Proper running technique has been discussed and debated for decades. After experiencing Achilles tendon pain and plantar fasciitis pain, I needed to take a closer look at my running style and technique. Thanks to the guidance of my trainer, Juan Ruiz Tagle, at http://backtofunction.blogspot.com/ I have altered my running technique to allow other parts of my body to help take the pounding of my mile running.
Please take a look at this running video as I discuss what I have changed for optimal protection and optimal performance:
I will post my next blog, “Running Exercises,” on Friday evening, just before I take the long drive to New England on Saturday morning the 27th of June.
One of the ways that I used to treat my Achilles tendon injury was visiting Meilus Precision Therapy in Sarasota, FL. I wrote a blog back in January about my initial visit to the Meilus clinic. This entry is a follow-up discussing how I repaired my injury and got back to training.
Dave Wallwork, the clinical director, helped me mend the muscles and tendons in my lower extremities. This revolutionary “robotic arm” is able to go deep in the muscle tissue without pain. The therapy takes shortened, hard muscles and lengthens them.
Here is a photo of Dave Wallwork and I before our last session:
Here is a photo of the robot on my Achilles tendon as I was seeking to break up any adhesions that occurred from my injury:
For better performance and quicker recovery, please visit Dave Wallwork’s website at www.sarasotameilustherapy.com for more information. The following video shows how the robotic arm pressed on my leg and Achilles tendon, but it is also works wonders on the lengthening the muscles around the hips, shoulders, and back.
Next week I will again share one of my new training exercises…until then safe travels.
There are more master athletes today than at any time since the running boom of the 1970’s. Enter any race whether it is the local 5k or a sprint or Olympic distance triathlon and you will find by far the largest segment of athletes is in the master or over 40 category. This is true for bike races as well. I know this first hand as I lined up this past Sunday for a mountain bike race in the 50+ (sport master) category and there were 21 racers.
These athletes are just slightly past their competitive athletic peaks, but are still pushing their own personal limits. As the body starts to lose some of it’s strength, flexibility and aerobic capacity these athletes must do everything they can to maintain their competitiveness. They need to lift weights to maintain strength, continue with anaerobic intervals and tempo runs for endurance and speed and they need chiropractic care to keep their neuromusculoskeletal systems firing properly and their biomechanics in good working order.
Treatments can include spinal and extremity adjustment/manipulation, muscle work (pnf stretches to strain counter strain techniques), low level light (laser) to stimulate healing and activate muscle fibers, kinesiotaping to help with strained muscles to name just a few.
Take for example the US Postal Service professional bicycle racing team who won the Tour de France seven times in a row from 1999 to 2005. They had a team chiropractor who kept them riding everyday of the grinding 3 week tour and many times the team was the only one of over twenty teams to finish with all nine members still riding (all this through crashes and the overuse injuries that arise in such a grueling event). The riders all gave great credit to the team chiropractor for “keeping them in the game”.
Another example is football champion and all-star Jerry Rice who says chiropractic was an integral part of his long and fruitful playing career. So much so that he is now a professional spokesperson for the American Chiropractic Association.
Basically speaking, chiropractic adjustments have profound effects on the human nervous system and this is the system that controls and coordinates every function of the human being. What could be more important? Especially for a master athlete.
So if you find yourself accumulating some nagging aches and pains, instead of reaching for nsaid’s (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) think seriously about seeking out a well qualified sports chiropractor. Especially in light of recent research about nsaids that state:
American Journal of Sports Medicine
“Injured muscle fibers were shown to have incomplete healing because of medication (NSAID)
Archives of Internal Medicine
“NSAIDs have been shown to delay and hamper the healing of all soft tissues including muscles, ligaments, tendons and cartilage.”
“NSAIDs can delay healing and delay it significantly.”
Multiply that with the adverse cardiovascular and gastrointestinal side effects and you are playing with fire. Why on earth would anyone, let alone an athlete, take something (nsaids) that will cover up the symptoms and cause delayed healing. Then go out and train or compete and risk even greater injury. It makes absolutely no sense at all. You are better off controlling injuries with RICE (rest ice compression elevation)
You are much better off and safer with chiropractic care, especially the master athlete.
Planks done properly are a terrific way to strengthen your abs while protecting your lower back. The days of isolating and shortening your ab muscles are history! Your core is for stabilization, not isolation. Just because you feel an isolated burn in your abdomen while doing crunches does not mean that you are strengthening your abs properly. Functional training uses multiple joints and multiple muscle groups. The video below will show you different variations of the plank.
Some people feel that planks are boring, but this is just one of the ways that I strengthen my core while maintaining a neutral posture. By realizing the value of a plank, I think you will find an effective exercise for core development and strength. So walk away from the ab machines and “walk the plank” to core stabilization.
My favorite upper body exercise is the punching matrix. It is a multi-directional, multi-functional exercise. We have rehabilitated shoulders and alleviated pain with this unique exercise. It will be part of my strength training 3 times a week this summer even as I am on the road racing 3 times a week.
Have fun punching your way to power!
This year David has set another aggressive goal for himself. I am so excited about the uniqueness of this goal and how David plans to go about executing on it! We will all undoubtedly learn a great deal as things unfold.
As you may have seen on his Home page, David feels that the primary challenge facing him during this summer
The third exercise that I have in my workout regime is the balance reach. Balance reaches are wonderful for mobilizing your joints and stabilizing your muscles. The balance reach is an example of how to pick up something properly while on one leg. When done correctly, the balance reach keeps you back in neutral and avoids back pain.
I have a client who is a professional golfer and we discuss in great length about the problems with back pain on the tour. Golfers have a difficult time with back pain due to rotation on their golf swing or to flexion when picking up the ball or tee. Just watch pro golfers on TV pick up the ball incorrectly each time they put the ball in the hole. This video on how to perform a balance reach while keeping your back in neutral has become an integral part of my pro client’s training.
No matter what sport you play, the balance reach is a great addition to your exercise program.
A great leg workout is a functional squat. In this video, Juan and I demonstrate how to do a proper squat. We will also show you some of the pitfalls of doing a proper squat and how to protect your lower back at all times. I do my squat routine after my lunge matrix. This is part of my warm-up program and strength program. A special thank you to Kevin Freeland at Body Focus Fitness based in Tempe,AZ for providing me a place to train when I am in Arizona and supplying the equipment for these videos. In this video, I use the medicine ball in my power fast squats.
I hope you can add a squat routine to your workouts. This will help you gain speed and power.
How do I begin and end my workouts? I use the lunge matrix. It is a multi- directional exercise that I use for my warm-up, for strengthening, for power, and for my cool down. It is a multi-purpose exercise that strengthens your legs and core, opens up your hips, and protects your back. My trainer, Juan Ruiz-Tagle, and I take you through the lunge matrix in the video below. I look forward to your comments after you have tried this starting routine.
We are 9 weeks away from the New England Marathon…One Mile At A Time beginning on July 1st! We are going to run a new blog every Monday evening until the start of the event. We will be sharing all the parts of my new training program.
My new trainer and www.OneMileRunner.com Consultant, Juan Ruiz-Tagle, explains what I needed to add to my training, how to properly work your core and abs, how to avoid serious back pain and how to workout your arms and legs in muti-directions. I hope you enjoy this eye opening interview and the subsequent videos that follow every week showing some of the foundational moves of the training. Next week I will be posting my new lunge matrix video. I look forward to receiving your comments and feedback.