Observation @ Foam Rolling and PLB question

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  • #64759

    Observation about Foam Rolling

    Ok. So I used to be queen foam roller. Everyday before bed. I felt I was getting better sleeps etc.

    I haven’t touched the foam roller throughout these 11 weeks thus far. More because I was petering out of the queen-ness of it :). I can’t recall if it was in a zoom or in the forum the discussions of the pros and cons of foam rolling/ the different camps etc.

    Well- not sure if this was related but I can only put my finger on the foam rolling.

    I’m always out with at least minimum 9 pounds of weight. So adding more to that for the weighted hikes was good. I haven’t walked in the hills with a good weighted pack in quite some time. So- we’ve added to that and walking with about 17 pounds. WOW love it – way to get those legs and core working on a different level.

    So yesterday was hike day. Gorgeous here in NZ super sun-shiny day. No issues. Took 20 min break at turn around point for snacks and pictures of course.

    Brendan my husband (whom is an avid bushman and his regular fitness is my literal year of training fitness) He billy goats floats across riverbeds and scree slopes. Says to me: he is in disbelief that I walk up the mountain with full water bladders in pack and do not empty them before coming down “who does that” I said laughing it’s a training hike (face palm) and I do that.

    The night before we were all watching some awesome doco on Saqqara Tombs when I was just stretching on the floor. Empty floor – place self there – that’s what we do. But the foam roller was in reach and I’m like “oh wow, ok lets do this” and did about 20 min just rolling out the usual. Felt good, good sleep and next day this weighted hike.

    Had no issues before with weighted hike all felt awesome. Walking up kept adjusting the pack making sure its in right place and thought hmm.. why, am doing that? On the walk down my hips didn’t feel like they were syncing with my steps down. Then near to the end my old knee tightness which I haven’t felt in over a year was coming back and why was my ankle (weaker ankle from many injuries) was feeling too loose like not pulled in/stable. It was as if that whole side was trying to figure out its position and keeping things “together”

    It dawned on me while feeling a bit wary and disappointed thinking it was the weight and maybe Brendan is right don’t carry that down etc. But then thought no, no …what else. When I had the “Ah. Ha” moment that holy crap was it because I foam rolled the night before? I don’t rinky-dink foam roll. I get in there and make sure it’s worth the effort of foam rolling.

    I began thinking well the purpose of foam rolling is stretching out the fascia and creating that space and untightening the tightening. BUT- in doing that – did I unravel a network of “tight” “put together” form and create a disharmony when I needed the “tight” to hold all together firmly while carrying weight ascending/descending?

    It has most definitely got me thinking. I would love your thoughts and opinions I do see the benefits of foam rolling but if it does loosen up the network when the network needs to be healthfully tight; I’m assuming here – not really a good thing eh. I probably should only use or recommend the day before a recovery day. OR maybe just go get a massage instead haha. I’m not using “Im getting old” excuse bc there are some wicked awesome strong female older athletes that are just killing it out there.

    I’m only basing this on one moment in time – I am curious if any of you have had anything similar.

    PS Coach Carolyn – you mentioned in the training peaks zoom that the heart strap monitor can interfere with the Personal Locator Beacon. Is this all straps to all beacons? Where we go for training here, most definitely requires PLBs and it’s the first time I’m wearing a heart strap etc. IF god forbid I ever need to use it – disconnect and take Hr Strap off?

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    Anonymous on #64813

    Hi Pie,
    Every athlete is different as far as what they like and tools they use. However, first I’d like to support your intuition. The fact that you foam rolled for the first time in 11 weeks and went big the night before could have easily been a trigger for the problems hiking the next day. Any deep work, rolling, massage, PT, chiropractic self care or acupuncture ( ; should have 24 hrs rest afterward. So next time do it before a recovery day. Or do very light work after a hike though I prefer gentle stretching post activity to foam rolling.

    I don’t foam roll much, I use it on recovery days to target troublesome areas, either a massage ball or a roller. I am a big fan of light cupping work myself on larger areas. I also do monthly massage/PT and chiropractic to balance it out. All done with 24hrs of recovery planned in afterward.
    It’s not a getting older thing it’s just getting smarter ( :

    As for the HR chest strap. Yes this is all chest straps. Think of it this way, anything that has any form of transmitting capability has the potential to interfere with a beacon in both send and receive mode. That’s why the rule is phone off, no chest strap, and anything that can transmit carried a full meter away from your beacon. So if beacon is in pants pocket, everything else should be up in the top of your pack. If you want to snap pics with your phone, take the time to turn it on and off is most ideal unless you are traveling in a zero risk zone. Were your HR chest strap for everything else you do, you will develop “the feel” for being aerobic over time. It’s a great practice anyway. Then go by feel when touring and have accurate chest strap data for other aerobic activities.

    I hope this helps!

    Piedad Barillas-Bird on #64832

    “Any deep work, rolling, massage, PT, chiropractic self care or acupuncture ( ; should have 24 hrs rest afterward.” Indeed! Was def an interesting experience and noted for myself and it’s something I state in clinic – haha just didn’t register for myself bc I was just “rolling” per say.

    Re: HR strap – just didn’t even cross my mind and yes perfect sense. Also if coming across someone out there – where maybe you do need to set off your beacon etc.. these days so many wear smart watches, of course phones, and wireless ear buds as well as now – bluetooth hearing aids. Just out of habit phone is always on airplane mode or off when I’m out back.

    Very Helpful and another thank you to you and Maya for the TONS of awesome INFO you have placed on this forum. I have created a word doc with all the links and tidbits that will help me as much as others. Many Blessings.

    Melanie Hunter on #64973

    Hi Pie,

    Thanks for sharing your experience, I enjoyed reading it. I started foam rolling about 4 years ago as a warm-up to kettle bell work so my experience is ~5 minutes, 3x/week, which sounds far short of your Queen status 😉 but at least it’s been enough that maybe my opinion is interesting to you. I’ve also been a certified massage therapist since 1999, although I do not practice for a living, I only do it as a hobby.

    Over the years I have come to view a deep massage or any intense body work as a nervous system challenge that you need to “recover” from so that you can come back better, similar to a workout. Which is to say I share Carolyn’s view that it’s a good idea to take a day or so to “integrate” (apologies for the terribly over-used word!) any kind of body work, including deep foam rolling. Perhaps it’s less that you loosened up things that should be tight and more that you gave your nervous system something extra to chew on that it hadn’t quite worked through when you went hiking again.


    Piedad Barillas-Bird on #64975

    Hi Melanie.

    It makes complete sense. For some reason I just never put foam rolling into that category. It just made my sleep SO much better but of course hitting that deep neuro level.

    🙂 it may relax me too much. It had definitely broadened my perspective especially that so many things work quite differently for many people. I now know truly what it does for me and where to place it in my training programme.

    Have fun out there!

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