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We utilize a personal, functional approach to rehabilitation, injury prevention and performance enhancement. See how our many “tools in the toolbox” can help you cross your finish line.Get started today »
Rarely does it take more than watching my Florida State Seminoles and Miami Dolphins win in the same weekend to get out of a funk from a poor performance. Sometimes spending an entire weekend watching football with my little brother is enough to fix any mood, but I still find myself incredibly disappointed.
When I ran the Fingerlakes Ultramarathon last summer, my biggest takeaway was the importance of perseverance. I don’t give up easily, if ever. That ultramarathon was the hardest race I had ever done physically or mentally, and I will never forget the feeling I had crossing that finish line (you can read the race report on my blog, Eat, Sleep, Travel, Run, Repeat).
Just knowing how often I wanted to quit or limp off the course to the med tent after falling (one of many times) and cutting open my knee — then still finishing — was enough to give me that “if you can do this, you can do anything” feeling.
Fortunately/unfortunately that was the feeling I had to channel at the NYCRuns Narrows Half Marathon this weekend. What started out as a race to determine my fitness for the Chicago Marathon turned into a mental battle just to cross the finish line. The conditions were less than ideal and after mile 3, I knew my goal had to change … drastically. I went from aiming for a PR and the time I needed to prove I could physically BQ in Chicago, to just trying to finish the race.
Sometimes pushing through the pain is the answer, and sometimes it isn’t. This situation was probably the latter. Thankfully I am not injured, but I did take a fun trip to Urgent Care post-race.
Turns out all this running in extreme heat took a huge toll on me (surprise!). My previous post was about heat training and how challenging it was to complete my 3-hour run in south Florida. Last weekend I attempted another 3-hour run and by coincidence, it was in south Florida, again. The second time I started much earlier in the morning (4:30 a.m.) but on two hours of sleep (three-hour flight delay the night before) and, if you can imagine, even hotter weather, it did not go well. It was better than the first attempt but I felt worse afterwards.
I came back to New York hoping for better weather and to get back on track like the last time but to no avail. It was one of the hottest and most humid weeks of the summer, and that continued through Saturday. Even though one of my runs close to the race went well and felt OK, the Friday before slowly drained my confidence. I felt fatigued and sore, and even though I had spent three days that week in the compression sleeves, I just didn’t feel physically ready to race.
Everyone has that one race that they can say changed their racing perception. Mine was the Miami Marathon in 2012. I trained HARD for that marathon through blizzards and other types of weather new to a south Floridian living in a new climate. I was ready to crush a sub-4 for my second-ever marathon in my hometown, assuming that’s all that mattered on race day. The race drew near and about two days prior, I was put on the “Do Not Fly” list by my doctor since I had recently come down with the flu. So, naturally, I went anyways.
So now I’m walking to the start line, sick and achy, with the weather channel harping 77 degrees and 84% humidity for our 5:30 a.m. start time. It’s safe to say that race did not go well for me. I somehow finished, but it wasn’t pretty. It is still to this day the worst race I’ve had (but strangely not my slowest time!).
The point is, you can be ready or not ready — but anything can happen on race day. I have not heard or said any other phrase more in my life as it is so hauntingly true. Up until the week before the Narrows Half Marathon I felt prepared and confident — but nothing can prepare you for start time temps of 75 degrees and 97% (yep…97%) humidity.
I’m hoping to put that race behind me and get even more focused on my goal for Chicago. Who knows? Maybe the weather will be the same in Chicago. Maybe it won’t. All I can do is show up to the start line at my best with faith in my training and let go of things I can’t control. As long as I cross that finish line with no regrets, I’ll consider it a successful race. And besides, check out our new singlets for the race! BQ or not, at least we’ll look good doing it!
Erica Silbiger is a 10-time marathoner, having run her first marathon with Team in Training in San Diego on June 5, 2011. She will run the Chicago Marathon on Sunday, October 12, with her sights set on achieving a BQ. Erica is the Assistant Director of Admissions for the Columbia School of Social Work, and part of her job involves traveling around the country speaking to prospective applicants in the fall. She trains with North Brooklyn Runners. She also blogs at Eat, Sleep, Travel, Run, Repeat.
