Running – a gradual progression
Summer’s here! Would you like to spend more time outdoors and still keep up with your regular workouts? Well, running is a great way to enjoy the best of both worlds. Also, you can keep the motivation up by signing up for a running event at the end of the season. But before you’re off and running, here are 8 tips that will help avoid injury.
1) Gradual progression is key : Keep in mind that you must gradually increase the following elements : the duration, the frequency, and the intensity of your runs, even if you’ve run before.
2) Don’t run every day. Take a few days rest between runs. If you run every day, the risk of injury increases. We suggest a minimum of 48 hours rest between runs. Make the most of these off days by practicing another sport.
3) Gradually increase the duration. Start by alternating running and walking. During your first outings, alternate 1 minute running time with 2 minutes walking time. Then, gradually increase the duration of your running time. For example. 1 minute running and 1 minute walking, 2 minutes running and 1 minute walking, 3 minutes running and 1 minute walking, etc.
4) Variety keeps it fresh. Alternate interval running and continuous running. Change the running distance. A typical week should include at least one interval run, one continuous long distance run and one continuous shorter distance run.
5) No need to beat your personal best every time. Keep in mind that you’re doing this for pleasure. There is no need to be gasping for air at the end of each run. Track your efforts with the help of a heart rate monitor and adapt at every run.
6) The body dosen’t lie. Listen to it. That stiffness in your back or in your joints is telling you to take a few days off. You should heed the warning. Ignoring it could lead to injury.
7) Ask a kinesiologist. They can evaluate your technique and design a progressive and personalized running program. They can also prescribe a weight training program that is specific to your needs. This program should be performed at least twice a week.
8) Have fun. Use your outdoor runs to clear your mind, unwind and have fun.