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How to Prevent Running Injuries

Having a well-programmed training plan and taking some precautions can greatly minimize risks to these injuries and ailments.

Here are some tips to prevent running injuries.

– Don’t Ignore Pain: From my experience as a sports therapist, most runners (and other athletes) who come to the sports clinic and complain with unbearable pain are usually those who have been ignoring the pain and discomfort for some time and waited for the pain to worsen before going to be checked and treated. Muscle soreness is natural and it is sometimes okay to ‘run through the pain‘ especially if you only feel slight soreness from your legs, but if the pain has been consistent and increasing, then it’s a sign that what you are feeling is more than just regular DOMS. If you run with sore legs, it might also mean that other muscles will be compensating for the effort. So if you feel sore but you need to add mileage, run at a slower pace.

Read about the difference between “Chronic” and “Acute” Injury here.

Rest Adequately: Most of these running injuries result from lack of enough recovery time for the body to repair and strengthen itself for your next run. At the slight feeling of unusual discomfort or pain, lessen your running load or activity and rest adequately.

Warm up and Stretch: Tightness of muscles causes an imbalance in your body. Make sure that you stretch especially after you run, holding the stretch for each area for at least 20 seconds. Before you run, warm-up properly and try to do dynamic stretching and reach the muscles ROM to ensure that they are ready. Some people and websites advice focusing the stretch for the calves, hamstring, groin and quadriceps, but a whole body stretching routine which includes other body parts that are involved with running (shins, hips, low back, abdominals, and even chest and shoulders) will ensure that your body is well-balanced and ready for your run. A good warm-up routine lasts for 5 to 10 minutes and conditions the whole body, not just the legs.

Lift those weights: Resistance or strength training can help you develop muscle strength and endurance for your runs. Resistance training also adds to your core strength. Don’t worry about bulking up from weight training – having a balanced training program will ensure that you reach your goals without adding extra weight.

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Cross train: Doing other activities or sports will develop your body in different aspects and may help you improve your agility, stamina, and coordination. This helps prevent injuries because your body becomes prepared to react to different kinds of stresses. Don’t just run – try swimming, biking, basketball, football, even wall climbing! Cross-training also minimizes risk for overuse injuries which occurs especially when you repeat the same activity (i.e., running) over and over again.

Dress appropriately: Make sure that your shoes fit right. If you have flat feet or high arc, wear appropriate shoes that meets your specific needs. Check the soles of your running shoes – running shoes are usually good after 400 to 500 kilometers. If possible, wear a separate pair for every day walking and running to prevent your shoes from wearing out quickly.

Patience is a virtue: Don’t force yourself to run longer distances too soon. A safe range for increasing distance is 10% per week. Do not try to run uphill or downhill if your body is not ready for it. It is commonly thought that running downhill is easier because you get gravity to lessen your effort, but running downhill can actually be more stressful to your joints and muscles as the body tries to ‘brake’ and control the fall.

Stay hydrated: Long duration physical activities like running may require additional 1 1/2 to 2 /12 cups of water on running days. drink 150 to 250ml of water 15 to 30 minutes prior to your run. Try to drink at least 150ml of water after every 15 minutes during your run. Hydrate with a sports drink after your long run to replenish lost liquids and electrolytes.

Talk to a coach or trainer: If you are serious about wanting to improve your performance and adding up to your mileage, talking to a professional is the best thing to do. Reading about training programs and running regimens may not be enough. Doing what other seasoned runners in your club may not even be beneficial. Individualization of your running program is very important not only because it will significantly improve your performance, but it will also decrease risks for injuries.

Check out running shoes and other gears from Amazon.

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Have you experienced any running injuries? How did you recover?

Do you find these tips helpful?
What else do you want to know about running injuries and ailments?
Let me know in the comments?

Check out these ebooks for your Kindle and iPad:

Running Injuries: Treatment and Prevention by Jeff Galloway

Runner’s World Complete Book of Women’s Running: The Best Advice to Get Started, Stay Motivated, Lose Weight, Run Injury-Free, Be Safe, and Train for Any Distance

ChiRunning: A Revolutionary Approach to Effortless, Injury-Free Running




Get Ripped in 90 Days


10 Minute Trainer - Workout for the Busiest People

 

Run and train with your Garmin Forerunner GPS.

