I’m going to go into one thing that my recent work with Marc at South Congress Athletic Club highlighted. I posted recently how he analyzed a few things about me and one was that I was distributing my weight unevenly between my left and right side/legs. Specifically he noticed that when I was standing neutrally the Tibialis Anterior Tendon was engaged more on my right foot than the left … I put more weight or strain on the right than the left.
The right foot is the one I’ve been having trouble with in the toes with a sprain in the area between the feet. I also had a foot sprain on this foot in the past and have had minor plantar faciitis.
Today Marc worked through some of the exercises that are part of the program he’s put together which I’ll be doing on my own. One of the exercises was a seated calf raise. What’s shown in the video does NOT cover what he wanted me to focus on but just shows you the machine and what you’ll see people at the gym doing.
There were a few things he wanted to make sure I focus on. The first was keeping my body upright. One of the ways I’ve often heard people describe good running form is to feel like there’s a rope going through the center of the top of the head straight down and we’re trying to keep it taught. Marc makes a point of in all the exercises pointing out one or two things to “feel” or “look for” to ensure it’s working the muscules the right way for me. So I had that in control and he said I should feel my calves activate.
The strange thing was I noticed pretty quickly that the calf in my right leg was not activating like the left. That was pretty strange so I spent a little more time with Marc on that. What I noticed was that in the right foot I was pushing more from the outer pad of my foot (outside three toe foot area) than the left foot. As soon as I focused on engaging the inner foot pad my calf in the right foot engaged, it created a more even distribution of force across the foot.
It was insightful to see the imbalance between both my feet and how I use them. All this work has given me more insight into why I tend to see the same injuries over and over and why they tend to differ between my left and right side, now I hope all his trying to balance the body out helps keep me fit and running.