Monday, October 18, 2004

Next Year

Spent a very chilly Saturday morning at the Richfield High School Alumni Cross Country meet. This year I was a "mere" participant, next year I vow to run it. It's only two miles - - but that's been difficult these past months.

That night I read an article in Runner's World about something called the "Pose Method". The Pose was developed by a scientist schooled under the old Soviet system where running form always meant more than in the West. His theory (in a nutshell) is that the traditional heel-strike running style of many runners and joggers puts too much strain on the system, resulting in injuries. The Pose requires you lean slightly forward (the article likens it to "falling" forward) and landing on your midfoot which can absorb more shock. (WARNING: - a midfoot strike takes more muscle strength in the legs - especially the calf/achilles. Some who try this method report achilles related injuries.)

Well I got to thinking. When I underwent PT a few years ago, a video analysis of my running style showed I was a midfoot striker. The PT said that indicated I spent time on the track running "shorter" distances. True - I loved the 1/2 mile in junior high and high school. You can't run a fast half-mile on your heels. When I first entered PT I was suffering a calf problem - - probably related to my mid-foot style -as well as knee problems. Her suggestion was to work the muscles of my calf and quads to better support my knee, and switch to a heel strike.

I've never really gotten "better". Heel-striking seemed to work OK at first, but lately I start hobbling after 100 yards. After reading the article I was inspired to return to my mid-foot strike.

Inspired by memories of my athletic youth, and stoked up to try the Pose, I woke up Sunday morning bound and determined to run. After M and Mom returned from swimming lessons, I set out. Using the new (but probably incorrect or at least modified) Pose Method, I completed about 1.5 miles.

The "Plan" for now is to try to run at least 2 times a week, continuing Yoga and walking, and hope for the best - - at least 2 miles at next year's alumni meet.

2 comments:

amy said...

Hmmmm....maybe I'll try the mid-foot thing. My knees have been killing me....and the whole "quad strengthening thing" hasn't worked for me either. Nothing beats a good 5 mile run, though....sigh...guess we aren't 15 anymore!

Sue A said...

Go John G GO!!! I hope those 1.5 miles felt great!!