The first month of training is complete for the 2015 “Greek Islands Adventure” race series. It has been a wonderful month of workouts and preparations. One of the new recovery tools I will be trying this training season is hydrotherapy. I wanted one of the most powerful, 2-persons spa hot tubs on the market. This lead me to the purchase of a Vita Spa called Amour. I have soaked every night this past week. Foam rolled every night this week. And had my massage therapist, Lori, over tonight to see how my body is doing after two weeks of intense workouts. I want to see how my body recovers over my five months of training. Does the hydrotherapy help? Does it hurt? Does it not make a difference?
Here is what hydrotherapy claims to assist with:
1) Soothe overworked muscles.
2) Diminish stress and tension.
3) Remove aches and pains.
4) Warm inner core.
5) Provide therapeutic massage.
6) Stimulate blood flow and circulation.
I will keep you posted over the next couple of months to let you know if hydrotherapy actually works. As I have done in the past with graduated compression socks, visualization, or nutrition, I have arranged a personal laboratory to test out this experiment. If anyone of you have comments about hydrotherapy or want to share your personal experience with hydrotherapy, please write us back with your input.
I have had two wonderful massage therapists take care of my body over the 14 years of competition. The first was Stacie Nevelus for about 11 years and the second was Leah Macy for the last 3 years. Both therapists were invaluable. They worked with my strange work and training schedules (often saw me on Sundays), were available in emergencies, and were passionate about their professions. They were both part of the www.OneMileRunner.com Consultant’s panel, sought to expand their skills (Stacie – cupping and Leah – Thai massage), and both deeply cared that I was in the best possible shape to reach my aspirations.
Stacie is teaching her techniques around the region and Leah is on her way back home to Arizona after her 4 years at Wellness Concepts. Leah will continue her work around the Phoenix area, but she will be missed in Florida. Both Stacie and Leah exemplify why they both got into massage therapy. They wanted to help people feel better, learn the value of recovery and body work, and make an independent living for themselves. I feel they were both healers and made the right choice to seek a profession that suited their gifts.
So I have been recommended a couple of new names of massage therapists that I will meet in the upcoming weeks, but first I wanted to say thank you to Stacie and Leah for keeping my body together all these years with my intense training regime. I know I sometimes looked like Humpty Dumpty when I arrived on their massage tables, but they were able to put me back together after their sessions. Thank you.
If you are fortunate to find a great massage therapist, I hope you can appreciate the value that they bring to our active lifestyles. Priceless indeed as life is better on the move…
We wanted to share what we learned in this 2012 Isles Mile Challenge experiment that could help you perform at your peak. Remember this is a “buffet” of ideas, please pick or choose what you want that could help you reach your highest level of performance.
1) TRAINING – Our focus in the spring on running up and down the Ringling Bridge to prepare my body for the up and down conditions of the islands worked out great. My training buddy, Wayne, and I set up sprint work, tempo work, and interval work on uneven terrains. We live in Sarasota and train most of the time on surfaces that are very flat, we call the conditions “Florida Flat” (as I have raced in California on so-called flat courses, but they are very up and down compared to Florida).
2) RECOVERY – After 30,000 miles of travel through various time zones, my body held up surprising well. With races every week, one pulled hamstring and the tour was over. No Advil or ice was used to recover – just massage therapy and my Body Protection program. During an interview the other day, the reporter did not believe me at first when I said that I used no medicine at all on the trip, but after he heard of my training – he understood. Not only on this tour did I not get injured, but I also did not get sick. My immune system stayed strong throughout the travel. I took my Vega One shake every morning, followed a strict vegan diet, and had no alcohol.
3) RACING – Prayer, visualization, and a present focus mentality prepared me for the various race conditions. Each race was different, but my mind was the same. There were times I spent hours on the road race course going through the turns and 1/4 mile splits over and over. I wanted to feel like I had raced on this new course before. Getting familiar with the conditions really assisted me in my racing confidence. Also,my focus on my racing form and technique really helped me to stay fast and strong. Charlie Olbrias (our official timekeeper) said that I looked as fast as I did 3 years ago when he followed me to 27 races in 2009. My mile race times this year backed up his observations and assertions.