From the first day I opened Finish Line Physical Therapy, providing the highest quality of care, service and personal attention has always been our top priority. Next to a patient seeing results from physical therapy, nothing else makes us happier than hearing how a person’s experience was the best they’ve ever had.
Even as we’ve grown over the years, our aim remains the same: to provide each patient with “five-star service” in an environment that inspires, supports and challenges you to be your best.
With that goal always in mind, we will transition to 45-minute treatments, one-on-one with the PT, beginning on September 2. All evaluations and follow-up appointments will be 45 minutes with the physical therapist, providing even more one-on-one time for the therapist to further enhance the patient’s manual treatment and exercise program.
Don’t worry – our wonderful aides will still be around the clinic to greet you when you arrive and keep the office running smoothly. However, now you’ll be spending more time under the watchful eye of your PT to complete therapeutic exercises.
We’ve also updated our cancellation and no-show policy to ensure all of our patients have the same opportunity to receive the best care possible. We maintain a strict 12-hour notification cancellation policy with the following in place for late cancels or no shows:
- 1st Late Cancel/No Show – Fee Waived
- 2nd Late Cancel/No Show – $50 Fee
- 3rd Late Cancel/No Show – $75 Fee
- 4th or More Late Cancel/No Show – $100 Fee
We remain committed to doing everything possible to help you achieve your goals. Let us know if there’s ever anything else we can do to make your experience even better!
Understanding your body’s nutritional needs and the optimal amounts of key nutrients it requires is a difficult task for many endurance athletes. In this seminar, part of a series co-hosted with the Dashing Whippets Running Team, nutritionist and runner Katie Casto Hynes will demonstrate her methods of building an effective diet for your body to perform at it’s best.
WHAT: “Fueling YOUR Body” Nutrition Presentation with nutritionist & runner Katie Casto Hynes
WHEN: Monday, September 29, at 7:00 p.m.
WHERE: Finish Line Physical Therapy
119 W. 23rd St. Suite 304; use the code 2711 to access the building
Katie Casto Hynes received her Masters of Science in Nutrition & Exercise Physiology from Teachers College, Columbia University. A former collegiate athlete turned competitive marathon runner, her passion for fueling the body with healthy foods inspired her to enter this field. She has worked with athletes to help them improve their performance through nutrition and proper race fueling. Katie can often be seen running loops around Prospect Park and chatting about her latest kitchen adventures.
When we look at the limits of our potential — whether in running or in other athletic pursuits — how far can we go? How do we put all the pieces together and become strong, healthy athletes who can challenge ourselves to run beyond our personal limits?
Join Finish Line Physical Therapy as we welcome Born to Run Coach Eric Orton, author of the book, “The Cool Impossible,” to share his formula for reinventing your running and becoming the ultimate athlete. Eric will explain how to get the most out of your miles by focusing on foot strength, running technique and training, mental strength and nutrition.
“The Cool Impossible” Book Event with Eric Orton
–> Monday, September 22, at 7:00 p.m.
–> Finish Line Physical Therapy (119 W. 23rd St. #304)
–> Drinks and light refreshments will be served
The first 50 people to RSVP and attend the event will receive a free copy of “The Cool Impossible.” Fill out this form to reserve your spot (and tell your friends while you’re at it).
Eric Orton has a passion for adventure, participation and health. As a mountain runner, coach, author, and entrepreneur, Eric has spent a lifetime exploring human potential and the limitless possibilities of the body and mind.
Based in the outdoor adventure paradise of Jackson Hole, Wyoming— Eric is an elite mountain runner and athlete with epic adventures always on his mind. He has raced competitively at most every distance from 100 meters to 36 hours in length.
As a performance guru and world-renowned running coach, Eric personally oversees the training of dozens of athletes, from recreational racers, competitive age groupers, to elite ultramarathoners.
