Friday, October 30, 2009

Five Most Common Runner's Injury

Runner’s World Guide to Road Racing by Katie McDonald Neitz deals a part of the book on runners injury which I find very informative to all runners of any level to ensure injury free and quick remedial actions to take if and ever a particular injury is experienced.

Here are the five most common running injuries, how to spot them, and how to get relief quickly.


The plantar fascia is the connective tissue that runs from the heel to the base of the toes. It may look like a series a of fat rubber bands, but, it’s made of collagen, a rigid protein that’s not very stretchy. The stress of overuse, overpronation, or overused shoes can rip tiny tears in it, causing pain and inflammation, aka plantar fasciitis.

Causes: Drastic or sudden increase in mileage, poor foot structure, and inappropriate running shoes can overload the plantar fascia.

Symptoms: sharp stab or deep ache in the middle of the heel or along the arch. Another sign is the “morning hobble.” Taking the first step causes sudden strain on the bottom of the foot. The pain can recur after long spells of sitting. But it tends to fade during a run, once the area is warmed up.

Treatment: At the first sign of soreness, massage (roll a golf ball under your foot) and apply ice (roll a frozen bottle of water under your foot). While it’s typical to experience pain in just one foot, massage and stretch both feet. Do it first thing in the morning and three or four times during the day.


(ITB) syndrome is one of the most common overuse injuries among runners. Because the most notable symptoms is typically swelling and pain on the outside of the knee, many runners mistakenly think they have a knee injury, but, it actually involves the ligament that runs down the outside of the thigh from the hip to the shin.

Causes: ITB syndrome can result from any activity that causes the leg to turn inward repeatedly, such as wearing worn-out shoes, running downhill or on banked surfaces, running too many track workouts in the same direction, or simply running too many miles. ITB afflicts seasoned as much as beginners, also, it is much more common in women. It could be the way some women’s hips tilt, which can cause their knee to turn in.

Symptoms: The best way to tell if you have ITB syndrome is to bend your knee at a 45-degree angle. If you have an ITB problem, you’ll feel pain on the outside of the knee.

Treatment: Rest Immediately. That means fewer miles or no running at all. Side stretches will also help, as will ice or heat, ultrasound, or electrical stimulation with topical cortisone.


Known as patellofemoral pain syndrome (PFPS) occurs when a mistracking kneecap (patella) irritates the femoral groove in which it rest on the thighbone (femur)

Causes: Pinpointing a single cause is difficult. It could be a biomechanical problem – the patella may be larger on the outside than it is on the inside, sit too high in the femoral groove, or dislocate easily. There are also muscular causes. Tight hamstrings and calf muscles put pressure on the knee, and weal quadriceps can cause the patella to track out of alignment.

Symptoms: Tenderness behind or around the patella, usually toward its center. You may feel pain toward the back of the knee, a sense of cracking, or that the knee’s giving out. It strikes mostly younger, recreational runners and twice as many women as men.

Treatment: At the first sign of pain, cut back your mileage. The sooner you lessen the knee’s workload, the faster healing begins. Avoid knee bending activities, canted surfaces, and downward stairs and stride hills.


The nature of shin splints most often can be captured in just four words: “too much too soon”. This is usually a problem for either new runners or runners starting over. “Shin Splints” is the catch-all term for lower-leg pain that occurs below the knee either on the front outside part of the leg (anterior shin splints) or inside of the leg (medial shin splints).

Causes: Often plague beginning runners who do nit built their mileage gradually enough or seasoned runners who abruptly change their workout regimens, suddenly adding too many mileage. Other causes could be overpronation, inadequate stretching, worn shoes, or excessive stress placed on one leg or hip from running on cambered roads.

Symptoms: You’ll feel tenderness, soreness, or pain along your lower leg. Initially the pain might be present only while you’re exercising. Eventually, however, it can be continuous. The most common site for shin splints is the medial area. Anterior shin splints usually result from an inbalance muscles in the calf and the front leg and often afflict beginners who either have not yet adjusted to the stress of running or are not stretching enough.

Treatment: When shin splits strikes, you should stop running completely. Ice your shin to reduce inflammation. If you continue running, wrap your leg before you go out. Overpronators should wear motion-control shoes. Avoid hills and excessively hard surfaces until the pain goes away. Stretch your calves and Achilles regularly as a preventive measure.


The Achilles is the larger tendon connecting the two major calf muscles – the gastrocnemius and soleus – to the back of the heel bone. Under too much stress, the tendon tightens and is forced to work too hard. This causes it become inflamed (that’s tendinitis) and, over time, can produce a covering of scar tissue, which is less flexible than tendon. If the inflamed Achilles continues to be stressed, it can tear or rupture.

