CCM Diary: More Art Than Engineering

More progress today.  I made it all the way through my 8 mile run, slowly perhaps, but I’ll take it.  My left leg was fine, but my right continued to remind me on a regular basis to watch my form carefully.  Still, it’s good to know that I should be OK to make it through my leg of the relay.  I’ll find out Sunday whether I’ll be able to do any more than that.

Running while coming back from minor injuries does provide an opportunity.  While I’m still tender, it’s easier to see exactly what irritates the tender spots and adjust what I’m doing until the pain subsides.  On today’s run, I noticed that my right leg felt much better when I was running on the left side of the road, where the camber of the surface acts like a lateral wedge.  The extra wedge makes it easier for me to get my foot planted properly when I land with my ankle flexed slightly, as it does when I’m not overstriding.

Anything that makes pain go away is worth paying attention to.  I think I’ll add a little wedge to my right forefoot, not much to start with, because I have to be careful not to over-correct and cause new problems. I can always add more later.

Sometimes (well, to be honest, often) I think I futz around with my shoe inserts too much.  You might think that by this time I should have figured out what works best.  Maybe so, but I figure there are two possibilities.  One is that unlikely as it might seem, if I keep trying I’ll find the magic combination that makes everything better.  The other is that given my biomechanics and the ongoing encroachment of age I’ll always have problems no matter what I try, but if I keep fiddling the minor changes in my gait will allow one repetitive strain injury to heal while the next one is developing so on the average I stay healthy enough to keep going.

My experiments have definitely taught me things that have helped.  I never thought I’d be able to run in shoes as light as my 7 oz. GEL-Hyperspeeds, but over time I’ve figured out how.  Trying new things helps me beat back time, and it keeps running interesting.

(8.1 mi. run; 147.5#)

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