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A journal of running, healthy food, mountains, bikes and technology by Julia Revitt

 

Last February I wrote an article on whether tight hamstrings were the cause of my re-occuring bad back.  I thought it would be useful to update you all a year later on my progress.  I had the aim of ‘of getting my toes level with my nose in the classic ‘Hamstring stretch’’.

Well, one year on despite on religiously stretching my hamstrings every morning I have no more flexibility in them.  I am still unable to touch my toes or get my toes level with my nose.  But on a positive note, I have only pulled my back once during this year and got back to full mobility within 4 days which is really amazing for me – normally it takes up to 3 weeks.

So I will continue to stretch my hamstrings daily as I’m still sure they are at the root of my back problems but for now I know that I will never be as flexible as Yogi Marlon or even Davina in her ‘Body Buff‘ series.  However as the definition of madness is to expect different results while doing the same thing I am going to shake up my stretching routine.  I already do the stretches in Davina’s workouts 3 times a week and am now on the lookout for new hamstring stretches which I will add into my daily stretching.

I have also being doing some research into barefoot running after reading Chris McDougall’s Born to Run book.  The inspirational book lead me to think that maybe my back problems were caused my something much lower down – my flat feet!  So since reading that book I have been doing kick boxing and cardio classes barefoot 3 times a week with a view to keeping my ankles strong for off road running in the Alps this year but also to improve the muscle structure in my feet.  Have a look at Chris’ website if you want more information on the barefoot running debate.  I recently re-took the flat foot wet test and am proud to say I am no longer flat footed!  Buoyed on by this success I am seriously considering buying some Vibram five fingers for off road running in the Alps.

Again – watch this space and I will let you know how it goes!

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  1. February 13, 2011

    Barefoot running is very beneficial just so long as you learn the technique correctly. Most people do as it hurts to run badly barefoot. However, some folk in a small minority still carry on running badly barefoot and get injured. I’m looking forward to discussing it with you. It will be a very positive step for you. Buy the Vibrams. 🙂

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