Now that the summer is over, it is time to set up your fall training, recovery, and race schedule. Please feel free to ask me any questions on how to optimize your efforts as you try to peak in the last quarter of 2012.
Training has begun for ourwww.OneMileRunner.com 2012 tour – The Isles Mile Challenge. Speed training began last week to test out my form in a series of sprints – 20 x 100 yards in 14-15 seconds followed by a new recovery modality entitled Thai Massage. At Wellness Concepts, www.wellnessconcepts.com, our new Massage Consultant, Leah Macy, puts me through some of the various yoga-like positions of the ancient therapy (over 2500 years old).
Leah spoke to me about different ways we could continue to work on my flexibility and to increase my range of motion. So we are going to add in another recovery session every other week with Thai Massage. We will shoot another video later in June to see any improvement over the few months ahead.
Perhaps after viewing this short video below, you might consider to add Thai Massage to your recovery program.
My second week of training had a small bump in the road, but overall it went well.
Monday began with a 6 mile run followed by strength and power training. On Tuesday, Wayne Johnson and I ran a 6 mile run with fartleks thrown in for two miles on the grassy grounds of GT Bray fields in Bradenton. After the final speed work, I felt my right knee was tender and I stretched it out after our medicine ball, band, and hurdle work.
However, I still felt a bit of pain on my easy run on Wednesday after my 8 hours on the tennis court. Fortunately, I had a massage with Stacie Nevelus on Wednesday evening. She was able to alleviate the referring pain to my right knee (as it was coming from my lateral quad), but on Thursday it was still not 100% yet. After my tennis and easy run on Thursday, I saw Dr. K (Kotlarczyk) at Wellness Concepts in Bradenton. He does various manual therapies (massage, PNF, laser, chiro etc.) and fully addressed the knee. I walked away from the therapy pain-free.
After a long day of tennis on Friday, I ran 6 miles on Saturday with 10 x 100 meters in 15 seconds each repetition. The pain was totally gone and my stride felt long and powerful.
The importance of recovery sessions during the week is vital to building a base of fitness in training over a 4-month period. The sooner you seek attention to any training ailment, the better chance you have to fix the problem.
As we embark on our 4th event, many people have been asking me about how my training will be different than other years.
First, I will be expanding the exercise program that I have been using over the past few years. Not only will I be incorporating the mobilization, strength, and flexibility movements in my training, but also I will need to add even more advanced plyometric training in order to deal with the challenging terrains, elevations, and conditions unique to this tour. I will be sharing my entire training program (from beginner to advanced) in a full-length DVD fitness program at the beginning of 2012. This movement based program will be the key element to keep me injury-free as I train for 3 months and race over a 5-month period.
Second, I will be adapting my speed training to only one time a week on the track and conduct most of my speed workouts on the road or off-road conditions to match the surface I will be racing on each month. There is not much I can do about the 6000 feet elevation at the Grand Canyon in May here in Florida, but I can find places that are close to the other conditions that I will be presented with in each race.
Third, my running regimen will be slightly different as well. I will perform a weekly mix of a long run (6-9 miles), a tempo run (2-3 miles), an interval workout (varied each week), 2 recovery runs (in between the faster days), and a sprint workout (my favorite). This mix of workouts each week should provide me the speed for the mile and the strength to race the mile over and over from May to September.
Lastly, I will add another recovery session after my training with my chiropractor/massage therapist. With my heavy training and turning 48 in April, a little more time “on the table” will be beneficial to create a successful training program.
The last “stop” on our www.OneMileRunner.com recovery tour is Meilus Precision Therapy with Dave Wallwork. Dave uses his robotic machines to lengthen my muscle tissue. We use this therapy not only for treatment of injury or stiffness, but also as a regular program for body maintenance and injury prevention.
Here is Dave’s story on scoliosis and his treatment.
