Sunday, 31 May 2015
I also changed the battery in my heart rate strap beforehand. I've wondered if there was an issue for a few months and bought a packet of CR2032 coin cells fro eBay but hadn't fitted a new one. I think it did help as the recording in the early part of the run was far more stable than it has been for a while.
Let's hope all OK tomorrow. I'm entering 'tiger country'...
Saturday, 30 May 2015
I suspect these are dun-coated Highland cattle but would welcome correction. I only saw four but there might be others free on the moor. They make a change from sheep but might be a bit scary if one crept up on you.
Anyway, the run was Ok. I didn't really notice my ankle until the 12km mark and on the descent through Limb valley I became aware of my left knee. Things weren't too bad when I got home and I easily managed to pop to the shops and cut the grass so no real problems. However this was my first run over 20km since the Canalathon so inevitably there is a bit of effort and retraining involved.
At the start of the run my heart rate data were all over the show - sometimes ridiculously high. Often this is due to the contacts being dry but that wasn't the case as I repeatedly moistened them. For the latter two thirds, or perhaps even four fifths the readings were fine. Maybe the level of sweat had built up enough to maintain the pick up. Might be worth swapping the battery to see if that helps.
Friday, 29 May 2015
Earlier this week I saw an online article commenting that whilst technique is important in swimming one mustn't forget strength and fitness. Today I really felt that both of those were lacking.
Throughout this week I've felt weak even though last week was a nominal rest week. Circuits on Wednesday felt tough - although I did the run there and back a little faster than usual. before that, I could barely face going out on Tuesday for a run and eventually cut it a bit short.
Monday, 25 May 2015
This weekend we visited friends in Kendal. It was suggested that I might enter the 30th Hutton Roof fell race but as it was a rest week and my ankle is still troubling me it didn't seem wise. From what I heard the terrain is a bit rough underfoot and not ideal for delicate ankles and feet.
Throughout the walk I was aware of trying to trend carefully and couldn't decide how to put my right foot down. This is hard work and very irritating until I managed to forget about it for a few km at a time. Really it was no trouble nor painful just not entirely trustworthy.
This morning I received a very thorough leg massage from one of the friends who is training as a Sport Therapist and at that stage of competence and confidence where you get good work executed very conscientiously. It's a pity he doesn't live a lot closer. All the usual suspects were tight, and now some hours later a bit tender, but I'm sure they'll be improved in the long run.
Tuesday, 19 May 2015
The physio looked at my feet and decided that they were very tight and rigid, an issue I've been aware of for many years. She was able to loosen them up a little which eased tension on the dorm of my right foot, possibly around Extensor Digitorum Brevis. I've been given some exercises in an attempt to educate the intrinsic muscles of my feet to be more dynamic, both in contraction and importantly, in relaxing. An interesting observation is that I am happiest with my feet walking around barefoot at home, Ok with them in lowish running shoes and find a new pair of trail walking shoes (quite rigid with 12mm heel drop) the worst. Perhaps I've become used to less than 10mm of drop?
Sunday, 17 May 2015
The teacher gave me some tips about my stroke, in particular that I probably wasn't exhaling sufficiently for the effort I was making. This was also linked to a rushed arm stroke that gives a short window for inspiration. Having said that, I didn't feel I'd settled into my stroke at all in the half hour due to the short pool length.
He also thought that I should adopt a thumb-first entry style to reduce air capture on hand entry which some online 'experts' feel is bad practice nowadays. Here's an example but there are others! This is probably trivia but anything with a risk of injury isn't ideal for a stiff 50 year old.
Saturday, 16 May 2015
This morning was one of those days with a hot sun and a cold wind. This dependent on my exposure to the wind and my effort I varied between too hot and too cold and put my jacket on and off a fair few times. The run took me via Devil's Elbow to Oxstones and was just under 20km. This is my third week of long runs so next week will have to be a bit gentler. As usual (now!) I tried to keep my heart rate below 140bpm and so walked the key ascents and didn't rush the descents either. After all I still have the dodgy knees and a slightly troublesome ankle.
|Fresh spring leaves at Whirlow|
Friday, 15 May 2015
After finishing a little early at work I went for a swim with the goal being to do sets of two lengths. That worked fairly well although I took longish rests between them. After 10 or so sets I put my mind to doing a set of 3 lengths and actually did a block of 5 or 6; it's not all that clear from my data. A key result though was managing the final 3 lengths in just under 3 minutes. My goal is to improve my technique and fitness to achieve 1km in a 30 minutes total so this is a step in the right direction.
