Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Unhealthy soreness

  This last weekend, on Sunday,  was a chance for me to test the state of my well being before I embark on the two hardest races I might possibly ever do..... The Utah Spartan Beast race and the
Cuyamaca 3 peaks 50k trail run. I know what you must be thinking after reading my first blog post, that he must be off his rocker!! Both of these races are in less then a month and I expect I will be pushing myself way beyond my current fitness comfort zone.

The statement that is pictured here is the direct representation of my "training strategy" ....and apparently, as you can tell by those races I signed up for, that it is of my race-sign-up strategy as well.  "No Pain No Gain!" I have finally come to realize after this weekend that it is a bunch of hogwash! The snowball effect of my training strategy had gained me severe tendinitis in my left forearm, painful shin splints,  2 pulled calf muscles, pain above the knee, on the inside of the knee and on the outside of the knee(due to IT band syndrome.) I have spent many a nights scouring the medical websites, trying to diagnose all of my latest training ailments. The latest of which is a really bad strain of one of the main tendons on top of my right foot. I first experienced this while doing a 13 mile run by my house. The pain took about 2 weeks before it suppressed enough for me to run on it again. I am now currently suffering through the same pain again after a 15 mile run on the local beaches of La Jolla and Del Mar on Sunday.

As I sit here reflecting back on the weekend and thinking about how much pain I am in right now, I am asking myself, where did I get all these injuries? Well, after finishing up the Spartan Race in Malibu in November, I immediately started doing my research on how others trained for these races. I began with hiking the local 3 mile trail, Cowles Mtn. while carrying a 40 lb jug of water....that then lead to running the Mt. Nebo Secret stairs with my friend Jeremy with the same water jug.

245 steps of pure pain!!


We got so obsessed with training that we started doing training hikes in the middle of the night. We would hike to the top of Cowles Mtn. and find large rocks to carry down with us. Anything to keep the intensity up! Well it turns out that holding a heavy object in your arms in a fixed position can cause some serious problems with your tendons. I had to cut out this type of training as it was causing me problems in my job as an Automotive Technician. Luckily short after, I discovered a smarter way to train for the 8+ mile Super Spartan race. After stumbling across some Spartan Race  videos on youtube and seeing how successful this guy, Hobie Call was, I knew I needed to adopt some of his training techniques. Anyone who can win every single Spartan Race across the country must be on to something! I immediately went out and bought a weight vest that was adjustable up to 40 pounds and his DVD that had just come out, entitled “Hobie Call’s How To Train For Obstacle Course Racing.” The DVD is available for purchase here :  I must of watched the the entire DVD through 3 times before even attempting the 40 minute "warmup." The workouts were very simple to perform but the intensity of them was like nothing else I had done before! My workout routine during the week would consist of starting with half of the warmup exercises and then putting on the weight vest for the run-lunge-burpee-run. There is nothing else like finishing off a set of traveling lunges with a weight vest, dropping down and doing 10 pushup burpees and having to immediately hop up and start running again.

In my next post I will talk about how the training affected the outcome of the 8+ mile Super Spartan Race I completed in Temecula.

Until then, take care and stay injury free. Train smarter, not harder!
Christopher Brill
P.s. Feel free to email me if you have any questions about Spartan races, exercise and nutrition, or anything else for that matter!

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