Run and train with your Garmin Forerunner GPS.

The Garmin Forerunner 10 is the most common GPS watch that is used by runners, marathoners, and serious sports enthusiasts all over the world. It accurately tracks your distance, speed and pace, and calories burned. If you are serious in pursuing fitness, the Garmin Forerunner 10 helps identify your personal records and provides motivation in your workouts. The Garmin Forerunner 10 is very helpful for athletes and everyone who is serious in their distance-based workouts.

How to use the Garmin Forerunner 10 GPS?
Most runners and marathoners use the Garmin Forerunner 10 because its features are easy-to-use and allows you to record your runs with one press of a button! The display settings that sshow the distance, pace, and calories can be customized easily. The Garmin Forerunner 10 is very light and comfortable while having the features that you need.
When you press start, the Garmin Forerunner 10 works to monitor your distance, pace, and calories burned and shows you the summary of your workout after every mile, until you finish your workout. You can easily determine if you have just broken a personal record! The data recorded from your Garmin Forerunner 10 can be quickly uploaded to the Garmin Connect software for analysis, comparison, and for bragging rights!

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Garmin Forerunner 10 GPS Watch (Black/Red)

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Garmin Forerunner 10 GPSWatch (Violet)

READ: Garmin Forerunner 10 – Great performance in a small, low-priced package

What are the Features and Benefits of the Garmin Forerunner 10 GPS?
The Garmin Forerunner 10 GPS watch is a compact watch that has a display resolution of 55 x 32 pixels (W x H) and is amazingly light weight. The Black/Red Garmin Forerunner 10 is slightly bigger than the Pink/White and Green/White watches.

How long does the Garmin Forerunner 10 GPS watch battery last?
The Garmin Forerunner 10 uses a rechargeable lithium-ion battery that lasts up to 5 weeks in power save mode, and 5 hours in training mode. It can definitely endure a full marathon!

READ: 5 Reasons why I love my Garmin Forerunner 10
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Get the Garmin Forerunner 210 if you want to swim with your Garmin.

Get the Garmin Forerunner 210 if you want to swim with your Garmin.

Can I swim with the Garmin Forerunner 10?
The Garmin Forerunner 10 is a water resistant watch up to 50 meters. You can technically swim with your Garmin Forerunner 10 but most people recommend using the more water-durable Garmin Forerunner 210 instead.

Where can I buy the Garmin Forerunner 10 in Canada?
You can buy this compact GPS watch in Canada through amazon in different colors.  Get your Garmin Forerunner GPS Watch from Amazon.ca at a lower price by clicking here.

 

Do you need the Garmin Forerunner 10 GPS Watch?
With the complete features of the Garmin Forerunner 10, it is a good investment to help you achieve your goals and beat your personal records. If you are starting to be serious with your running and want to begin training for a marathon, then the Garmin Forerunner 10 is for you!

 

Click here to check out more models of the Garmin Forerunner GPS watch.

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Garmin forerunner 110 Garmin forerunner 220 Garmin forerunner 220 violet
Garmin Forerunner 110 GPS-Enabled Sport Watch with Heart Rate Monitor (Red) Garmin 010-01147-00 Forerunner 220, Black/Red Garmin 010-01147-01 Forerunner 220, White/Violet

Running is one of the best ways to exercise – it is free and natural, almost everyone can do it!

Running feels great because it releases more than just sweat – you also get to release your worries and stress. Every time you run and catch your breath, you breathe in as a new person.

The Boston Marathon is undoubtedly one of the well-known marathons and serious runners from all over the world dream to take part in this prestigious marathon. It is held yearly and it attracts at least 500,000 spectators and participants each year. Both amateur and professionals run in this most-sought-after event and this year, the first american man to win the Boston Marathon since 1983 crossed the finish line. It was Meb Keflezighi, 38 years old, who finished and won the men’s division with a time of 2:08:37 (which is technically a 2-hour “sprint” for most people).

Read more about Meb here.