Monday, 11 May 2015
I agreed with myself that I'd let form slip a bit to focus on not taking a break. Naturally I didn't aim for 1000m non-stop, I started with 2 lengths, that's 66m. I paused my timer whilst resting between pairs to get an idea of my pace. Or that was the theory, indeed I did pause the timer but hadn't realised that a pause didn't make a length mark as well. So really I've little idea of how many I did, I'd say at least 10 of these. After that I did 3 sets of 3 lengths (a whole 100m!). The 3rd lengths were rather scrappy but the main thing is that they happened. Moreover I felt myself regulating breathing during the 3 lengths, sometimes more exhaling, sometimes less; almost as if I was adjusting to to the load. Perhaps with single lengths your body can't get a clear idea of what it needs to do?
Sunday, 10 May 2015
By last Friday day my morning heart rate was raised by nearly 20%, presumably due to the sequence of long run; another run, circuits and a late night (with too much wine). Saturday's run felt tougher than I'd hoped so this morning I was surprised that my waking heart rate had dropped back halfway.
Midmorning I found time to chill for a few minutes and popped on the monitoring strap. I was pleased to see my heart rate was further reduced at its normal rest rate and the standardised HRV was 73 which is pretty average for me.
I doubt that the extra few hours had much of a recovery effect or that breakfast had been beneficial to that extent. Hopefully tomorrow I'll be starting afresh on a week and will be strong enough to do a 10% mileage increase rather than the step-back I'd thought looked inevitable on Friday/Saturday.
Saturday, 9 May 2015
The weather forecast was poor so it seemed ideal to stay in the valleys or most of the time, just making the high point of Oxytones for a few minutes. I set off through the the parks from Endcliffe up to Forge Dam.
From the dam Porter Clough was as tough as usual and I was glad that I'd already allowed myself to walk. Once I emerged on the moors the headwind was ever so strong and made the stretch to Oxstones fairly unpleasant. From the trig point though the wind was on my back and most of the journey was downhill.
I was satisfied to be under 7min/km including several photo stops and that my ankle hadn't been a problem. Every so often I was aware of it, but nothing that made me think I was over stressing it.
Sunday, 3 May 2015
A little more online reading suggests that forefoot and midfoot strike is more likely to irritate the muscle than heel strike, which makes sense, so perhaps there's a bit of that to blame? I've also spotted a few hints linking peroneus longus tension to first ray metatarsalgia (i.e. pain on the ball of foot) so my observation of that is nothing unusual. Importantly, if that is present it's more likely that the muscle is tight and making things worse. I need to find some good literature to support these aspects!
Saturday, 2 May 2015
Today I planned to do 18km to achieve a week's total of 30km and to ring the changes I did the eastern part of the Sheffield Round Walk. This is a deceptively hard loop and has highlighted weaknesses in the past. In several of the woods the bluebells are in bloom and I thought the best area was Lady Spring Wood which has the perfect combination of dappled sunlight and ancient woodland.
|Slightly tweaked in GIMP|
Within the first few km I wondered how the run would develop as I had niggles from the right ankle but these settled quickly and I committed to carry on. Hopefully this won't prove to be a mistake. I kept the pace very gentle with a slowish target heart rate and walked on both ascents and descents. My goal was to be little faster than what is becoming my target 'race pace' of 7min/km. During the run I felt calf muscles, ITB tension, peroneus tension, patellar tendons, sore quad insertions but as the irritation moved around I hoped that each was trivial and would pass; which they did.
The roller and food at home made things feel better but now, early afternoon, I feel to be stiffening up and I think more roller work and stretching is called for.