In the Zone

Yesterday I set out for a long run. Had planned 10km but with the new shoes (Asics Gel Nimbus) and better eating this week, I felt pretty good and flirted with the idea of pushing my body and going longer. I signed up for a 10km race which is happening in a few weeks so this would likely be that last long run until then. 

I’ve been to two Pilates sessions in the past couple of weeks and got some great tips on how to loosen up my hip joints. I did a lot of dancing as a child and was always taught to “tuck in”. I suppose I never really forgot that because apparently it’s what is causing a lot of my issues. My SI joints are locked up and I am working hard to unlock them.  My instructor also suggested a few minor changes to how I run and I’ve been trying to incorporate those techniques. Overall I have been running with consciously tightening my core which in turns causes me to lock up my hip joints. That has got to change. 

So during the early stages of my run yesterday, between 3-9km, I felt amazing. I felt like I was flying and my hips felt great. I almost felt like I was meditating.  By 10km though, I started getting tired and felt the SI joint acting up. I made a few adjustments and was surprised how it actually did help ease up the discomfort. 

Before I knew it I was home and finished my longest run to date. 

I was also able to finally test out my two-bottle water belt. It felt a little awkward initially but I soon got used to it and was so glad to have my hands free.  I’ll definitely be using it for the race. 

This morning my legs certainly noticed the subtle differences I incorporated in my run. My quads are sore but in that good way. Nothing a little foam rolling won’t cure. 

Anyone who says running doesn’t work to lose weight or get fit clearly didn’t test their body. 


10 thoughts on “In the Zone

  1. Well done! I wish I could run, I know anyone can run and I used to but I’m just not good at it, find it excruciating in every way (my quads and hamstrings are so tight it’s ridiculous despite doing yoga, pilates and Bodybalance!) and so just don’t do it very often. You have inspired me and I may just have another go, don’t hold your breath though, lol 😉

  2. I need to know more about these changes you incorporated.
    I found that when I started increasing my running distance and frequency, I started gaining weight (maybe multifactorial), but I’m hoping as I get back into it this week, I will increase differently, so I avoid that runners weight gain.

    • I stopped tightening my core abdominal muscles. As I did this, I would also tighten my butt and those tight glutes, I think, were leading to the hip issues. My pilates instructor told me to try to be more “free” with my running; she suggested I make a conscious effort to use the hip flexors more as I swing my leg forward. It felt awkward at times but I found it helped ease the discomfort in the SI joint.

      I can totally see why someone would gain weight — all those extra calories needed for fuel. My friend warned me of that when I started running 3 years ago. So far I haven’t noticed it to be much of an issue, that but I’m still not running more than 3-4x per week, in fact it’s really only 3 days a week that I run. Any more than that and I think I start getting hurt, so I’m just listening to my body. I am also not doing super long distances every week. After the 10K race in two weeks, I will slowly increase the distance by 500 m every 10-14 days. That is super slow, I know, but I think it works for me.

      • I did some reading and it’s pretty common for people to gain weight when they increase distance and frequency. You get a larger spoke in cortisol with each run and your body gets accustomed to the new metabolic rate fast, so even if you don’t increase your caloric intake AT ALL, you could still gain weight from metabolic changes and the physiologic stress of running

      • Sure can!
        I was also reading about stride improvement in this month’s runners magazine. One of the tips was to try lifting knees higher with strides (thereby making strides longer). I guess that is pretty equivalent to activating hip flexors more… I tried that a few days ago and it did feel weird, but by in a bad way!

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