Sunday, 26 September 2010


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Sunday, 19 September 2010


We runners are positive people, Ok so we moan a bit when we're injured, but generally we're pretty upbeat. To prove this head to dailymile. For those who are not aware of the site, dailymile is a social training log, make friends share your training and stay motivated. This is where I go to get a big dose of motivation and inspiration. Everyone is so positive with each other, there is no negativity, and a great place for athletes to learn from one another.

Your profile page gives you a breakdown of your weeks training and shows your latest posts and friendly comments.

As well as being a social network, you can also use dailymile as a detailed training log.

There's also great forum pages where you can discuss categories like Running, Triathlon,Cycling, along with a whole lot more with other athletes.

I have a question in the forum under 'General Running' Who would you run with?. I've asked other runners - If you could run a mile with anybody dead or alive, who would it be and what would your question be to them?

I've had some great and interesting answers, to date:

  • Doris Day, it would be the happiest, musical mile with her amazing upbeat personality. My question would be - is it really windy in the windy city? - Melissa W

  • Katarina Witt, my absolute figure skating idol who I wanted to be just like. I would ask - how do you make those triple salcows, toe loops and lutz'z look so easy when all I can manage is just a single??? - Rebecca G

  • Tough question. I have two answers: 1. Pele; 1282 goals scored in 1363 matches; how is that possible? 2. Lance Armstrong; what do you do when your mind is telling you to quit? - Jonathon L

  • Oooh,Prefontaine Would love to go for a run with Tyson Gay. Lopez Lomong,I'd probably be in too much awe to be asking questions, but if Lomong, I'd want to talk to him about Sudan.-Holly T

  • Sporting wise, it would be Sir Steve Redgrave, 5 Olympic Golds in 5 Olympic games, making him the greatest Olympian ever. My question would be, how did you keep yourself motivated, fresh and still feel the love for your sport over such a long period of time?- Melissa W

  • Mary Decker. She was one of my favs in high school when I picked up distance running - Jim H

  • Mostly people who aren't famous who I know through the internet and what to connect a real persona to their internet presence. Having grown up around many people of fame and many more of supposed fame... there isn't much about being famous that impresses me, so... its all just normal people too numerous to name. - Bo A

  • Don Kardong, because he is funny. I'd ask him about the 1976 Olympic marathon where he came in 4th. - Mark D

  • I would run a mile with my oldest Sister Tracy. She ran track back in the day doing the Mile and the last leg of the Mile Relay. Very fast on her feet. She walks a lot now, and if only we could run 1-mile together it would please this runners heart. Also Valedictorian in her class with grades that were better that a pot of gold. Truly a role model for everyone that knew her. Thanks Sis, for giving me the heart to run. I love it.I would ask her what if felt like going to the (State High School Track Meet), something her brother never accomplished in the 2-mile run.I guess I'm a simple guy, but that's my heart. I would even buy her a new pair of shoes if she wanted me to, hahaha. God Bless..+ Jimmy. ( =  - Jimmy J

So head over to Dailymile, make friends join in the forums, and go and get yourself a great big helping of motivation. I would like to thank all my friends on the dailymile for all their support especially while I've been out injured.

Monday, 13 September 2010

Achillies Injury - Complete Recovery Guide

Sport Injury Clinics are expensive places, I should know. So I thought why not share what I have learned through having my own injury. This may not be specific to everyone but I reckon this is a pretty good guide to anyone who has suffered or is suffering with an Achillies Injury. I have commented on the injury through older posts but I'd thought I would bring it all together in this Post.

OK lets rewind 9 weeks. This was the point to when I realised on a 12 mile run that I had to stop. The trouble with an Achillies injury is that although usually stiff first thing in the morning it warms up as you get up an about, so at the start of a run there is usually very little pain.

By the end of this specific run though I had pains shooting through my calf muscles that suggested enough was enough.

Although the Internet is a wonderful place to get advice, I decided I needed some proffesional advice personal to me.

The following is advice given to me for my specific injury. Please seek your own proffesional advice initially. But hopefully the advice below will be helpful to anyone who is suffering from a similar injury.

1. Using a foam roller

You can purchase a roller on the Internet or any good Sports Store. Firstly sit on the floor with your feet resting on the roller. Now lift yourself off the floor with your arms and hands at the side of you, put one leg on top of the other (as shown in the diagram) and roll yourself forward and back from the ankle to under the knee. As you roll back towards your heart push down more weight with your top leg to really get deep into the muscle. If you feel a particular spot, stop for a moment to give more time on that particular spot.

Make sure to work all around the muscles by turning your feet inwards and outwards to get to the side of the muscles. Spend about 3 minutes per leg.

To get a more intense workout on the muscles you can replace the roller for a tennis ball and really work on the problem areas.

For your information the two muscles that you are loosening here are the Gastrocnemius (the big bulky one) which attaches to the heel with the Achillies Tendon and the lower muscle the Soleus. In my case these muscles are so tight which is causing strain on the Achillies.

After completing the above for two weeks

2. Foot Exercises

The great thing about this exercise is that you can do this anywhere, any time. At your desk or on the bus! Probably not while you're driving though!

While sitting down extend your leg and gently pull your foot up towards you, twist to the left, point your toes down away from you and finally twist to the right. All the movement needs to be in the foot only from the ankle. This is a good exercise to get some strength back in the ankle area, aim to complete this for a few minutes each foot, 3 times a day.

3. One leg balance

Ok I'm guessing not many of us are expert tight rope walkers, so if you need something to grab onto near by you when you do this exercise I would recommend it!

This again gets strength back into the feet and through the core of the body. Raise one foot of the ground and what you're aiming for here is to keep balance for 2 minutes per leg. You will wobble around when first attempting this. Notice the small movements in the foot as you balance this is great in strengthing your feet and ankles.

4. Gastroc stretch

Remember this is the big bulky calf muscle. Stand in front of a wall in the stance as shown in the diagram. With feet flat you need to stretch out the back leg and lean forward slighty. The important thing here is to keep your back leg straight. Don't go to far into the stretch, you're looking for a 5 out of 10 feeling in the muscle. If it's hurting ease of a little and take in deep breaths while performing this exercise to get the oxygen to the muscle. Complete for a few minutes on each leg. 
5. Soleus stretch

This is the lower of the calf muscles. You peform this exercise exactly as the previous but this time, keeping your back leg foot flat bend your knee. This time you will feel the pull lower down. Again deep breathing with a few minutes on each leg and ease of the bend if you feel too much pain.
6. The Recovery Run

This is where I'm at now. I've been performing the above for about 5 weeks now (I have not run for 9). So the next step is getting back to running. Obviously this needs to be performed slowly and i'm afraid if you've not run for this sort of time, you are back to square one!

Firstly complete the two above stretches, walk for five minutes, before again stretching. Now a 5 minute slow jog (Any pain, STOP!). Stretch again, finish with a five minute walk guessed it STRETCH again. When you're back home sitting in front of your computer reading the 'Running OK in the UK blog!!! Ice the Achillies, 3 minutes on, 3 minutes off. Repeat 3 times.

You now need to rest for a couple of days before repeating the above running protocol (you can still do all the above exercises in between). If everything was Ok then add 5 minutes to each run when you go out.

I hope the above is helpful to someone. It's a pretty long boring post if you are not suffering with this type of injury, but it is a very common one so maybe useful in the future but I hope not.

I've put in a couple of video links from the sportsinjuryclinic website which show the types of massage which can acompany the above exercises.