FIRST, let me just say… this is not a running blog. This, is a blog for all fitness, and everything health that comes up. Which leads me into today’s post….
I read an online fitness article that very intelligently promoted foam rolling. I also, very intelligently promote foam rolling, incase you were wondering. The article, however, said it was more effective to roll before bed or after a workout, to promote the relaxation and recovery period of muscle building, that way your muscles weren’t relaxed during the workout, possibly stifling your muscles.
Here is where it pertains to running:
I mentioned previously that I hated running, and didn’t do long distance because it hurt. While I was going through physical therapy for pain in my right knee -due to a strain in my right lateral collateral ligament, from over tension of my IT band- I was introduced to, among many life saving mobility exercises, foam rolling.
I found out that the reasons for both, pain in my right knee and the lack of range-of-motion(ROM) in my left foot, was due to a lack of flexibility and rotation in my left hip. Does all of this sound complicated???? It was for me when it all started, but then it got real easy.
Something to remember…. A loose muscle is a long muscle. A long muscle is a strong muscle. A strong muscle is what separates you from the person behind you.
Rolling and stretching is a good idea after exercise and/or before bed, I agree. Here’s where I disagree; doing any movement or exercise with a tight muscle can cause more damage, or create more restriction than loosening the muscle and working in a “relaxed” state.
The best thing to do would be to warm up, then stretch and roll, then kick some ass….
As muscles go, during an exercise, muscle fibers are recruited as needed to complete a movement. If you somehow strain a few fibers or get them knotted, those muscle fibers can restrict the ROM of the other fibers or cause the other fibers to become strained. The shortened movements can create knots in the other fibers, shortening your muscles. Over time your muscles will lose power.
Here’s another thought… You start the day off under stress, creating tension in your shoulders and back. This tension creates weakness, making you susceptible to pain and strain in your lower back and possibly your legs, if you’re on your feet, or restrict blood flow, causing your extremities to “fall asleep” while you sit down. Now carry that tension, without rolling it out, into a workout, where your lower back and shoulders carry the load and stability of most exercises. What do you think this will cause?
WHEN IN DOUBT, ROLL IT OUT!!! Take care of yourselves. I’ll continue my routine, but thank you.