Physical Therapy and Wisdom

Physical Therapy

I had my fourth PT session this morning. Hilda and Nick over at Harvard-Vanguard in Somerville are helping me recover from my hamstring problems. It is a slow process and I am hoping that eventually I will be able to put this injury behind me (no pun intended) and get back to my training.

I’ve been incorporating the stretching exercises they give me into my daily routine and try to do the full cycle of stretches at least twice a week. It’s amazing how much stretching you can do while watching TV or waiting for the coffee to brew. I love to multi-task so adding stretches to time that would just be spent sitting or standing around is fantastic.

My regular training routine is about 20 miles per week. When I’m training for a marathon I like to average 25-30 and peak around 35 miles per week. With a job and family it is difficult to find the time for this much running. I know that if I want to improve my marathon time I need to get more miles in per week.

Since I am working through an injury my plan is to get back to 20 miles per week and stay at this level for the next few months. I can’t afford to push it and aggravate the injury, so I’m just going to have to suck it up and run my next few races just for fun. It’s not like I was ever out for prize money or anything like that. But, like most runners, I do enjoy seeing my times improve.


Like so many of my close-to-middle-aged running mates, I am looking to keep running into my 80s. I’ve seen plenty of older guys at races so I know it can be done. The old gang is also realizing that we do have limitations and that our bodies will punish us if we do not respect those limits.

I had big plans for the summer running season, but I screwed up. Now I’m just hoping to finish my next three races and not cause any additional damage to myself. Here are a few hard learned lessons that I mentioned I’d pass on to you when I started this blog.

One lesson is that you need to respect your body and understand your limitations. It’s easy to get over-confident when you are feeling good and things are going your way. These are the times you need to be careful, when you are pushing your boundaries. As athletes we need to push our limits, our boundaries, in order to grow and progress towards our goals. Just be aware that at your peak and when you are most confident is the time you are most likely to make a mistake and/or injure yourself.

Another lesson is the famous 10% rule. Hal Higdon and other running guru’s will tell you that you should not increase you mileage by more than 10% per week. Any more than that and you risk injury. I spent three weeks traveling or being sick earlier this summer. During this time I ran one 5K each week. This caused my fitness level to drop off significantly. When I got back to training my body was not ready.

Trying to go from 3.2 miles per week to 20+ is not a good idea. I can tell you from my own personal and painful experience. Don’t ignore the experts like I did and think the rule doesn’t apply to you.

This Sunday my long run will be 8.2 miles. Many in my club will do the full 16.2 route but I’m not up to that level yet.

Have a great weekend, get in some good running and thanks for stopping by.

©2012 anagelin

Recovery and PT

Happy Friday everyone! In many areas of the US the heat wave continues. Here in New England the heat has broken and the weekend should be comfortable and great for running.

Recovery and PT begins

I had my first appointment with the physical therapist on Monday. She gave me a series of stretches to do but no definitive diagnosis, so I’m not sure which muscle or tendon is causing my pain. She told me that it was okay for me to run short distances, so I was happy about that.

Things are feeling better and I do not have any unusual pain while running. I still have pain while driving my car. I think it is the piriformis muscle and not the hamstring that is the cause of my pain. While the piriformis and hamstring can both cause pain in the same area, I’ve never had pain like this before.

Since I am feeling better,I think the exercises are working. I plan to incorporate them into my normal stretching routine to help prevent future injuries.

Recovery run

VERT,SasquatchI ran the VERT Sasquatch 2.3 mile trail race last Sunday. It was my first ever trail race and it was fun. Trail running is a little different from street running and I would like to do more trail running in the future. All three beer vendors had great stuff and I’d drink them all again. They were NOTCH, Slumbrew and Pretty Things.

Tuesday night I ran 4.5 miles with the running club. We did a little walking and it was hot but I felt okay. I also ran a 5K at work. For a guy who is preparing for a Fall marathon, 10.1 miles in a week is pretty poor. But it’s better than nothing.

This Sunday I’ll join the club for their Sunday morning long run, but I’ll do the short course and see how it goes.

Have a great weekend, enjoy the summer weather and get in some good miles.

©2012 anagelin