01 Aug Stop Running Injury In its TRACKS
We can all agree that running is a beautiful thing. It’s an amazing form of exercise that few things compare to. Whether alone, or with a running group or a team sport, when done properly it can enhance your physical fitness, health and well-being. It strengthens muscles and builds strong bones as well as burning plenty of calories to help you maintain a healthy weight. One of major problem with running is, it is associated with a staggering high chance of injury. Figures show 70 % of people will sustain an injury while running. That’s crazy!
It’s an all too common scenario that we hear from our runners, they start running again or start building up there running. They feel something is not right, a twinge in a muscle or a sore joint, they shrug it off, pop a few ibuprofen pills, put some ice on the area and continue. A few weeks later there on the couch in agony. What are the chances of this happening? Pretty damn high!
Over the last decade, running science has shifted its focus from treatment to the prevention of injury. Just like so many health problems we suffer from today we know prevention is a really KEY thing. What I am going to share with you is far from rocket science, of course there is also a number of other things to consider but these THREE prevention strategies will give you the biggest bang for your buck! It will give you great long term benefits and significantly reduce your likelihood from substantial injury.
Know Your Limits….
The reason why injury rates are so high is that it’s extremely easy to go and injure yourself. Just go out for a run and do too much, you will get injured! It may happen instantly at that run or 3 weeks later after a few runs, even some problems takes months to surface from an accumulation excessive running load. Your body has this little thing called the zone of optimal stress. Your muscles, tendons, ligaments and joints have a threshold of stress that they can tolerate, go over that threshold and you have a high probability of injury! Everyone’s threshold is different and the good thing is it can be improved by yes you guessed it running. Following a training program is one of the safest ways to start and stay running for the long term. Knowing how much you are capable of doing, benchmarking that, and being sensible when increasing your running mileage is one of the best things you can do.
Be the Tortoise, not the Hare. Increase your weekly and monthly running totals gradually. Use the 10-percent rule as a general guideline, but realize that it might be too aggressive for you
Strength Training is Key
But I don’t need big muscles to run? Recreational runners over the years are now seeing tremendous results from adding strength training into their program. A runner’s best armour against injury is a strong body. We are constantly seeing runners that strength train having less injuries and improved performance. It helps to guard against impact, builds your tissues tolerance to running stress and leads to a more consistent running form. If one muscle isn’t strong enough or isn’t working well, other muscles compensate and our entire chain can be disrupted and contribute to injury. If your foot has stability issues, it can roll in more, causing your knee to turn in and your hip to drop. When a strong body runs everything is working efficiently, if the foot and ankle muscles are strong it provides a solid base to land and propel upon.
You don’t need massive muscles to be strong. Lift heavier with lower reps of 5 or less can promote optimal strength and minimise muscle growth. Try for sessions 2-3 times per week. Focus on your legs, it’s particularly important to focus on your hip muscles. When you strengthen you gluteus muscles you increase your leg stability all the way down to the foot.
If you Have Pain get it checked out.
This is perhaps the most widely repeated advice by health care specialists to avoid more chronic and long term injury. Do not run through pain, stop your pain in its tracks. Pain is your body’s signal and acts as a messenger system to notify you something is not quite right. See someone that actually pays attention to your pain, accurately identifies the problem and gets to the root of what’s causing it so you can get back to running as quick as possible.
Depending on the sort of pain will depend on who you may want to consult with about your problem. At Solefix we deal with all types of foot, ankle and lower leg running injuries; such as big toe arthritis, neuroma’s, heel spurs, plantar fasciitis, shin splints, calf strains, and achilles tendon pain to name just a few.
We work closely in conjunction with our external team of referrers such as physiotherapists, osteopaths, general practitioners and sports doctors for knee, hip and back complaints assessing the foot’s role in injury through biomechanical and gait function asssessment of the entire lower limb and body.
Call our friendly receptionist on (03) 6249 1155
53 Main Road, Claremont, Tasmania
Solefix Podiatry incorporating Claremont Podiatry