Archive | June, 2007

Sunshine here I come

26 Jun

Water Running and Real Running
Real running first :-)

It was a case of white line fever today as I headed to the football oval next to the Nunawading pool. Todays session was 3 minutes walking and 2 minutes running for 20 minutes. I walked/ran along the white chalk line of the boundary, it worked out to be one lap of each for a total of 8 laps. So how far around a suburban football oval? Who knows? How long is a piece of string? I figure in my 8 minutes of running I probably covered about 1500 metres.

Again the legs felt fine, phew!

Then it was straight to pool for the water running session.

5 minute warm up
5 by 2:30 hard with 30 second easy recovery
2 minutes easy
6 by 2:30 hard with 30 second easy recovery
5 minute cool down

It was a really hard session today because I pushed it, well, I always push it but I really wanted to get the heart pumping today. I reckon if it was a track session I would have run myself into the ground. In fact I had sweat streaming into my eyes at one stage around the midpoint and there was alot of lactic.

Check this out for pure poetry in motion, I found it on Coolrunning last night. It is the final stages of a 5000mtre race in the UK at Crystal Palace in 2004, Mottram Vs Gebrselassie. Sure we have seen plenty of footage of these types of races but this one has been shot exceptionally well and the speed and power is quite breathtaking. I don’t mind admitting it is now sitting on my desktop and I have watched this a few times in the last 24 hours ;-)

Take me away to the sun
Off to the Gold Coast tomorrow morning, thank god, it is so freaking cold down here I can’t wait. Checked out Weatherzone today and it is looking like pretty fine and about 20 degrees for the next 6 days, perfect!

My sister is not bailing on the race, though my brother is looking like a DNS because he has put his back out again. So, once again, official cheer squad duties, I am so disappointed that I can’t run this one. This time last year I was heading up there to run my first ever half marathon.

There is a football oval near my brothers house so the running is taken care of for Thursday and Saturday, my sister-in-law has sussed an Aquatic Centre about 5 minutes from their place so Pool Running is taken care of as well. Looks like I will be able to keep up most of the regime while I am away, though with the 10Km on Sunday and a BBQ lunch chances are the “long run” in the pool will be scratched. Come on, I have done 5 in a row now, I am allowed one week off, am I?

Yeah, worked it out today, it has been exactly 7 weeks since my last proper run which was miserable and I had to admit I was injured. At least I had someone who can put me on the right path and get me to a decent Sports Doc, it may have been a shit day but it was the start of the recovery. I try not to dwell too much on the weeks that are passing.

At least today I broke out the proper running gear and looked and felt like a real runner again, even my legs still look fine, I was convinced my muscles were turning to mush but they seem to still be there.

Anyway, I’ll have limited internet access to the net over the next 5 days so take care and I’ll catch you when I get back.

My Inspiration

25 Jun

Water Running
I love being on leave and being able to do things at my leisure. As per usual on the first day of leave I didn’t do a hell of a lot, just enjoying being able to take my time.

There was a big noisy school group using one half of the pool this afternoon, but I had a whole two lanes on the other side all to myself.

5 minutes warm up
10 by 90 seconds hard with 30 second easy recovery
2 minutes easy
10 by 90 seconds hard with 30 second easy recovery
5 minute cool down

Tomorrow, before hitting the pool I will be doing another session on Terra Firma, this time I step up to 3 minutes walk and 2 minute running for 20 minutes, 8 whole minutes of running :-)

Apart from that not much to report today, like I said, just taking it easy. During this break I am determined to get my Study in order once and for all, this is the room next to my Bedroom. At the moment it has my desk, 2 bookshelves, a filing cabinet and a whole lotta mess. When I am finished with it, it will have my desk, filing cabinet and all the walls will be lined with bookshelves, suffice to say, I LOVE books. I am also going to buy a reading chair whose only prerequisite is it must be comfortable enough for me to fall asleep in.

