Sunday, April 26, 2009

Mission accomplished

Its been a week since Canberra marathon. A week where I have done zilch running (or exercise of any form), eaten lots of chocolate and have been advised to not run for at least a month. Now in the past if I had been told to not run for a period of time there would have been much brow furrowing, mental calculations, and pouting because it meant throwing out all my carefully thought out training plans. This time I just acquiesced, smiled, and totally agreed with my osteopath, who had uttered those words. Because for too long now I have been running with injuries, entering events with injuries and gradually those injuries have been getting worse. Enough is enough. I must pull out my goggles, cap and bathers - time to hit the pool.

Canberra marathon #8 (can you believe it, only 2 to go then Griffin status Strewth!) went better than I thought it would - meaning there was no walking involved. During the marathon there were very good patches when I felt like I could actually run a good time and then there were very bad patches when everything (and I mean everything) hurt. During those times I just concentrated on putting one foot in front of the other and moving forwards! I also focused on trying to catch and pass the person in front of me - that worked as well and it took my mind of the pain. Then there was always Katie's get-ups to look forward to - that girl has one colourful imagination!

Finally the finish line and I finished just behind Tesso - yay! I had to sprint (marathon version of sprint) to the finish line in order to get in under 3hr 40min - that hurt!

So that's Canberra Marathon #8 done and dusted.

It was great to catch up with the Qld crowd afterwards at Rydges - Clairie, Tesso, Katie and Mark. We really should do this more often guys!

Well done to everyone who did Canberra marathon - running 42.2km is an achievement irrespective of time.

(photo courtesy of John Kennedy)

"Having a dream is what keeps you alive. Overcoming the challenges make life worth living.

-"Mary Tyler Moore

Monday, April 06, 2009

The agony & the ecstasy

Actually I recall the agony during my osteo appointment but not the ecstasy - unless you count when she stopped the ITB massage.

I presented at the osteopathy clinic this afternoon for my appointment, feeling slightly worse for wear after yesterday's run. My lower back was sore, as was my left hip and hamstring. The ITB is ok as long as I don't run. After relating my tale of woe (ie yesterday's run) the osteopath focused on my ITB and lower back, and so the agony began. I'm not quite sure what was more painful - deep massage into the belly of the ITB, massaging right along the edge of ITB or the elbow into the ITB, or for the fact that it lasted for about 40 minutes. It was one jelly leg when I did eventually stand up! I return for another ITB massage on Thursday and for another one next Thursday - something to look forward to - not!

Then its in the lap of the gods. Che sera, sera.
"What you focus on expands."
- Buddha

Sunday, April 05, 2009

Uh oh..........

I diligently went around changing all the clocks back an hour last night before going to bed so I would be getting up at the right time this morning for my long run. I didn't realise the number of clocks/watches we have in the house!

Anyway I was up bright and early this morning for my planned 26km run, down to Lake Burley Griffin (close to Regatta Point) and then back home. There were lots of runners out this morning, plus a few cyclists. Its a pleasant run along the cycle path to the lake. I spent a lot of time mentally planning a mini group exercise session that I have to present to class on Tuesday, so the time went quickly. Before I knew it I was at the turn around point. So far the running was going to plan and apart from some tightness around the left hip/glute, I was cruising along at 5.30min/km pace.

Then.....uh oh..... something happened at the 20km mark - my left ITB was getting sorer by the minute. It then got so bad that I was half jogging, half walking/hobbling for the next 2km. Jeez, I'd forgotten how painful an irritated ITB can be. It was then I realised there was no way I was going to be able to finish the run (I still had 4km to go to get home) so I gave in (after a lot mental arguing back and forth with myself) and called Mr CJ to come and get me. Damn, if its not one thing its another. Admittedly during the latter stages of SFT my left ITB was beginning to hurt, especially during the downhill runs so I guess it should come as no surprise that its reappeared, with a vengeance.

Methinks that once Canberra marathon #8 is done and dusted, I might have a break from marathons and focus on shorter distances for a while.

Lucky I have another appointment tomorrow with the osteopath though I'm really not sure she can do miracles. Fingers crossed.....

I trialled the cardio session I will be presenting in class on one of my sons this afternoon - its a circuit style cardio session. It certainly got his heart rate up!!! hehehe!!!!! The session incorporates body weight exercises such as pushups, squats, mountain climbers, butt kickbacks and ab crunches interspersed with shuttle runs (the number increasing with each additional exercise) and star jumps. Lets see what the class thinks on Tuesday evening! I'm now trying to select appropriate music for the session (only 10mins) - the playlist so far looks like this: Counting the Beat (The Swingers)- BPM 154, You spin me round (Dead or Alive)- BPM 140-156, Here it goes again (Ok Go) - BPM 146 and Chelsea Dagger (Fratellis)- BPM 154. I need to choose and its so hard - I can't decide.

BPM = beats per minute, and for a high intensity workout, the BPM should be 140 and higher.
"Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think."
- From A.A. Milne's Winnie the Pooh

Saturday, April 04, 2009

Dem bones, dem bones, dem bones........

.....The leg bone's connected to the knee bone,
The knee bone's connected to the thigh bone,
The thigh bone's connected to the back bone........

Last Monday I made an appointment to see an osteopath. She was recommended by my massage therapist, and as I trust her judgement, I decided to give it a go. I had no idea what an osteopath was, or what they did, but I was about to find out! The reason she suggested seeing an osteopath is that I have been having ongoing problems with my left hip, glute and hamstring which was exacerbated when I hurt my back late last year.

According to the Australian Osteopathic website "Osteopathy is a "whole body" system of manual therapy, based on unique biomechanical principles, which uses a wide range of techniques to treat musculo-skeletal problems and other functional disorders of the body." Treatments can include massage and stretching; articulation techniques, in which joints are mobilised by being passively taken through their range of motion; muscle energy techniques, in which contracted muscles are released by alternately being stretched and made to work against resistance; counterstrain techniques, which achieve release of restriction by placing the affected joint or muscle in a position of comfort, while applying a "Counter" stretch to the antagonists of the tight muscles; functional techniques, which involve gentle mobilisation of joints in a way which "probes" barriers to normal movement until a way is found through the restriction; and, manipulation, which may be used where it is appropriate and safe to do so, though it is not the mainstay of most Osteopathic treatments. Osteopathic manipulations are carried out using minimum force levels in order to maximise safety and minimise patient discomfort.

I think pretty much all the above techniques were used. At one stage I did ask whether I would be taller by the end of the session, given the amount of stretching that was happening. There was one particularly uncomfortable period where she was manipulating the deep rotational hip muscles - they are so incredibly tight. Whether this will help, only time will tell. If I can comfortably get through 42.2km in a fortnight's time I'll be happy.

Running this week has been limited for several reasons - a sub-5min/km pace run (9km) and an easy 5.30min/km pace run (10km). Tomorrow I plan on running 26km. Fingers crossed everything holds together!

"It does not do to dwell on dreams and forget to live."
- J. K. Rowling