Shortly after this revelation last week, I made a call to Robert, my former trainer and still very good friend, who is a master trainer and owns Peak Peformance Fitness in Marriottsville, MD. Just moments before I made that phone call, I was hovering on the ledge of my 2nd story office window ready to jump.
I'm not kidding.
He talked me off of the ledge, and told me to come in and see him.
"but your schedule is so busy, when do you have time?"
He must have sensed the raw desperation in my voice.
"I'm available whenever you need me."
Robert agreed to see me on Sunday at 10AM, and even offered to pick me up at my house and drive me to his studio. Geez o man...I must have sounded RULLLY desperate! I'm telling you all of this because I want to make sure you understand that in addition to being a completely awesome trainer, he is an even greater friend, and an all around cool guy.
So, in addition to my super cool trip to Fleet Feet Sports on Saturday, I also had a training session with Robert on Sunday at 10AM.
As Robert has reminded me so many times, he once again reminded me that I cannot neglect that fact that I had a knee problem in the past. He again reminded me that knee problems have a tendency of creeping back up if you do not properly train and pay a little extra attention to said knee. So, we again reviewed the exercises that I should be doing at least twice a week.
Yeah, so that's not me, but that's the exercise.
Not only did we go over the standard leg extension, but also leg extensions with the toes pointed outward (think "duck"), and leg extensions with the toes pointed inward (think "pigeon"). He has instructed me to use very light weight and do 3 sets of each of those exercises (point up, point out, point in) 20-30 times per set. Then we also did some machine leg presses.
The focus here was making sure to distribute the weight on my foot evenly because he reminded me (again) that I have a tendency to run on the outside of my foot.
After all of the fabulous strength training that he reminded me how to do (and gave me a mild guilt trip because I haven't been doing), he said "so, am I going to have to teach you how to run all over again?"
What a concept. Maybe I forgot how to run! I know that sounds silly, but you're dealing with me. The girl who was wearing "husky" jeans when she was 11. The girl who avoided recreational sports like the plague until she was well into her 20's. Wellllll into her 20's. I was not a runner. Or a jogger. Or even a power walker. Until welllllll into my 20's.
Then Robert taught me how to run.
Then I stopped meeting with him.
Then I got hurt again.
So, yesterday he taught me how to run again.
My new mantra has become "work quads, not calves...work quads, not calves." Stop laughing. The goal of this new mantra is to encourage me to run from my quad rather than from my ankle the way that my body naturally wants to.
In Rob's opinion, my whole problem is originating from my overdeveloped calves. The fact that I have been running from my ankle for the past year is only further developing my already overdeveloped calves. Trust me, they are ginormous. Large and in charge. They want to be the boss. They want to run the show. I'm not havin it. My quads are bigger, so they're gonna win.
He instructed me yesterday to keep my knees a little less bent, foot more flexed than bent (think "heel-toe,heel-toe"), and shorten my stride by about 1/2. And today on the treadmill, it felt like I was doing "baby steps" to the 2 mile mark.
Have you ever seen those ridiculously fast power-walkers? Yeah, that's what I thought I looked like. Probably not though. I'm sure that I thought it looked much worse than it did.
Any way you slice it though, I looked silly.
But, I had a better run than I've had in weeks. Although the treadmill was only set at 5.3-5.5, I was actually running much faster than that because my feet were going double time.
Thank you Mizuno Wave Inspire 5's.
Thank you Robert.