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A Pain Free Runn Around The Lake
Yesterday, I went to Muay Thai class and when I got to the gym, they told me my class was cancelled because they are still on the July 4 holiday schedule. I suppose the trainers are taking the week off.
So I went back to the lake and went for a run.
I used to run every night, but since my back surgery, running is much more difficult for me than it used to be. If I run long enough, I get a bit of nerve pain down my legs. It’s not very bad pain, but it’s more psychological. I get scared by even the slightest bit of nerve pain. Nothing is worth the risk is reinjuring my back, so running feels like a high risk vs low reward activity.
Plus, since I stopped running, I’ve become much more committed to lifting. I weigh 190ish pounds now, as opposed to a few years ago when I was 170. The extra 20 pounds makes a big difference when running.
I’m almost positive I hurt my back by landing really flat on my feet when I ran. After thousands of miles of running, I think those little impacts are what caused the herniation.
We’ve learned a lot about the science of running over the last 15 years and it turns out the proper form is to lean forward slightly and land on the balls of your feet and “push” off the ground. Imagine you have straps on your back and you are pulling a sled behind you. To pull the sled, you would slightly lean forward and drive off the ground from the balls of your feet. Well that’s what you want to do even without pulling weight. You’re driving against the surface of the earth which lessens the impact on your joints and also pushes your momentum forward as opposed to up.
The slight variation has a huge effect on the impact on my knees and back. I still feel very awkward when doing it, but I will keep practicing.
I was excited about the run because it felt great, I enjoyed the sunshine, and I was able to take my time and enjoy the run without fear or worry or being in pain for the next few days.