I started today by sorting all my running magazines into Publication and date order and put them away in some wooden magazine racks on the shelf, next to all my running books. Then I need to get stuck into ordering all my books, biographies, philosophy text, non-fiction, fiction etc, I studied Philosophy at uni, I have alot of books on the subject, it makes me look all pretentious and smart :lol:

And of course I need to sort through all the mess and start getting rid of it and most importantly clear out the cupboard and get a shoe rack to store 7 boxes of running shoes –
4 pairs of Brooks Trace 5 and 6 (2 in rotation, 2 in waiting)
1 pair of Nike Zoom Elites (for racing)
1 Pair Adidas Cross Country and Distance track spikes
1 Pair of Adidas Supernova Control

See, I have to start running again, I have too many shoes to get through. I also have wicker 4 draw unit that stores all my running clothes, tops and socks in the bottom draw, shorts in the second, tights in the third and long sleeved tops in the fourth.

It really is a sickness :lol:

This guy caught my eye a few weeks ago when I cut out an article on him from The Age, such is the rarity of an article on Athletics they always catch my eye. I don’t really have any comment to make on the controversy surrounding his bid to be allowed to compete at Beijing (rather than the Paralympics) should he run well enough to gain selection. At this stage I believe he has already run a 200mtre that will gain him selection for the mens 4 by 200 relay, should the South African team as a whole gain selection for the Olympics. Frankly I think if he can run a qualifying time he should be allowed to compete.

I don’t know enough about the prosthetics used and whether or not they really to provide any advantage, though I have read that the energy return is no where near what he would get from his own legs.

All that aside, he is a hell of an Athlete and I love his determination to compete with able bodied Athletes, if you want to see him in action look here.

I have also posted a picture on the Inspiration page of this blog.

Ran a mile

24 Jun

Water Running and the real thing
Real running today, along a dirt path that runs next to the Blackburn Creek. I stopped there on the way to the pool this afternoon, for only 4 minutes worth of running there was not point getting into the proper gear. I had my togs on under my tracksuit so I just put a proper pair of sneakers on and I was good to go, my bathers have a crop top just like my running top so, ahem, support was not an issue.

Todays session was the same as Friday’s, 4 minutes brisk walk followed by 1 minute running for 20 minutes, this gives me 4 minutes of running in total. Again I felt fine and comfortable today and not complaints from my legs, I have no idea of pace because I am not bothering with the foot pod at this stage.

Next session, on Tuesday, I am moving up to 3 minutes walking and 2 minutes running, excellent :-)

After the running it was off to the pool for the usual 90 minute Sunday session. This one was not for the faint hearted –
5 minute warm up
10 by 5 minutes hard with 1 minute easy in between
Then for the remaining 25 minutes I just did a tempo “run”

Phew, feeling a little tired now.

This week, after not running a step since mid May, I ran about 1600 metres, a whole mile :-)

Why bother?
People who don’t run just think I am mad, most wonder why I am even bothering with the water running and reckon I should just be taking a break, after all it’s not like I am paid to run.

I don’t really bother justifying myself or waste time with explanations with these people, they will never understand.

Stacks of people who do run have commended me on my efforts and tell me that they are not sure if they could keep up the amount of water running I have been doing for so long.

Sure you could! What is the alternative? Sitting around getting fat, losing all that hard won fitness and feeling sorry for yourself, no thanks. You really don’t know what you are capable of until your back’s against the wall and you have a doctor on the phone saying you have two Stress Fractures and it will be at least 2 months before you can think about running normally again. You look at the alternatives, you buckle down and you get on with it is what you do.

Yeah I have had some crap moments, I have chucked wobbly’s, cracked the sads, had a sulk or 10 and felt sorry for myself as I have contemplated a lost season that I was so looking forward to and realised that goals I had set at the start of the year would have to wait.

But I have also discovered that when the chips are down I can still stay positive and make sure I can salvage some of my fitness, I made a new friend, got over my body issues by spending hours every week in my bathers and I dipped into a well spring of patience that I didn’t know I had.

