Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Wednesday frazzle

I had an amazingly good run assessment/technique session with A. at Chelsea Piers. Again, the video is a hugely useful tool - especially on the treadmill, it is very easy to see how much my ankles roll and the way the knees then buckle to compensate - I have a lot of work to do!

We then did a bunch of drills on the track, with some more video - a drill where you lean up on the wall and do "fast feet," a couple other drills to get the feel for 'pushing' off the ground (leaning against trainer who is walking slowly backwards; trainer standing behind and using stretch bands to exert force) and then some actual 'running' - only in a drill format. Hands crossed on chest for the first half of the 50 meters, then dropping to sides (but keeping arms relatively still and hands high/contained - I have a tendency to swing much too far back); eyes on the ground about 5 feet in front, so as to keep body leaning forward; and striking with FOREFOOT (I mistyped "heel" in first version of this, sorry!) and really pushing off, as though one is pushing the ground away. Some noticeable improvements by the time we did the last video at the end, though I can see it is the sort of thing it's difficult to work on on one's own.

(Hmmm, really it is possible that I am almost as inefficient a runner as I am a swimmer! Certainly in both cases whatever speed I get is much more from the fact that I'm reasonably fit and that I'm willing to work hard than because of any particular biomechanical advantages.)

Other cues: stay "low to the ground" (but without hunching/crouching/folding at the waist); light fast steps.

(I will log it as 2 miles)

I have been having truly epically high stress levels this week - nothing out of the ordinary, I think it's always like this at this point in the semester, but it's been well beyond acceptable levels for the last couple days. Last night and this morning in particular, I really was on the verge of totally losing it! It was amazing what strongly beneficial effects this session had on my mental health - after about 20 minutes, I realized that the previous five hours of insane stressing-out had completely escaped my mind, I was fully concentrating on foot placement and neuromuscular questions about running!

This coach is very good - it's really exceeded my expectations. Training sessions with him are too expensive (these are free, as part of my membership package) to be more than the occasional luxury, but I think that I will have to ask my mother for the 3-session package for my Xmas present...


Brent Buckner said...

That sounds like a great session!

Becca said...

See, now, there is the foot strike thing again. I must figure this out! I have been trying to lean forward, and I think it helps. But really I don't get it.

Danielle in Iowa said...

I'm jealous that they actually have trainers that know their stuff in this way!