Consistancy = Success

In my 11 years of racing triathlon, I have come to realize that a huge part of success is consistency. If you are able to train in all aspects of the sport consistently, your ability to achieve great things dramatically increases. One of the biggest hurdles that stands in the way of this consistency is injury and I find this rather amusing.

How can an injury be amusing? Well because most of the time its predictable and preventable. If you choose to let it happen, that is silly… to the point of being kind of funny. Obviously crashes, accidents, and extreme circumstances aren’t necessarily preventable because then they wouldn’t aptly be named so, but for many of those training related injuries, if athletes would take the time to get to know their bodies a bit more many of those obstacles could be completely avoided. So how do you “get to know your body more?” Try seeing an experience physical therapist and/or chiropractor. Their job is knowing all about the human body. I have starting seeing three of the PT’s at Alta Physical Therapy and Dr Lisa Erikson at LifeSport Chiropractic. Charlie, Mike, and Erin at Alta have been helping me to diagnose and treat potential problem areas to help avoid any show stopping injuries and Dr Lisa has been adjusting me. If you haven’t noticed, I’ve been blogging about them a lot lately and there is good reason – I’m injury free!

Four of the things that we have done so far to help predict and prevent injuries are Selective Functional Movement Assessment (SFMA), Functional Movement Systems (FMS), Trigger Point Dry Needling (TDN), and Active Release Technique (ART) .

Both SFMA and FMS are ways of assessing fundamental patterns of movement, such as bending and squatting, that can be associated with known musculoskeletal pain. We’re able to identify meaningful impairments that may be seemingly unrelated to the main musculoskeletal complaint, but contribute to the associated disability. In other words, we do a few simple tests and are able to find major weaknesses. From these assessments, I’m given specific exercises to do and areas to focus on when it comes to supplemental training. We find the weakness and eliminate it. Potential problem solved!

I’ve talk about TDN in a previous blog. We’ve been using this to focus on areas that I have been absolutely pounding in training. By helping the muscle to recover faster, I’m able to progress through training smoother and with greater success.

And the newest treatment that I’ve been trying is ART. ART is a movement-based soft tissue treatment technique that smooths out tissue thickness, releases trigger points, lengthens tight muscles, frees scars, mobilizes nerves, and improves range of motion. Here Charlie is working on my quads and calves.

I have definitely noticed two distinct differences between ART and TDN as recovery tools. ART is far less “intense” and is much more comfortable to go through, but TDN has greater effects for me in the long run. With TDN, I’m pretty sore for the following 48 hours, but then see outstanding results. With ART, I’m not very sore right away, but I do see differences almost immediately. Both are great techniques that I’m using for the same purpose, but who know what they can do for you!

With Dr Lisa, we’ve been working on a lot of areas. Check out the pictures and see what she has been working to correct. We’re making good progress (you should have seen me before)!

As triathletes (although this applies to pretty much any endurance athlete), we spend exorbitant amounts of time trying to get faster. Whether it be the latest and greatest training program, the next big break through in bike design, or the new super food (in my best cheesy commercial voice) to help you lose weight and build muscle at the same time, triathletes are willing to try it. Bigger, better, faster! Gotta have it! If we’d just spend a little bit more time on our body itself rather than all the things we put on it, do with it, and come out of it, we’d be able to really fine tune that racing machine. I’m doing it, and I’m seeing a huge difference in performance already. Can’t wait for race season!


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