I know foam rolling (aka myofascial release) is good for me; I just can’t remember how to do it properly. So I decided to look up some “how to” videos on foam rolling.
If you don’t have a foam roller, get one. You can find them on Amazon.com or retail sports stores or places like Target. I have a travel-size one I can take with me that I got for $12 at REI, and I picked up a bigger one recently at TJ Maxx for $20.
What Made Me Look Up These Videos
My back has been extremely tight lately–probably from all the squats and lunges I’ve been doing in my cross training. I also ran 7 miles on Saturday after taking 30 days off of anything over 3 miles.
This morning, it was hard to sit up and get out of bed, so I started with the back stretches. It hurt, but I felt pretty bendy afterward. Then I did the other foam rolling stretches because I know I need to. Next time, I will go in this order:
- IT Band
- Lower Back
Note: I warmed up a little bit by walking on my treadmill for 5 minutes.
I really like the foam rolling videos by Oscar Sanchez, C.S.C.S. Not only does he have you roll up and down, he suggests moving your muscle from side to side. There’s a reason why he called the calf/achilles move the “porcupine stretch.” Feels like you are being stabbed. HOWEVER. I felt like a million bucks after these.
(Looks like he also has some training programs for half marathoners, too, when you view his channel.)
You’ll Probably Cry
Warning: If you have not been using a foam roller or any kind of massage lately, these are going to hurt. I almost cried doing my IT bands. It’s also a good idea to check with your doctor, chiropractor or physical therapist before starting any new exercise routine. I’ve done these before at the PT, but it’s been a looong time, so I needed a refresher and Oscar’s videos were just right.