Baby Got Back-Or Needs To!

While perusing Facebook today, like every other day, I came across an article on Triathlon.com that featured a picture of Miranda “Rinny” Carfrae. Rinny recently won the Ironman World Championship in Kona, HI by having one of the most stellar marathon performances ever. She came from behind and passed some of the world’s best athletes to take the title for her second time, breaking her own run course record by laying down a 2:50:38 marathon time.

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I always pay attention to an article if Rinny is the example they’re using because clearly she’s doing something right! I watched her run towards 1st place as Ironman streamed the race this year and just watched in awe and amazement at her effortless stride and strong posture. I think this year’s race placed more attention on her race than it did the men’s race which is very nice to see.

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Source: Triathlon.com

Anyways, back to the original topic, the Triathlon.com article “The Glutes: Your Biggest Asset” provided some valuable insight on my lingering issues. Since I’m sidelined right now with plantar fascitiis and achilles tendinitis, I can only dream and think about running but I’m in the weight room lifting and building strength back up just no cardio right now. As I read the article I came across the factoid that weakness in the gluteus maximus or your butt, can lead to the issues I’ve been dealing with! Now, I’ve known that having a strong core and glute muscles are important to athletic success but it hadn’t really crossed my mind as to a major stemming factor of my current situation.

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Source: Outside Online

“With weak glutes comes the threat of running’s most common injuries — everything from IT band syndrome to plantar fasciitis can be linked back to the butt.”-Bryan Hill, physical therapist 

Hmm, IT band troubles-check, plantar fasciitis-check.

The article provided a quick test to see if your glutes are in fact weak.

Do this: a single-leg squat as low as you can go. If you can reach an angle of 80 degrees or more (90-degree knee flexion is optimal, says Hill), you’re likely efficient at loading your glute properly while running.

So of course I immediately got up of my chair that I sit in way too much and tried both legs. Not only did both legs really burn from the exertion but if I could guess my knee flexion I would say about 75-80 degrees…not good!

When I was doing CrossFit, we rarely had to do pistols but when we did I could never do them. A pistol movement is a one leg squat with the free leg stuck out in front of you. Those things are damn hard to do but I understand why their important to incorporate.

I can't do them on the floor let alone a kettle ball handle!

I can’t do them on the floor let alone a kettle ball handle!

Since I’m not running and focusing on rehabbing on my own, I’m going to add in a lot of glute and hamstring work so that come the new year, I’ll be stronger and more flexible and hopefully eliminate or at least ease a lot of pain and tenderness as well as get my body more symmetric.

Next week I go back for my check up with my doctor. I don’t think anything will be discovered nor do I think we’ll need to do any further testing. I’m expecting him to say I can start jogging again by walking a block, jogging a block and building up very slowly. I’m going to hop on the bike trainer this weekend for no more than 20 minutes to see how things feel. I also want to get in the pool and swim some to get some cardio but will avoid pushing off the wall so I don’t add stress to the achilles.

I’ve been not running for 3 weeks and by next week’s appointment it will be 4. In a Runner’s World magazine issue from this month, the Ask the Experts column explained that you should expect your body to take at least 3 weeks to regain your fitness when you’ve been injured or sick for 3 weeks. So that’s what I expect 3-4 weeks to probably feeling 80% and then on from there.

I’m still registered for the Donna Marathon but clearly the 26.2 isn’t happening in February but I’m seeing if I can do the half now but the main priority is being healthy entering the 2014 triathlon season as my date to officially begin training for IMLP looms closer and closer.

One final note semi-related to all of this (because he provided me 50% of his genes) is that today is my dad’s birthday and wanted to wish him a HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

Dad and I on his birthday at the Orlando Magic, DeVos graduation ceremony 2010

Dad and I on his birthday at the Orlando Magic, DeVos graduation ceremony 2010

PS Can’t believe its been 3 years since my graduate class crossed the new Amway Center’s basketball court at half time to be honored for our graduation. Craziness!

PPS The director of my graduate program, the DeVos Sport Management Program at UCF, Dr. Richard Lapchick, wrote a wonderful article for ESPN.com on Nelson Mandela’s significance in sports and racism. The two were friends and so it was sad to hear of the passing of Mr. Mandela yesterday. Click here to read the article

RIP Nelson Mandela

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Dr. Richard Lapchick and I at the 2010 Central Florida Sports Commission Event

Dr. Richard Lapchick and I at the 2010 Central Florida Sports Commission Event

Exercises for strengthening the glutes as posted by Runner’s World:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Three Weeks to Health and Strength

Back from the doctors and the news isn’t awful, it definitely could always be worse. They took x-rays (I always like to see these and check them out!) and everything came back clean. Phew!

