Born To Run

this is an order- you HAVE to read Born to Run by Christopher McDougall!!! such a great book. i read about this around Christmas and it had such rave reviews, i knew i had to read it. keith read it first and couldn’t put it down- half the time, reading me parts of the book out loud. well, now i’m reading it and i’m the same way. i’m telling everyone about it. it’s a true story and utterly fascinating if you are at all interested in running.

Born to Run is written about a runner from Runners World who set out on an adventure to meet and run with the Tarahumara Indians in the Copper Canyons of Mexico, arguably the greatest distance runners in the world. throughout the book, you meet some very interesting people and learn a ton about this very secret tribe of people that actually do exist in the world, but you also get a very interesting perspective on body mechanics, shoe mechanics, barefoot running, etc.

so, i’m reading this book and completely sucked in by the idea that the current running shoe is causing more problems than good. the idea of the Tarahumara Indians (who, by the way, run in a homemade type of hurache sandal!) and many of the barefoot runners is that the fancy running shoes are too supportive and controlling over your foot and you’re not allowing your foot to do what it really needs to do to support your ankle, etc. they make some very interesting points throughout the book.

interesting enough, my chiropractor (dr. brad) asked me to bring my running shoes yesterday for our visit. it was really pretty cool. he did a very thorough assessment of me in my running shoes and then the same assessment barefoot. he did some interesting things with my feet and suggested that maybe i say bye to my stability shoes and try out some neutral shoes. what?! is he really telling me the same stuff i’m reading in this book right now?? yes! he said my stability shoes are acting like a brace on my foot and that even though i have a super flat foot, i have very good foot to ankle and ankle to knee balance. all these years i’ve been running in stability shoes but i think i may be giving some neutral shoes a shot in the near future.

anyway, i must note, though, that this is not all what the book is about- it’s really about the adventures of running and the joys of running. if you’re having a hard time finding motivation or you’ve forgotten how to love the sport of running, read this book! it will literally want to make you jump up and go for a run- barefoot or not!

sidelined

it’s tough being sidelined by injury. for weeks, i was concerned about missing the 2 longest runs with the group, but i was also excited about my upcoming vacation and my plans to do a crazy intense trail run before i left town. i had been planning to go out to the trails and do the 6 mile loop twice! intense, yes, but i was more than excited about it. instead i was at home with ice on my hip.

saturday morning came around and, yes, i was thrilled to be leaving town but the weather was just so perfect for the long run. keith and i sat in the airport waiting on our flight and i was just teary eyed to be missing the run. i guess if the only reason i was missing runs was for fun stuff, i would be ok. it’s another thing when you can’t run but you still want to!

we get on the plane and i pulled out my new issue of Runners World and it was literally like it was written just for me! i couldn’t put it down. the whole issue touched on being sidelined by injury and how this really messes with your head but also gave ways to combat the issues that usually come along with the injury. it also had an entire story about Meb and his injury during the 2007 olympic trials. again, it was talking to me. Meb had a searing pain in his hip, found that he has an overworked TFL, glutes that aren’t firing, blah, blah, blah.

ok, so now i’m telling myself “it’s ok, you and Meb are one.” i’m trying everything. it truly SUCKS being sidelined when you don’t want to be but according to Runners World, i will start appreciating my body more, will become stronger and more efficient once i’m back and will certainly not suffer any crazy emotional thoughts during my next race!

we’ll see…

Snap, Crackle, Pop

i gave in and went to the chiropractor! yes, me! i have never been a huge believer in chiropractics. not sure why, other than i can’t stand the thought of someone else popping my neck, back, or whatever. keith, on the other hand, has gone to one off and on for years…and has been trying to get me to go to one forever.

i finally decided that when you’re in bad enough pain, you will try anything! so, most of you know, i have been having some hip pain that i really just thought was soreness. i’ve been working my hips pretty hard ever since i went to physical therapy last fall for my knees. turns out, the majority of knee problems are a direct result of an issue in the hip. anyway, i woke up last friday and my left hip was sore to the touch- not just one spot but an area of about 8 inches diameter. i thought it was strange- couldn’t remember bumping into anything and it just felt like a really bad bruise but didn’t think much of it. saturday morning was the long run and my very first step i felt a fairly bad pain but really thought i could run through it. after a few steps it really seemed to subside and felt more like it has for months. that is, until about mile 3. i got the most intense, searing hot pain in my hip than i ever could of imagined. i spent the next 2 miles trying to run but i couldn’t make it more than 2 or 3 steps.

well, anyway, i certainly couldn’t live like that so the first thing i thought to do was call my acupuncturist. it was a saturday and i knew i wouldn’t even be able to call my doctor until monday and i at least needed to know i was seeing someone asap. went to my acupuncturist on monday- in her opinion- severe bursitis and possible torn ligament. we’ll see about that!

ok, on to the chiro- since i have been having neck pain for about 5 months and also started to have some weird sciatic pinching on monday, i decided to take the plunge. keith went with me on tuesday and, let me just tell you, it was so strange! however, i was also very impressed. Dr. brad did a very thorough postural analysis and lots of strength tests. so, aside from having bursitis and tendonitis, my glutes aren’t firing which has caused my TFL to over-work and now i’m completely out of whack. what?! my butt doesn’t work?!?! well, we can’t even start on that whole issue until we can reduce this inflammation and pain. i’m on day 6 of NO EXERCISE and i’m going crazy but i’m willing to do whatever it takes to heal.

bad news- i have to ice my hip at least 5 times a day while on vacation along with doing weird stretches and ingesting enough advil to make anyone ill. good news- he thinks i’ll be good to go for the race!!!

back to the actual experience….so odd! doesn’t hurt and i have actually felt some relief in my neck. ok, i’ll say it. yes, keith, you were right- i should have gone last fall. as far as the hip goes, no relief yet but dr. brad says i’m responding well to treatment. i’ve gone every day this week and each time i’m really more impressed with his knowledge and skill. he specializes in sports rehab and injury prevention so i think it’s a pretty good fit.

i hate to say it, but their must actually be some benefit to all the weird popping they love to hear!