As spring approaches, many are beginning to train outside again and we’re all for it!
Maybe you’re excited to sign up for your first 5K, ready to start shedding pounds with some hill courses, eliminate stress with some fresh air exercise, or just get rid of cabin fever. Maybe you just felt like running…
Get into the running groove.
- Been a while since you did strenuous exercise? Schedule a physical examination with your primary care physician to ensure your body is ready to endure jogging/running.
- Check your shoes. How old are they? Are they comfortable? The average running shoe lasts around 6 months if they average 9-12 miles per week of running (that is running ONLY). If you’re buying brand new shoes, I suggest walking in them for about 2 weeks as a break-in period.
- Go easy on yourself. People make a common mistake of setting unrealistic running goals. If this is your first attempt at running, start by walking 10-20 min, 3 times per week. If it’s been a few months since your last run, start by getting into a comfortable jog for 1 mile, 3 times per week.
- By giving your body time to rest, you can help to avoid the dreaded shin splints. Building up to longer distances can also keep you from getting burned out.
- I highly recommend wearing a heart rate monitor to assure you stay in a healthy and safe heart rate range so that you don’t overstress your cardiovascular system. You can calculate your max heart rate by performing this simple formula (220-age=Max HR). I suggest 60 percent of that max heart for a comfortable and safe running pace.
- Examine your orthotics. If the top cover is worn out or they aren’t ‘feeling’ like they should to you, it’s time to bring them in. Orthotics do eventually wear out and need to be updated. Lots of runners use orthotics to their advantage and swear they’ve shaved time off their PR.
- Take swigs as you run to keep your body hydrated, mouth moist and body cool. Our body is made of at least 90% water, so it’s important to drink up!
- I recommend finding a group to run with or at least a running partner. It’s safe, motivating and fun! The BLUEgrass Runners Club is a great way to meet people and find groups that meet your running pace and comfort. Be careful out there!
- Listen to your body. If you’re experiencing pain, your body is telling you there is something wrong. We are under the misconception that we should always ‘walk it off’ or ‘play through the pain.’ First, follow the RICE Method and if you’re still in pain, call for an appointment. Stress fractures can derail even the most motivated runner.
Check out the local race schedule for upcoming races.
If you incur an injury while training or during your race, please make an appointment with Lexington Podiatry.