Apr 26

Injury Prevention for Runners – Run It Wednesday

Have a running injury? If you don’t now, you probably soon will unless you know how to prevent common running injuries. No runner wants to be sidelined but, unfortunately a lot of runners (myself included) don’t do all the little things they know they should to prevent injuries before they happen. Run It Wednesday to the rescue with common running related injuries and how to prevent them.

Since I’m now in the over 40 crowd, I’m tackling how to stay injury free as you age up. The fact I haven’t had a significant injury in a very long time is not by chance. I take injury prevention seriously and, the older I get the more I need to do.

Here is my best advice for staving off injuries as you move toward 40 and beyond:

TAKE CROSS TRAINING SERIOUSLY

Basically, don’t half ass your strength days or anything else you do that isn’t running. A lot of common running related injuries are due to the normal imbalances of your body and, unless you strengthen those unbalanced weaknesses, they will break down. Yes, they will.

There are tons of YouTube videos, articles and Pinterest posts on how to spend as little as 10 minutes a day doing some basic strength training. This is hands-down the best way I know to avoid the physical therapist.

FINE TUNE EVERY DAY

What I mean by “fine tune” is dynamic warm-ups before your runs and stretching and foam rolling afterward. I’m not saying I do these things all the time however, I feel a lot better when I do.

When I was training for two marathons in one year in 2015, I was religious about stretching and foam rolling every night. It resulted in feeling good on race day and sweet and shiny new PR!

I have since fallen off the wagon with this and my body feels it. I have vowed to get back to my nightly routine so I can feel less like the tin man on my long runs.

EAT WELL AND REST

Out of all of these tips, this may be the hardest for some. I tell people all the time – my abs and arms are made in the kitchen! I love to eat healthy, nutritional foods that nourish my body but I also like to indulge. Nothing is off the table (get it?) as far as my diet but I can tell you I pack in protein with every single meal, eat healthy carbs and healthy fats.

I also take my resting very seriously. This is one of my favorite quotes:

And if you need motivation for resting like it’s your job, check out some of the #RestDayBrags on Instagram or Twitter and join in bragging about being lazy AF because you’ve earned it!

TRY A TRIATHLON (OR AT LEAST SWIMMING AND CYCLING)

I know what you’re going to say – – “I can’t swim!” Well, I couldn’t swim either and was actually terrified of open water swimming about 7 years ago and now I’m competing in triathlon national championships. Not only has my swimming and cycling improved my mental game and increased my confidence, it has given me tremendous endurance and power on the run.

I’ve become a much better runner since I started regularly swimming and cycling.

Another great advantage of being in the pool is the ability to do pool runs. Although they can be fantastically boring without a waterproof iPod, they are very effective and can keep you in running condition while you’re injured. Elites substitute land running for pool running all the time when trying to manage an injury so learn from them and do some wet miles!

Cycling is a obviously a lot easier than swimming, even if you don’t have a bike. Go to your local gym and take a spin class once or twice a week or see if you can borrow a bike from someone with a similar body type. Cycling gives your body a break from pounding the pavement while giving your legs an incredible workout and building strength and endurance.

MORE INJURY PREVENTION POSTS!

Just because you’re not as old as I am does not mean you will be spared from any number of running related injuries. Sorry. Here are some great posts from some of the most knowledgeable women runners I know, most of whom have suffered through these injuries and can now bestow their wisdom onto you. Take heed!

SARAH | RUN FAR GIRL

 

CARLY | FINE FIT DAY

 

ANGELA | HAPPY FIT MAMA

 

NELLIE | BROOKLYN ACTIVE MAMA

LAURA | THIS RUNNER’S RECIPES

 

 

Have you been injured lately?

Have you ever had one of these injuries? How did you overcome it?

Are you an over 40 runner? If so, how do you prevent injuries? 

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