There are many causes for scoliosis. About 80%-85% of people with scoliosis have a type called IDIOPATHIC scoliosis. This means “no known cause”. Idiopathic scoliosis often runs in families and appears to be due to genetic or hereditary factors. It is not known what “triggers” the development of the curve, or why some curves progress more than others. Scoliosis may occur in children who are otherwise perfectly healthy. Meilus Muscular Therapy Method works on the theory that the muscles on one side of the spine are shorter than the other and therefore pull the spine towards the shortened side, causing the curving and in some cases the rotation of the spine.
According to the Scoliosis Research Society, about 10% of the adolescent population has some degree of scoliosis. This means that about 1,000,000 children just in the United States have scoliosis. About one fourth of these children, or 2%-3%, will require medical attention which may consist of observation for further progression of the curve, bracing or surgery, depending upon the degree of the curvature at the time of its detection. Some scoliosis may be so mild that treatment may never be necessary.
During adolescence scoliosis usually produces no pain and may be difficult to detect. Mild scoliosis may be present for several years before it is seen. One of the easiest ways to detect it is by using the forward bending examination. Most importantly, the physician should check the child’s spine regularly until growth is complete since scoliosis may appear at any time during adolescence. The curvature may progress considerably during the last major growth spurt. The Meilus Muscular Therapy Method can help limit the amount of curvature and in many cases of young adolescents reduce the curvature in just a few visits. The primary Muscle involved in scoliosis is the Psoas. The Psoas originates on the Transverse Processes of all Lumbar Vertebrae and the side bodies of the last Thoracic and all Lumbar Vertebrae. It inserts on the Lesser Trochanter of the Femur. If the Psoas is shorter on one side than the other it can cause the spine to bend to the shorter side. Lengthening the shorter Psoas can provide significant improvement.
Can Scoliosis Be Cured?
There are currently no medications to treat scoliosis, nor can its onset be prevented. When scoliosis is detected, the doctor may refer the patient to an orthopedic spinal specialist for evaluation and treatment. This may consist of periodic examinations, including standing X-rays as needed to determine if the curve is increasing in size. If scoliosis is identified early, The Meilus Muscular Therapy Method can help to limit the curve as the child continues to grow through adolescence. The X-rays below show a 10 year old female who came to me with a nine degree double curve. She was treated five days in a row. Treatments lasted for two hours per day. The pre and post X-rays show the reduction in the curve. This girl returned a year later with increased pain and a mild lumbar curve. She had had a growth spurt of 3 inches. All complaints were resolved in four treatments. Her parents will continue to monitor her back and she will be seen as needed.
Before therapy After therapy
Severe curves may require surgical treatment. Early detection and treatment is the best way to avoid surgery.
Simple Home Test For The Early Detection Of Scoliosis:
Is one shoulder higher than the other?
Is one scapula (shoulder blade) more prominent than the other?
Does one hip seem higher or more prominent than the other?
Is there a greater distance between the arm and the body on one side than on the other when the arms are hanging down loosely at the sides?
Does the child have excessive “swayback” (lordosis)?
Does the child have excessive “round shoulder” or “roundback” (Kyphosis)?
Is there a larger “crease” at one side of the waist than the other side?
Does the child seem to “list” or lean to one side?
When you examine the child, have her bend forward with her arms hanging down loosely with the hands even and the palms touching each other at about the level of the knees.
When in this position:
Is there a prominence or hump in the rib area?
Is there asymmetry in the hips or waist?
If you have any “yes” answers or if the child has a brother, sister, parent or other close relative with scoliosis, consult your family doctor or orthopedist.
“Yeah David” the onlookers would yell in languages he didn’t even understand, but that’s not where this adventure begins. This adventure begins in Sarasota, FL where David visits me weekly for therapeutic and sports massage. My job is to keep him ready for high performance and injury free. This makes for a difficult task as he sets out around the world to accomplish his feats of speed. The adventure, Around the World In Under 30 Minutes. This entails running 6 one mile races in 6 weeks in 6 continents in under 30 minutes. My challenge was to bring David the therapeutic and recovery effects of massage as he jet sets around the globe. How would I do that when I’m here in Sarasota, FL and he is abroad? That answer became apparently easy. As a practioner and educator of Massage Cupping Therapy, I would instruct David on the many uses of a single silicone cup. He would use this cup in the shower with soap before and after his events and training. The true testament would be how his body felt when he got back and on my table. David set out on a feat of speed Around the World in Under 30 Minutes with one cup, 6 continents and a multitude of uses. This would be my contribution to this running endeavor of speed.
