Sunday, January 31, 2010

Tanned calves

The 3.8 km Tan running track around the Melbourne Botanical Gardens would have to be my favourite place to run. This morning I did two laps in Vibrams, one lap barefoot and then finished off with another Vibram lap.

Felt fantastic while I was running and managed to keep a nice steady pace at around 5:10, the only issue at the time was some rubbing inside the left shoe on the second lap. Knowing that I would get a blister, which I did, so I went for the next lap barefoot. Wheatie went home half way through the last lap because he was tired or had sore nipples or something.

After a 10 minute car ride up to the observatory cafe I got out and the calves were all seized up like rocks. A little stretch and light walk and they were good although I'll probably feel a bit of action down there tomorrow.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Give me five!!!!

My new Vibram Sprints turned up today, garish, red and awful looking. I took them for a 6km spin with Nic and Taj making sure that we ran at a slow and steady pace, a very cruisy 7:30.

After about a km I noticed that I was hitting the ground too hard and there was definitely too much heel in my strike. This balanced out after awhile and then I had to contend with the achilles for the next km or so. After awhile I started to settle into a rhythm and felt a little exertion in the calves and my ankle region felt as though it was working although not straining. I concentrated on running as light as I could by visualising that I was a Navajo running through the woods in moccasins. I don't know if the Navajo ever ran through the woods in moccasins but it doesn't matter really.

Overall I would have to say that the Vibrams are way good to run in and that I can see big possibilities with these guys. Could they help lead me to the end of achilles pain and plantar fasciitis? Only time will tell: man I hope so! I've got marathons calling out to me, yeeeehaaaar!!!!
A cruisy 7.2 km along the Yarra and around the Tan at a 5:16 pace.

Everything generally felt ok - no pain in the calves and no more than usual pain in the Achilles.

My new VFF Sprints turned up today, so maybe I'll take them for a spin tonight.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Longest. Barefoot. Run. Ever :-) lol

..........and a couple of good ol blisters to show for it!

So I ran about 3k up the Yarra and then another 3.8 around the Tan in the trusty old Mizuno's. Now I seem to have seriously changed my running style because the old calves were mooing like crazy by the time I'd finished the Tan lap.

After hobbling across the Anderson Street bridge I decided to take off the treads and run home au naturale. It actually felt good most of the way with only the onset of a couple hugo blisters slowing me down over the last km. Although there was a 300m patch where I ran with chewy stuck to the front pad on the right foot. That was a little annoying as it slowly collected little bits of gravel untill it turned into bolder size and forced me to stop and remove it.

Run stats

34 minutes for 6.8 km in the Mizuno (5:00 minute pace)

20 minutes for 3 km barefoot (6:40 minute pace)

Saturday, January 23, 2010

My running mate

Originally uploaded by the Red Right Hand
This is Taj my running partner.

I'm still building up his endurance, he's a little slow and can't go much further than 10k. His biggest problem is that he wears himself out sprinting up and down the creek bed. The age old trap of going out too hard too early!

Softly softly....

10k run - down the Dandenong Creek trail to Wantirna Rd and back.

Easy pace, felt good. Worked at light footfalls and attempting to work from the hips and not push off with the feet. The achilles hurt like bitches when I first started, then eased back after a couple of km's.

Took Taj the Labradoodle out with me and we had a nice time with a fine mist of rain falling for about 60% of the run.

Friday, January 22, 2010

A wet embrace as we moved across the floor.....

A warm and steamy dojo leaves us all dripping in sweat especially when grappling is the order of the night. Thankfully it was all stand up grappling working on the best arm positions and practicing with using gentle resistance against force. Earlier on we did some shell defence and light sparring with straight punches only.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Tuesday MMA

A basic run down on what we did on Tuesday night with Shihan Richard.

Jab, cross, elbow. Grab opponent on opposite shoulder and pull them into a knee smash.

* Note to self - Remember to keep your guard up and especially do not wave your free arm around when making a move.

Jab, cross, rear downward shin kick (same side as the cross)


Jab, cross, fake rear shin & switch. Opposite shin kick to the inside of the leg.

* Note to self. Practice footwork and direction, be sure that kicks are deliberate, powerful and on target. If its not there then don't throw it.

Had some minor cramping in the calves, no big deal though.

Did some of the combo exercises with Brett in a sparring type fashion. He's great to work with as he has a fluid and continuous method. he also has good cardio and just keeps on going.


A 7.2 km run taking in a lap of the Tan and some Yarra River. I concentrated on redirecting pain from my achilles to my calves. This successfully relieved the strain on the achilles and they felt ok, only problem was that the calves cramped up big time.

By the time I had finished the Tan lap the calves were cooked, so I crossed the Princes Bridge to head back to the office. They were so cramped up by this stage that I was getting shaky and was starting to wonder if I would actualy make it back.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

MMA back in full swing

I went to a couple of MMA classes last week which were basically a make up class that had students ranging from white to brown belt. They were good classes to get back into the swing of things. They were not overly demanding from a mental point of view although one of them was physicaly demanding. At 7.30 it was still about 42 degrees outside and warmer inside. Quite a few students faded out in the second half of the class and had to excuse themselves.

Last night was my first session for the year in the brown to black class and it was another step up, as was expected. Early on I found myself getting confused as the instructions came out hard and fast and the combinations had a greater degree of difficulty.

