Focus, Focus, Focus. Right now that is what I need to do, focus on the process to help me become not so much a better runner, but more to become a less fragile runner. Which means doing the work beyond getting out the door and putting one foot in front of the other.
The getting out the door usually is not an issue, all too often it is that I get out the door too much and especially at times I should not. The other stuff, all that pre-run, post-run, mobility, strength, mental and actually resting are things that I have to focus more on.
Well that is what I keep telling myself and over the years I have even done it for brief periods of time.
Unfortunately, the sins of my youth and middle age are catching up to the 63 year old body that I now have and all that other stuff that I neglected over the years is coming back to haunt me – miserably at times.
No, I cannot change the past, but I can do better going forward and since what I do with my time is now mostly my own choices, that particular excuse of not having enough time is no longer pertinent. Now it is all on the man in the mirror to focus on what needs to be done.
Yes, I will fall off the wagon, slack off what I need to actually do, change my routines, methods and generally be fickle about what I do, but with each change, attempt and experiment, I am finding that I do get closer to where I want to be.
The bad thing is that no matter what I do, it will only delay, not stop the inevitable declines in my running and physical body – the sad part of getting old, just when you start to figure things out, your body no longer can do everything the brain asks of it.
Which means the only thing that I can do is enjoy each day, take what the body will give (and push it a little more than I should once in a while), smile at the progress I do make and focus on the positive things in my running and life that I can control, not those things that I have zero control over.
So today, I keep plugging away at my RewiredChiPose Running style and see what Lesson 4 (The Pull) brings to the table today.
Today I am planning on working on “pulling/lifting my heels and just to complicate things I am going to set my metronome to 175 spm and wear my rubber arm harness to keep my arms more in line during the short Pose focus run.
I did the ChiRunning warm-up but forgot to do the squats, lunges, leg swings (I have to do a list of the work that I do, so I don’t forget). Then I moved on to Pose Method lesson 4 and did better on the drills than I did yesterday. I completed everything assigned and felt good heading out the door. The legs were not bothering nearly as much as they have been and that is huge.
I have figured out that doing 1-2 minutes of running is not really enough for me, I just start to get into a good rhythm and I need to stop, so I go out a .25 and return, which seems to be just enough to not lose focus on what I want to do.
Today I used the arm bands and metronome, along with working on lifting/pulling and did better. I really think that now that the legs are not hurting as much that I am doing better. The other part is that I am not really worried about landing on my forefoot all that much (it will happen or not), I am more concerned with getting my landing closer to being under my hips versus the serious overstriding that I have done for so many years.
The rubber bands do help with getting my arms where they are supposed to be and the metronome helped with getting the cadence up in the 170s which is where I want to be.
Did your support leg leave the ground, pulling upward, before your other foot dropped toward the ground? I am not sure about this I think the timing was better, but I am still focusing too much on just running versus attempting to do the Pose method.
Did you let your airborne leg drop to the ground with no muscular effort (letting gravity do all the work)? Not really, I am still muscling through the entire stride cycle, though it seems smoother than it has been.
How did you overcome inertia (with no help from gravity or momentum) to change support? Muscle action, the lean is not with me yet.
What are your goals for your next training session? I think that I will move to lesson 5 tomorrow to see how things all tie together and if that makes a difference in how I approach the run.
Once I finished the short Pose run, I got ready to run to the Town Office for a 3-4 miler depending on how the legs felt and how much the humidity kicked butt.
Just for giggles, I used the metronome still set at 175 spm and headed down-back. I gotta admit that I was glad that I used the GRR8s the extra cushion on the road down there helped with all the rocks. An 8:04 first mile is the fastest mile I have run since July and felt pretty good. I really focused on keeping my cadence up and the stride length shorter than usual which worked really well.
The second mile was a bit tougher and the small hill by the Town Office seemed to suck the life out of my, well the humidity didn’t help either, but I slowed down quite a bit and had to keep refocusing to keep the cadence where I wanted it. Definitely not used to it.
At the 2.0 mile point, I knew that 3.1 was all I would be doing. I was already soaking my shirt and the legs were telling me that this faster paced crap was not necessary. I did pretty good on Blake Hill, but still slowed way down. By the time I reached the flats on before Stevens Hill I was sucking wind pretty hard.
I did loose a bit of fitness over the past 3 weeks and to have that high a heart rate at those paces is indicative of it. Yeah, the 70+*F/70+% probably didn’t help too either.
When I finished my Achilles (yeah both of them) were a little grumpy, which tells me that I was landing on my forefoot more than I am used to, so that part is coming naturally. Once upon a time I did run with a forefoot landing, oh so many years ago.
Once I got back to the garage, I decided that I had worked that run a little…well a lot harder than I had planned, so therefore wasn’t going to do a strength session. Which is probably a smart idea, at least until I get muscled into the strength workouts to skip a day between them. I don’t mind working hard, but at the same time I don’t want to blow out something, because I was overly ambitious.
Although I did manage to get a foam rolling and car polisher session in. I even looked at and picked up the jump rope, but put it back down as a bad idea today. Maybe tomorrow.
Speaking of tomorrow, I am planning a sort of rest day, where I go through Lesson 5 in the Pose method, run 1-2 miles, jump rope (50), do a strength session, foam roll and rest most of the day.
A good day, but I am tired tonight.