Saturday, December 19, 2009

Getting better

Distance 20km [total: minimalist 44km: Barefoot 144km]

Thursday was a windy day after the early morning rain cleared up. The hot weather that we had earlier in the week when the temperature touched 40C broke on the Wednesday night with rain and thunderstorms leaving Thursday cool and wet.

I ran 8km along the beach and road on my circuit that takes me up and down the beach. The outbound part was into strong south westerly winds that whipped sand up and blasted it at my legs, I needed sunglasses to keep the wind and sand out of my eyes.

I recently came across a book that was written by English 50's & 60's runner Gordon Pirie.
It is long out of print but is available on the internet for free (legally). It is eye opening in that he was trying to promote correct running style for years and was saddened to see how the running shoe industry has made shoes that make that proper running style all but impossible. He blamed them for the millions of runners that end up injured each year.
One of his tips to correct running is to stand on your tip toes and lean forward, your leg will automatically move to a position to stop you falling and you will land on your forefoot. From there you just continue to keep moving and landing on the forefoot, but not, he emphasises on the toes.
The book is called "Running Fast and Injury Free' and I can recommend it.

Putting this into practice on my beach run it feels like you are gliding along, even running into strong wind it seems like you expend so little energy that I don't need to stop and catch my breath. What a contrast to when I had my runners on, they suck the energy out of you.
On the return journey the wind was blowing me along the beach but I actually preferred it when I had the headwind as I could control my stride length better.

I am far lighter on my feet now, running along the stony beach path is easier. A woman running the other way said "I must be a sucker for punishment", I just told her to tread lightly.
My feet no longer seem to get as much abrasive damage as they did a couple of months ago mainly due to the way my foot contacts the ground.

I missed my Friday run as I forgot some vital equipment, namely running shorts, I was also a bit pushed for time due to having a party on that evening.
So, Saturday morning, the sky is overcast but not cold, maybe 20C, good running weather.
I headed back to the beach but this time ran a longer course that took me north from the Jetty at Grange to Esplanade at Semaphore a distance of 6km, the beach is quieter up this way. I ran the entire distance without stopping then turned around and ran back.
When I set off I didn't feel that good, breakfast was only an hour earlier, and my tendons ached a bit from standing up all yesterday evening.
By the time I got back to Grange, I felt almost like I could go at racing speed. My legs and body are really responding well to shoeless running. If I ever buy any kind of running shoe again it must only be a lightweight racer with minimal padding. The only thing is that when you go into a sports store these days all you will find his heavily padded runners as people believe all the hype about the shock absorbing capability. Lets hope the enlightenment spreads.


No comments:

Post a Comment