WHAT! A day off.... but I feel so energised?!....
But yes this is what I am to do today.... energised because the weekends training didn't go exactly according to plan when I gave myself a slight strain to the right calf so haven't done as much as normal....( it feels almost like I'm on taper!! ).... this calf thing seems to be catching .....
I have to take a fair degree of responsibility for this I must admit.... as you may or may not be aware I decided earlier this year to take a self look at my running style (or lack there of)... and with the help of Brain training to Runners (a book in case you wondered) and Core Endurance , I set about ditching my orthotics and working on my core and stabilising muscles and little by little move my foot strike from out in front to more under my body in a pose-esk style, whilst upping my cadence..... I have done this gradually and have found that my Asics Cumulus shoes which I have used for years now feel, well too cushioned. I have gradually introduced an old love, Mizunho Wave Riders (I think) which are a bit flatter and slightly less cushioned (at least that's how they feel).
Things have been going really well and my running seems to be feeling stronger too .... no doubt mostly related to my increased mileage but up until now I haven't found a niggle which is a relief after last year.... BUT THEN...
Well because I'm fully into the swing of my training hours I have neglected the core/ stabilising work for about a month.... THIS IS BAD.... but not entirely the problem
Last week I received a nice LOVELY pair of K-Swiss K-ona shoes.... Ummmm..... now I had done some research and loved the look of these when I got them, after all they went with my recently purchased K-Swiss tri gear... ha ha ha ha ... obviously the main reason to buy them yes? ..... Anyway, I figured these would be a good race shoe (slightly lighter with the air holes and drainage holes looked ideal for tri).... soon as they were on my foot I could feel the difference, they felt firm and yes with less cushioning but comfortable.
So with the excitement of a kid in a candy shop I promptly used them for a tempo run. 15mins easy, 2*15mins tempo and 15mins easy home. I have to say I loved running in them but did feel the difference in the cushioning and wondered to the wisdom of shoving these on my feet for an hour straight away. But still. The run was GREAT!
Got home and as I expected my calf muscles tightened, the K-Swiss shoes are definitely good race shoe material for 5-10k.... but I really ought to have transitioned to them a bit more gradually.
Not to be outdone I got Jezza, my sports massage guys to sort out the stiffness the day after so the day after that a 4 hr ride and 10min run was no problem... but I knew the calfs were tight.... So cliff top runs were probably not the order of the day for the weekend... but boy the runs and walks we had down in Dorset were brilliant.
A cold seaswim on Sunday and straight transition to a run was a struggle... However after 10mins I warmed up and had really got into a good steady stride and then that "Oh" what was that sensation.... followed on the next step with "uh oh" ..... and abrupt stop.
The GOOD news to this though is a I did not sharply pull up and I didn't try to run on (which I did a few years ago when I had something similar which really was a stupid idea but if you don't know what a calf strain feels like then this act isn't so stupid, kind of).... and I have managed to rest, I have compressed (to the thanks of some compression socks and stuff), I have managed to contrast treat (ice and heat) and bearing in mind I am a trainee sports massage ninja I have treated with some different techniques which should help with the repair work!! So 4 days on, I'm confident if I manage this ok then I should be fine to run at Little Woody in 9 days (this is a middle distance event, the run is just short of a half marathon although it is mainly off road...)..
So I'm taking today as another rest day (I rested Tuesday).... but will continue the rehab work.
Things to note:
1. Still do your core/ stabilising work, even if this feels like a "nothing" work out it really isn't
2. Introduce new shoes slowly (DUHHH !!)
3. Be patient in recovery (if I hadn't been told to rest today I would have gone out on my bike or sort out the x-trainer)......
On other news - I have already swum 2.5miles more then last month.... so at least I've managed to swim more as planned :)