THINGS EVERY RUNNER SHOULD BE DOING TO AVOID INJURY.
Recovery should be a critical part of every persons routine. Over the last year and a half of running I’ve been able to keep my body happy by doing a few select things. I’ve seen countless friends try to join along on the journey and drop out from injury, through that relitavely short time. Why? Because they avoided the things I’m just about to talk about.
1)Foam rollers + Lacrosse Balls
These things work wonders. What it actually does is open up the knots in your muscle allowing for more blood flow in the area and quicker recovery time. It can be crazy painful but is a total game changer. I always think of it as a free massage. I found a lot of great rolling techniques from ‘Functional Patterns.’ You can search that name on facebook/youtube and you’ll come across a feed of many things. He does a lot of runner specific releases. (Exclaimer: No I don’t know him personally I just found him very useful and wanted to share it!)
Running tightens muscles and stretching opens them up again. With my routine I always make sure to warm up a little bit before. Stretching cold is not a good idea and can result in injury. Usually I try to get in a 10-15 minute bike ride or run in before starting, or doing it directly after my runs. With my stretching I focus on: hips, groin, quads, hamstrings, calves and achilles tendon. Like the yoga section I suggest finding a good routine on youtube!
I was actually going to a studio for a while called Yyoga in Vancouver. Recently switched to save money and time to just doing yoga at home. Instead I found a lot of great people on youtube who I can follow along with. Usually I just search “Yoga for Runners” and have found lots of great routines by doing this. A lot of them focus on hip and groin release which was definetly something I wasnt focusing too much on in my stretching routine. This has totally changed my mobility and the way I feel.
4)Taking day’s off
Day’s off are important. No it is not good to run everyday. Your body needs days off so give it rest! Especially if you’re really sore or something starts to feel achy take time off. Currently I am running every other day and every once in a while I’ll take 3 or 4 days off in a row. I feel much stronger after the days of and have found that it has improved my running much faster than going out there daily.
Wether it’s just applying ice in certain locations or submerging yourself into an ice bath. The benefits are endless with this one… Apply for 10 minutes , remove for 20 and repeat.
6) The right shoes + replacing them at the right time
Go buy a proper pair of running shoes. If you’re putting in endless miles it’s worth every penny. I would recommend asics or new balance, i’ve been very happy with both brands! Secondly… if you have had a pair of runners for a while it might be time to replace them. I usually switch mine once they start feeling really spongy, usually get around 400-600KM of use per pair.
7) Build up gradually
This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t push yourself, but be realistic. Don’t jump from running 5km regularly to 15km regularly. With each new week add a bit of distance, or up your pace a bit!
8)Focus on form
There are a lot of good resources, once again I would recommend using youtube. Watch several videos on proper running form. Running is a very repetitive movement and should therefor be done properly!
9) Switch up terrain
Trail running has been known to work different muscles, especially one’s that help with stabilization. Try to throw some trail running into your routine, not just pavement!
Hope this list helps. I try to do most of these regularly and have been very fortunate in the injury department. If you have any recommendations to add to this I’d like to hear! Follow me on Instagram @uwe.eggers !
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