Pre-race massage usually consists of some gentle rocking and/or shaking to loosen up the muscle and get some blood flow to the tissue. What I would ask David to do pre-event is done in the shower. The tool I had David use is a Russian-made bell shaped silicone cup that measures 3 inches at the opening. While in the shower before each event or training, David would lather up the areas of focus with soap. For David, this would consist of the gluteal area and the legs. Taking the bell shaped silicone cup in hand, gently squeeze and release once on the lathered skin and begin gliding. This creates a vacuum that lifts the tissue and penetrates deep into the muscle as it glides over the soapy skin. Starting in the gluteal area, begin working in a circular motion. The cup can be moved in any direction or parked for a few minutes over a particularly tight area. For a runner, it is usually the piriformis and the gluteus minimus. Then follow with the same suction glides over the thigh then lower leg and finishing with strokes towards the groin area. The purpose of doing Massage Cupping before the event is to bring blood flow to the muscle tissue. With this method, you can feel it warming the tissue as it brings the oxygenated blood into the tissue. This blood flow is evident by the pink hue found in the skin. This is particularly important prior to a one mile event. When running at such speed, it is vital that the muscle be properly warmed up. Using the silicone cup prior to such speed will effectively warm the muscle and prevent it from seizing up during the race.
After an event of this speed, the tissue is flooded with lactic acid, and very fatigued. I find that using Massage Cupping with the silicone cup post event will effectively flush this out. This simple process will clear out old debris and lactic acid that occurred during the race. This allows for quicker recovery and the ability to get back to training sooner by decreasing the delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS). Once again, in the shower, repeating the same area and stokes to achieve the flushing of the muscle tissue. With the function of the vacuum effect created by the cup, water is pulled from the cellular level into the muscle tissue helps to hydrate the tissue. It is because of this that it is important to drink healthy amounts of water. This is the same as in any post event recovery.
As six weeks had passed, I am sure for David the flying, car rides, remote locations and time zones made for one great adventure! David was successful in completing his 6 miles in 6 weeks in 6 continents in under 30 minutes . . . injury free! Once back in Sarasota and on the massage table, I was amazed at how well his body held up. David truly went the distance. With one cup, six continents and a cup with a multitude of uses. I know what will be in his travel bag when traveling far from home. For David will be traveling the miles while going the mile. I can’t wait for what adventure lies ahead . . . to be continued!
The end of January took us at www.OneMileRunner.com to Gainesville, Florida and the University of Florida for the Jimmy Carnes Indoor Invitational. It was a special weekend as I had the opportunity to try out my new New Balance spikes with my new orthotic and race against many college runners. Stacie Nevelus, the www.OneMileRunner.com Massage Consultant, traveled up to “gator land” as well for the event. We were glad that she came along and we took advantage of her services for a pre-race and post-race massage. Please check out our informative sports massage video below:
I ran a smooth 4:46 for my first race in 2010. It felt good to race indoors again (last time was 2007) and confirm that my training for The Indoor Nationals in March and for our July event, “Around The World In Less Than 30 Minutes,” is right on schedule. Please check out Stacie at www.stacienevelus.com for more information on her cupping massage therapies.
One of the BIG reasons why I am recovering so well after each mile race has been the massage work of Sandra Bello at Body Destinations in Tyngsboro, MA. www.bodydestinations.com. Sandra has introduced me for the first time to the attributes of a hot rock massage. A hot rock massage quickly detoxes my muscles and heats up the area allowing Sandra to get in and do her healing work. She has been professional, dedicated, and resourceful.
Check out this video about the value of a hot rock massage. You might just recover better than ever…