Gravity: new product to help with pain throughout the body.

Just came across a new product to help with pain throughout the body. It is called Gravity and is making big waves in the world of Physical Health around the World.

Read how it works

I am Interested in testing this product, as it offers my clients an opportunity to reduce pain when at home, away from the clinic. It is an inexpensive way to help heal themselves in conjunction with a rehabilitation programme.

I have been playing football, tennis and working as a Physiotherapist. I sustained a whiplash injury in a head on tackle last weekend. My neck has been restricted on the right side with restrictions in right and left rotation, side bend and extension. I get a stiff right Thoracic Spine, from using my right arm, with Physiotherapy work.

Tonight I used Gravity for 30mins. I placed the neck and sacral elements into position. The neck element took a few adjustments to get comfortable. Initially, there was a strong pressure on the mastoid processes. With the adjustments I was able to get a very comfortable fit around my neck. The sacral element was very easy to place and very comfortable. I placed a roll under my knees to maximise relaxation.

I lay on Gravity and closed my eyes. I could feel a light comfortable pressure around the neck and on my sacrum. As I relaxed more I could feel myself drift into a deeper state of relaxation.

After 15 minutes on Gravity the neck element moved slightly as I lay on it. I was consciously relaxed but my muscles were moving my head on the neck element. I am not sure why my muscles either relaxed or contracted, but I continued to relax as much as possible. The movement continued to occur intermittently over the following 15 minutes.

After 25 minutes lying on Gravity I picked up my phone to check the time and check text messages. At this point both elements of Gravity started to feel hard and slightly uncomfortable. I am not sure if it was time on Gravity or not relaxing fully that created the pain.

I got off Gravity and tested my motion. I am normally stiff to right rotation and left side flexion of my Thoracic Spine. As I tested these movements I still felt mild to moderate restriction, but not severe restriction I normally felt. My neck felt stiff at end range, but there was a feeling of unusual comfort with each motion.

I plan to use Gravity 20 minutes in the morning and night. I will report on my findings. I will see what happens over a one week period.main-bluefourth-blue

Mistake with training and 95km on the bike

This weeks training started well with Fran changing my weight training to power training. This eased the pressure on my calf muscles and my legs felt better overall.

I had my massage on Monday with Michelle and my legs were feeling the best so far heading into my three hard ride sessions and run. First training was the swim and my confidence was better after completing the 1500 m swim last friday. I focussed on technique, in particular, trying to get my body into a side on position as I pulled through with my arm (like a fish). The second session was swimming 500m, 400m and then 200m with short rest periods. I am finally starting to feel the breathing easier in the water and I can complete longer distances. I had to revert back to the 17.7 m pool and hope to get into the 33 m pool more often.

The first bike session of the week involved 10 sprints up the steepest hill in Richmond called Kingston hill. I really pushed hard and I got my heart rate up to 85-90 percent of my heart rate. I noticed each time my chest was starting to hurt. I was thinking it could be my heart and on the 7th repetition my legs slowed up completely and I felt faint.

I watched my heart rate monitor and could see my heart rate was lowering and raising in a normal fashion. I decided to take the last 3 repetitions easier and kept my heart rate around 80-85%. My chest pains calmed and my breathing was better. It still took me 1.5 hours to complete the training and it shattered me for the days work.

The very next day I ran 1.15 hours around Battersea and my legs felt better as they were looser. The first lap was stiff but the second lap I really picked up the speed. Fran my coach gave me advice on using my arms to help pull my legs along and it made the biggest difference I have ever noticed with running.

I was trained to keep my arms lower to conserve energy but Fran says keep them higher and use my chest and arm muscles to rotate my body and facilitate leg movement. I completed 3 laps of Battersea Park and my legs felt strong and free. Using my arms has given me some control over helping my legs to run.

I made a big mistake with the following days bike ride. Fran gave me instructions to ride at a relaxed 90 RPM for 30 minutes with a 10 minute warm up and cool down. I misread it as maintaining 90% of maximum heart rate for 30 minutes. I thought Fran was crazy and how did he expect me to maintain this heart rate for 30 minutes.

I trusted Fran and took on the challenge to ride at 90% MHR for 30 minutes. I struggled to get the heart rate to 90% and when I did I could only maintain it for 10-30 seconds. I felt defeated but did repetitions of 90%MHR with little rests in between. I called Fran and told him he had set an impossible task. He corrected me on my training plan and warned me I may have overtrained for the week.

He was right as the next day I decided not to run and two days later my legs were stiff and sore. I went for my long bike ride this morning and my legs felt tired as I was leaving the house. I had 3.20 hours to ride and this was not going to be comfortable.

The first 2-3 laps around Richmond felt tiring and my quadriceps were fatigued. I eat pieces of power bar and drank my SIS carb drink every lap (20 minutes). On the 4th and 5th lap I felt better and my riding got stronger. I am not sure if the energy from the power bars helped or my body just responded to the riding. I could climb hills strongly and on the flats my legs felt better.

On lap  7 I started to fade. My legs got heavy and all I wanted to do was get around the course. My cadence stayed the same but my speed dropped as I stayed in higher gears. By lap 8 it was the furthest I had ever ridden. I misjudged the distance around the park and actually rode 3.40 hours.

My body was fatigued and I imagined being at home lying on the floor under the sun and resting. I got home and to my surprise I had ridden 95 km. This is half Ironman distance and longest I have ever ridden. It was a major achievement and milestone to hit this distance.

I know I must double this distance for the Ironman but I am now hitting distances my body has never experienced before. I like this idea and I can learn what happens to my body and how it adapts to different training strategies.