Also chatting with a runner who has been out for 8 months now I was again reminded that I am getting off relatively lightly here.

PBs will come, goals will be reached and new ones will be set, it will just take a little more time that’s all.

And I am bothering because I love to run.

Road Trip

23 Jun

Water Running
Back in the pool today, pyramid session

5 minute warm up
1,2,3,4,4,3,2,1 minutes hard with 1 minute easy between each rep
5 minute cool down

The long and winding road
Off to cheer on team Sandy at Geelong today, AV round 4 Cross County, 4Km for the girls and 16km for the boys. It was the tradition round, harking back to an old 10 miler back in the day.

I was picking a very excited Jo up on the way through, she was running her first event this season after being injured and is well and truly on the comeback trail.

I’d never been to Geelong before, fortunately my faithful GPS got us there safe and sound. The sky was dark, it was a little on the chilly side, fortunately the rain held off and there was some great racing to be seen. The start line was really wide and everyone looked pretty cool all grouped together in club colours and you could hear the chatting in the crowd, when the gun when off there was just a big stampede.

After watching the girls steam home, and taking lots of mental notes for my race report, I found Jo to see how she pulled up (well, thankfully). We then grabbed the blanket and assorted cut fruit and took up position at the top of the hill to cheer the men on.

Back along the freeway for the long trip home and to flake out on the couch, after the week I just had a work I am exhausted and just wanna chill now, sadly I’ll probably fall asleep by 9 :roll: one of the reasons I didn’t stay on in Geelong for dinner, I probably would have fallen asleep at the wheel on the way home.

A whole 800 metres!

22 Jun

Running, Real Running, on Land
I did my 4 minute walk and 1 minute run for 20 minutes, which amounted to 4 whole minutes of running and about 800 metres covered :-)

It was great!

Though I felt like a total doofus doing little loops in Birrarung Marr on the soft surface, though not the grass it was too uneven. The Doctor said I could run on The Tan and the surface of BM is the same, and quite soft underfoot after the rain.

I wasn’t even at all apprehensive, I couldn’t wait for my first 1 minute run. I took the first couple of steps and there was not a squeak of protest from my legs. It felt very fluid and natural, I was worried I would feel all awkward and unco but it was like I had just run yesterday.

Of course the hard part was stopping after only 1 minute, but I did, I promise, I ran not a second over 4 minutes in total.

And I was smiling like a madwoman the whole time.

Yes, I do have very strange feet, I refer to Clarkey’s comment on yesterdays post

Hi Em, good to see some really positive news.
One thing jumped out at me, you mentioned over pronation and high arches in the same sentence….. I was always led to believe they were opposites. Over pronation from flexible/flat feet unable to provide any resistance. High arches due to inflexible feet, requiring better cushioning to aid with impact protection due to reduced flex.(in worst cases – supination).
I’m no expert or formally trained, but it might be worth asking the question. I may be completely misinformed.

Yep, all true, generally a high arched foot does not tend to over pronate and requires a cushioned shoe. But the human body is a strange and wonderful machine and does not always act according to type. This is the exact reason why I would never recommend anyone trying to choose their own running shoe based on foot type because there are always exceptions to the rule, like me. Despite my high arches and inflexible ankles, I defy convention and still over pronate, therefore I wear a stability shoe, however they tend not to have the best arch support or the cushioning I need, hence the orthotics. Clarkey, I would never accuse you of being misinformed mate, I just have freaky feet :-)

I got tagged
by Becky :-)