Cause: Tight or fatigue calf muscles transfer too much of the burden of running to the Achilles. This can be brought on by not stretching the calves properly, increasing mileage too quickly, or simply overtraining.

Symptoms: Dull or sharp pain anywhere along the back of the tendon, but usually close to the heel. Limited angle flexibility; redness or heat over the painful area; a nodule that can be felt on the tendon; and a cracking sound when ankle moves signal Achilles tendinitis.

Treatment: Stop running, take an anti-inflammatory medication, and ice the area for 15-20 minutes several times a day until inflammation subsides. Self-massage may also help. Don’t start running again until you can do “toe raises” without pain

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

EATING FRUIT - The Right Way On An Empty Stomach

This article was shared to me by my friend Chan Joo Huat of Singapore. I post this as an information tool and leave matters to the readers to verify and seek the truth behind each statement.

In our daily quest to seek a healthy diet to augment our passion for running, this informative article will complete the equation for a healthy lifestyle.

We all think eating fruits means just buying fruits, cutting it and just popping it into our mouths. It's not as easy as you think. It's important to know how and when to eat.

What is the correct way of eating fruits?


If you eat fruit like that, it will play a major role to detoxify your system, supplying you with a great deal of energy for weight loss and other life activities.

FRUIT IS THE MOST IMPORTANT FOOD. Let's say you eat two slices of bread and then a slice of fruit. The slice of fruit is ready to go straight through the stomach into the intestines, but it is prevented from doing so..

In the meantime the whole meal rots and ferments and turns to acid. The minute the fruit comes into contact with the food in the stomach and digestive juices, the entire mass of food begins to spoil....

So please eat your fruits on an empty stomach or before your meals! You have heard people complaining — every time I eat watermelon I burp, when I eat durian my stomach bloats up, when I eat a banana I feel like running to the toilet, etc — actually all this will not arise if you eat the fruit on an empty stomach. The fruit mixes with the putrefying other food and produces gas and hence you will bloat!

Graying hair, balding, nervous outburst, and dark circles under the eyes all these will NOT happen if you take fruits on an empty stomach.

There is no such thing as some fruits, like orange and lemon are acidic, because all fruits become alkaline in our body, according to Dr. Herbert Shelton who did research on this matter. If you have mastered the correct way of eating fruits, you have the Secret of beauty, longevity, health, energy, happiness and normal weight.

When you need to drink fruit juice - drink only fresh fruit juice, NOT from the cans. Don't even drink juice that has been heated up.. Don't eat cooked fruits because you don't get the nutrients at all. You only get to taste. Cooking destroys all the vitamins.

But eating a whole fruit is better than drinking the juice. If you should drink the juice, drink it mouthful by mouthful slowly, because you must let it mix with your saliva before swallowing it. You can go on a 3-day fruit fast to cleanse your body. Just eat fruits and drink fruit juice throughout the 3 days and you will be surprised when your friends tell you how radiant you look!

KIWI: Tiny but mighty. This is a good source of potassium, magnesium, vitamin E & fiber. Its vitamin C content is twice that of an orange.

APPLE: An apple a day keeps the doctor away? Although an apple has a low vitamin C content, it has antioxidants & flavonoids which enhances the activity of vitamin C thereby helping to lower the risks of colon cancer, heart attack & stroke.

STRAWBERRY: Protective Fruit. Strawberries have the highest total antioxidant power among major fruits & protect the body from cancer-causing, blood vessel-clogging free radicals.

ORANGE: Sweetest medicine. Taking 2-4 oranges a day may help keep colds away, lower cholesterol, prevent & dissolve kidney stones as well as lessens the risk of colon cancer.

WATERMELON: Coolest thirst quencher. Composed of 92% water, it is also packed with a giant dose of glutathione, which helps boost our immune system. They are also a key source of lycopene — the cancer fighting oxidant. Other nutrients found in watermelon are vitamin C & Potassium.

GUAVA & PAPAYA: Top awards for vitamin C. They are the clear winners for their high vitamin C content. Guava is also rich in fiber, which helps prevent constipation. Papaya is rich in carotene; this is good for your eyes.

Drinking Cold water after a meal = Cancer! Can u believe this?? For those who like to drink cold water, this article is applicable to you. It is nice to have a cup of cold drink after a meal. However, the cold water will solidify the oily stuff that you have just consumed. It will slow down the digestion. Once this 'sludge' reacts with the acid, it will break down and be absorbed by the intestine faster than the solid food. It will line the intestine. Very soon, this will turn into fats and lead to cancer. It is best to drink hot soup or warm water after a meal.

