By Cathryn Clayden, Dec 30 2015 11:29AM
To maintain my registration as a podiatrist, and as part of my continuing professional development, I regularly attend the best sports medicine conferences in the country, each time coming away inspired and motivated by the speakers who are mentors, trainers and coaches to elite athletes at the very top of their game.
But I don’t seem to be able to apply a little of that get up and go to my own life. Hell, I even pay someone else to walk my dog. I have never exercised, am rapidly approaching 40, and my current fitness levels stand at about zero.So I have decided to abandon my unhealthy lifestyle, and start running. I treat patients that run, from weekend enthusiasts to experienced athletes, and listen to myself reel off advice and training tips, but what do I really know about it? Surely I’ll be a better practitioner with more empathy and insight when approaching patient care if I actually experience the aches and pains myself, the perseverance required to push myself to the absolute limit.
Plus I want to find out what I’m capable of. The whole barefoot running debate intrigues me and I eagerly await new posts on the subject by my hero and lecturer at Latrobe University Craig Payne, himself a runner. Funds allowing, I’d like to try out the extremes of running footwear for myself, from a more minimalist shoe, to something like a Hoka OneOne, the ultra-cushioned over-sized offering that went the opposite way to the barefoot trend. I’m going to find out about drop, make sense of the terminology around the industry, and discover what it really means, and how it really feels.
My blog posts will be dual-pronged. You’ll have the beginner’s perspective on breaking through the pain barrier and upping your mileage, and my humble podiatric perspective on equipment, clothing and footwear, training schedules and injury prevention along the way. I’m lucky, I have a clinic full of k-tape, electrotherapy units and of course, a wonderful sports therapist on tap. But ultimately, I’m embarking on unchartered territory for an extremely unfit 37 year old. I’ll keep you posted.