Today we're bringing you a new Friday blog segment aptly named Physiology Geek Friday.
This segment will consist of technology, training tools, new testing protocols and other various items or strategies either myself or Kevin have been experimenting with. There is always exciting new technology and research in the world of sports thats easy to get caught up in. Thats why I like to use myself as a test subject for different programs or devices. That being said, I am no elite athlete and I'm still fairly new to the world of endurance but that allows me to approach these sort of things with an unbiased and open mindset.
Lets get into todays topics.
Mobility tool I'm using
I've used several rollers ranging from the nice and squishy blue roller to a 6" PVC Pipe. I saw a segment with Mike Boyle using the roller and talking about how it stands out from other rollers. Rollga has a contoured design which allows for more focused self myofascial release. This is especially nice for people who abuse themselves rolling down their IT bands. It allows you to keep a nice angle on each side of the IT without aggravating it by rolling right over it. The contours also protect your spine by leaving a gap to avoid making contact with the spine itself when rolling your back. My other rollers have remained on the shelf since I received my Rollga and I expect they will remain there. You can check out their website here.
Training tool I'm using
Part of me wanted to use these because they look cool and part of me wanted to test out the idea of "neural priming." These weapon esque grips make a regular push up much more difficult as they challenge your stability on a whole new level. They're also are great for planks and L-sit Holds if you're bold. They look like an easy ticket to crushed fingers or a broken wrist but I have enjoyed using them intermittently in my workouts. I find that when I mix these in on a Push day I feel more stable in my shoulders.
What I'm testing out
I am still fairly new to running but I knew starting out that I wanted to progress to a 0 drop shoe and develop a smooth mid foot strike. I started with the classic supportive Brooks Adrenaline GTS to build my base fitness up and have slowly moved to less and less shoe. I've wanted to try Altras trail shoes but I have been enjoying my Inov-8 Roclite 305s so I opted for the Escalante road shoe. In my opinion they are by far the best looking Altras and are also one of the lightest. I have been loving these shoes. They have a lower stack height than most Altras and have an all mesh upper that feels like you're really not even wearing a shoe. I love the toe box and have noticed my feet feel much stronger over the last few months. I think I have found my brand as long as these shoes hold up.
What I'm reading
Working at Podium has driven me to consider activities 5 years ago I would have been adamantly against. Athletes of all ages and competition levels come through the office and it has really peaked my interest in the questionably sane world of endurance sports. I've knocked off some races on foot and have started putting in more miles on the bike but there is one more step to fully dive into the endurance world, triathlon. What better way to start than reading Joe Friel's Triathletes Training Bible. So far this book has been a wealth of information on topics I'm familiar with such as training zones and testing to topics I'm less experienced in like balancing 12 hours of training in three different disciplines. While he doesn't suggest this book for the Novice triathlete I find myself enjoying the more in-depth discussion of training and physiology, because at the end of the day I am a physiology geek novice or not.