The DWF, or daily workout and food is aimed at giving you some basic conditioning ideas. For some it’s the only thing they do, for many it’s just part of your training day.
Most days you also need to work on skill ( I often focus on gymnastics), Strength and therapy drills: I need always focus on my vulnerability to Plantar fasciitis, Patello-femoral and back pain. By having a sensible self applied therapy regime, you can stop the problems before they start.
We don’t assume that you have access to a pull up bar! But today we stayed in the flat because we have a pull up bar there (with rings on). We wanted to do a version of Cindy. The Crossfit workout of 5 pull ups, 10 push ups, 15 squats. AMRAP in 15 minutes (it should b 20 minutes, but Im 59, so I cut myself some slack now and then.)
I wonder now, why I didn’t wonder then why I ever thought I could simply lock my feet up in shoes all day, ignore them and assume they would continue to take whatever abuse I threw at them:
The day I got plantar fasciitis was awful, I stood by my bed, foot held in the air like a begging cat and tried to work out how to get to the loo. Hopping, for me certainly, had always been easy, but today the mere thought of accidentally putting that foot down on the floor made me almost throw up in my mouth.
Obviously I had to cancel my morning. I said sorry to my 3 morning clients (bye bye money)and put a warning out that I probably wasn’t going to get to teach my classes in the evening.
Thankfully by the end of the morning I was more mobile, but still putting pressure on that foot felt like a super unwise thing to do. But as it always does, Plantar fasciitis gets easier as the day goes on
I think I made it to those classes and got so carried away that I demonstrated some double unders ( that’s where you skip and the rope passes under you twice). When I landed I didn’t collapse with agony ( you can thank 15 years of martial arts, boxing and security work for the ability not to cry like a child in public) but someone watching me said, I literally turned green with the agony.
Of Course, things went from bad to worse, but I did discover that “simply hoping isn’t a method” I discovered, however, that, having a disability, albeit a temporary one, really sucks. If like me you are active, plantar fasciitis makes most days awful. One day I recall, had to pick up a box from one venue and walk it around the corner. A 5-minute job: 45 minutes later. I just about made it.
My efficiency and vitality started draining away. I certainly wasn’t running or training
Then came the cascade of doctors, therapists, Dr google, and well-meaning people all with great advice. Stretch it. Do this exercise. The only thing they did seem to agree on and this was backed up by the BMJ. Was that I was in for 6 weeks to 2 years of pain.
I got lucky: just 14 months
Thankfully I didn’t fall for surgery or injections or shock treatment or blood transfusion
But I randomly tried things for a day: a bit of stretching. Maybe 2 days in a row I’d bother to stretch my calf. I did the required 10 to 15 seconds. I was a fitness instructor so I knew what to do(or so I thought).
Strengthening my foot was important so I’d dead lift some more.
So I really started researching. I noticed that everyone had their pet dogma or their one-hit solution. It was always “ all you have to do is stretch it” “all you have to do is ice it”, “all you have to do is a therapy drill”.
It became obvious, as it will to you, that most solutions are combinations. Often you need to do a multiplicity of things. Today the word “multidisciplinary” is commonplace in a successful business. Often you don’t hear it in physical therapy.
If you get to see a state funded physio, chances are you end up with a scrap of photocopied paper with a few random exercises in it.
So on my course I’m going to show you how to combine the proven protocols to produce accelerated healing results.
Im going to blow away a lot of silly myths and rumours about stretching, and I’m going to show you how to do it properly to solve plantar fasciitis. I’m then going to help you break up the specific knots and trigger points in your muscles that are causing and keeping you in pain. Then you’ll be doing some M.E.Ts, the ones that will help you re-educate your muscles, finally you’ll be learning and doing an effective specific strength regime.
This unique combination works.
I unoriginally call it the SSES system ( stretch it, smash it, educate it, strengthen it) as you need to do all 4 as part of your regime. If you simply stretch it, the trigger points get you, and a lack of strength drags you back into pain. Strength on its own, without educating your muscles and restoring an effective range of motion, is also a low return strategy.
I’ll teach you these skills with a mixture of video, photos, and written teaching resources to help you learn. For the first 100 people you’ll get my email address so any issues I’ll be there to help you. However, I’ll soon set up a free but private Facebook group to support you that way.
Try and do the foot exercises below. Your feet will love you, and you will also learn to love your feet. This type of activities are also helpful in your battle against plantar fasciitis.
Scrunch your toes, with or without a towel. Just think about the position you leave them in normally. Straight and locked in your shoes like prisoners. To paraphrase Marie Antoinette “Let them scrunch air” or treat them to a scrunch festival on a towel! Give them some manoeuvering room.
Splay your toes: see if you can splay them.
It was a bit of a battle for me to learn how to do this ( as, like you I’ve locked my feet into shoes for the last years, so I alternate the splay with using my fingers to pull them apart ( you can do it en-mass as shown here or individually )
Big Toe stretch
Slowly stretch and pull the toe backward toward your shin. Go as far as is comfortable.
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Underpinning every psychological approach to back pain is education.
It’s seen as crucial that you understand the mechanisms of pain within your body. So here is a super simple introduction to the basics of pain. I started teaching in our kitchen:
We have that basic banana approach. We can now build up to a bit more of a technical overview. You’ll see, I got kicked out of the kitchen, into the bathroom!
now, its up into the brain! We were relocated to the bedroom
Its back to the bathroom to remind ourselves about what switches nociceptive neurons on and off
back into the bedroom to look at “inhibitory interneurons” and “enkephalins”
Helping you understand how pain works is certainly the approach used by Dr Sarno in his TMS (Tension Myositis Syndrome)programme and Dr Schubiner in his MBS ( Mind Body Syndrome) programme. I just think our educational process is a bit funnier!
The Backaholic course should be ready in late August/early September, so if you want to fix your back pain, do sign up for our newsletter so you know when its available! Obviously we will send out lots of handy hints and tips between then and now.
The big warning. Some back pain is really serious: check your RED FLAGS by clicking here
Whilst I talk about the various therapies and stretches for Plantar Fasciitis here, its worth tuning into the “length of stretch” debate.
If you look at Porter D, Barrill E, Oneacre K, May BD. The effects of duration and frequency of Achilles tendon stretching on dorsiflexion and outcome in painful heel syndrome: a randomized, blinded, control study. Foot Ankle Int 2002;23(7):619-624.
You’ll find two protocols coming neck and neck:
3 minutes of stretching 3 x a day (ie hold the stretch for 3 minutes) , or five sets, 20 seconds each, two times daily.
Either way, the take-home message that a quick reluctant 10-second stretch when you can be bothered, isn’t enough. The study also determined that both sustained and intermittent Achilles tendon stretching exercises increase Achilles tendon flexibility. This increase in flexibility correlated with a decrease in pain!
This is an idea that features heavily in my fix your plantar fasciitis course. It’s only £27 and has the most effective science-backed drills. Never waste money on physical therapy again!!
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