Ankle Strengthening

Hello!

I sprained my ankle a few weeks ago. The injury brought to light the importance of ankle strength when it comes to Spartan Races. During the typical Spartan Race, the uneven terrain and running pace put quite a toll on my ankles. In addition, the intense training adds to the wear and tear. Since my injury, I have incorporated ankle strengthening routines into my training. The routine has made my ankles stronger than ever before.

Routine

Two times a week I go through a balance training routine. The balance training, strengthens my ankles and also improves my proprioception. The proprioception improvement assists when running on uneven terrain. Below is the balance routine:

  1. Using a Bosu Ball, I stand on the board side with both feet. I make circles with the ball ten times both clockwise and counterclockwise.
  2. Using a Bosu Ball, I stand on the board side with one feet. I keep my balance for one minute, 3 times on each foot. To further enhance the exercise I close my eyes.
  3. Between the single foot balance exercise I perform 20 calf raisers and 20 dorsiflexions of the foot.

It may seem like a short routine, but it does wonders for my ankles.

Running

A major component that can assist with strengthening your ankles while running are the shoes you wear. In a previous post, here, I reviewed the New Balance Minimus, which can greatly strengthen ankles. Specifically it is the vibram technology that contributes to this. Shoes with the vibram technology and a minimal structure put more stress on the surrounding structures of the feet. There is not as much support compared to a regular running shoe. For example, I used the Nike Free RN Distance for a few months straight and then used a more minimal shoe. The following day my feet and lower legs were much more sore.

I would recommend using a minimal shoe a couple times a week for less intense runs. You can build up to using them in more intense runs, but definitely take it slow.

Final Thoughts!

Overall I did not make many changes in my workout routine, but they have made a major difference. I hope the balance routine and the shoe recommendation helps with your performance!!

Mitch

*This post contains some affiliate links, which means I receive a small commission if you make a purchase using this link.


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Plantronics BackBeat Fit Headset

Hello!

I love listening to music when I workout. Whether its to pump me up for the workout or distract me from the pain, its a necessity. However, you need to have headphones that can face the conditions of a fit lifestyle. During training sessions my headphones must endure getting caught onto objects and tolerate the sweat. In addition, they have to survive the wet conditions when I run in the rain. Also I have not been able to find a pair that stays in my ears.

I have been through my fair share of headphones. It seemed that I would always have to get another pair every couple of months. Yet, then came the Plantronics BackBeat Fit headset. I’ve had this headset for a few months now and they have exceeded my expectations.

Sound

I am by no means a sound expert, but the sound is great for me. I have the volume at about half max volume because any higher will be too loud for me. They don’t completely block outside noise, however that is great when I am running outdoors. If you wanted to block outside noise, they are able to.

Design

The BackBeat Fit headset wraps around the back of the head and wraps around the ears. On each ear are buttons for certain functions, such as pause/play, volume, calls etc. The range is around 40 feet. But, if there are objects between you and your phone it will cut out a bit. Otherwise it has been no problem. They are easy to use and the best part is that they remain in my ears during any workout!!!

Durability

There have been no issues, durability wise, since I got these headphones. Because of the wireless design, these headphones are unlike to get caught on something in the gym. Also, they are designed to outlast the sweat and any wet training conditions. After numerous workouts, my headset still looks brand new!

Battery

The battery lasts for 8 hours and only takes around 2 hours to recharge. A great feature is every time you turn on the headset it informs you on the time you have left. 8 hours is plenty of time to get a few workouts in. Also, after having the headset for awhile now, the battery does not seem to be degrading what so ever.

Final Thoughts!

I can not be happier with a headset. Finally, I am able to listen to music while training and not have to fumble around with them constantly. I thoroughly recommend the Plantronics BackBeat Fit headset.

Mitch

*This post contains some affiliate links, which means I receive a small commission if you make a purchase using this link.

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