Running and walking are activities that are very repetitive in nature. The constant loading on your body makes you more prone to overuse injuries. Here are some simple ways to help you prevent yourself from getting injured while you’re training for the Vancouver Sun Run:
Footwear: Be sure to have a pair of shoes that fits your foot properly and that is not worn out. A general rule of thumb is that a pair of running shoes should be replaced every 600 miles (4-6 months depending on how much you run weekly). An old shoe will have less absorption qualities to it leading the rest of your body to take all the impact of each step.
Running/Walking surfaces: Change up the surface you run and walk on regularly. The concrete sidewalks are very unforgiving! Try the trails, the road, a treadmill, or the water. Change it up frequently and you’re body will thank you!
Intensity and Duration: Never increase you mileage by more than 10% a week. Stick to the program!! Follow a hard workout with an easy rest day. Too much too soon is one of the most common causes of overuse injuries! Your body (the muscles, tendons, joints, bones) all need to time to adapt the stresses of running and walking.
Warm-up and stretching: Always warm-up before your run or walk. Especially in this cold weather, our bodies tissues need time to warm up to decrease stiffness and tension. A brisk walk, followed by some standing leg swings, or marching with high knees are all suitable ways to warm up. You should spend 10-15 minutes warming up before you start your actual run. And always finish your workout with a series of stretches that address your “tight spots” and all the major muscle groups.
Have fun out there!!
Timberly George, BScKin, BScPT
Registered Sport Physiotherapist
City Sports & Physiotherapy Clinic