Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Lower Back Stretching

Newmarket Rd Bury St Edmunds
Today's Run - 4 miles
Janathon Day 1 - 5 miles
Day 2 - 5 miles
Day 3 - 4 miles
Total 18 miles

Physical Condition - Fairly Good- a couple of aches and pains this morning. A slight ache in the lower back must have been walking a little stranger than normal as Sarah noticed. Also a slightly tight left  hamstring though not painful. Neither of these were painful and didn't prevent me running but may be an early warning of sciatica. As I have had this before I know  this can be agony so something I want to avoid.

Gibraltar Barracks
Mental Condition - Very Good - still early days isn't it. Four consecutive days of running isn't something I have done since February last year when I did 6 days in a row but so far keeping runs short.

Today's run was an out and back run  turning at the 2 mile point next to the Gibraltar Barracks in Bury St Edmunds. I quite like this as a regular route to run and because I run this often it provides a gauge as to my fitness and speed , timing it as I do. It was certainly a notch cooler this morning and I had resort to hat and gloves. With running I always find that it is my hands which suffer most in cold weather and as long as I keep these warm I am OK.

With the run over I just had time for a quick look at possible exercises for the lower back and found these. They are now on my schedule for a while at least. I am definitely in the camp of being poor at doing stretching.  There is a lot of advice out there and more recent advice seems to be to avoid static stretching before a run when your muscles are cold and to stretch after your run.

On many of my runs I pass the building in the photo which is the Gibraltar barracks built in 1878. The Suffolk Regiment was based for long periods in Gibraltar during the 18th century particularly during the siege by the French and Spanish. So when a new barracks was built in Bury St Edmunds, it would have seemed appropriate to name it after one of the Suffolk Regiments main campaigns.

The regiment was formed in 1685 originally to fight off a rebellion by the Duke of Monmouth.

The Suffolk regiment saw action at the Battle of the Boyne in Ireland in 1690 and Dettingen in France in 1743.

One of its major campaigns was at the Battle of Minden in 1759 when the Suffolk Regiment won a major battle attacking French positions without aid of supporting artillery against cannon fire. Apparently soldiers plucked red and yellow roses from hedgerows to wear in their hats and every since this battle is annually remembered by a parade. Just along the road the local pub has been called the Minden Rose.

The Suffolk Regiment were involved in many campaigns in many parts of the world including India, New Zealand ,South Africa and of course during the 1st and 2nd world wars.

However all that remains now of the Gibraltar Barracks Site is the Keep. The rest of the site has largely been built over with the Bury Sports Centre and College facilities. I can remember as a child often playing on this site when there was the remains of a shooting range. At one end there was a large sandpit against a brick wall with lots of bullet holes. At the other there were shooting positions often built into the ground so that only your head was above ground level. Playing with friends you could often find bullets mostly spent but some seemingly still intact.


  1. Anonymous5:30 pm

    Hope you do manage to stave off the sciatica.

  2. You've done more in 4 days than I had hoped to do in a week!! Well done. Remembering to log and blog id the hardest bit!!....well, bar the running!!!

  3. Thanks abradypus me too

  4. Thanks Katrina its like a full time job

  5. Congrats to all of the running man. Best of wishes with the rest of Janathon. I hope that those stretches will be able to manage our back pain and what not. I might have to incorperate some of those in my non stretching routine. Thanks for sharing. Cheers.

  6. Stretching does help, although you may need massage to break down old scar tissue too. Your mileage is impressive!

  7. Nice banner photo. Is it new? And what's the memorial all about?


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