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Running Tips For Beginners – Avoid Injuries And Improve Your Health

Running Tips For Beginners – Avoid Injuries And Improve Your Health

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. After all, it’s a lot more enjoyable and more appealing to be outside now rather than 3 months ago when it was colder and darker!

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 during the early weeks of Spring. 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) is a goal that can continue to stay 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 and smart 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 BodyFit Physical Therapy we have been asked about how to avoid that post run stiffness and aches during the run. 

Warming up is vital for everyone: you will see Olympic athletes completing vigorous warm ups before their events, and you will have seen park runners stretching and lightly jogging to prepare before the 9am start on Saturday. 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 carrying on 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 quad muscles (the muscles at the front of your upper leg).
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).

If you're getting back in to a running routine and you need some extra help to stay feeling your best, call BodyFit Physical Therapy at 860-507-7365.