Sunday, March 27, 2011

What To Do if You Strain Your Calf Muscle

Yesterday began my 25 week countdown to the Asheville Citizen-Times Half Marathon. I really wanted to run a particular time so I set my self a long training window. Day one was great with an easy couple of miles. Then I had my son's soccer game, of which I'm the coach. While warming up with the kids, I chased after a stray ball, got ahead of it, turned my foot so the ball would stop - and POP...pulled my calf muscle. The technical term is a "Calf Strain". This is where the muscle pulls away from the tendon, hence the "popping" sound.

The best way to treat this is to stop all activity - so my 25 week plan is going to be shorter - until the pain is gone and you can walk, run etc...with no pain. In the meantime, you should practice everyone's favorite acronym R.I.C.E. In case you've been living in a cave, or just have a horrible memory, R.I.C.E stands for:
  • Rest
  • Ice
  • Compression
  • Elevation
Rest is obvious. Don't try running, playing soccer, or any other sport. Try to stay off it as much as you can.

Ice is just that. I actually use an ice pack like you would put in a lunch box, but my favorite is a frozen bag of peas. Because the peas are so small, the frozen bag easily molds to the contour of your leg.

Compression - let's get back to this one in a moment - but basically you want to wrap it or wear a neoprene sleeve. Again, more about this is a minute.

Elevation means keep it raised up so the blood doesn't pool into your foot or lower leg.

O.K. - Compression. Knock on wood, but it's been a long time since I've had an injury. In fact, in all my years of running, I've not had a running injury. After all, this incident was warming up with the soccer team - not while training for my half.

Anyway, I went to get an ACE bandage and to my surprise, the old metal catch-claw is a thing of the past. Now, the ACE bandages are self adhesive. Just wrap and stick. WOW - that sounded so easy and it actually was very easy.  Start at the ankle and wind up the leg pulling it a little tight, but not too tight. No problem - piece of cake.

One teeny-tiny detail that the directions left off turned out to be a vital piece of information. Pre-wrap. You see, you only want to compress for a while, not around the clock. I went to remove the ACE bandage and it hurt like H-E-double hockey sticks! The self adhesive is great - except that it sticks not only to itself - but to the hairs on your leg. I suppose I should have known this, but since I've never had a running injury, nor has anyone I've trained had a running injury, I've not had reason to need to use an ACE bandage. The last time I had to use one for something my kid did, it still had the metal catch-claw that held the bandage on.  Had I used a thin layer of pre-wrap, the ACE bandage would have come off nice and easy, rather than sticking to my skin and leg hairs!

It's only been a day, and already I can put more pressure on it.  In fact, I moved a piece of furniture - so much for the "rest" part of R.I.C.E., eh?

I don't think I'll be out of commission too long.  Maybe just a couple of weeks...maybe just one as it seems to be healing fast.

Asheville Half Marathon Training

Well - as of today, there are 25 weeks until September's Citizen Times Half Marathon in Asheville, NC. I went out and helped to coach the Beginning Runners group this morning. Ran a touch over 2 miles with them. Then I went and coached my U-8 Soccer team. While warming up with the team, I sprinted, stopped and turned my foot to stop the ball and "popped" my calf muscle. Man, does it hurt! Been doing R.I.C.E all night. Tomorrow I'll probably wrap it with tape but I won't run again until I'm pain-free.

Anyway, if anyone wants to train for the half with me, I'll be starting a group in the next couple of months. I figure a good 12 week program will do the trick. I'm gearing up now (or was until today) because I'm trying to run a specific time...shooting for a 1:45:00 which is roughly an 8 minute mile the whole way.

If you're interested, let me know. 828-582-4373 or john@ashevillerunningcoach.com

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Weight Loss Trainer in Asheville

Do you have a few extra pounds to lose? I'm a personal trainer in Asheville and I can help you. No fad diets, no dancing and jumping around with difficult dance moves or TV programs that are obviously not designed for beginners. What I offer is tried and true workouts that will help you build lean muscle, lose fat and improve your endurance.

As a Certified Personal Trainer & Sports Nutritionist, I can help you lose a healthy 1-2 lbs. of fat per week. Why wait any longer? Call today! 828-582-4373

Friday, March 4, 2011

Sports Nutritionist in Asheville, NC

Well, I did it! Just a week after passing my Personal Trainer Exam with ACT, I passed my IFA Sports Nutritionist Exam (International Fitness Association). The test was pretty challenging, but most of it I already knew from being a runner all these years plus my Kinesiology coursework in college. The ACT exam was very heavy on nutrition also so it was great preperation. The IFA course study materials were great and very informative - I just happened to be pretty much up to speed. Got a 97%!

So - looking for Sports Nutritionist in the Asheville Area? I can help you create a plan that will help you improve your performance & achieve your goals.

Contact me today at 828-582-4373

Certified Personal Trainer in Asheville

Well, I did it! On Feb. 24th I passed my Exam and I'm now an ACT Certified Personal Trainer. The test was really challenging. Luckily, my college coursework in Kinesiology and my experience training as a runner since the '80's came in very handy. Not to brag - but one question on the practice exam was thrown out because I pointed out a flaw in the question. They agreed with my assessment and have removed the question.

So - looking for a certified Personal Trainer in the Asheville Area? I can come to your home, office or gym and offer you 1 on 1 or group sessions. I can help you to create an exercise plan that will help you achieve your goals.

Want to lose fat? Want to gain muscle? Need to break through to that new PR you've been chasing? I can help. Contact me today at 828-582-4373

60 Day Challenge - Week 5

This is the start of week 5 and I have gained weight... AGAIN . I started this challenge at 191.0lbs and I'm (as of today, Nov. 22nd) 19...