Friday, August 26, 2011


Rested from running for 4 days. With Salonpas spray, Ammtlez and ice bag, the ITB feel much better and I have no felt any pain when walking down the staircase. I also purchased the Amino Acid supplement from GNC (with their discount voucher from Men’s Health Run) and hope to speed up the recovery process. Took the supplement from Monday to Wednesday, stopped yesterday as I didn’t want to overdose and affecting the body-ability to extract amino-acid from normal food.

As the ITBFS seem to ease off, I decided to try the KT tape and throw in a shorter try run before the weekend long run. I got the kinesiology therapy tape KT Tape @ discounted price of RM63 from SportSprises79 in Bangsar. The official website suggested 2 tapering methods, ITBS-Knee & ITBS-Knee-X. The first method looks very difficult so I tried the ITBS-Knee-X method.
Pre-Cut 20 pieces per Roll

I-Tape & Cut one I-Tape into 2 equal pieces

With no stretch, put on the I-Tape on the lateral side of the knee

With full stretch put on the first shorter tape

Also with full stretch, put on the 2nd shorter tape (take note you shouldn't stretch on the anchor points at the end of each tape)

After tapering, the knee felt better support from lateral side. I put on VFF and headed out for the short run. The X-tape came out by the first km, may be due to too much stretch and imperfection of my application. I continued with only the I-tape for the remained 3km. I still felt the mild support with only the I-tape. After the run, I didn’t remove the tape and want to try if it last the shower. It survived through the warm water, soap and shampoo.

Btw, this is a very costly + risky way to enjoy the run. The tape itself is about RM3.15 per I-tape (pre-cut into 20 pieces I-tape per RM63 roll). As the severity of the injury is uncertain, the protection from the tape is too in the mist. Unless I undergo a thorough check with specialist and used the tapering method recommended (if the doctor still allow me to run), the risk of over-train will remained. Now, I still felt the very mild tightness on lateral side of my knee. Good news, it doesn’t seem to worsen by this morning 4km. I am not too sure this is the effect of the tape or the RICE. May be a longer run with the tape on tomorrow, it will able to tell.

On next week Hari Raya & National Day break, I will take some more off from running. 
Selamat Hari Raya and Happy Holiday.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

ITBFS & Training Update

Illiotibial Band Friction Syndrome (ITBFS) is a common injury that runners often pick up. One of the main causes for this injury is over-trained, with poor running technique. I guess I fitted into this cause nicely. I ran 67km and 8.5hours last week, close to 20% extra from my weekly normal.

The left thigh felt tight on the lateral side during last Sunday BA-Sri Hartamas LSD, around 40 minutes after start. If my memory served me right, it should be right after the crossing of the Jalan Duta underpass. The lifting of the legs to cross barrier on the underpass must had tipped the ITB friction (with lots of cumulating from my poor running technique). On that time, I didn’t pay that much of attention to it as its just tightness on one side of the thigh, and I am still ok to keep running. I continued to Sri Hartamas via the Matrade building. First time met with Mohan, Terence Poon and another runner (sorry I forgot your name, thank you to run with me at the slow pace) at the traffic light in front of Hartamas Height. We chatted along the way and thank you guys for sharing some tips on preparing marathon, I even booked a place at Mohan 7 hours pacing team in RJM :P Met with more runners on the way to the Petronas station.

Thanks to Terence, I really enjoyed the special flowers rain/shower treat. Heard from Carol that this is a pledge that will keep us in running, no heading back!
That’s GREAT! :D

Back to ITBFS, I felt the left thigh is about to cramped up after the flowers rain. Pushed on to the Petronas station and took some rest there and slowly ran back to BA. The left thigh felt terrible now, so no double hills today. I reduced to run-walking after the Bukit Tunku, and finally back to my car in one piece. Reached home, after cleaned up, I performed the usual message, put on the compression socks and a quick napping for recovery.

