frustrated newbie mileage update (long way to go)

Discussion in 'Mileage Reporting' started by shawshank, Jul 24, 2011.

  1. shawshank

    shawshank Barefooters
    1. Indiana
    2. Iowa

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    I posted in the newbie forum & got some great advice from the BF community. I was going to continue my post in the newbie forum, but thought it was more relevant for mileage reporting.

    I have been running 35-40 miles a week for the past 5-10 years. In shoes. I have done some reading on BFR & have started the journey. It has been "one step forward, 3 steps back" in my first attempt.

    Here is how I started out.



    WEEK 1: first try

    5 mins BFR, day off, 5 mins BFR, day off, 10 min BFR. All of these runs @ a slow pace, trying to relax my calves & ankles & arms/shoulders, focus on lifting my feet & increasing my cadence. I also ran on smooth hard surfaces (e.g., concrete)



    WEEK 2: first try

    5 min BFR, 7 min BFR.

    My calves cramped up so I stopped BFR for about 2 weeks, focused on cross-training (biking, yoga, swimming, elliptical) & posted under the NEWBIE forum to get some advice from more experienced BFR. Made some changes that included: (1) rolling my calves to massage them & work out any places that are especially tight; (2) walking around barefoot whenever possible & focusing on lifiting my feet when walking.

    WEEK 1: second try @ BFR [running on smooth hard surface = indoor track @ my gym]

    5 min BFR, day off, 5 min BFR, 2 days off, 10 min BFR. All of these runs @ a slow pace, trying to relax my calves & ankles & arms/shoulders, focus on lifting my feet & increasing my cadence. Still rolling my calves 3x a day. Trying to place a tennis ball or baseball under my calves to loosen them up (thanks for the tip zapmamak!). Cross training w/ elliptical in VIBRAMS (@ the gym), wearing VIBRAMS or going barefoot 100% of the time, increasing my distance swimming (up to 2400 m 4x a week), & biking if it is not 120 degrees outside. :) NOTE that I tried 2 days off before the 10 min BFR.

    WEEK 2: second try @ BFR

    5 min BFR. 1 day rest, 7:30 BFR. [running on smooth hard surface = indoor track @ my gym]



    This is as far as I've gotten so far. My calves are a little sore today, but I will roll them tonight & try to loosen them w/ the baseball/tennis ball trick.

    Keeping my fingers crossed & focusing on my form. I felt a little pain behind my right knee in the middle of the 7:30 run & tried to bend my knees more & shorten my stride. Pain behind right knee went away. (yeah baby!)

    If anyone has any advice to give me on completing my transition to BFR & slowly building up my mileage base, that would be fantastic.

    best, shawshank.
     
  2. twinkletoes

    twinkletoes Barefooters
    1. Nevada - Reno

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    Welcome Shawshank. As you are

    Welcome Shawshank. As you are likely well aware, the transition time is different for everyone, and most do experience frustration at the need for patience. When I think back on the first few months, I remember wondering if the change to BF was worth it because of the tendonitis, the tender soles and hot spots, super tight calves, and the very odd pains in my left foot (from bunion surgery & two bad sprains) as bones and muscles slowly adapted. What I can say after nearly a year and all the attendant aches and pains of the change, is that I would do it all over again in a minute, but lose the shoes completely rather than try to keep mileage with minimal shoes, and basically start over. The hardest part was the mental component of sacrificing miles for strength and conditioning on my feet and calves' time. Still is. I have recently moved to a very hilly neighborhood which has challenged my soles and calves to a new level of strengthening once again. I think the advice of relax, relax, relax applies to the mind as much as the body. It's quite an amazing journey though and I hope you enjoy it in spite of the challenges.
     
  3. spoonerweb

    spoonerweb Chapter Presidents
    1. Taiwan
    2. Connecticut
    3. Presidents

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    When I first started, I only

    When I first started, I only did a quarter mile eveyday for the first week. Then the second week did a half mile. Third week, 3/4 of a mile. Fourth week, a full mile. So you may need to start out on even shorter runs. Everyone is different though.
     
