Think you're ready to run? Here are our 5 check points to staying healthy.
With a little help, you can avoid the pitfalls of running injuries that happen to over 80% of runners. The upcoming Army Run is a great way to stay in shape, meet other runners and support our troops. Here are 5 critical guidelines to prevent injury and run pain free:
1) Pace yourself.
Create a running schedule that includes running at least 3 times per week. Increase your distance and speed gradually following the golden rule of progressing no more than 10% per week. Trying to do too much too fast will get you injured more often than not. The body will adapt to training stress so long as that stress is tolerable for the body. The smallest and most gradual increases will give the most consistent gains in endurance and speed.
2) Train to run.
Let's face it, not everyone is in perfect shape to run. With a few strength training exercises, you can prepare your body to run strong and run pain-free. Simple exercises like wall squats, step ups and core stability exercises like planks can go a long way to getting you ready. No time to do exercises? Break them up and spread them out over the week.
3) Know your weaknesses.
Make sure you know where you're weak and where you're strong. Often, a couple of small, very specific changes to your exercise routine can often make the difference between limping across the finish line and smiling as you pump your fist in the air! Check out the British Journal of Sports Medicine article on correcting hip strength and biomechanics here
4) Match the shoe to the foot.
Shoes should be matched to your foot and not the reverse. Higher arched feet that are stiff may need a softer shoe while flat feet that are more mobile usually function better in a slightly more supportive shoe. Not sure if you have a high or low arch? Come in and show us your feet, shoes, orthotics if you have them and we'll help you make the right decisions based on your body and your running goals.
5) Pain does not mean progress.
Pain is the most reliable sign of problems in our body. If you have pain, make sure you know why this pain is happening. A running performance assessment can identify the cause of your pain and get you back on your feet as fast as possible.
Running Performance Assessments Available
Our running specialists can identify muscle imbalances, shoe foot mis-matches, perform otrhopedic tests and address the specific causes of your problem. We will provide detailed exercises, running injury prevention educational handouts and treat the soft tissue restrictions to get you back in action in the shortest time possible.
Shauna Ironside, Certified Athletic Therapist, Running Specialist and Functional Movement Screen provider is available by appointment. Still have questions? Just call us at (613) 521-3222.