Today i used a foam roller i bought at the Sports Authority. I have been tender in my legs for a while, and I was told that it is a good way to release tension caused by repetitive motion like running.
Verbal instructions i received: Roll back and forth on this and if you feel a lump, stay on it for 30 seconds. Then roll some more and when you find more lumps, hold them, then roll some more.
Internet instructions: If you look up foam rollers you will mostly figure out how to curl your hair. Fortunately, you can wade through those and find some videos on how to use a foam roller. Luckily, I am a research maniac, and over the last year I have looked at things like Mayofacial release, Active Release Therapy, and so on and so forth. I am sure I have probably read most of the posts regarding foam rollers that were posted on Trifuel, SlowTwitch, Beginner Triathlete, About.com, and any other one you could possibly think of to look up. I didn't see that lady with the giant rack who does the burpees and the other Body Motion videos do a video on them yet, but I am sure she will soon. It seems inevitable.
Anyway, long story short, (yeah right), I started rolling my calves. Here is the deal, There are basically 3 muscles on the back of your leg. The two larger ones on each side, and one in the middle, kinda underneath everything. I am not going to feed you techspeak that I know all about what they are and such, cause I would have to look them up and post what I saw on the internet, you would think i am wicked smart, but I am not. When looking at MY calf, you see what looks like a tapered wine barrel stuck to a 4x4. No visible definition between the 3 muscles whatsoever.
This indicates to me that we may have some adhesion issues. Sure enough, about half way up, i feel a lump. When i say lump, I mean more like I have unintentionally adhesed, like, a baby's arm, or a 3 foot python or something in my leg. Rolling over it is painful, and feels like going over speed humps in your car (not a speed bump mind you, if i were actually in my car, my head would have hit the ceiling.). I have the same tenderness on my IT band, only it is less like a speed hump, and more like driving through a train yard. Kinda bumpy. Quads are the same way.
I feel much better after rolling them out. I think it is going to take some time to get the big ones dissolved... Also, I forgot to put my workout in here! I ran 7.5 miles. About 1.25 hours. Right on track. I did about .5 miles barefoot to work on getting the tender feet stronger.
Who knows, maybe by the end of the year I will be Barefoot Somebody or Other.
P.S. - If you have a baby who all of a sudden is missing an arm, please let me know, I will stop rolling, and try to pop it like a zit. (Mental note:I shouldn't write AFTER the glass of wine.)