A serious note about heart attacks HEART ATTACK PROCEDURE': (THIS IS NOT A JOKE!) We all should know that not every heart attack symptom is going to be the left arm hurting. Be aware of intense pain in the jaw line. You may never have the first chest pain during the course of a heart attack. Nausea and intense sweating are also common symptoms. Sixty percent of people who have a heart attack while they are asleep do not wake up. Pain in the jaw can wake you from a sound sleep. Let's be careful and be aware. The more we know the better chance we could survive.

Monday, October 26, 2009

My Subic Adventure - SIM And Others

When I finally decided to participate for the 21k Subic International Marathon a compromise agreement with the family was to bring them as well in Subic and have a family bonding time.

On 24Oct09 Saturday early morning the family with my granddaughter proceeded our way to Subic. As I have not been to Subic for about two years, I was delighted to see that travel time has been greatly reduced with the opening as well of the SCTEX (Subic Clark Tarlac Expressway). When we reached the Floridablanca interchange, the westbound lane has been coned for counter flow as the eastbound lane will be used by the 42k Subic International Marathon which was to start on the same day at 4:30pm using the expressway all the way to Subic area ending at the Remy Field.

We reached the Subic area at about 9:30am and went directly to ZOOBIC. I have arranged our tickets via internet the day before so the wonders of e-technology were available for this theme park. I found the place great with its main attraction of almost 50 tigers and all types of animals, serpents, crocs and others. There was even an animal and Aeta shows incorporated in the package. The tour was guided and lasted for 3 hours so your P475 is well worth the entry fee.

It was already 2pm when we were able to check-in at the Lighthouse Resorts which was also a sponsor for the SIM and gave 20% discount for participants. The place was nice and has the beach and pool facilities for the children and adult as well.

At 5:00pm the family decided to have a Sunday’s anticipated Mass at the San Roque Parish which was also inside the Freeport Zone to free my tight schedule on Sunday which will be 21k race and travel time back to Manila. This part I will not forget for a long time. Just after the after the mass, I told the family that I will bring them back to the hotel and I will proceed to Remy Field to await the finish of the 42k race which should be coming in by 7pm. Feeling so in a hurry, I forgot my favourite orange Nike cap and a very expensive Rudy Project shades at the church pew. As they say, the “Lord Gives And Takes Away”. So long shades may the finder enjoy you!

Arriving at Remy Fields at 6:30pm the Nike 10k race was in its last runner coming in at the finish line. The announcer was mentioning that there were about 270 participants on the said race. The field had a very festive atmosphere and the stage was being prepared for a night party and band which was to start after the awards ceremony of for the 42k. Then just about 6:50pm the first Kenyan runner entered the field and followed in interval of minutes by another 7 Kenyan runners. I was already losing hope to see the first Filipino runner and finally the 9th finisher was Filipino runner from Baguio. After he cross the finish line, I had to leave be back to the hotel with the family.

At 3:00am the following morning I was already awake and preparing myself for the race. The distance from the hotel to Remy Field was barely 5 minutes so I was taking my time to leave the hotel as the gun start will only be at 5:30am. When I did arrive at 5:00am at Remy Field, the area was already full of people. I am not good at making estimates but there were thousands. This is the very first time that I have seen so many police participants, Philippine National Police is one of the sponsors. There were also a lot of young kids in elementary grades which probably are local school supporters for the event. While awaiting for the start of the race it was nice to see familiar faces and friends from, however, with so many people it was difficult to maintain conversational phase.

I was hoping that the gun start for 21k will be as scheduled but sad to say it did not with a mini program injected prior to the race. I do not complaint for this, however, only two negative comments I have for the race are (a) the gun start for the 21k, 10k, 5k, and 3k was changed to be a mass start. This could not have been an issue if the organizers were able to control the participants to be positioned before the start line. In the process of having people go back there were squeezing and stepping over with 3k and 5k participants in front rather than at the back and children squeezed in between. This was unsafe, I hope they improve this in the future. (b) Medals for the 21k run out to more than half of the participants. The organizers were fully aware of the number and should have prepared accordingly. Other than these two issues, the race was great. The route was perfect with no vehicular traffic, scenic view along the way, inclines to conquer and a good fresh air for the lungs.

As I have participated on both the 21k events for the QCIM and SIM, I am very much tempted to compare both events, but, would rather not and just thank the sponsors for both events to continue providing these races in the future, however, to take notice of the post race analysis and comments received from the different sectors to improve on the same in the future races. Both events are very distinct from one another which are just great. Both ice creams have different flavour.

