If you read my blog regularly you know I am plagues with running injuries, so much so that I considered changing the name of the blog to injured runner. As a work toward an injury free 2017 I am excited to share this guest post by Bethany with you.
How to Prevent Common Running Injuries
Getting injured seems unavoidable as a runner, but there are simple ways to prevent common running injuries from happening in the first place. Strength and rest are valuable assets to a training program that can help you stay healthy. Stay on track with your running goals by adding a couple of techniques to keep you injury free all year long.
Slowly Build Strength
Slowly building your strength helps you stay on track with your long term running goals. Runner’s often get excited and build mileage at a fast rate. As thrilling as it can be to reach new milestones, it can often hinder your body for long term running. By adding mileage a little at a time, it allows your body to heal properly for stronger strides.
Overtraining is one of the leading causes for injury and can contribute to those dreadful shin splints. Supplement your running routine with cross training that works your muscles in different ways to avoid exhausting your body. Swimming, elliptical, and yoga are all great workouts that work your muscles in different ways to build strength.
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Remember to allow time for rest in between tough workouts for your body to properly heal. Tiny cracks in your framework, otherwise known as stress fractures, can occur when your body works too hard. Listen to what your body needs and be mindful when it is time to rest.
Fix Your Form
Having proper running form is a key adjustment to avoiding injury. Bad form leads to muscle imbalance that triggers common running ailments. Runner’s knee, iliotibial band syndrome, and Achilles tendonitis are all injuries that have a root cause of weak muscles and misalignment.
Your body takes on pressure as you pound your feet against the ground. Fixing your form helps balance your weight and evenly distribute it throughout your body for less impact on just one part of the body.
Hold your chest upright and slightly lean forward into the motion of running. As you stride, keep your foot underneath your knee and hip as your foot strikes the ground. Hold your core tight and your arms at a 90-degree angle. As your arms swing back and forth the opposite of your leg movement, keep your breath steady and your eyes forward. When you can keep proper running form every time you head out for a run, then you will be able to avoid long term injury.
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Avoiding injury takes attention to the details of how you run, and how you rest. Allow time in your training program to rest and recover in the way your body needs. Pay attention to your body’s alignment and how you carry yourself as you run. When you can stay in tune with your body, you can prevent injury from happening and continue to run your best every single day.
Bethany Widdicombe is a runner at heart, a researcher by nature, and a writer by passion. Having traveled across the world, she continues to be an advocate for awareness and knowledge that empowers people to a better life. You can now find her running out on the trail, or nestled away writing her next article for Running Stats.
How do you prevent running injuries?