a blog about running fast with style
So true story I’m not good at setting goals: our relationship is complicated at best. This summer I made a rather sad attempt to set some and they were ambiguous at best but one of them was to lose my marathon shuffle and my reclaim my stride from fifth grade.
That’s my dad in the red… can you tell we are related? But that stride is long gone ever since I started running marathons. I tend to have both feet on the ground and look a lot more like this:
It hurts me just looking at it.
I made some progress this summer with opening up the old stride but my real gains were made in January when I started running short hills and 100m strides. It was the first time I felt my stride open-up like it used to a million years ago (slight exaggeration). All good news right?
Maybe not so much (not yet anyways). The past fall I had to cut down on my yoga because of my schedule and when I started training again I didn’t add it back the way I should have. The result? Umm little to no stretching and the loss of any dorsiflexion (you can check out my last post for all those details).
But that’s not the whole story and least when in comes to my right side. I maybe fell off a horse once and tore my calf muscle. Umm… and by horse I mean a pony horse named “Bunny”.
And you might think it looked a little something like this:
… or this?
But no. Alas Bunny looked much like and average sized horse just much wider and a bit shorter and surprisingly fast on the pivot.
A deer darted out in front of us and Bunny turned on a dime and I fell off her back. I was also in my mid 20s (did if forget to mention that?) and I was working for a non-profit with very minimal insurance and google search didn’t exist so I did what any 20-year-old would do: I called 1-800- ask-a-nurse. Yep it was a real number in Eugene (looked it up in the old paper phone book and everything).
The nice nurse on the other end of the line told me to elevate my leg and ice it and I complied. The entire back of my leg turned black and blue and purple and people would gasp and make awesomely awkward comments about me an my leg when I was out in public. I decided I didn’t need crutches but opted for a cane because why not?
It took a month + to heal and I never saw anyone and might have developed some scar tissue that might have led to my extra inflexibility in my calf.
Silly 20 something year old Robyn:
(… at least I was happy right?).
On a random side note this little accident all went down the week Seabiscuit was released. I know it could have been a lot worse. It’s almost the same story… except I’m clearly not a jockey and… well Bunny’s no thoroughbred horse (sorry Bunny but it’s true).
Okay enough of my back story the good news for this week… wait for it… I have dorsiflexion!!!! Like double digits dorsiflexion! Boom! My scar tissues seems to be giving up just a bit.
Heading into my PT appointment on Monday I was pretty disappointed. My foot was feeling pretty sore after just two easy days of running and I was ready for no pain. My PT was much more excited for me because the pain in my foot meant that my foot was finally tracking correctly, my calf was finally working and the pain I was feeling was muscular which was a good thing (not the heel bruise).
I mean SWEET!
The news gets better though kids, my PT also told me I had to stop running so slowly. No joke and no sarcasm. My foot is more efficient when running faster and the slower pace was actually causing more stress than if I were running at a faster pace.
I knew I liked my PT.
I still opted to play it safe on Monday and cross trained for an hour on the AMT. I thought the AMT (Adaptive Motion Trainer) was just a fancy elliptical:
But (for me) it’s a lot harder to use than an elliptical (my heart rate was at 70% on level 1the first time I used it) and it feels more like a running than the awkward motion of the elliptical. It also has a built-in TV which helps ward off boredom. This was my third time on the machine and had advanced to level 4 to get the heart rate up (that has to be a good sign right?).
I’m a bit antisocial at the gym so lucky for me “my” machine is on the end next to a broken one so I have lots of space to breath and sweat.
Tuesday I finally experienced the great out doors!!!
I decided I was going to try a little progression run like I’d run in December. The plan was 5-7 miles two pretty easy, two more a bit faster and then 1-2 still a bit faster.
I started my run and my watch was telling me I was running 10:00 minute mile pace. I’m sure it’s just struggling to find the satellite but after a half mile no change. Well if this in 10:00 minute mile pace I’m in trouble.
I rent my watch (like a good obsessive compulsive runner) and realized I was running 7:45s, now that’s more like it. Here’s what the rest of it looked like:
I cross trained on Wednesday (more AMT machine 85 mins), rested on Thursday and then ran an 5 miles on Friday.
Saturday more AMT (80 mins) and Sunday 7 miles outside followed up with and hour on the AMT (sort-of a long run??).
The foot seems to be making progress though I’d like it to be moving along a bit faster, but I can’t complain. I sort-of workout and a 7 miler? Things are looking good.
run pretty run fast
(… and if you fall off a pony horse named Bunny please seek medical attention… oh and in case you were wondering… yes, I did get back on that pony horse.)