Thursday, 9 June 2011

Age Group Win In 5 Mile Race, Injury And Warning On Wearing Minimal Shoes!

Birkenhead Park 5 Mile Race Report

The Numbers

Garmin Data
Mile One 5.34
Two Miles 11.04
Three Miles 16.48
Four Miles 22.39
Five Miles 28.23
Finish 5.09 miles = 28.45 ish!
I decided to run in the Saucony Hattori Saucony Hattori

I'd done 3 runs in them, but was still undecided as to whether these shoes would be OK to race in!
I've been going down the minimal shoe route for some time now but these shoes are quite extreme with very little padding,
I'd experienced some sciatic pain down my legs after a run in them on Tuesday and in retrospect this was a good warning of what was to come!
I travelled down with Stevie L and Trace, the weather was cool but windy.
Warming up I felt quite good but the shoes did make the Tarmac feel pretty hard, oh well lets give it a go!
Away from the start the pace was hot, I seemed to be getting overtaken on all sides.
I soon got into it and pulled passed a few guys who often beat me.
The first mile came in 5.34 which included the first half of a hill which we had to go over 3 times.
I was feeling pretty good and went through two miles in 11.04.
It's been a while since I've done any short distance road races and I felt my central governor was maybe holding me back just a little, I always use to find that a couple of these short races kind of reset my pain threshold and I would often improve by a minute in just a couple of weeks!
I started to lose the group in front of me after two miles but started to fight back getting onto the back of the guys ahead just after 3 miles 16.48.
Now we hit the final hill, half way up I got a sharp sciatic pain down my left leg.
My calf muscle started to lock!
I backed off my effort hoping the pain would ease off, I tried to stretch my back and relax the spasmed calf.
Should I carry on or pull out, how bad was the damage?
I reached the top of the hill, the guy I'd been running with was now 20 m ahead!
The muscle was no worse so I increased my pace on the downhill catching the guy.
Out onto the final 200m I lifted the pace and pulled away, still holding back a little in fear I'd completely tear the muscle.
Walking around after the muscle felt pretty tight and sore!
As I have a history of sciatic problem my conclusion is that this shoe just doesn't have enough shock absorbing under the forefoot for my high arched fairly rigid feet.
I pushed the limits just a bit too far this time and paid the price!
Today I went to see my chiropractor Dr Scott Fullwood who adjusted my back and did some very painfull trigger point and friction massage on the calf!
He recommended some easy walking and jogging for a few days.
Quite a few runners felt the course was not fast and at 5.09 miles on the Garmin I can see why!
I finished first in my age group and I think 15 or 16 overall [no results out yet].
So it's back to slightly better padded shoes for me but an interesting experiment all the same!

The Power Of The Mind, Breaking Through The Central Governor!
Thanks to Marathon Talk for the link

THATS LIFE (Michael Buble Covering a Frank Sinatra hit!) from Third-Eye-Chakra on Vimeo.


Grellan said...

I wonder should you have spent more time "adjusting" to the Haftori's before running "eyeballs out" in them in a race, particularly given the early warning on Tuessday. Of course hindsight is a great thing.

Very impressive splits despite hoding back and well done on the AG win. Hope your calf recovers quickly.

Grellan said...

Ops! Hattori's


Good point Grellan.
My gut instinct kind of tells me that for running on a hard surface I need more padding under my forefoot taking into account my high arched feet.
The hattori did feel good training on the grass track with the club on Monday but not so great running home on the Tarmac.
I guess my question to you would be was the human foot designed to run on a hard surface at high speed ?
I think I reached the limits of right for me, this has not been a short journey and over the last 2 years I have been modifying and adjusting to less of a shoe.
My feelings are I want a very light shoe that is also extremely flexible but also has good shock absorbing under the forefoot.
End of the day we are all different in our needs and it's not always an easy journey to find the ideal for US !

Ewen said...

Bad luck about the injury Rick. Hopefully it's just a short-term one.

Good point about the shoes. I think they need to be selected with the surface in mind - more cushioning for tarmac, less for cross country.

There was a study (think I saved it via Twitter) where they found that runners adjust their stride to suit the impact forces felt... so if they are running barefoot on a hard surface they apply less force to the ground. If they have 'enough' cushioning they can apply more force and hence achieve a longer stride.

Samurai Running said...

Maybe deep down you want to go out in sympathy with me ;)

Mmm I wonder if it is the light shoes or the bit of barefoot running I did just before my injury that was responsible?

Hope you're back into it soon!

Junk Miler said...

You've got a choice - hit the ground hard or don't. If you want to hit the ground hard, you'll need cushioning.


Josh I guess I'm a hit the ground hard sort of a guy!
Would love to be a light floating sort of Geb runner, but I'm a heavy sort of power runner.
Scoot and Ewen, the trip to my local friendly chiropractor seems to have worked managed a easy social run with the club tonight :0]

Junk Miler said...

I wonder if power runners should train differently than floating runners. How many routines you find useful (like the hip stretching, etc) wouldn't have any benefits for me because I move differently? And vice versa.

That's something for smarter people than me to figure out.