Monday, February 25, 2008

1st training run - stiff knee

I did 3 miles today! My knee is a bit stiff, so I walked several times. It felt pretty good.

My training this week:
M - 3 mi
T - 30 min + strength
W - 3 mi
Th - Rest
F - 3 mi
S - 3 mi
Su -Rest

What am I training for?? Good Question!! I'm definitely doing a 5k May 3. The Big Lake Half marathon May 10 is a dream, but if the knee holds - who knows! L and her husband are running it, so I'm going to either run it, or watch and cheer!!

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Ipod Nike+

I have a new toy!
For Christmas, my FI gave me a productRED ipod nano to replace my dying Sandisk Sansa. He even had it engraved with "just start running" on the back - very cool!

So for my birthday, I bought myself the Nike+ sport kit for the nano, which includes this little receiver for the ipod and a sensor on my shoe. The sensor on the shoe talks to the receiver and tracks my speed, distance, and time at a remarkable accuracy! No, I don't have Nike shoes (they are WAY too narrow), but they make a little "suit" for the sensor, so it sits on the top of my shoe. I also got the Nike armband which is pretty comfy. I've only used it on 2 runs: one on the dreadmill, one with L, but it works pretty well so far.

The great thing is the nike+ uploads my runs to my nike+ web account every time I plug in the ipod! Now my runs will be posted on the blog right away (see red widget!) Pretty cool technology!

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

IT Band Exercises

I thought I'd share with the world some of my PT exercises for my IT Band injury (and weak butt). My situation may be different from yours, so use/do them at your own risk!

1. 5 min. warm-up on a bike, treadmill, or brisk walk

2. Leg swings. 15 leg swings with each leg. Both front to back and side to side. (This is also a great for warm up your joints before a run!)

3. Back Lunge with Twist. From upright position, lunge backward as you begin to twist towards the "inside of front leg. As you drop into the deep lunge (you can put knee on the ground, I do) twist all the way around and "look behind you." Do 2-3 times on each side.

4. Walking Lunges. Lunge forward. Keep knee in line with foot. Your toes should stay in front of your knee. Do five on each leg.

5. Knee Grabs. Walk forward while bringing one knee to your chest and pulling up on it. Stand up to tall and hold. Switch Legs. Do five on each leg.

6. Step Ups
* Keeping an upright posture, Step up with your right foot (slowly, count to 5).
* Complete the step by standing, feet flat on the step.
* Step back down with the same leg and repeat 10-15 times. Do 2 sets on each leg.

Maintain a straight posture the whole time, using only your quadriceps and gluteus (buttock) muscles to lift your body weight up.

7. On the Ball.
Bridges. 2 sets, 10 reps.
Reverse Hypers. 2 sets, 10-15 reps.
Flutter Kicks. 2 sets, 10-15 reps.
Wall Squats. 2 sets, 10-15 reps.
Hamstring Curls. 2 sets, 10-15 reps.

8. 1-2 minutes on the foam roller - This is a great message for the IT band.

I have been doing this routine 2-3 times a week and will continue throughout my training. The leg swings, back lunges, knee grabs and walking lunges are great for before and after a run!

Friday, February 15, 2008

I've graduated!

After 4 weeks of PT for my IT band, I am allowed to run again! Yipee! The PT said my main issue is not really my IT band, but weak gluts. I have a weak butt! HA! Actually my weak butt causes my running form to degrade as I approach 6-7 miles. Once that happens my IT band tries to compensate and causes me PAIN!

So my first run in a month was 2 miles with L and her husband (they were my chaperons!) It felt ok. My knee and leg were fine, but my breathing sucked! So much for maintaining a base! I guess I need to slowly work back into a training regimen.

I think the key to keeping the pain away is to keep up the butt exercises and to stretch before and after running. My PT gave me some great butt exercises and active stretches that I will post next week (with pictures!)

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

I'm old!

Today I leave my youth behind! I'm 30! yikes!

Actually I don't feel 30. I woke up feeling the same as I did yesterday - achy, grumpy, and sore! With all the pain I've been going though with this IT band thing, you'd think I was 80!

On the positive side, I've moved into a new running age group - 30-39!! No more racing against college kids! (granted the 5 year olds and nuns still beat me, so why should i care!)