  4. JosephTree

    JosephTree Barefooters
    1. Pennsylvania

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    Keep banging away at it and

    Keep banging away at it and you will gradually reach a more satisfying level of running. You're really lucky to have the swimming and the crosstraining to tide you through.

    I've been running BF since 05/10 and am only now realizing that I'm pretty comfortable almost all the time now. For a long time I had all the twinges and aches you've heard of from other posters here. The thing is, all through the process I was thrilled to be running at all, and to be seeing even very tiny increments of progress.

    If you persist and slowly work your milage up, you will reach the trickiest phase, imo. That's when you're not only in the midst of developing your new BF body, but having to figure out how to keep it up with ice and snow complicating everything. If you get through the winter and still are making progress as a BF runner, you will find it all geting easier and easier as the spring progresses. That's been my experience, anyway. I think it should be all gravy from here on. I can hope, anyway.
     
  5. shawshank

    shawshank Barefooters
    1. Indiana
    2. Iowa

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    This community.  rocks. 

    This community. rocks. the. house. it is tough mentally because running is such a cornerstone in my workout routine. I have developed cross-training "skills" due to injury bugs that hit me 1-2 times a year.

    I am still banging away at it & really listening to my body. I'm also running w/ a BF group on Fridays @ the cross country course (which is very hilly & somewhat grassy, but not very flat so it should be good to work those small stabilizing muscles in my calves & ankles.

    sticking w/ the smooth surface of an indoor track for the shorter runs. slowly building up 10% time per week.

    One problem is that when I try to extend my runs in my running shoes, *they* *feel* *terrible*. I'm sure this is common in this community, but these shoes are brand new & were one step on the way to using more minimal shoes.

    hopefully I will build up enough to be able to run in these shoes comfortably. It's just strange how quickly your feet become sensitive to being encased in shoes!

    Meanwhile I have my VIBRAMS for day to day walking around (since it's so hot out...I had some burning on the soles of my feet. yeowch).

    I am just so conscious when running BF. I am concentrating so hard on listening to my body & waiting for some twinge in my calf. I know that is necessary in the early stages, but it's nerve wracking!

    thanks for all the positive vibes & enouragement. best, s/s.
     
  6. mokaman

    mokaman Chapter Presidents
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    It looks like your doing

    It looks like your doing everything right...just hang in there keep at it...really no need at this point to increase anything till your calves adjust further. It can be a slow process but you will hit a tipping point and it will get a lot easier and then extend your distance little by little.

    That is common about your shoes eventually you be at a cross roads and have to ditch them in favor of no shoes at all or some tolerable minimalist shoes...good luck its worth it in long run!
     
  7. shawshank

    shawshank Barefooters
    1. Indiana
    2. Iowa

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    when I hit that tipping

    when I hit that tipping point, you will be the first to know! thanks for all the encouragement! it's just so painfully slow so I can't wait to hit my stride! s/s.
     
  8. taterman

    taterman Guest

    I did the same thing

    I did the same thing spoonerweb did, increased daily mileage by 1/4 mile a day each week. I did the "transition" thing and maintained a total mileage od 6-7 miles a day between shoes and barefoot. In doing so I learned that, for me, it was best to separate the runs (not do them back to back). Also, I let myself revert to my old heal striking form during the shod runs so as to not overstress the bones/ligaments/tendons/muscles with too much of the forefoot form all at once. So far it's worked for me, but I know it doesn't work for everyone.

    It sounds like you have enough of a running background to know your body and know when things aren't right. Like others have said, take it slow and hang in there. I personally really liked the advice I was given to run completely barefoot whenever possible, the soles of my feet being so tender forced me to take things slow.

    You're fortunate to have a group of barefooters to run with, it's nice to be able to talk to real people every now and then.

    Keep it up.

    Nate
     
  9. shawshank

    shawshank Barefooters
    1. Indiana
    2. Iowa

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    taterman wrote:I did the

    Tx Nate. I've gone too long w/out shoes. Now they are uncomfortable. I tried to do a split run w/ my shoes, but it felt horrible! Just taking it slow. My feet are a bit tender after my "long runs", which is up to 17 mins.

    It is nice to talk to real people, but I hope you (and the others on this board) are real people as well. :) If not, you are all the best bots on the internet(s)! ;)

    later. s/s.
     

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