Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Instruments of torture

Sunday's race left painful wounds... first a bruised hand and left hip from the fall..., second... a very painful and tight hamstring, third... a fatal blow to my morale...

After taking 2 days off from running to regain motivation and nurse all the physical and mental wounds, this morning I run 17km... It is amazing how my aerobic condition is good: I was running at 4'00"/pace with HR in recovery zone.
Also amazing is how I could still finish the race in 34'15" while crawling on 1 leg for 3km...and I was not at all tired.

Anyway now the only remedy is to work on releasing the hamstring as much as I can before the marathon, avoid racing flats and avoid running "too fast". It seems there is a kind of barrier for which I can not run faster than 3'35"/km without problems.

I want to thank everybody for all the suggestion about different treatments (foam roller, trigger points, etc...).
My arsenal for self-inflicted torture is well equipped:

TOP: foam roller 6"... very good for general muscle release
BOTTOM: massage works well on some hard spots but I will rate him below the foam roller
RIGHT: tennis ball... very useful to take care of any small sign of Plantar fascitis and also to work on some trigger point release technique, but I found that tennis ball is slightly too small to work on some bigger muscles.
so.. here the final weapon:
LEFT: Softball Ball (Mizuno)... works amazingly well for hamstring and quadriceps. It is big enough that you can sit on the floor with the ball under the hamstring and let the pressure of the leg do the job.
It can really dig deep inside large muscles...


Sling Runner said...


Do you like sports massage? I have foam rollers, the stick etc at home but nothing can beat the feeling of deep tissue massage :)

Thanks for the information on pulse meter, which is much more practical than using a Garmin HRM. I'll get one from ebay (around USD30 + postage)

I might also copy some of your big workouts, but of course not at your pace !!

by7 said...

I definitely think that a real Deep tissue massage is the best of all, but for me is sometimes unfeasible:

- when I am in China (70% of the time), there are no massage therapists...
there are many kind-of-massage place but nothing really which could qualify as a real massage
- in HK, seems that all the qualified massage therapists are based in Central district, which is really far away from my range of action... so 1hr massage would mean 3 hrs total time..

(Note: I must also complain about the crazy prizes of massage therapist and physio in HK: my physioterapist has recently upped the bill to 950HKD/session, which is equal to 120 USD !! all because of the crazy rental prices.
Basically you are paying their rental !)

So at the end, even if I would love to have a good serious massage every 2-3 weeks, I resort to self-massage (especially in China I have plenty of time after work)