I was told I have severe tendinitis. I knew I had tendinitis most of this running season but now its just progressed beyond the point of managing on my own which is why I’m feeling pain in all of my calf and lower leg.

So here’s the game plan to off-season success:

1. No running for 3 weeks. While I’m not happy about this I expected it. My legs need time to heal and then need the proper base again to start running. I am allowed to bike and swim though I’m going to give biking a little more time as I have such poor circulation already that biking exacerbates it.

2. Stretching 2-3 times a day especially after a shower or hot tub. Also, massages! 

3. Anti-inflammatories. Trying to avoid the shots since I’m young and don’t want to start down this path yet.

4. Finally, I’ll be sleeping with someone other than Memphis (hope he doesn’t get jealous). Yup, I’ll be wearing a boot to bed. It keeps your foot in a flexed position which right now is totally uncomfortable. This should be interesting!

I think the boot needs a name, something fun, let me know your suggestions. It may need some stickers to brighten it up as well.

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How this impacts the rest of my off-season is still TBD. I go back to the doc’s in 3 weeks. Should things be better by then, I will then be allowed to gradually, G-R-A-D-U-A-L-L-Y start running again. Yes, I’m spelling it out for myself, not because I don’t think you all can’t read.

I most likely won’t be doing a full marathon after all before Ironman Lake Placid but I’m fine with that. If anything, I want to do the half mary there and support the cause. The end goal and most important thing is to enter triathlon season healthy with a strong base of fitness and health so maybe this is a blessing in disguise? I’ve got big things planned for 2014 so I’m focusing on finishing 2013 healthy and strong.

The past couple of days, I’ve gotten a ton of comments on my blog post: The Importance of Rev3 Triathlon and Why I want to be a Team Rev3 Member. Current members have commented and Team Rev3 Facebook even shared my blog on their Facebook page. Makes today’s prognosis a little easier 🙂

Team Rev3

An Update of Sorts

For quite some time now, about 2 months to be exact, I’ve been dealing with plantar fasciatis and tendonitis in my achilles. Nothing a runner doesn’t experience at some point in their sports career but recently things have gotten worse, much worse. I’ve had to stop in the middle of workouts because it feels like the lower part of my left leg is extremely tight and sore and as I push off, there is just no power, just a sort of deadness in the muscle.

Once I do stop running either for water or because I can’t handle it anymore, its difficult to put weight on it and the joints are extremely stiff. Needless to say, I’m frustrated and unhappy especially since I registered for my first marathon.

I know, I know-I didn’t write a blog post on it! I was waiting to see what happened with my leg but now training is impacted and I’m on the couch with my leg propped on a pillow while it aches. I have a doctor’s appointment tomorrow with my favorite doctor who has seen me since I fractured my left femur when I was 13. And yes, I firmly believe a lot of my leg issues stem from this accident 15 years ago.

Back to the marathon. I changed my mind recently have a good 10 mile run and really analyzing why I didn’t want to run Jax Bank Marathon and if I really did want to do a full before Ironman Lake Placid. Since I moved to Jacksonville, I loved the 26.2 with Donna race as it supports breast cancer research and does so amazingly. I’ve gotten to meet Donna Deegan several times when I worked at the PGA TOUR as the two groups are heavily connected.

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I love that race and it holds special meaning which was a strong reason why I didn’t want to do Jax Bank. That race held no meaning for me, was two days after Christmas and had fallen victim to “everyone is doing it” syndrome. Well, I have to race the races I want to race and listen to my body which is what I’m doing now. I ran 2.5 miles Monday and hobbled up the driveway in pain and frustration. Tomorrow, I’m hoping for some answers and therefore a treatment plan so I can get back to training safely and hopefully laying the ground work for some fun Rev3 races and of course, D-Day, IMLP!

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Speaking of Rev3, they’ve got two new races on board for this coming season, West Virginia and Mexico! Ok get the Deliverance music out of your head as WV is very pretty and scenic. West Virginia is August 1-3 which makes it tough for me since I’ll be getting back from a week in Lake Placid but that doesn’t mean you all can’t go! As for Mexico, the details are coming out but I’m hoping its on the East coast side as it would then just be a hop skip and jump there. Anyone got any airline points to share?!

Thank you for the support for my Rev3 blog post the other day! They truly are a great company and I will race with them for many years to come no matter what.

Team Rev3

Will post tomorrow on the result of the doctors appointment.