Thursday, September 29, 2011

DEFCON 4 (5 is the lowest level)

My legs have been feeling a bit tight since the Half Marathon but nothing serious, or so it seemed. I went for a massage yesterday to "discharge" my legs and felt pretty good afterwards. I've been running for a long time without having any pain and certainly no injuries so I thought it prudent to try and nip it in the bud. When my legs do get overloaded, they tend to hurt in all the same places: left knee, left calf / soleus, right hamstring, right foot. I'm convinced that the accumulation of small injuries and defects throws the whole kinetic chain out of whack and that these asymmetric symptoms are actually all connected. Its probably all because I can't lift the big toe on my right foot as much as the big toe on my left foot!

Today it was "series day": 20 minutes hard, 5 minutes break, 25 minutes hard. I did the first 20 minutes at 16kp/h with no problem - if anything it was too easy and I should probably have run them a bit faster. But my left calf muscle started to seize up in the second set and I ended up doing it piecemeal and stopping 5 minutes before the end. I now have a limp while walking so I think I am one short step away from injury, if it isn't already the case. And to think I was boasting to the physiotherapist only last night that I never stretch. I don't know that stretching would have helped prevent this from happening, but it is certainly useful now. I may not believe in stretching but I do believe in warming up and - guess what - that is exactly what I neglected to do this time. I'm going back to see her shortly so I'll have to eat a little humble pie, I guess.

So I'm going to have another massage, do some electrostimulation therapy at home and apply some Kinesio tape (see photo above). I'll also swap my 40 minute run tomorrow for a commute to work and back on the bike (2 x 40 mins) and I have Saturday off anyway, to get ready for the two hour run on Sunday if the calf is better by then. I really hope so!

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