Monday, October 29, 2012

Week In Review - More Barefoot Running Analysis And Socks And Blisters

Week in Review - More Barefoot Running Analysis and Socks and Blisters

Tuesday: 8 miles, 1,000' gain - 54:33 Went fast today, felt good. For the Creekside/Flume with a tag of Fools Creek this is my new PR for the loop.

Wednesday: 9 miles, 1,700' gain - Deadhorse again. Took me 1:21 today. Some snow still on the north side.

Thursday: 8 miles, 1,000' gain - 1:03 Slow today; tired. Amazing how much slower on this loop from just Tuesday's PR.

Friday: Off - 6 hours standing and walking.

Saturday: Off - 6 hours standing and walking.

Sunday: The race got moved to next weekend because the trails were muddy. I know, trail races are supposed to be muddy. However, according to the RD, in 2009 someone complained to Jefferson Parks after the race about the trail conditions, and now Jefferson Parks will not allow any races when trails are not "perfect." Oh well, another week of taper. Went skiing instead. 27,000' of descent. First day back on the tele's. Quads, stomach, and shoulders are worked!

Monday: 8 miles, 1,000' gain - 58:55 Faster then Thursday, but slower then Tuesday. Amazing to keep track of how one's time fluctuates, especially since my phenomenological experiences on the loop were relatively the same each time, although today did not feel too bad and I know on Thursday that I was tired and slow.

Two new studies have been published. The first is entitled "Changes in lower extremity movement and power absorption during forefoot striking and barefoot running." Like the other studies involving barefoot running, the authors wanted to look at the effects of barefoot and forefoot striking had on lower extremity movement and power absorption. The authors found that running with a forefoot striking pattern (which occurs in barefoot running or just running with a forefoot strike) resulted in reduced total lower extremity power, hip power and knee power. Furthermore, the authors also found that there was a shift of power absorption from the knee to the ankle. So, rearfoot (or traditional) running results in more power absorption from the knee, while running barefoot or on the forefoot results in more power absorption from the ankle. An interesting side note of this study is that the authors found it is more about the strike pattern and not being barefoot per se - alterations associated with barefoot running patterns are present in a forefoot pattern when wearing shoes.

The second study looked at running sock structure and blisters. It is an interesting idea, in that the particular weave pattern used to make a sock may influence blister formation in runners. The authors found that a plain jersey knitted pattern with two yarns were found to be most suitable for running socks. Great, so what is a plain jersey knitted pattern? Well, jersey knit simply means a single-knit, plain-stitched fabric with a face side that is markedly different from the back side (or, a clear inside and outside), while plain means a basic criss-cross method of weaving cloth. So the best socks to prevent blisters according to this study are ones that employ a simple criss-cross weave, with a face side and a back side. Now, which brands employ this weave? 

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