I will use my GPS to track some routes out of Richmond Park for the coming rides. Fran will be taking me out next Sunday for my long bike ride.

I have my compression garments on and I am feeling good after the long bike ride. I am enjoying this experience and hope my body continues to adapt in a positive manner.

I have added in a stretching session on a Wednesday after my runs. I stretch on a mat and also use the power plate to massage my legs and stretch. The combination of stretching and massage is helping. I also massage my own legs after the long bike and stretch.

I can see training is starting to pick up and the distances are fast becoming a reality. I must keep a positive mindset for the training and event on the 25 July.

Week 22: food poisoning disturbs training and first 1 hour run

This week started with great intentions and coach, Fran, wanted me to push hard this week. I had been on a  physio course over the weekend and I ate a sandwich from starbucks. On sunday night my stomach was tender and I was very tired and feeling the shivers in my body.

My first thought was a flu was coming on and I did not know how many days this would cost me in training. On monday morning I woke up feeling rotten. I had no energy and I was sweating but felt freezing. I had to head to work however when I got there I canceled my afternoon clients and went home. I slept for 4 hours that evening I was much better. It was a relief feel a normal temperature and I was happy my training could resume.

I took the executive decision to stay away from training for two days. My body actually enjoyed it and by Wednesday I felt 100% better. When I was in NZ I was told by a world-class physiologist, Jon Ackland, to pick up your normal routine of training after you recover from sickness. He said too many athletes try to catch up on what they have missed out and get injured or over train.

I followed Jon Ackland’s advice and on Wednesday got back on track with my planned training for each day. I had an hour outdoor run to do but my legs were tight from last weeks long bike. I missed my massage on monday because I was sick. My concern was the ITB pain coming on in my legs but I went ran and wanted to see what happened.

I ran around Battersea park. There was a  steep camber in the road which I tried to avoid by running along the middle of the road. My body still felt the  camber and my right knee and left calf did get niggles of pain towards the end of the run. I actually finished the hour but it was not totally comfortable. The massage next monday will desperately be needed to stop this from happening. I will also use kinesio tape to unload the fascia and see if it helps.

On the physio course we tested the effect of kinesio tape on the length tension test for ITB called the OBER’s test. When the tape was on the ITB tested much longer. I wonder if there will be a carry over to running? I will try it next week.

I missed my swims this week and did my long bike rides. The 3.15 hour bike was a beast as my legs were still tired from the 1.5 hour ride two days earlier. I  enjoy the experience of pushing my body into new distances of bike riding. The last lap of Richmond park today felt like my legs were about to Bonk. I was extremely slow up the hills and it almost hurt. This was the 7th lap around the park and it was windy and wet.

This coming week I am going to reassess my nutrition and look at rest times. I do not have a physio course until the 25 March so I have until then to get some consistency in my training, get my body stretched and massaged and have regular training times. I want to meet up with Fran to assess my gym program this week and I must swim 30 minutes non stop.

Week 21 training plan to come…..

Week 28: feeling exhausted in the mornings

I have done 5 days of training and I have my 2.5 hour bike tomorrow. I have altered my diary and fitting in the training this week went well. It is different when I have planned my week and I do not take on any more social events during the week.

Week 28 has seen a significant increase in training with swim sessions being tagged on the back of a weight training session and interval bike training session. My calf muscles and left knee did not like the increase squats and lunges this week. The massages I have on a monday are keeping me supple in the legs but I must avoid squatting too low to save my knee-joint.

The bike intervals were horrible. I managed to keep my heart rate at 75% of my max and ride for 2 x 20 minute intervals. My legs were hurting after 5 minutes of each interval and it was a mind game to keep myself going for 20 minutes. I have another bike session tomorrow and looking forward to no intervals.

Been waking up in the morning with my body shattered. I know my body is working harder and it is responding to the training. I know I must monitor my motivation levels, how tired my body feels in the morning, how it responds to training and if my appetite is normal. If these change I know I am overtraining and will tell Fran (coach).

I want to buy winter gloves this week, get my bike box booked on my flights back to NZ and to Zürich and book the Ascot Hotel in Zürich.

The bike box is costing £54 to book for Switzerland. If it exceeds 23 kg I must pay a further £30 each way.

Braces tightened yesterday so teeth painful again. Looks like back to soft foods this week. I have noticed my body is wanting lots of Carbs but I think I am overeating the carbs as my body is storing too much fat and I do not feel great at night. I will switch to more protein and vegetables at night. Get the steamer out and make it easy on myself to cook.

Leg injury improving with rest and massage and stretching

The pain I have had on the inside of my lower shin is still there occasionally when it is cold or after squats, lunges and long bike rides. I have worked with my massage therapist and discovered it was my flexor hallucis longus tendon that was injured.

I have rested for the last 3 weeks and then have had massage and stretching. I ran for 45 minutes today on the treadmill and my leg felt tight at the start and tight at the end but in the middle it felt as good as it felt with no injury. I ran slowly and hope to run outdoors later in the week.

Cold weather changing training

The weather in London this year has been freezing. It is 0 to negative degree temperatures and ice is on the roads. I may not be running at the moment but the riding has had to stop.

It is really disappointing I have not been able to get consistency in my training as I feel I would be a lot stronger now had the consistency occurred. I have not squatted in the gym for three weeks. My legs are getting stronger for swimming as this is what I have focussed on in the last two weeks.

I am had two massages on the leg by Michelle Pollard and it has made a big difference to my leg injury. I immediately had less pain with walking down stairs and walking along the pavement. I went for a very slow run this week on the treadmill for a couple of minutes and there was no pain.

I am on a break for one week and Fran has said no training. I am resting ready for the push in January. Real training