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Boston 2013 Through the Eyes
of the Runners

The Boston Marathon has encountered lots of issues and controversies through the years, unfortunately including the Boston Marathon 2013 bombing, but did you know that women were not allowed to run in this race until 1967? Women were barred from running the famed Boston Marathon for over 70 years!

History tells us that women were generally excluded from participating in sports, and this includes running the Boston Marathon. However, a woman named Kathrine Switzer made the first attempt to run over this barrier and succeeded. Kathrine was a student from Syracuse University and she was only 20-years old when she registered for the Boston Marathon  using her initials K.V. Switzer. No one realized that she registered a woman and she was able to officially sign up for the race and was given a race entry number.

During the race, a marathon official (balding guy in the photos) realized that a lone woman was running the Boston Marathon among hordes of men. This official tried to stop Kathrine and physically forced her to run the marathon when he discovered K.V. was a female runner. Other runners including Kathrine’s boyfriend helped Kathrine continue running and blocked the official from stopping her. The lone female runner in the 1967 Boston Marathon made headlines around the world and proved that anything can be done in spite of hindrances.

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After running the Boston Marathon, Kathrine Switzer engaged in promoting sports participation among girls and women. With the help of other passionate women, the Boston Athletic Association  finally was convinced to drop their discrimination against women and allowed them to participate in the race in 1972.

Because of Kathrine’s dream and perseverance, the Boston Marathon opened its starting line to women, and by 2011, almost 43% of the Boston Marathon runners were female! Apart from the Boston Marathon, Kathrine Switzer also helped lead the drive to include women’s marathon in the Olympic Games which was achieved at the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles.

To know more about this trail-blazing woman read her biography, Marathon Woman: Running the Race to Revolutionize Women’s Sports by Switzer, Kathrine (2009)

Kathrine also has a book entitled Running and Walking for Women Over 40 : The Road to Sanity and Vanity by Switzer, Kathrine [1998] which is very inspiring for people over this age. It’s never too late to run!

Also check out 26.2 Marathon Stories written by Kathrine Switzer and Roger Robinson, an elite international runner for thirty years (1966-1995)!

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Continuation from my post “Common Running Injuries and Ailments, Treatment and Prevention (Part 1)”

6.) Muscle Pull/Muscle Strain

Muscle pulls can occur to your hamstrings (back of thigh), quadriceps (front of thigh), gastrocnemius (calves), or adductors (groin muscle/inside of thighs). A muscle pull is a small tear on a muscle that is caused by overstretching. Pulling a muscle sometimes produces a popping sensation when the muscle tears. It is an acute injury that can be very painful upon onset.

How to treat muscle pulls: Like any other acute injury, stop from your activity and rest. Immediately put ice on the muscle for 10 to 20 minutes, until the swelling has lessened. Seek medical attention to determine how much your muscle is damaged. For muscle pulls, you need to undergo physiotherapy treatments so that your muscles will heal properly. If you just let the injury pass, the fibers in your muscles will develop scar tissues which may hinder movement or increase risk for future injuries.

How to prevent muscle pulls: Muscle pulls happen on shocked muscles either because they are not properly warmed up or because you made your muscles do something heavy that they have not done before, or both. Make sure that your body especially your legs are warmed up properly before you run. Warm up for 5 to 10 minutes, doing both metabolic movements to facilitate blood flow to working muscles and dynamic stretching.

Read about the difference between “Chronic” and “Acute” Injury here.

7.) Runner’s Knee/Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome (PFPS)

Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome or PFPS is obviously a common injury to runners that its layman’s term is called “runner’s knee.” However, this may happen to other athletes as well. Runners knee occurs when the kneecap is out of alignment and stress is continuously placed on this misaligned joint. It is a chronic injury that results from wearing down of knee cartilage. Runners knee or PFPS can be recognized with pain around the kneecap when going up or down stairs, squatting, or sitting with knee bent for a long time. Some people may be more susceptible tight to this injury because of their anatomical structure (flat feet or misaligned knees turning inward), but tight and under-developed hamstrings and quadriceps are usually the main culprits.