Lastly, I wish to thank the group of Takbo,ph (Rico Villanueva and friends) stationed at near the 14km distance who provided COLD DRINKS that really made may day. I completed the 21k in 02h45m05s and had the rest of the morning swimming at the resort pool before reaching back in Manila at 5pm.

SIM my family bonding time and 21k race, great and wonderful (sad- goodbye Rudy Project shades)!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

21km KOTR / SIM - Torn Between Two Lovers

When announcement was made that the 21k category for the Subic International Marathon and the Adidas “King Of The Road” will both be held on 25Oct09, I told myself that it is going to be a difficult choice to make as both race events are great and have their own pros and cons.

Just life a lover torn between two beautiful ladies, I registered for both the 21km category for both races. I knew I can only participant in one race, but, I did register for both to allow myself enough time to contemplate and make a last minute decision as to which event to attend. Anyways, the one that I will not select I shall have a souvenir singlet and race bib to keep.

With only 4days remaining before the event, I have to make a difficult decision today. I have in the end decided to participate in the SUBIC INTERNATIONAL MARATHON 21km category as against the Adidas KOTR. Whilst the choice of SIM was not favourable in terms of travel, contingency expenses and time. It did offered a positive mark as the event is an International event as compared to KOTR. Further, the KOTR fiasco on the race packet distribution and handling of the so called “running expo” was downer that cast doubts as to actual race handling of KOTR.

Regardless of my reasons, I still PRAY for the SUCCESS of both events KOTR and SIM for the ultimate satisfaction and content of the running community as a whole.

As for the SIM, I intend to bring my family for an overnight stay at Subic on Saturday 24Oct09 and make the most of the visit in Subic to check out the different facilities and attractions. This will also allow me to be fresh and ready on 25Oct09 at 530am which is the gun start for the 21km.

Subic here I come!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

1st QCIM - Delivered As Promised

A few months back when QCIM was first announced, I have my reservation if I should partake on the said race on reasons that I have to spread myself evenly and be selective of the marathons and race events one after the other for the month of October and November. Today, I am glad that I did run the 21k for the 1st QCIM.

In a short and simple statement, it was a well organized, participated, supported marathon race event. I wish to extend my congratulations to the City Government of Quezon City, Runnex, Finish Line, the PNP support group, city public schools and the countless volunteer groups that has made the event a success and something to emulate. As promised and hyped, the event delivered the goods!

When I was discussing marathon organization with Bald Runner (Gen.Jovinal Narcise), he has emphasized that one important aspect in the equation in organization of a running event to guarantee its success is to have the GOVERNMENT involve on the project. The government have vast resources at its hand to ensure support from all sectors. Only after the government’s involvement will the private corporations be tapped to polish the commercial needs of the event. To tap the cake with icing, it is of course you need a worthy organizer who knows what running is all about. A tri-partite effort is necessary and this is exactly what did happened win the 1st QCIM. It has definitely had its labour pains during the process, but, to think that this is only the 1st, the standard it has achieve on the 1st year which is already of International Standard will easily improved with the experience gained and as the years continue (hopefully there will more years in its existence)

The route was GREAT imagine 8 lanes of Commonwealth Avenue free from traffic is all for the runners delight. For the full marathon, an added trill was even the coverage of the La Mesa Dam eco-park. QCIM did have the full backing of the City Police Stations, mobile cars, patrols, PNP officers and ranks. They were all over to handle security and traffic issues. This I think was the primary reason why was the route was free from vehicles. Added to these, are numerous marshals stationed on all intersection.

Water Stations, aid stations, providing 100plus, muscle pain, water sprinklers from fire trucks, were positioned in strategic location. Another welcome participations were the five (5) schools bands with the majorettes. I wish to make special mention of the high school students that were stationed at Commonwealth Avenue and Don Antonio who were so energetic in their cheers and smiles. The young girls and boys were an instant relief to watch.

The area within circle and Mindanao avenue was like having a fiesta at hand that you have people on the street and walking about while watching the runners. Parking was not a problem which was free and had guards stationed in the parking area.

Congratulations to the Kenyans who were expected to win and did delivered to lift the running standard of the event. Not to be outdone, congratulations as well to the Filipino elite runners that won, Cris Sabal was again at his best. To all the runners, congratulations for your participation. Runnex and Finish Line you did a good job.

Lastly to the City Government, PNP and the community sectors of Quezon City please take a bow!