Road to the Olympics: Interview with Shannon Rowbury

With the 2012 London Olympics right around the corner, AlterG is buzzing with excitement. Which AlterG athletes will make the team? Who will take home the gold? Who is using the AlterG to train?

One Olympic hopeful, Shannon Rowbury, has been using the AlterG for years.

In between her extensive training regimen we were able to speak with Shannon and dig deeper about her use of the AlterG.

Q: What injury were you recently using the AlterG to recover from?

A: A stress fracture in my Femoral Left Neck (left femur bone).

Q: Why was the AlterG helpful in your recovery?

A: AlterG allowed me to begin running 6 weeks after my diagnosis, when I otherwise would have only been cleared to use an elliptical. The beauty of AlterG is that it allowed me to gradually build up my physical strength in running. At the same, I was also able to build back my confidence in my body, which is just as vital. By the time I was cleared to run on the ground, I knew that I was capable and I was able to progress from running 0 to 50 ground miles per week within one month.

Q: Since recovering from your injury, have you used the AlterG to train?

A: Yes. I use AlterG as a supplement to my regular training. When I am trying to build my mileage or when I am feeling fatigued, I hop on the machine.

Q: How have you used it to train?

A: When I had my stress fracture, I used it for everything from easy runs to workouts. Last year, when I was recovering from an Achilles injury, I would cool down on the AlterG after my workouts because it was the only way I could run after hard training. This year, I use the AlterG to boost my mileage on high volume weeks or when I am feeling fatigued and want to get a little extra recovery.

Q: How has the AlterG helped your overall performance?

A: AlterG has been a real asset to my running. I do not think I would have recovered as quickly from my stress fracture without AlterG. I also don’t think I would have made the World team last year if I didn’t have AlterG to help me train through my injury.

Q: What else have you been doing to prepare for the Olympics?

A: I have spent a total of 4 months at altitude this year to work on building a strong base. I have also done a lot of work at my “off” distances, to work on my weaknesses.

Q: How does it feel to be setting so many records (like at the 2008 Beijing Olympics and at the 2012 USATF meet) as a US woman?

A: It’s really exciting to be exploring unknown territory. Now that I am in my 5th year as a professional runner, I have experienced both ups and downs, so I have a greater appreciation for those moments of success and I intend to live them to the fullest.

Thanks and good luck Shannon!

Stay tuned to see how she performs this Summer!

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One Comment

  1. Posted August 14, 2012 at 11:00 pm | Permalink

    I ran on an AlterG treadmill for the first time today. My physician, Dr. Brian Fullem, recommended it as a means of facilitating my recovering from a tibial stress fracture. I’ve been really struggling with feeling like I was losing fitness during recovery. After one session on the AlterG, I was hooked. Then, I ready Shannon Rowbury’s comments. Also watched the videos of Adam Goucher and Roberto Salazar. Now, I feel renewed hope for returning to ground running in only a few weeks with much better fitness than I thought possible. As a running coach, I am thrilled that we have a couple of AlterG treadmills in the Tampa bay area.
    The experience of rehabbing with the benefit of the AlterG will allow me to share my firsthand experience on my blog and in a future podcast.
    Shannon’s comments prove that the AlterG could be a training aid for any runner, injured or not. Thank you.

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