Saturday, December 24, 2011

EricG's Running Tips #28 Maintaining Through The Holidays? Yeah Right!

The holiday season is in full swing, and as always the hot topic besides how many days in a row retail stores can stay open, is how is one suppose to maintain a balance of fitness with all the eating and drinking. The typical answer is exactly the same as the rest of the year, but that is boring.

My opinion on this one is you don't. It is just too much damn fun to celebrate with family and friends. Get out there and do the best you can to off set all those nasty but joyous calories ingested through your  favorite holiday desserts and beverages. Just don't beat yourself up over it. I use this time of year as an excuse to let loose and get it all out--actually to get it all in:). Additionally I think its a great time to allow your body to recover from a tough year.

I may put on a pound or two, I may lose a couple steps in my running pace, but So What!!!

It is 100% worth it to me. I am going to enjoy this holiday season with my family and friends and not regret it for one moment.  However you choose to enjoy the holidays, my family and I wish you all the best and are looking forward to sharing our experiences with you in the coming year.


Sunday, December 18, 2011

Always Listen To Your Doctor???

I need to let off a little steam here.  I made a very poor decision a few weeks back and have been debating about this post for nearly 2 weeks. I would never tell anyone not to listen to their doctor but I have often wondered if I may know better on occasion where my own condition is concerned.  I went to have my ankle looked at a couple weeks ago to make sure I had not done any real damage at Javelina. As I suspected the doctor found nothing. I have been going to the same orthopedic group for years. I have been there for knee, foot, ankle and IT diagnosis and have always had great care but for some idiotic reason decided to try this new guy. I was intrigued by the fact that he is an athlete himself and promotes that heavily (marathons, triathlons).

During our visit he made what I thought to be an odd assessment. He told me that I severely over pronate.  I was sitting on the table when he broke the news and other than 2 or 3 hops on my right foot he had not seen me touch the ground let alone walk or run. In my mind I was thinking "what on earth makes you think that and how the hell did you come up with this interesting conclusion".  What I actually said was "I have had my stride analyzed several times and have never been told that I over pronate and am in fact neutral".  Is it possible that things could have changed I wondered?  The doctor seemed to think it was obvious.  He said I should get an orthodic called Powerstep. I bought them and tried them because doctors know best.  Right?


I even had confirmation from my wife who looked at me like I was crazy when I showed up at home with these things and shared the story. After my first run I sent him an email explaining all of the things I was concerned about from the arch, foot position and ankle discomfort. He suggested I keep at it, allowing the orthodics to break in. So I kept at it for the next week running minimal mileage. I never ran more than 9 miles and began to experience what I would describe as significant knee pain at the base of my right patella. It was not constant but up hill/stairs, down hill/stairs, during the act of standing up or sitting down and even pushing my chair back at my desk would send sharp twinges through my knee.

Bye Bye orthodics and guess what?  No more pain.  Just had a great week of pain free running. Returned the orthodics too, as they come with a 30 day satisfaction guarantee.

I will continue to listen to my doctor's medical advice but I think I will follow my own advise and instincts where running is concerned.


Monday, December 12, 2011

Running is My Drano!

Yesterday during my first run over 10 miles since Javelina, I was telling my friend David how much I missed being out there.  Not because of how running makes me feel in the moment, but because running brings a certain freedom to the rest of my day.  During the past few weeks I decided to take some time off so I could recover mentally and physically from a long year. Although my planned recovery was not comprised of complete abstinence, I thought significant rest would help me feel more focused in mind and ready in body. Au contraire! It's as if my veins are clogged with negative energy, numbing my synapse to the point where everything is in slow motion. I have been battling laziness, lack of motivation and confidence, crankiness, and blurred focus.

I have decided that running is actually my Drano! For normal clogs just a half bottle is required (short run). For major clogs use the entire bottle (long run). Fifteen to thirty minutes after pouring in the required amount flush thoroughly with warm water (shower).


Sunday, December 4, 2011

"Running" The Common Denominator

I have had a couple of hours to reflect on my run today. On the surface, just another 9 miles at Rockefeller State Park on a beautiful December morning. I have run every inch of every trail here many times over. So why write about today? Because today I ran with about 15 people I have never met before.

I met this guy Mark a couple of weeks ago through a mutual friend. Mark was telling her about his plan to run his first ultra this coming April and she suggested we meet.  So we emailed a couple of times and had lunch. It turns out Mark is a member (founding member I believe) of the NEW RO RUNNERS, a local running club based out of New Rochelle, New York with about 130 members. They organize runs every Saturday and Sunday around Westchester County. In addition they race together and yes socialize together. I recall mark telling me how running has brought them all together not only in running but community. Their slogan happens to be "Changing the shape of the community - one mile at a time".

What brought these people together in the first place? Women and Men of different races, religions, ages and running abilities all hanging out for one simple reason...they love to run.  It's that simple.  The reality is if not for running most of these people may never have met let alone get together. It is unfortunate, but often the things that make us all so interesting are the differences that keep us apart. The awesome thing is many of us have running in common and that alone has the power to break down many barriers and bring so many wonderful people together.

Thank you Mark for inviting me to join you all today. Always nice to meet so many new people. Running has done so much for me and meeting new and interesting people is certainly at the top of the list.

Get out there and run with someone you don't know soon. You may be surprised at what you find.

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