The knee joint is the largest and most complicated joint in the body. As a runner it is also one of the peskiest joints when it comes to injury. As a Pilates instructor, I find that ITB (Iliotibial Band Syndrome) is not only one of the most common injuries that people seek help for, but it is also the most common injury that athletes try and avoid. ITB is caused by the iliotibial band. The Iliotibial band is a thick band of fibers that begins at the iliac crest (the border of the most prominent bone of the pelvis) in the pelvis and runs on the lateral or outside part of the thigh until it attaches into the tibia (shinbone). The gluteal or buttock muscle fibers and the tensor fascia latae (muscles of the hip joint) attach to it, and the band acts to coordinate muscle function and stabilize the knee. The ITB, which is like hard plastic, rubs against the lateral femoral epicondyle, which creates a pain and inflammation on the outside of the knee. Tightness is also felt on the outside of the knee and pain turns to burning or stinging during running (especially on downhills).
There has been a lot of opinions on compression & cold water immersion as means of recovery, taking into account recent research on Compression Garments and Cold Water Immersion which I will cover in this article.
As promised here is my take on having a coach/ structured training program…
Well firstly let me start off by clearing the air, one does not need to be a pro athlete to have a coach, in fact there is probably more need for the non-pro to have a coach, than the pro.
Let’s look at a runner’s life: at some point a person wakes up to the wonderful world of running!!
They take to the streets or mountains, and soon find a route, and that becomes the weekly norm, the comfort zone, until they decide to take the next step and take part in a race or two.
In a nutshell, running can be the best fix, it means many things to different people - better fitness levels, part of an overall health program, a challenge, a de-stressor, quiet time.. But whatever the personal motivation is, we keeping putting on the shoes and heading out the door, over and over again.
Another week down and hopefully the end of this flu/cold hybrid that has hindered my training over the last week. Unfortunately colds/flu/ injuries are part of an active lifestyle and plague us all at some point. The problem always seems to be as to how to make a decision as to whether to go ahead with working out, and keeping on the training program, and when to decide that you are too sick/injured to continue training? This seems to be a widely debated topic and the general consensus is - if it’s above the shoulders, it’s ok for moderate/light exercise, but if it’s below the shoulders, it’s a no-go. In some instances a injury might stop you from running, but cycling & strength work are ok, in fact even help through active recovery. Luckily, having a coach, I have debated this over the last week and been satisfied with doing Pilates classes and some light runs on the basis that if 1km in, you don’t feel good, call it a day.
All runners have a training program. Some runners are highly disciplined and never miss a day on their schedule. Others are so erratic they have a hard time calling it a training program, more of a “run whenever time allows”. Both these styles have potential pitfalls related to over training. The disciplined runner can over train due to lack of proper rest and packing in more training than the body can withstand. The run whenever you can type may overdo it when they have the time, enjoying it so much on the day they forget that their body is untrained for the distance they are running on the day, and so pay for it afterwards.
Pilates and running are two exercise disciplines that on their own make sense. But just as peanut butter is good on its own, it becomes better when you add jam. Jam is the Pilates of running, making your running style, speed and endurance just that little bit sweeter.
Welcome to the new Outpost Running site. My name is Michael Gombart and these are my adventures and misadventures, along the way of training, racing and getting out there in the running world.
Having now just passed the 1 year mark since I started running I cannot help but laugh when I look back and think about how much has changed. Hangovers, an extra 20kg’s and late nights and fast food were par for the course, as well as not being able to run 5kms without being brought to a halt by a very reluctant pair of legs. Back to the present, in my last 5km time trial I managed 18 minutes & 33 seconds.
As humans we have several unique biomechanical and physiological adaptations that make us the long distance champions of the land mammals. When your friends and family tell you that running is bad for you, you can hit back with these incredible facts.
Humans started running about 2 million years ago.
We are not the fasted runners on land, however, Bramble and Lieberman say “it’s our combination of reasonable speed and exceptional endurance”, that worked for us in the past as hunters. A good hunter can outrun an antelope over long distances and this persistence hunting to exhaustion method is still used by the Bushman today. Bramble and Lieberman think that running may have driven our evolution to give us the anatomy and physiology we have today.