Running injuries happen to the best of runners, and when they happen, it really stinks. Not only because they hurt, but also because of one gets all down for not being able to run.
The good news is that there are a few things you can do to prevent them. Knowing how to prevent running injures is important not only for new runners but for all runners in general.
Running injuries happen to almost every runner, and it has to do with the type of running shoes you wear, the type of running surface you usually run and your mental approach to the sport.
What can you do to reduce your chances of getting hurt?
First of all, learn to pace yourself. Don’t do too much before your body is ready for it. Don’t go faster than you are ready for. Do the things your body is able to handle, no more.
It may sound silly, but new runners are not the only ones who ignore this basic principle. Seasoned runners can ignore it too.
As a new runner, your first weeks of running are exciting. You do great improvements very quickly. You can go from being a total couch potato to running your first short race in a matter of weeks.
For seasoned runners, the issue is about overconfidence. After all, if you’ve been running for years injury-free, wouldn’t you think you probably are immune to them? That’s when seasoned runners lower their guard. They begin running long distances without paying attention to the little warning signs the body is giving.
The solution is the same for both types of runners. Learn to pace yourself. Help your body adapt to the demands of running. After all, running is hard work. Give your body a break to recover and rebuild itself after every workout.
Take a break
It is very important to take a break between run days to let your body recover. And if somebody tells you that you should be running every day to be a real runner, just ignore them. Not taking a break is a sure recipe for getting hurt.
You may have heard of advanced runners running every day. If you feel tempted to do the same, don’t. There’s a big difference between a professional runner and the rest of us.
Professional runners can run almost every day because their bodies have adapted to it. Their bodies are used to the stress of the sport. Their bodies are trained to recover fast after each workout, some times a few hours is all they need.
The rest of us are not at that level. We need space in between runs. Sometimes a day is enough. Sometimes you may need more than that.
Give your body good stuff to work with. That means, eat real food, full of nutrients, to help your body on its recovery process. Also, don’t skip meals or eat too much. Instead, eat when you are hungry, just enough to help your tummy feel happy.
And don’t forget this essential rule: the best foods are simple. Fresh fruits, fresh vegetables, nuts, natural fats, lean protein, etc. Those are the foods your body needs.
The farther the food from its source, the less you should eat of it. For example, fresh apples are like a zillion times better than a piece of apple pie from a fast food restaurant.
Running injuries happen. But just by pacing your training, resting enough and eating healthy food you are reducing your chances of getting hurt.
[su_quote cite=”Dean Karnazes”]Run when you can, walk if you have to, crawl if you must; just never give up[/su_quote]