Start on the Right Foot With Running: 10 Tips6 March, 2020
New to running or just out of the game? Spring is running season and the races and events may be a tempting challenge, but where should you start?
RAC Personal Trainer and resident running expert Ashley Foos has 10 tips for runners looking to get back into the swing of things.
- Invest in New Shoes:
- If you know your shoes are 2+ years old or you have run over 500 miles in them already, most likely you are in need of a new pair.
- Proper shoes help prevent running injures and relieve stress on your joints.
- Get fitted at your local running store. As a RAC member, you receive special discounts at both Altitude Running and Runner’s Roost — just show your RAC card when you go in!
Increase Distance Slowly:
- Don’t attempted your first long distance run if you’re not ready for it. Pushing yourself too hard can result in injury.
- Ease into it. Try to progress your mileage by just 10% each week.
- Practice Strength Training:
- If you’re a newbie, or an advanced runner, strength training will help you run more efficiently and help correct any muscular imbalances.
- Mix it up with both cardio and strength exercises as you train.
- Proper Form:
- This is key for all runners… Running does not hurt your body, it’s the way you run that does the damage and causes pain.
- The primary causes of injuries are poor running form and poor biomechanics.
- Build a good foundation by analyzing your running gait, correcting your form with a coach, and being analyzed.
- Don’t ignore a proper warm-up routine before a run.
- Run-specific warm up exercises allows your body to be fundamentally prepared for the biomechanics required in proper running form.
- Stretch and Use a Foam Roller:
- To prevent injury, you must maintain good flexibility and good range of motion in your joints. Running is a very repetitive motion that creates a lot of stress on the body.
- Release muscle tension and knots by stretching and foam rolling as often as you can. A foam roller is a runner’s best friend.
- Train Early:
- If you have a race coming up, make sure you don’t start your training program too late. It’s never a bad thing to be over-prepared for your next upcoming race.
- A majority of running injuries happen during a race due to inadequate training.
- Eat Well:
- Make sure you are consuming a clean/healthy diet: plenty of healthy and complex carbohydrates, solid proteins, and healthy fats.
- Junk and acidic foods upset the stomach and won’t make for a pretty run.
- Feed your body nutritious food. You’ll have more energy overall and feel better during your runs.
- Run Outside:
- Don’t spend too much of your training indoors on treadmills. Running on a treadmill is not natural, and is actually “easier,” giving the false impression of speed and distance ability.
- You will be better prepared for races and become a stronger runner when you train outdoors.
- Running shouldn’t be hard. It’s a natural movement.
- Don’t overthink it and don’t force it. Relax your mind and relax your body to move naturally.
By: Mariah Wenzel