How to treat Runners Knee or PFPS: Runners knee is an injury that will heal given its own time. But this doesn’t mean that you can run it off. Take an appropriate time to rest and avoid putting weight on your knees. While resting, you can do cross-training such as cycling or swimming to relieve your knees of the stressful loads of running and strengthen the muscles around them. Put ice around the area of your knee if you experience swelling, for 10 to 20 minutes every other day or until the swelling is gone.

How to prevent Runners Knee or PFPS: Your knees will thank you for doing resistance exercises. Do other activities apart from running like Pilates. Have your feet and knees checked – wear orthotics for your feet if you are flat footed. You can also wear a fitting knee support if pain comes back after treatment. Be strict about increasing your mileage to 10% per week. Run on level roads and limit your downhill or uphill runs.

Read about “How to Stretch” here.

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8.) Iliotibial Band Syndrome/IT Band Syndrome

The Iliotibial Band or ITB Syndrome causes pain felt on the outside of the knee. The Iliotibial band (ITB) is a long tendon that connects the top of the hip to the knee at the side of the thigh. It is commonly believed that ITB syndrome occurs when the ITB tightens and rubs against the knee cap. However, new studies suggest that Iliotibial band pain can be caused by tightness from hip muscles pulling the knee. This syndrome can be mistaken for knee pain since pain is felt almost on the same area. You can determine if you have Iliotibial band syndrome by bending your knee to a 45 degree angle and you feel pain on the outside of your knee. Getting an MRI may be the most accurate way to know if you have ITBS since it will show any thickening of the band.

Check out running shoes and other gears from Amazon.

How to treat Iliotibial Band Syndrome: The best way to treat this syndrome is to decrease your mileage or not run at all. Rest is very important to lessen the load on your knees and give time for them to heal. Get a massage to loosen up the muscles around the hips and thighs. Stretch your hips and thighs regularly. Foam rollers are starting to be popular, but you need to know how to use them properly to gain the most benefits.

How to prevent Iliotibial Band Syndrome: Warm-up properly for 5 to 10 minutes before you run, ensuring that your leg muscles are ready for the run. When you start to feel pain around the knee while running, slow down and refrain from running uphill or downhill. Decrease your mileage for the week or cross-train. Make sure that your shoes are not worn out on the sides of the sole and replace your shoes as soon as you can if they are worn out. Another thing you can do if you regularly run on a track is to change the direction of your run.

Have you experienced any of these conditions before? How did you recover?
Do you find these tips helpful?
What else do you want to know about running injuries and ailments?
Let me know in the comments!

Check out these ebooks for your Kindle and iPad:

Running Injuries: Treatment and Prevention by Jeff Galloway

Runner’s World Complete Book of Women’s Running: The Best Advice to Get Started, Stay Motivated, Lose Weight, Run Injury-Free, Be Safe, and Train for Any Distance

ChiRunning: A Revolutionary Approach to Effortless, Injury-Free Running




Get Ripped in 90 Days


10 Minute Trainer - Workout for the Busiest People

 

run shoes
Every runner needs to have the perfect running shoe that fits well and works well for them. Specific footwear characteristics should match the individual needs of a runner. Also, each training type – endurance, strength, or speed – that runners undergo have different demands on their bodies and also their running shoes. Thus, it is important to know which kind of running shoes match your specific goals and individual needs.

With the wide developments in running technology today, it can sometimes be confusing and even intimidating when choosing your new pair inside a running shoes store. How will you choose what’s best for you and your training when there are different categories, shoe types and shapes within the standard Neutral, Stability, and Motion Control?

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The design and technology of shoes varies depending on the brand and type of shoes. As a general guide for running shoe categories, here are brief definitions for the 3 major categories of running shoes and some tips when buying your new pair:

NEUTRAL
The shoes under the neutral category are usually designed with a flexible forefoot and soft but firm midsole. These are the best types of shoes when you tend to land on the outside of your foot. You can determine where your foot lands by checking the soles of your old shoes – if the outside of the sole is worn out, then you tend to land more on the outside of your shoes. This may also be the running shoes for people with a high foot arc. Check if the arc of the shoes you’re planning to buy has enough support or rigid especially if you have a high foot arc. These kinds of shoes support the arc of your foot more than your ankle or your knees. You can observe that this type of running shoe often has a curved sole.

