Lockdown 2.0 - Prevent Running Injuries
Running away from lockdown - within our 5k limit :)
After the first lockdown we treated lots of running injuries! Some old injuries that had resurfaced but also some new injuries that just didn't like the sudden increase in training load i.e. going from zero to running every day.
I don't know if there will be as many eager new runners in dark November but here are some pointers to decrease your risk of injury. I have also put together a sample template program for total beginners to start running and gradually make your way to 5k. There are also lots of great apps out there to help you on your running journey.
1. Start gradually
Our bodies respond really well to gradual increases in exercise. They really don't like going from zero to hero i.e. running 5k every day for one week and giving yourself an injury. Two to three runs per week for 8 weeks is a great starting point
2. Rehab old injuries
Your biggest risk of injury is your previous injury! If you have a history of knee or achilles injuries, get back to your rehab or get in touch with your physio. It is likely that you will need to strengthen this areas of weakness or irritability.
3. Incorporate rest days
Some of you might be adding in some HIIT or bootcamp home workouts into your week. It is wise to incorporate rest days into your week particularly for novice runners.
4. Warm-up & cool downs
Running is great because you can really fit it in around your own schedule. Your time might be very limited, so you can add your rehab exercises before or after your run. In general, strengthening exercises work great as a warm-up and a yoga-type stretching routine can be nice to finish and check in with how your body responded to that run.
5. Listen to your body
You can be on the best running program in the world and still get injured. You are the expert about your own body. Listen to how it feels and learn the difference between muscle tiredness after a run and pain. Get your aches and pains checked out when they occur and it will keep you running in the long term.
Finally, this isn't meant to deter anyone from running but rather some advice on how to minimise your risk of getting an injury. Happy running folks!