For the past few weeks, during workouts, my legs have felt tired, like lead, like heavy sacks of sand. First, I thought it was the high heel wearing (probably part of it)... then... I thought my legs were probably just tired and potentially overworked. Then, I thought it was just from running because I felt OK, not 100%, but OK during boxing. At the same time, I thought... shoot am I just going through another phase of feeling old?
I tried getting more sleep, eating more protein, drinking more water. Well that helped some things, but, my legs still felt like lead. And so, I did what I should have done the moment I came back from my first bad run... stretch out and foam roll. Yesterday morning, I woke up early and stretched out my calves and hamstrings for about 10 minutes and then foam rolled for another 5 minutes and stretched again. The end result? I felt like a new woman at boxing last night. My legs felt light as a feather.
Why foam roll? Foam rolling is the best alternative to massage. It applies direct pressure to knotted areas that stretching alone, cannot treat. Foam rollers are especially helpful for those who consistently have high intensity workouts or run. Over time, those who are constantly training, develop micro tears that get worse over time and eventually turn into a knot or "trigger point" causing pain and/or stiffness. Foam rollers can be picked up for around $20 at most sports stores or online. I also like "the stick" (seen below)... it's a less painful treatment and quicker to use, plus it can be packed in a suitcase.
I'd like to hear how many of you use a foam roller and how often?
Have a great week - stretch it out! xo