Eric earned international notoriety as the coach of Christopher McDougall, a relationship that initially began with Eric helping McDougall train for and joining him to race the 50-mile Copper Canyon Ultra Marathon with the Tarahumara Indians. That story served as the foundation for McDougall’s 2009 best-selling book, “Born To Run.”
In 2013, Eric authored his first book, “The Cool Impossible,” as a way to help all those runners wondering how to put it all together and become strong, fast, healthy runners who can challenge themselves to their own Cool Impossible by dreaming beyond fear and living beyond limits.
The former fitness director for the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, Eric has a BS in Business Marketing from the State University College of New York at Buffalo and a BS in Environmental Land Use Planning from Metropolitan State College of Denver.
He is a certified Functional Training Specialist and has held coaching certifications from both USA Triathlon and USA Cycling.
Join the Arthritis Foundation and Finish Line Physical Therapy for a panel discussion about empowering ourselves to make activity a lifestyle. If you struggle to incorporate exercise into your daily life – but strive to – this panel will provide inspiration and tips for getting started and making health and wellness a lifestyle.
- Dr. Alexis Chaing Colvin (orthopaedic surgeon at Mt. Sinai Hospital and chief medical officer for the United States Tennis Association) [full bio]
- Michael Conlon (PT, coach, marathoner & triathlete) [full bio]
- Alyson Clark (health coach & nutritionist) [full bio]
- Jennifer Horonjeff (Arthritis Foundation Jingle Bell Run honoree; was diagnosed with juvenile arthritis at 11 months old but has since had a professional dance career, is a certified Pilates instructor and a professional ergonomist)
Moderated by Afriqiyah Woods, PT
WHEN: Tuesday, September 16, from 6:00-7:30 p.m.
WHERE: Finish Line Physical Therapy
119 W. 23rd St. Suite 304; use the code 2711 to access the building
RSVP to Jaclyn Dagnall
We always love a good success story, and FLPT patient Michael Olzinski is here to deliver one! Michael is a trainer, coach and triathlete who works as an assistant coach with the elite team purplepatch fitness. In a recent blog post, he shared how prehab work in building functional strength helped his training for Timberman 70.3 and sets him up for success at his other races this season.
You can read Michael’s entire post, “Timberman 70.3 and a Lesson in Functional Strength,” over on his blog, The Endurance Journey. Here is an excerpt as it relates to functional movement for endurance training:
Seeing the Light
So I have known about Finish Line PT for quite some time. I pay attention to the New York training scene, I have raced with numerous impressive Finish Line athletes, read lots of Michael’s work, and at a little office event at Active.com got to meet Brynn and hear her talk about the facility. Finally I think to myself, well, I guess it’s time to really get smart and utilize someone who is not me, because clearly I am not to be trusted with my own body.
I was not injured, I was still executing all of my sessions, just not that greatly. Yet through my entire training career I always talk about people being “ticking time bombs” due to imbalance and movement insufficiency. I was a bomb that was on the edge of some type of major injury, and getting into Finish Line was the best thing that could have happened to me at this stage in my career. I actually never viewed or spoke that I was going in for “Therapy,” but more so that I was getting involved in a sport-specific functional movement training for triathletes. Every experience that I’ve had since then has epically impacted the type of season that I am having this year, my Timberman race, and races for years to come.
My Strength and Mobility Program
Upon getting started at FL, I was matched up with Jason Lakritz. Jason has been working with me now since April, and I am excited to come in any time. Not only is he a drop-dead runner who I cringe at his splits, but he can actually communicate with me and my obsession with Track and Field and anything related the the human body or movement training. Jason has set up a program and movements for me that I simply have never seen or done, and then some that I have but neglected for stupid unfounded reasons.
One key issue that Jason noticed was when he looked at my running form that since (maybe) my hips and torso were so tight and immobile, I wasn’t extending through my hip and glutes while running and thus most of my propulsive forces were happening at my calf. Hmmmm makes sense why my lower leg would blow up from time to time. As a result Jason started me out on some intricate hip flexor and trunk mobility movements that I do on a regular basis now a days.