Aim of the game is a one word response, this will be tough for me

1. Where is your cell phone? bag

2. Relationship? surviving

3. Your hair? cholorinated

4. Work? busy

5. Your sister? beautiful

6. Your favourite thing? sneakers

7. Your dream last night? running

8. Your favourite drink? Sav Blanc (well, hard to limit to one word)

9. Your dream car? Mercedes

10. The room you’re in? lounge

11. Your shoes? socks

12. Your fears? spiders

13. What do you want to be in 10 years? Alive

14. Who did you hang out with this weekend? pool

15. What are you not good at? waiting

16. Muffin? blueberry

17. Wish list item? sub20minute5km (does that count as one word?)

18. Where you grew up? Montrose

19. The last thing you did? iced

20. What are you wearing? PJs

21. What are you not wearing? tiara

22. Your pet? asleep

23. Your computer? essential

24. Your life? contradiction

25. Your mood? relaxed

26. Missing? running

27. What are you thinking about? ;-)

28. Your car? red

29. Your kitchen? ugly

30. Your summer? hothothot

31. Your favourite colour? green

32. Last time you laughed? Today

33. Last time you cried? Sunday

34. School? turbulent

35. Love? ??

I tag JayKay, JoJo and Beki

Mainly to see Jo keep the answers to one work :lol:

Yeah, I am back baby!

21 Jun

Where to start?

Well, first up the good news, I can run again!!!!!!

Doctor is very happy with the state of my legs and I am now armed with a 21 day run/walk program. Anyone who has ever returned from injury will know how little running will be involved, but frankly I don’t care, it is the start of the journey back. Tomorrow’s session will only see me running for 4 minutes and walking briskly for 16 minutes (I have to walk 4 minutes run 1 minute for 20 minutes), so I’ll be down on the grass in Birrarung Marr tomorrow afternoon, if you see me please refrain from pointing and laughing :lol:

I will be doing a run/walk session every second day for the next 21 days, with the run sets getting longer and the walk sets getting shorter until I finish with walk 1 minute, run 5 minutes for 30 minutes. On day 21 I have an appointment to see the Doctor again at which point she told me that she will be letting me make bigger jumps in the running blocks and start talking about when I can return to real training, speed work and competing :-)

Sadly though even walking the 10Km on the Gold Coast next week is strictly off the agenda :-( so I will be cheering people on from the sidelines. I haven’t told my brother and sister yet but I suspect they may bail, though I hope not because I have paid for their entries.

Phew, I am so relieved, I will still have to go to the pool every day for at least the next month, but at least the end is now in sight. And when I told the Doctor how much pool running I had been doing she said I would have preserved alot of my fitness, especially as you are against 3 times the resistance under water, so more good news.

So what caused it????

I spent an hour with the Podiatrist this afternoon, armed with big bag of shoes for her to look at. Thankfully all my shoes are fine, which is a big relief as I just bought a new pair of Brooks about 7 weeks ago, I will also be allowed to run in my new cross country spikes.

I did get to run today, it was very exciting, she lent me a pair of shorts and I had a short run on the treadmill so my gait could be assessed, gotta say it felt fantastic.

Anyway, turns out that even though I am wearing the best shoes I can for my gait they still don’t provide enough support for my high arches and they did not correct the over pronation enough, added to that high arches also don’t absorb shock very well. So a combination of high mileage training, over pronation and poor shock absorbtion was just a bit too much for my poor tibias to handle and hey presto, Stress Fractures.

Hmmm, so how to prevent this catastrophe befalling me again??? Yup, you guessed it, custom orthotics. The Pod gave me 2 choices, custom’s at $490 a throw that will be tailored for me, will last 5 years and will allow me to keep up the high mileage stuff or off the shelf jobbies for $100 that will last a year and won’t be uniquely mine.

Would you like some thinking music Em, Dah, Dah, Dah, “break out that plaster of paris and get moulding, every second you waste is a second without my new feet”. They will be ready next Friday, but I will be picking them up the following Tuesday when I get back from the Gold Coast. With the run/walk program the orthotics should be nicely broken in by the time I am easing back into normal training.

So am I happy? Hell Yes!

