Some background...
I thought I knew how to run. I was running with a forefoot strike way before B2R. Stumbled on it quite by accident: One day back in 1999 I was out on a favourite 5 mile loop. Half way through (after heel striking the first half) the shins locked up. Painful. Frustrating. Could barely even walk. What to do now? Long painful walk back in the cards. Found, quite by accident, that walking on tiptoes eased the pain. Hmm, what about if I try walking on tiptoes? No pain! Ok, let's try jogging on tiptoes. No pain! Finished the remaining 2.5 miles in RECORD time. Next day? Ouch! Sore calves! But, I was intrigued. I started experimenting and fairly soon the calves began cooperating. My engineering background analysed the situation and I realised that, from a mechanical perspective, this makes total sense. Natural shock absorption! The human body is truly amazing. I enjoyed a lot of great running. Knocked 2 and a half minutes off my 5K time. By now it was almost impossible to go back to heel striking.

Some middle ground...
Enjoyed some great running years. Now, let life and work get in the way. I was running off and on. Too much confidence in ability. Here come the injuries. What? Not letting injuries heal fully? Of course not!

Ok, I finally realised that I am not invincible and that, if I want to realise my love of running, I need to get back to basics. Enter Eric and "The Cool Impossible."

After figuratively devouring the book I realised that after all this time, even though I ran with a forefoot strike, I was still overstriding! I always knew that my foot was landing ahead of my knee. I even had the pointed toes that coach describes in his book. I also had the muscular symptoms that he describes: namely, frequently sore achilles, tight hips, tight hip flexors.

Right away I ordered a slant board and stability disks.

In the meantime, I wanted to take this new found knowledge out for a spin. Even though there are only five form points (Foot strike, Leg stance, Knee drive, Takeoff, and Arm carry), it's still a lot to think about. So I took off for an easy run. Little mantras running through my head: Ankle behind knee, arms loose, cadence quick and light, drive into the ground. But wait, I was forgetting something. I was also getting tired. Then it came to me; the most important thing; knee drive. How could I have forgotten that? So, I start focussing on knee drive, knee drive, knee drive. Every muscle in my legs, right up to and through the glutes came alive! The muscle sensation was totally different than I had ever experienced. Now the other form points were easy to incorporate and, although I was still tired, it felt like I could run much longer.

Since that initial correct form run, I have received the equipment and have started work on foot strength, upper body and core strength. (I thought my feet were already strong...not very!) The good news is that the strength is coming fast. The better news is that my achilles is no longer tender. The awesome news is that my running continues to get better and easier and is now wonderfully enjoyable again.

Now, for my Cool Impossible...

Thanks Coach

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Comment by Lori Enlow on June 9, 2013 at 2:04am
Go for it, and keep us posted!
Comment by David Pearson on June 8, 2013 at 9:04pm
The distance, and by extension, the total time has been the mind and body challenge for me. A 50 or 100 miler seems impossible but incredibly cool.
This year, my goal at 47 years old is to break my half marathon PR set when I was 25.
Comment by Lori Enlow on June 8, 2013 at 8:42pm
Marathons are harder than 50ks in my opinion.
Comment by Lori Enlow on June 8, 2013 at 8:42pm
Maybe next year for a 100 miler...I definitely suggest Leadville. How about an ultra before te end of the year? Look around!
Comment by David Pearson on June 8, 2013 at 8:32pm
Well, you know, I've run three marathons and each one has been a huge physical challenge. So, now, my cool impossible has to be be an ultra distance race. You, Lori, are an inspiration. Leadville or Western States are in my future.
Comment by Lori Enlow on June 8, 2013 at 6:10pm

....And what might that cool impossible be? 

Train With Eric

Foot Core

The Cool Impossible by Eric Orton

The Cool Impossible: Run Beyond Limits

“this is by far one of the best training books of the past decade.” - Competitor Magazine

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