When starting to incorporate running into your life, it can be quite easy to injure yourself and put yourself out of action for a little while. Similarly, it can be easy to prevent any injuries when running if you know how. Here are some easy ways to help prevent any injuries when running.
Wear the right kit
This might sound like a pretty basic request, but we can’t stress enough how important it is to get yourself kitted out with the appropriate gear. Running can be tough on your body, so make sure you’ve got proper running shoes to support your feet and ensure that you don’t damage your back with bad support and posture. Make sure you’re running in clothes that are comfortable, breathable and optimum for the temperature you’re running in. You’re going to get hot and sweaty, so make sure you can stay calm and cool on your run!
Work on your technique
Running is a sport as much as any other, and it’s important to work on your technique in order to improve and keep yourself healthy. Make sure you’re running at a pace which is comfortable for you, you’re eating at reasonable times before and after, you’re fuelling your body correctly and that your running technique is spot on. There are a host of different YouTube videos and blog posts that will teach you the correct technique when running. Research, learn, copy and adapt. Your body will thank you for it.
Run on soft surfaces
Try to run on soft surfaces when possible. This is better for your joints and will help you to prevent injury. Running on pavements or tougher surfaces is tougher on your joints and could possible injure you.
Warm up and Cool down
An age old golden rule in the world of exercise, but it couldn’t be more true when running. Start your run with a warm up walk to get your muscles ready, and finish your run with a cool down of more walking, followed by stretching to help ease your muscles. It’s super important to warm up and warm down – plus the walking is a nice break after your run!
If in doubt – don’t run
If you’re feeling a little worse for wear, then don’t push yourself. Sometimes the body will tell you when it needs a break – and you have to listen! The worst thing you can do is push through an injury when your body needs a rest, risking potentially injuring yourself further. If you’re ever in doubt, then just don’t run.
Vary your training
Varying your training is incredibly important to see any kind of results. Your body will get used to the repetition of running if this is all you do, so why not incorporate some different types of exercise to wake those muscles up? From hill sprints or long sessions to interval training, working different types of running styles into your regime will help you to get fitter, stronger and see improvements in no time.
Treat minor niggles
When it comes to keeping yourself injury free – any niggle you might feel needs to be treated. If you’re feeling uncomfortable and are worried about a niggle, then you need to get it checked out. Whether that’s a rest, a sports massage or a trip to the physiotherapist, make sure you don’t leave it. If it’s persistent then you must go and get it checked out properly! Never be complacent with an injury.
When injured keep active
When you are injured, it’s important to keep as active as you can to stop yourself starting your running journey from scratch. Go for walks or exercise your body in ways that you are able to do without pushing yourself. If you can’t run – can you try swimming? If you can’t swim, how about a brisk walk or a muscle workout in the gym?
Following these 8 simple steps will help you to keep yourself injury free and allow you to truly enjoy your journey to becoming a runner.