Walks -> My physio told me this is important. Currently when I run/walk, my backward lean basically forces my front muscles in near my hips to activate in order to stabilise, and there is no letting up. Running of course aggravates this. My back/butt muscles are just along for the ride. So-- standing near a mirror, my physio basically moved my chest a bit forward (which I felt as leaning over). Then I looked in the mirror. I was straight. I also noted how the slant of my neck seemed pretty bad (the result of sitting on an office chair-- holding you head up is hard). Rolling my shoulders back fixed that. So now I need to be paranoid when I am running and walking to try and check my posture. In doing this-- I will be 'firing on all cylinders'.
So-- in slow slow steps, I am going to try and do these things. I am still going to sub the cross-trainers/spin bike for 1 or 2 of my runs during the week. I don't want to injure myself any more than I already have!

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Two Year Running Anniversary: Recap

The Run that Started it All...
As I slogged through my LSR (maybe not so L at the moment, which is a good thing) I was listening to MarathonTalk, as I normally do on these jaunts. Martin Yelling, who is a presenter on the show, helps to coordinate the Bournemouth Marathon, and he was talking about the logistics and setup of the event. I recalled fondly how that was my first official half marathon and what I would call, "the gateway drug" into more serious running. The crowds, the backdrop, the delicious post-meal chili Mr.Mooses mother made for me and my friends...

Suddenly I stopped, and looked down at my watch, October 2nd. I thought two things:

  1. "It's dad's birthday I need to call him" 
  2. "Oh wow it's been two years since my first half marathon."
Yes folks, two years of race entries, loo queues, goody bags, and technical tees. Granted I did some races before that. I can recall quite fondly doing a Nike Women's 10k with Ciara in Viccy Park and going to the Palm Pub nestled in Mile End Park; which I always thought was closed, but no-- it only looked like that from the outside. 

Osterley 10k has mince pies. WIN.
But Bournemouth really started me out on this crazy path. That and Ciara, who I really should thank for getting me into this mess in the first place. We have done many races together, and even though we would cajole and harass friends, it would typically just be us two at the starting line. She also ran two of #RunTheBoroughs, including one very early Sunday morning run in Lambeth, only to find out about 5 minutes before I rocked up that Burgess Park was closed at 6am so had to impromptu find a route then and there. Skills this woman has. A very awesome, special set of skills. 

So this blog is a look back at my 2 years of running. Smashrun is absolutely brilliant for this. I also enjoy how it tells me what I can eat (healthy or unhealthy) based the calorie burn. Always good to know when I can eat a 5kg watermelon.

Basic (/dev/rand) Stats

First half marathon: Bournemouth 2014 -> 1:50:44
Fastest half marathon: Surrey 2016 -> 1:48:10
I find it a bit disheartening that my PB has only improved by 2 minute 34 seconds. To be honest though, I have never really trained specifically to run faster times. I always assumed if I ran more, I would get faster, which is true up to a point. With my marathon training I do hope to quicken my pace, as long as my body doesn't fall apart first... which reminds me I need to book my physio appointment. 
Day I Run The Least: Thursday
I have no problems with Thursdays honestly, I just like random statistics. 
Average Run Length: 5.8 miles
I basically ran 32 5k's in August over a weekend, that may have skewed my numbers slightly. However, better than the total overall mileage of the day skewing the other way. Still, surprised this number was not higher.
56% of my run are morning runs 
Hard to say I am not a morning person based on those numbers. I guess it means I have a 50/50 shot of actually paying attention to my alarm clock. 
Number of Weeks I Put in 50+ Miles:
This was in preparation for my first half (when I was young and foolish) and then the lead up to Run the Boroughs, which makes perfect sense.

Goals and Aspirations

Besides just hoping to feel 'normal' running again I of course have some desires leading into my next two years of running. Achievable? Who knows, but I want to give them a shot!

Run Sub 4 hr Marathon
How sub-4 is up for debate, please talk to my body about it. I feel if it is not too humind it should be doable in Hawaii, but we shall see. I bascially need to run a 9:09min/mile for 26 miles... or better. 
Run an Ultra
I am not sure which one, I have been looking at the Isle of Wight, the Cotswold Way, Hadrians Wall, Race to the Stones, Race to the King Just so many races out there... this requires much more research. 
More Volunteering
The amazing thing about running are the number of people who wake up at god-awful early hours to stand in ridiculous weather, and point a bunch of people running in the right direction or give them a smile and a cup of water. I want to do more of that to help give back.