Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Googling Deeks Injuries

Was reading a great article by Deek in the August 1983 edition of Runners World where he mentions that over his career (up to 1983 anyway) he only had 10 days off training due to injury.

The fascinating bit was his explanation why he was so fortunate in this regard. Deek says there’s 2 types of fitness, physiological fitness (say aerobic condition) and muscular- skeletal strength (bones and how muscles connect to them).

Deek said he was limited in natural physiological fitness so he had to train hard and consistently to build aerobic condition, this took time which gave his muscular –skeletal system the time to develop. His physiological fitness never surpassed what his muscular-skeletal system was capable of handling, hence he rarely got injured.

Hmmm. I found the above article when Googling the following words: ‘Deek’ and ‘injury’ to see how Deek use to handle what I am now handling. Needless to say what I found didn’t cheer me up, but it did help explain why I now have a muscular-skeletal injury, albeit only a small stress reaction in the upper right femur.

Coming from a swimming background as a kid, and then a triathlon background later in life I developed good aerobic ability, and never run the miles beyond what my muscles and bones could handle, mainly because large training volumes were achieved though cross training.

Enter the last 12 months where after dusting off the old V8 engine following several sedentary years, I now discover the frame isn’t actually strong enough to handle the torque the engine can still produce. 15 hrs/ wk of swimming, biking & running aren’t rapidly interchangeable with 15hrs/ wk of running.

The other interesting thing about this period is my own emotional reaction to time off and missing a big race, followed by what others expect me to be feeling.

The bizarre thing (to others maybe) is that I’m not upset at all (though disappointed my long term health was jeopardised).

The following facts outline my self-reasoning for not being upset:
• Running is risky on your body, you run you therefore gamble
• Not all gambles pay off
• When pushing the limits the risks (and rewards) are inevitably bigger
• If you win more than you lose over your career, your still ahead
• 6 weeks is a rest period, and I have no problem with resting
• Its not my job, so I can still eat
• There’s other things in life I also enjoy doing (swimming, biking)
• I love the drama & struggle of big come back

More philosophically however, leading up to each big race I always think ‘will the body hold together to get to the start line?’ Last year I got to 3 big start lines despite many things, with 6 foot 2010 just one start line I didn’t make.

But gees I'm looking forward to my first run back on April Fool’s day (that’s not a joke either)

Enjoy the running.