I went out for an early dinner, because I was starving and was in such a good mood. I made a total pig of myself, prawn spring rolls, red curry, lovely glass of wine and a banana fritter. Yep, a banana fritter, I reckon I have one about once a year and it was good, with lots of ice-cream, Mmmmmmmmmmm :-)

I am still battling with the database from hell at work today, 4 long days of setting up numbers for deployment into the new call routing world. 4 long days of staring at a monitor and scrolling through hundreds of lines trying to find the one I need because some short sighted moron didn’t think alphanumeric order would be helpful. They have fixed it but now we have to wait for our IT department to grind it’s way though the UAT and deem the upgrade OK for lodgment, therefore I am not holding my breath.

So, having a bellyache to my boss today because I got so frustrated with it yesterday afternoon that I was almost in tears, simply because it is such a stupid waste of my time. Anyway, I know there is nothing she can do about it, but I had to vent, so she said to me, this will make you laugh, the name of the company that developed it is “Simple”, I kid you not. Though it is apparent that this is Simple as in their parents are related, not Simple as in easy to use. Then she went on to tell me that they have a rep in Melbourne, Hmmm, really, and where would he be? “he’s quite good looking” said my boss, “yeah, he won’t be by the time I have finished with him”

Only one more day to go and I am free for 2 whole weeks :-) :-) :-) :-)

I am NOT a Circus Freak

20 Jun

Water Running
Nothing fancy today, just a 50 minute steady session, with a 5 minute cool down that came to 55 minutes in the pool.

Fortunately due to Jo’s superhuman ability to talk the time flew by. This being the same Jo who recently had some wisdom teeth removed and said at the start of the session that she was in a bit of pain today and would probably only manage 30 minutes :lol:

Seems the exercise endorphins kicked in and she managed the full 55 minutes, top marks :-)

I had my massage last night, I was expecting it to be pretty straight forward, assuming that the lack of running would mean reasonably relaxed muscles. Nope, seems that water running is working the old body more than I thought and it was commented that my Glutes were about as tight as they have ever been (Hmmm, let’s see what sort of Google traffic I get from Tight + Glutes) and I ended up needing over an hour to loosen me up. This included quite a bit of work on the shins and calves where the doctor said it was OK to “go hard”, telling a massage therapist that is like a red rag to a bull :lol: Seriously, it was a toughie but I feel magic today, seems not many people are happy to take the pummeling I took, I guess I am just one of those people that are at one with pain.

Alright, I am no masochist, I am not about to run off and join Jim Rose and his Circus Sideshow and Dry Needling has certainly ensured I will never suspend myself from fish hooks or take a kip on a bed of nails, but all that aside I do seem to have some issues with pain, namely my body does not seem very adept at recognising it.

A few years ago, after shunning the dentist for many years I was forced to make a visit when I lost half of one of my molars when flossing one morning. Turns out I needed pretty extensive root canal work, the dentist was amazed that I had not been warned of the impending doom by a nasty toothache, nope, not me, felt nothing.

Then more recently, prior to being diagnosed with the Stressies I read in my bible, the Lore of Running, that with Stress Fractures you can usually localise the hot spot by pressing down on you shin until you feel and I quote “exquisite nauseating pain”. Again, nope, nothing, I know the site of the Fractures now after seeing my scan and now if I prod around I can feel the lump, but it doesn’t hurt. In fact the discomfort I was feeling was no where near the Fracture sites, go figure. It still baffles me that I had very little warning as to what was about to befall me, I reckon I ran in discomfort for about a week and half before pulling the pin.

So really, how am I supposed to listen to my body when it won’t talk to me?

Back to the Doctor tomorrow and before that an hour with the Podiatrist. I have been told to bring in all my sneakers and racing flats as well as my street shoes, I am going to need a big bag!

I have decided that no matter what the news tomorrow I am taking myself out for dinner, I have been at the pool 11 days straight now, I deserve one night off. Hopefully it will be a celebration dinner, I reckon if I get the all clear to start my run/walk program I’ll be having wine, and maybe even dessert.


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