April 4, 2008

Sabotaging my Cooper River Bridge Run

Tomorrow is the Cooper River Bridge Run, which features a pretty steep climb over the bridge. The website says it’s a 4% incline, but they also show an elevation map that I used to calculate the following profile of the course, which doesn’t quite match up:

-0.5% for 0.40 miles (0.4 miles total)
0.5% for 0.35 miles (0.75 miles total)
0.0% for 0.60 miles (1.35 miles total)
2.3% for 1.55 miles (2.90 miles total)
0.0% for 0.10 miles (3.00 miles total)
-2.7% for 1.29 miles (4.29 miles total)
1.0% for 0.47 miles (4.76 miles total)
0.0% for 1.46 miles (6.22 miles total)

The plan was to take this course and then mimic it on the treadmill as part of training. However, I didn’t end up using the treadmill at all this week. (I did work out every day, just not on the treadmill). The idea is that my legs will be well-rested, but I don’t know if that will really be true. My right thigh is a little sore for some reason I haven’t figured out. It’s not quite my IT band; just general soreness, but it’s weird that it’s only in my right leg.

So yesterday, I decided to get a massage after work. Thursdays are short days for us, becaues we generally take flights out around 5 or 6, but I’m traveling today instead, so I had some free time. I browsed Craigslist, searching through entries like “attractive co-ed with tight bod ready to come to your hotel and ease your tight muscles.” Finally, I found Eli Thompson. He seemed to be very professional, he was only a few blocks away from my office in Boston, and he had a very reasonable intro rate of $80 for a 90 minute session. I figured I’d just go for one session, so it didn’t matter to me what his regular rates were.

Well, this turned out to the absolute best massage I’ve ever gotten in my life! Eli went so hard (at my request). At one point, he was literally putting his elbow into my muscles and
leaning with most of his body weight on me… and it felt amazing. At one point he asked me if it was intense, and I said “yes, it’s intense, but it feels amazing.” At the end of the session, he told me that my muscles are really able to take a deep massage, and that most people have a breaking point where they squirm… but I didn’t seem to have one. That made a lot of sense to me – I’ve gotten massages in the past, but always seen them as more of a treat that feels good, but doesn’t necessarily do much for me the next day. This one felt fantastic when I was leaving, and I knew I’d feel even better in a day or two.

My muscles are very sore today, however. I mean, I’m glad of that – I’ve never felt sore from a massage before – but they are seriously sore. I think it has ultimately loosened up my msucles, but I’m kind of nervous about my race tomorrow with my muscles so sore already, because soreness from a workout usually takes about 36 hours to set in for me. If soreness from a massage is similar, I’ll be in even rougher shape tomorrow.

I kind of don’t care though. That was the best massage I’ve ever gotten, and even though I timed it poorly with my race, it was so worth it. If you’re in the Boston area, I’d highly recommend Eli. I will definitely be scheduling another session with him.


4 thoughts on “Sabotaging my Cooper River Bridge Run”

  1. Good luck on the Bridge Run tomorrow!

    The elevation profile you see on the Bridge Run website is really artificial. The steepest part, which you will hit at about 1.75 miles is about 4%. You almost feel like you’re climbing straight uphill.

    Once you get to the top of the exit ramp, it starts to flatten out and then once you crest the center of the bridge, it’s a long downslope into Charleston.

    The elevation profile was probably created from a topographic map and then they added in the roadway over the water – where the elevation is zero.

    You can see what I’m referring to on my blog. Go to the March 19 entry. My GPS records all of that info but also pulls the elevations from topo maps. It shows a zero elevation when you’re over the water.

  2. Good Luck!

    Congrats on finding a proper rubdown. They are not easy to find – it took me 15 tries to even find someone with strong enough hands to even start to work out the bidness!

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