This stretch is of my favorites from Jason. Basically sitting in a ‘couch stretch’ where my hip flexor is on a great stretch, as my quads also at near end range of motion. The tri-planar arm/shoulder stretch adds to ensure that I am keeping my torso loose and mobile.
To compound that, my glutes are so tight that it pulls my femur into weird places, so I needed to release some tension in the glutes. I do some regular trigger point movements to help ease that and create better movement at the hip.
Also my trunk is stupidly immobile, so he has me on several thoracic mobility-type movements to ensure that the overloading I do from biking and swimming does not compound my issues.
Things started to turn around in July, and I started getting more comfortable, so he now has me doing some swimming/biking/running enhancement drills for balance, quickness, and power. Along with some great trunk stability work.
And then there’s the ViPR!! One of the tools that I USED TO work with almost every week when I was in the gym, and one of my favorite tools. I do some really excellent functional movements that not only target running power and balance, but also continue to push mobility in my thoracic region (this started to give me a little more issues in the summer as my hips started to loosen a bit).
Check out this excellent movement for running-specific counter-balance, agility, glute/hip loading and rotation in the thoracic spine. This is a movement that just FEELS like you are becoming a stonger runner and athlete, not to mention 30 seconds quickly will jack up your HR! Doing 30 seconds in both directions can really assist your balance, both anatomical and neuromuscular.
At this point, I will continue working on those mobility issues that I started with. I understand that these items take a long time to progress, so why wouldn’t they take a long time to correct? It just makes sense. But going into this most recent race at Timberman, I actually felt as truly functional as I have in the past 2-3 years. Nothing was hindering me, and I felt ready to race!!!
Read Michael’s entire post, “Timberman 70.3 and a Lesson in Functional Strength,” over on his blog, The Endurance Journey.
Fall marathon season is in full swing, and the weekly mileage is starting to creep up. Don’t be alarmed — be prepared to tackle the increases in distance. Here are three things Coach Michael Conlon considers essential when it comes to managing increases in mileage.
1- Never increase total weekly mileage by more than 10-15%.
For marathoners in particular, this is a pretty standard percentage (I’ll be interested to hear what our ultra experts say). Why? Endurance training is all about the culmination of training; it’s not about what you do in one day or even one week. Introducing too great of an increase in mileage at one time can lead to injury. If you are looking to introduce more volume, consider other forms of cross-training (cycling and swimming are both good options) as opposed to immediately adding more miles.
2- Build awareness so you can understand your own threshold.
Endurance athletes are notorious for pushing through pain. News flash: this is not always a good thing! For example, if you know your body begins to break down after 2.5 hours of running, modify your training so you don’t consistently go past that point. It’s one thing to do it in a race – and another to do it week-in and week-out during training. There are other ways of adding volume to a training plan (back-to-back long days, double days, an extra day of running in the training program, cross-training) that don’t involve taxing your body.
3- Always take one complete rest day.
Respect the distance when it comes to recovery. No running, no cross-training, nothing. Not even a rec league flag football game. Your body needs time to repair the microscopic damage to muscle fibers and the surrounding connective tissue caused by repetitive movements and daily stresses inflicted over a long training period. If you have a hard time doing nothing, opt for an active recovery day that involves dynamic stretching, self-myofascial work, hydrating, eating quality foods and getting extra sleep.
After running my 3rd marathon, I needed some serious help. I spoke to tons of people I knew from various running groups and on Twitter and they all said the same thing - go to Finish Line. Back there now proactively as I prepare for my next marathon after my hip and knee started bothering me. Feeling fantastic and more ready than ever. — Ben W.
Finish line is awesome. A few years back I started experiencing knee pain while running. They were super helpful identifying the issue (IT band tightness), and working with me with deep tissue massages, foam rollers, and strength building exercise to get me back up and running quickly. — Jonathan W.
I like the environment too; it feels more like a gym than the sterile environments I'm used to seeing at standard clinics. Everyone around the place is in a general good mood -- none of that grumpy New York customer service crap. They all seem to be athletes too. They worked with my insurance as well to get the price reasonable. — Vincent D.