After a good 15 to 20 minutes warmup with Ralph, our instuctor for the night entered the dojo and it was none other than Shihan Richard Norton. This was the first time I have had a class with him and I would have to say that he is awesome times 10, and that's being a little reserved.

My running is going well having clocked up about 101 km in the first 18 days of the year. This total score is close to Wheaty, who having set himself a goal to run everyday has clocked up about 105km in the first 18 days. My running is usually every second day with a few consecutive days here and there.

Later today I will be picking up my first pair of Vibram Five Fingers. I have had enough of Achilles and Plantar Fasciitis pain, so intend to try a bit of barefooting and near barefooting with the VFF.

On Monday night I went for a slow 5.6 k with the dog and did run the last 1km home in barfeet. MY pace was very slow and the steps did feel a little awkward as I had to adjust my gait. When I got home my feet were in a fair bit of pain from the existing problems and whatever new joy the barfooting brought, but here's the thing, next morning my feet felt better than they have in a few weeks. Still not great but noticably better, maybe a little tighter in the calves than normal though. Certainly last night I was getting some minorr cramps in the calves whilst I was out on the mats.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Just run anyway...........

Really was not feeling like running today. Had a headache and felt a bit sluggish but just went out anyway. After a couple of kilometres none of that mattered and it was just like any other run, in fact it felt ok as I settled into a nice pace.

Did a lap of the Tan and a bit of Yarra river for 9.8 km at 5:10 pace.

Mostly feeling good below the knees, better than it has for some time. I'm convinced that I am running through this achilles annoyance by changing my stride, which is getting easier to maintain.

My 10k pace is picking up nicely at the moment.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Too hot to even walk outside

The temperature climbed over 40 and I said no way, today was a day for the boring old treadmill at the air conditioned gym.

I ended up rattling out 7.33 km at 04:46 pace, which was not too bad considering that I never felt as though I was pushing things. That's about the pace I ran last year's Run 4 the Kids, so it would be good to go a bit faster this year.

The only thing that will hold me back will be achilles pain, which was actually ok today. Didn't feel anything on the right side and after settling into a good rythm at 3.5 km the pain in the left side started to become way less noticeable. Afterwards both achilles were a little tender, but certainly nothing to get worked up about.

Whilst running on the tready I concentrated on light foot falls, managing to keep the whir of the machine louder than anything I was doing.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Sheeeet its hot!

I was doing a job on Saturday looking at trees along a 4km stretch of road that needs to have some clearing done for bushfire safety. After looking at the job and throwing around a few ideas we decided to paint markers on the road at 100m intervals. After painting the first marker I quickly decided that the only efficient way of doing this job was to run and paint with Dad driving behind to let me know when we click over each 100.

I'm putting this one day as a 4k run at 30 minutes with all the stop and start and I did have to run back a couple of times because I forgot what number I had just painted :)

It must have been at least 36 degrees out there, maybe hotter in a couple of spots. Only 4k but I was pretty happy when I got to the end. Dad thinks I'm a little insane.....I think he could be on to something. Summer sucks arse...... there is nothing good about temperature over 30.

I ran in a pair of old Converse Chucks, not too bad but a bit sloppy and sweaty towards the end. Didn't notice too much pain below the knees, maybe a bit in the left achilles and around the outside of the left ankle, just underneath.

Friday, January 08, 2010

hot hot hot hot.......

The plan this morning was to run my 10 k Yarra and Tan lap route with an extra lap around the Tan. Everything was going well until I finished the second lap and decided to take a short cut back to the office.

It was probably around 30 to 34 degrees which left me dripping with sweat on the first lap. The worry was that on the second lap I started to stop sweating, so I caved in and took the quick way home.

I ended up running 11.2 k at 5:57 pace.

For the most part I deliberately went slow trying to stay at around 6:00 minute pace so that I could concentrate on my stride and feel where the pain was coming from below my knees. Generally it was my left achilles and the calf on the right side. The calf pain felt as though it was deep inside the calf and it didn't bother me that much. The achilles on the other hand was annoying.

I found that I was able to minimise the achilles pain by concentrating on a short step stride whilst attempting to stay as relaxed as possible. My left foot fall feels a little tighter than the right, possibly better hip movement on the right side.

Mobility of the ankle may be contributing to the problem, so I will do some work on the ankle joints and stretching in all directions, not just the achilles and calves.

Before going out I ran 500m barefoot on the treadmill. Through that experience I was certainly banging my feet down too hard.

Plenty to work on and unfortunately there won't be much in the way of speed work unless I can get these feet right.

Running tally after day 8

50.2 km at an average of 6.25 k per day or 10 k per run. A nice start and well on target - at this rate I should hit the target in only 321 days :)
Ok, so my plan is to run 2,010 km in 2010 and on the morning of the 8th January I've got to say that I'm off to a good start having racked up about 39km.

Friday 1 January - about 15k in the Dandenongs - a bit of trail running with Wheaty to kick the year off on a good note

Saturday 2 January - a cruisy 6.5 k run with the dog along the Dandenong Creek trail in Bayswater.

Monday 4 January - picked up the pace a little for a 7.5 k run along the Yarra and around the Tan

Wednesday 6 January - A bit longer and a bit faster along the Yarra and around the Tan for a nice 10k at around 5:15 pace. Later that night I ran a few k with the Hump Day Runners but it was a very slow and easy pace, a social pace you could say

Friday 8 January - I have a plan, lets see how it turns out!

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

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