When buying a shoe, observe the arc and check the heels.

When buying a shoe, observe the arc and check the heels.

Get your running shoes from Amazon. Click here.

STABILITY
Running shoes that are under the stability category are designed to control your feet from turning outwards when you run, balances your heel, and supports the arcs of your feet. These types of running shoes provide extra cushioning and excellent stability for your feet when you run. These shoes are for runners who lands on the outside of their heels and slightly turns their foot inward (pronates) when running. The arc of these shoes are not as rigid and may have varying degrees of support.

MOTION CONTROL
The soles of running shoes under the motion control category are usually straight or flat. Some designs have slightly curved soles but the main goal of these running shoes is to keep the heel secure and minimize the rate of pronation when you run. These shoes usually have a wider landing base for your heels, and a strong, rigid heel counter. These running shoes are good for runners who have flat feet or low arches. Runners who tend pronate their feet and have unstable knees when running can benefit more from these types of running shoes. Check the soles of your old shoes – if they are worn out on the midsole, then this running shoe category is for you.

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How to choose running shoes? Here are some tips when buying your running shoes:
1. Walk and Run in the store. Spend time with the pair of shoes before buying it. I know lots of people who buys specific kind of shoes just because they discovered that some great runner used it to finish first place in a race. You have different needs and what works for others may not work well with you. Test out the running shoes in the store. Don’t be afraid to take a few steps on them and even run a couple of meters if possible. Some good running stores even have treadmills for you to run on!

2. Don’t throw your old pair – yet. Bring your old pair of running shoes to the store where you’re going to buy your new shoes. If the place where you are shopping for a new running shoes is specifically a running shoe store, they may have staff who knows about shoes and can analyze the wear pattern of your old shoes. Because you will want to try on walking and running on your new shoes, bring your socks with you and any orthotics if you have one. If the running store have equipment for foot analysis, do not hesitate to have your gait analyzed even if you already know your foot arc or foot type. Let the staff know your running history, goals, injuries and what type of training you usually do.

3. Know your soft spots. One of the main reasons why we need to wear shoes is comfort. Your feet should be comfortable enough while you walk or run in your new running shoes. Pressure spots or loose fitting shoes often leads to blisters.

stock-footage-closeup-of-woman-tying-running-shoe-at-beach4. Perfect Fit for your Feet. If your running shoes are too loose and your feet slides inside your shoes, you will lose energy on every push off that your feet makes when you run. It is okay to adjust and re-adjust the laces of the running shoes while inside a store. Tie your laces so that you have a feeling of security without discomfort.

5. Running shoes are special. Running shoes are designed specifically for forward motion (i.e., running forward), heel cushioning and arc support. If you have time to observe the soles of different types of shoes, you can see that running shoes have horizontal line patterns on their sole. If you plan on using running shoes for other sports or physical activity, you will wear your running shoes out faster and you may even risk yourself injury. Cross-training shoes are designed for more lateral support (moving sideways, etc.) and toe flexibility. Buying a different pair of shoes like a cross-trainer for other activities is a good investment because your running shoes will last longer and you will reduce risk of injury.

Buy your cross-training shoe from Amazon. Click here.

When to buy your running shoes
You may ask yourself, “When do I need to buy a new pair of running shoes?” Usually, the top part or the body of your running shoes looks like they are still in great shape but the cushioning and motion control may have already been lost. Check the soles of your shoes if they are worn out too much. It is helpful to mark the date that you bought your running shoes. If you keep a record of your runs, compare it with the date that you bought your running shoes. When you reach around 800 kilometers or 500 miles, you may need to buy a new pair.
Getting a new pair of running shoes is an investment since your feet are the only parts of your body that touches another surface and absorbs all the impact when you run. Your legs and feet are your main engine for running so you need the excellent tools for support, stability, and comfort for them all the time. One of the keys to reducing risk of injury is to replace your shoes once they break down or wear out.

Choose the GPS watch that fits you. Read an overview of Garmin watches here.

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