Ironman Mont Tremblant

Monday, March 29, 2010

Run Forest Run!

I did my first run outside in about four weeks and it was exhausting. I can't believe how much I've "lost." I did two sessions of 30 minutes of water running last week but I don't really think that made much of a difference.

I went a whopping 3.80 km in 22 minutes for about a 6.00 min/km pace, slightly faster than a turtle. I kept the heartbeat under 139 but it sure didn't take much to get it higher.

I tried to concentrate on "toeing off" rather than heel strike first. Basically that means that the first thing to hit the ground is the back of my heel instead of the middle part of the foot. One thing Kevin pointed out was that when I stand my right foot turns outward about 20 degrees so that would explain the wear pattern on my shoes indicate the right upper outside of my right foot and the right heal hit the ground first. Also toeing off forces the body to lean forward and I know that when I get tired I lean backwards (another indicator of heel strike first).

It felt weird running like that and once I get my new orthotics I'll have to make the decision to change my running style as I will be getting new running shoes. So does that mean Newtons? There is much controversy about these shoes as its suppose to force you to run "naturally" whatever that means.

Initially I was not impressed by these shoes (and they're damn ugly) but perhaps they are worth getting a pair, which will mean changing my running style but given the number of times I've been hurt that's probably a good move. We'll see what the coach recommends.

Kevin was highly skeptical about using orthotics in my skates and in my riding shoes so I rode this morning without them and I think I should use them as I could "feel" my knees when I was riding so I'll try another ride using orthotics however I think for hockey I can do without them as not as much force is exerted on my foot as well as the rigid skate boot makes rolling in less likely.

Oh and another thing, looks like I don't have weak hamstrings but rather a weak butt so Kevin sent a whole bunch of exercises.....wonderful.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Hey, My Back Is Better

Well after a "short" 90 minute session with Kevin (the amazing chiropractor), I feel so much better.

He basically worked/checked on my shoulder, knee, leg, and back. Basically overall I'm in ok shape and should be able to start running again as soon as I get my orthotics. He figured that they should correct much of my foot/knee/leg problems as having flat feet, every step I take, everything rolls inward which in makes other muscles work extra harder to counter act the collapse.

With my shoulder, he said its structurally ok but probably needs some strengthening and in fact he'll be emailing me a whole bunch of exercises to help strengthening my weakness.

With my back he did a little acupuncture, applied some medication (smells like Ben Gay) and a minor back adjustment. Before he did that, he quoted the usual disclaimer how it may break my ribs. I responded Rick would kill him if he broke my ribs as my race season would be over before it started.

He also disagreed about using orthotics in my skates and was very doubtful about using them in my riding shoes as well. Who to listen to?

Ohhhhh My Back

So I was trying to do these hamstring extensions and I'm pretty sure that I did them wrong because after three reps my lower back was in pain.

Hopefully Kevin (the chiropracter) will be able to help me out today. I'm meeting him today (on Saturday) to have him check out my runner's knee. One thing I've noticed about the PT is that while he was pretty good at diagnosing my injury, he didn't prescribe any exercises so chances are this problem with happen again and again and again...

I got my new schedule yesterday and it looks pretty much of the same although I'm not sure how the switch over from water running to street running with go over with my foot/knee/leg. I'm sure more pain to come

Thursday's swim class was gruelling but at least we got to use flippers. Funny its so much easier to swim with flippers. I wonder if I can use them in my races?

Friday morning I rode for 60 minutes but didn't do the drills as my knees were a little achy which could have something to do with the fact that I using orthotics in my riding shoes and my knees aren't used to it. I also played hockey at noon. It was the last Friday skate and we only had one player on the bench. I was totally wiped out after the game and I had a meeting in Uxbridge later in the afternoon so I took a gel shot on the way up and it did the trick. Still ended up going to bed at 9:15 pm.

Good thing tomorrow is a rest day

Monday, March 22, 2010

Water Running

Well seeing that I can't run, on land at least, I thought I'd do some water running. I've done it before and found it totally boring and useless. Probably because I wasn't doing it right.

This time I tried it without any floatation aids. Gee what a difference. It was still boring but a lot more tiring and more realistic to land running. I figure I'll do this at least a couple of more times until I get my new orthotics. I used my dress shoes orthotics (as they weren't wrecked as much as my running orthotics) in my every day shoes and ended up hurting my left foot. Probably because my foot wasn't used to the support. I had to take some anti-inflams to get the swelling down for a couple of days.

The weather has turned a lot colder (today's high is only 8 degrees). I'm glad I was able to get in three rides last week but because I "ran" this morning, I'll have to ride tonight in the basement. I'll be watching the rest of Mad Men (season one). Its better than nothing.

I found an interesting website for "at home workouts."

The Hamstring Mega Blaster is hard.  This is the only exercises that deserves a name like this and it's really good for strengthening your hamstrings.

Definitely need to work on the hammies as it is a direct cause of some of my knee problems.

Thursday, March 18, 2010


Well after hurting my shoulder in December, I needed to find a swim coach and fast. Going to Personal Best triathlon clinic at McMaster where they video taped my swim, clearly showed me that I need improvement and my ever aching shoulder proved it.

Well after lots of physio in December and January, I started to look around for a Masters swim club. I chatted briefly with one of the coaches from the Markham Mallards swim club on Sunday mornings at Centennial Pool in Markham, I found out that they swim Tuesdays and Thursdays morning at 5:30 am....perfect time.

After going a couple of weeks I found that this was exactly what I needed and decided to join up.

Today's swim was tough as we did 1600 metres of kicking drills (which I really suck at) and finished up with a short 900 metres of front crawl. Am I getting better? Well I think so as it used to take me 29 strokes to cover one lap and today I was doing about 20 strokes. Time will tell if I improve on my mediorce swim time.

I'll ride outside tomorrow morning. One good thing about being off for March break is I can start my workout a little later ie like when the sun comes up. I hate riding when its pitch black outside and can't see shit in front of me.

Oh yea I gained two pounds last night. WTF???? Yesterday I lost two pounds

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

First Post

Well this is my first boring post

Not much is going on for training.

Since my last race (Scotia half marathon Sept 27/09) I didn't really take any down time and now I'm paying the price. Since Dec 2009 I have five injuries. Mostly foot/leg injuries but also shoulder (rotator cuff) from swimming like a brick. Thankfully that seems to have healed but the leg/foot injuries are driving me crazy. I'm used to being injured all the time but never this much. Something ain't right.

Finally I went to my brother's podiatrist in Ajax and it was worth the drive. I only went to him because he was cheaper than the podiatrist I've been using for like 10 years and I'm pretty happy with my decision. The guy certainly can talk as my appointment lasted almost two hours but he was certainly knowledgeable as his analysis explained why I'm always getting hurt. Part of the problem is that my right leg is two centimeters longer than my left leg because I'm bow legged and my left hip turns in to compensates and pulls everything out of whack. Oh yea my orthotics are toast so I'm getting a new pair. He also informed me that I should be using orthotics in my cycling shoes and hockey skate. Also explains why my runner's knee injury flares up every once in a while (like now).

Because my knee is still a little sore (of course I played hockey last night), I decided to try a little riding. I could definitely "feel" my knee but it wasn't too bad. It was a little chilly (4 degrees) when I left around 7:45 am but as the sun warmed up I started getting a little warm. I only went out for 41 minutes at a very easy pace of about 24 km. Funny how riding outside for 40 minutes was easy compared to riding indoors for 40 minutes.......painful.

Tomorrow.....masters swim at 5:30 am. Lots of people away because of March break