I guess I am still lucky (or may be still in early stage :P). The tightness doesn’t turn into pain, but I had problem to walk down staircase. The main course for these few days training will be on RICE (Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevate). Pray hard and hope to recover before the weekend. Some resources and suggestion about ITBFS:

Btw, saw this information about PJ Half Marathon on MyRaceOnline. En. Rustam also confirmed the NB30km will not happen this year. I will substitute my race schedule and join the PJ Half Marathon.

Happy RICE! :(

Monday, August 15, 2011

RJM 2011 Training Plan

There are about 5+ weeks until RJM. I am adjusting my training plan so that I can push through some of the training threshold. Hopefully this will enable me to travel on feet for 42km in 7+ hours. In this case, all my weekend LSDs are now go with time, and it’s going from current 2:30 hours to 4:30 hours before the RJM.

I will not able to focus on 2 things on running, so my plan to use VFF for the Marathon is tentatively dropped. NB905 will handle most of the LSD and VFF will restrict to the weekdays shorter distances only. Btw, I am wearing VFF to shopping after the LSD, it’s provide some mild stimulation when walking around.

Briefly looked at my time table, I should have no problem to stick to the plan, as long as I am able to recover timely from workout to workout. So, I get myself a flight socks (out of budget for RM250~400+ running compression). After last weekend LSD, I wear them and have both legs on elevated position after during the afternoon nap. The result is so far so good. I am still adjusting myself to use it, and hope it helps to speed up my recovery.

After few weeks training in VFF, my toes blister problem gone at least until 21km. The current weak point is still my ankle. Doc on the Run provided some timely advice on tapering. I will give it a try when I manage to find those KT tapes. I have some ankle support, but there are too bulky and I imagine it will result some blistering under my feet after 4 hours of running.

Yes, I feel a bit of panic about my near suicide attempt of running a Full Marathon so soon. Now all I can do is train as hard as my body allowed, and hope for the best. 

Also, Malakoff 12KM Kuala Lumpur 2011 launched today. Registration open at MyRaceOnline. It's the same route and venue like 2010 version. That time I am only on 7km, but over-weighted and not fit. This year, I registered for the 12km. It is time again to test out myself on the dreadful double looped Bukit Damansara route.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Running in VFF KomodoSport

It has been 3 weeks since I got the VFF. Now, I would properly say that running in VFF is a very good experience, and a very painful one. So far, I ran 100km in VFF with the longest distance and time I covered in one workout will be 15km (used 2 hours) and 2:40hours (hiking for 11km). The response from the feet in VFF in both workouts is overwhelming, but quickly it get through the threshold and what you only felt from there after is pain. For time being, I can’t pin-point the tipping point and the threshold. I will also imagine that this threshold will vary from each individual. So, if you are looking for the constant response from the feet to tune your gait, properly it will only happen before the threshold. You need a good gait and running style that locked hard into YOU, before you can go far in VFF. I used it for varies surfaces, asphalt, running trek, treadmill and even hiking. As you need your own legs to work hard as part of the suspension system, there are not much difference in term of protection and cushioning from the VFF in these varies surfaces.

I am now doing a quick and simple massage to my legs every night so they are in good shape and the pain do not accumulated especially at the calves, knees and the muscles on top of the feet. I am doing some strengthening exercise on the feet and plantar fascia area (refer to Merrell Barefoot for some suggestion). But some how I still felt some pain from time to time at some parts that I never experience before in running. I decided to take a few days off from now to ensure a proper recovery (plus I am actually down by flu too). I am fully understood pushing too hard in VFF may resulting stress fractures, and this is properly the worst injury for running, its only cure is REST until it fully recovered. I will change my training plan for RJM, with some training done in NB905 instead of 100% in VFF. Which shoes I will be running in RJM, it will be depends on my training now. Anyway, the well beaten NB905 should be a very good shoes for my first marathon. All LSD will be focus on time on feet until I can cover the 6 hours in one of the LSD.
River Jungle Marathon 2011 Route Map
6 weeks until RJM, my first marathon. 
Target in RJM, 7 hours (10 minutes/km pace). 

Update (11/8/11):
Found this article which is quite echo my point regarding running in VFF and ultimately, barefoot. I am now seriously thinking of getting another shoe for the RJM training :P