Welcome all to the new running section of DaytonMostMetro.com! Here I will be posting information on upcoming races, recommending some awesome recipes for runners, giving suggestions of routes to run in Dayton and giving out tons of general running tips and news.
Training Tuesday will be a weekly post pertaining to all things that have to do with…you guessed it, training. Check back every Tuesday for important training plans, tips, routes and much more that will make running a lot easier for you!
The topic for this week is one that I believe should be important to every runner, injury prevention. For anyone that runs multiple times per week, injuries will happen, but there are many ways to lessen the effects and prevent the big ones from putting you out of commission for weeks. I have had my fare share of a variety of running injuries as I have had a stress fracture in my leg, broken my toe, had shin splints and have had plenty of knee pain. I feel like with this array of unfortunate injuries, along with my extensive knowledge of all things running, I can give helpful information that can help prevent the most common of injuries from happening.
1) The 10% Rule
This is a pretty common and often forgone rule for beginning runners and one that can lead to agonizing shin splints. The general rule is that you should not increase your mileage more than 10% per week. For example if you ran 10 miles this week, you shouldn’t run more than 11 the next week. Your body will not generally be used to the sharp increase in mileage and will definitely lead to shin splints (sharp pain in your shins), which usually put runners out for weeks, depending on severity. Follow this rule and you can avoid over-training and unwanted stress on your legs.
Most runner’s will stretch before running, but it may be just as important to stretch after. Stretching after decreases muscle soreness from the running you just did, and also will make it less likely that you will pull a muscle or injure yourself in the next few hours after the run. I myself have an extensive stretch routine before running which helps me get loose before the run, but also to prevent pulling anything during the run. Look for an upcoming post about what stretches you should be doing.
3) The importance of the right shoes
Having the right running shoes is, in my opinion, the most important factor to consider when getting into running. Having the wrong running shoes will most certainly cause numerous injuries to all parts of your body. Also, having shoes that are worn out, can be a leading cause for a stress fracture (trust me on that one). Your shoes should not be worn past 300 road miles. For beginning runners, any shoe with gel in the sole of the shoe will do, but if you are going to be building up the miles a more precautionary approach needs to be taken. Since I believe this is so important, check back next week to read about how to buy the perfect running shoes for yourself.
Cross-training, I will abbreviate as XT, is very important for strengthening your muscles that you use while running. XT includes swimming, cycling, weight-lifting, elliptical, surfing and basically any exercise that doesn’t include running. Swimming is a total body workout and along with cycling can make for a great combination in addition to running. I will detail different XT programs in future posts.
5) Know the warning signs
Knowing when to stop is also something to consider. You may think that pushing through the bad pain is the tough way to go, but it may actually hurt you in much deeper ways. You may also need to ditch the music while running, because certain songs will get your blood pumping and may make injuries seem non-existent until after you are finished running. Don’t be afraid to put on a knee or leg sleeve while running, as this can help ease soreness and make transitioning from an injury back to running healthy.
With these few tips in mind, I hope that all of you can stay injury-free, and will enjoy running through Dayton. Be sure to check back every week for running tips, especially next week when I will guide you through buying shoes.