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  • Writer's pictureDr. Brandon

5 Keys to Avoiding Running Injuries

Whether you are new to running or a veteran of many races, a running injury is the quickest way to knock you off track and keep you from the fitness, stress relief, and time with friends. Running is usually one of the first things that people think about if they want to get a little bit fitter, lose some weight and feel healthier – so we have put together some running tips for beginners which are simple, easy to follow and will help reduce the chances of injury.

When you are next out driving, take a look at how many people are out pounding the streets.

You will notice a LOT of people out running, making the most of the lighter nights when we aren’t being baked by this Tallahassee sunshine(and maybe…just maybe the humidity is below 100%)

There’s a lot of common issues and injuries that can happen when you are running, especially if you are starting out or just getting back into it as the weather cools into Fall and we get into the fall race season.

As with easing and ending other pains, there are things you can be doing to ease your pain naturally without painkillers or surgery.

Running Tips For Beginners – Getting Started

Running your first 5K (or 3.1 miles) is an exciting goal, a popular distance for first-timers and the perfect way to get in shape and have some fun while exercising.

Even if you don’t consider yourself a runner (yet), almost anyone can be ready to run a 5K by starting slowly.

If you’re feeling nervous, you’re not alone. More experienced runners get nervous ahead of races too, but many new runners worry they’re “too slow” or they will be last or not finish at all.

Facing your fears and overcoming them will give you a big confidence boost.

Feel proud of yourself: Crossing the finish line of your first race will be something you’ll remember for a long time. And improving a PB (your personal best time) creates a rush that stays with you as a runner. But be warned, those feelings of accomplishment and excitement can be very addictive!

Pick out the right clothes and gear: From choosing the best running shoes and sport bras to knowing what to wear in any temperature or weather, it’s important to dress correctly to help you look good and feel even better.

Choose a training plan that motivates you: There are many overwhelming 5K training programs available. The couch to 5k app is a wonderful way to start with – it’s full of great ways to get motivated and track your progress.

Here at the Body Mechanix Physiotherapy, we have been asked about how to avoid that post run stiffness and aches during the run.

Warming up is important for everyone: If you’ve ever been to any sports event, you will see athletes completing vigorous warm ups before their events, and you will have seen experienced runners stretching and lightly jogging to prepare before start of a race.

Your warm-up needs to prepare you for the transition from zero to race effort. Warm up regimens vary based on the distance of the race and your race goal.

Running Tips For Beginners – How To Avoid Injury

The shorter the race, the more thorough the warm-up must be. If your goal is to reach a personal best, you will need to be at your own race speed right from the start. This requires a thorough warm-up to prepare you to start at that pace to avoid a slow opening.

It’s like driving your car without warming it up after it has been sitting in the parking lot for hours in 10 degree weather. It will take 10-15 minutes for your car to respond efficiently without a warm-up and it is quite taxing on the car as well. Your body works the same way.

A good warm up for a 5k run would be:

15-20 minutes prior to the race start, take 3 minutes and walk briskly gradually raising your heart rate and circulation to the working muscles. Then run 3-5 minutes at an easy pace and then walk briskly 3-5 more minutes.

If you run-walk, alternate running for 1 minute and walking 1 minute for 6 minutes instead of running continuously.

Your body will be warm and ready to go. Enjoy!

Running Tips For Beginners – Strengthening Your Knee Joint

It’s vitally important to ensure your knee muscles are strong enough to cope. These days, everyone thinks the answer to any problem or physical pain is to just ‘do some exercises’. Exercises are one of the secrets to ending and easing knee pain naturally, but there’s a right way and a wrong way to go about it.

If your knee is painful or swollen, the first thing you have to do is STOP exercising. If it’s not too bad, take a gentle walk for 20 minutes or so on a flat surface, but don’t carryon with your usual exercise routine, because you’ll make things worse.

A knee joint that’s painful and swollen is a sign that your knee isn’t strong enough and you need to understand there’s a difference between exercising and doing exercises. The latter is what you need to recover a knee joint that hurts.

Our top tips…

  1. Focus on improving the strength and control of your hip muscles (the muscles that actually protect your knee). Thing glutes and outer thigh muscles.

  2. You also need to consider having lower back muscles that are strong and hips that move freely.

  3. You need to be wearing the right footwear with enough cushion to absorb shock (the impact every time your foot lands when you walk).

Tired Of Daily Aches And Pains Stopping You From Exercising?

We speak to lots of people who come to us after battling aches and pains for months, if not years, and they have often tried a lot of other things which didn’t solve the problem…

They went to their family doctor, but were just told to take painkillers and rest…

They tried at-home exercises but it didn’t seem to make any difference…

They tried braces, or joint supports but the pain only got worse…

If you are frustrated with daily aches and pains, worried about things getting worse, then reach out to our team today.

Confused about where to start? We got you covered! That’s why we offer free consultations to help you get to the root of why you are dealing with stiffness, pain, or just not performing the way you need to.

During one of our free consultations, the Total Body Diagnostic, we offer expert advice about the worry and frustration of life-changing aches and pains – for FREE, in under 30 minutes.

If this article describes your story and you are looking for some help with overcoming hip pain, we offer FREE consultations, which give you the opportunity to come in and meet us and see for yourself how we can help you.

Here are just a few of the things you will learn in one of our free consultation:

  • What is the underlying cause of your pain? (hopefully nothing too serious!)

  • Roughly, how long will it take to fix the problem?

  • What to do to help – which doesn’t include painkillers, resting or surgery etc.

  • What other, natural, drug free methods are there to speed up recovery alongside treatment?

Our consultations are great for anyone that may be “unsure” if physio is right for them, and they give you the opportunity to ask questions and see for yourself if we can help you.

If you’d like one of our limited free consultation sessions, please click here to request your Total Body Diagnostic or CALL us on 850-765-2779 to make a no-obligation enquiry.

Other Resources

Do you struggle with agonizing knee pain after you exercise in the gym, or go for a run?

If so, download our free knee pain report and discover:

About the author

Brandon Alkire, DPT, CSCS, FMS, Cert. DN

Doctor of Physical Therapy and Strength Coach

Dr. Brandon is the owner and a Physio at Body Mechanix Physiotherapy and Fitness. Four of his favorite people call him daddy while he's been married to his other favorite person for over 18 years. He enjoys teaching martial arts and is a Mestrando in Capoeira while in the mornings, he can be found working out with the guys in F3 around town.

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