Sunday, 20 December 2009

A bump in the road...

There's something about December... every year I spend November motivated to the absolute max, getting stuck into my routine and flying towards Christmas ready to start the new year in the shape of my life... only to come to a grinding halt come month number twelve! There's just something about this month, no matter how hard I try I'm completely unable to listen to my alarm clock, ignore my lazy streak or avoid the chocolate box! This year, as if my own yule tide will power (or lack of) wasn't enough of a spanner in the athletic works I seem to have developed some kind of repetitive strain injury which is causing me a reasonable amount of discomfort through both arms when swimming and cycling. According to my good friend and physio extraordinaire Ove it's likely to be caused by too much time at my computer with bad posture... so less work and more training should do the trick then ;) In all seriousness it seems to be aggravated by swimming so I've not been in the pool for a week and will probably avoid it for another couple, cycling isn't great so other than a pre-crimbo long ride with Ben G scheduled for this Wednesday I'll be keeping off two wheels for a while. In an attempt to fix the problem I'll be partaking in a little sports massage, thinking constantly about my posture, particularly when tapping away on a keyboard, and booking an appointment with Ove asap. I've been working with a few athletes recently and have been emphasising the fact that the priority, for those people with summer goals, should be above anything else to arrive in 2010 injury free, healthy and good to go. For the moment then I'll be shelving my plans for swim PBs and bike miles in favour of a little more running and a lot more recovering. What makes things really hard is that not only do I really want to be swimming and biking there's actually nothing stopping me... except for common sense and the knowledge that if I start 2010 super fit but injured I'll be unlikely to reach the spring whereas if I compromise a little match fitness for a great foundation from which to build toward Lanzarote then 2010 will no doubt be rather special.

On the flip side of course is that running seems to be going really well at the moment... I've seen the light with regards shoes and have swapped my super heavy and somewhat clumpy Mizuno Wave Nirvanas for the lighter and somewhat smoother Mizuno Wave Inspires. For years I've avoided anything approaching lightweight shoes due to fear of getting injured but as I've said a few times, this year is about taking the odd risk in order to maximise speed. I've also got stuck into my Tuesday night tempo run and Thursday evening track sessions (12 x 400 off 2:30) and am enjoying feeling fast for the first time in quite a while. I won't bore you with the stats but due to the track being closed this week I repeated an interval session not done since this time last year and ran far quicker than 12 months ago. This morning we raced cross country with our tri club and again I was both surprised and pleased to finish a little closer to the pointy end than I'm used to. The big test of course will come on Boxing Day when H and I line up for the Chevin Chase, where my best performance came two years ago with 45:59 and 34th place...

At that I'll wish you a very happy Christmas and fall back into my December comfort zone ;)


p.s. today's pic comes from yesterday morning's parkrun where a few like minded people came together a demonstrated that with the right attitude and a little bit of teamwork great things can be achieved :)


lord_lordy said...

what made you see the light ?

I changed to all running in racing flats about 6 years ago having finally recovered from 5 years of knee problems. Since then I had nothing more than niggles and none that stopped me running. Of course now I've had my little snap (but that was one of those things).

Before you know it you'll be moving to Nike Frees and finally FiveFingers

If you've not already read it you should read Born To Run -- may change you're mind further about the benefits of these so called supportive running shoes.

Rogier, Natalie & Rhys said...

T & H,

Merry Christmas and a happy New Year

Tom said...

Hi Guys,

Reflecting on this season and particularly IMCH I felt I had played it way too safe and would be capable of going significantly faster by taking a more aggressive attitude to my racing. I looked at pretty much every aspect of my Ironman training and racing with the aim of getting faster in as many ways as possible. At over 400 grams my Mizuno Wave Nirvanas seemed an obvious place to gain a little 'free' time. Yes my cautious approach to running shoes has seen me through 12 marathons and five Ironman races without a single significant running injury... but I know I can get close to 3.10 in an Ironman marathon and in order to do that I need lighter feet ;) I also listened to a great interview on Ironman Talk with a Kiwi podiatrist who talked a lot about lighter shoes with less support giving you more feel for the road etc. and was also a fan of Mizuno due to their relatively firm ride. As with all changes they need to happen slowly over time so I've gone for the Wave Inspires which at just over 300 grams shouldn't be too much of a jump for my previously supported feet... watch this space ;) Will check out born to run, cheers :)