I recently received a pair of Lava Pants through XTERRA Wetsuits. I tested them in the pool and they have now become one of the best training tools in my arsenal.
Now I know some people are against the use of LAVA pants when training for this reason or that reason but you think I use them to swim, right? WRONG. I use them to run. Pool Run, in the deep end.
These pants are phenomenal for pool running. With just the right amount of buoyancy to allow you to float but also work hard, I don't think I'll ever go back to the belt! I thought at first that they may restrict my leg movement and make it feel strange but it was super natural and I really forgot I had them on. My chin is kept just about at water level, a tiny bit above because I wasn't struggling to breathe while running but if I want to remain higher in the water thats all on me and my running.
I swear by pool running. For whatever reason when someone asks me what they can do when injured I always say well get in the pool and run. Run long runs, run workouts, run easy days, run two a days. I get looked at like I have 5 heads. But it works. It works extremely well if done right. It works well if you get in the workouts, it does not work as well if you jump in the pool for 20 minutes, short workout, "thats about 3 miles right?" and call it a day. It takes patience, it takes persistence and it takes boredom to a whole new level but I tell you, its worth it when you come back and see the results.
Back in college I was injured in the fall with plantar fasciitis. I finally gave in to the injury at the start of the winter track season because I was in tears most nights and I felt the right time to take off was during the winter months. So after I had the PRP by Doctor Connors and was placed in a boot for a few weeks I jumped in the pool (not with the boot!) From there I did long runs 2+ hours. I did full blown track workouts, I did ladder workouts with time increasing and then decreasing. I did two a days. I would be sweating in the pool. By the time I came out I was exhausted. By the end of outdoor I ran a 17:37, a PR by about 20+ seconds. In a matter of weeks back on the track, because I hadn't lost fitness I was able to jump right back to where I was and beyond. It works, it works well if done right.
So there you have it. LAVA PANTS. The new great tool in the arsenal.
Until next time, train hard, get some Lava Pants,