Are You Ready to Run, Injury FREE?

Hey Runners, are you frustrated with constant injuries, too many set backs, and lack of quality runs, or runs at all?

It’s time to return to your training again and enjoy your runs, and stay injury free.

Does this sound familiar:

• I have not been able to run for weeks (or months)….and I have no idea what to do!
• Every time I think I’m ready to start running again, I feel the pain again. Am I every going to be able to run again?
• I get hurt so often I feel all I am doing is trying to get back into shape again!

Chronic injuries such Plantar Fasciitis, IT Band Syndrome, PF Tracking syndrome can cause you to stop running. What can I do to just run pain free again?

Well if you listen to most experts they will tell you to stretch, or rest and ice and then do it all over again. There are much better solutions for you.

First, train less. What, only run every other day, that’s not enough! Who wants to do that! People that run three days a week have a significant lower injury rate than those that run daily (or the crazy ones like me that did double workouts four times a week while running college cross country). Huh, wonder why I got hurt in college????

So why do runners get injured?

Here are a few tidbits for you.

Prevention

Most runners just run. They think the more they run, the more fit they will be. Prevention to them is doing a little stretching or icing after a particularly long or hard run. A combination of stretching, strength training, proper nutrition and hydration, and most importantly REST is the way to go.

RICE (Rest, Ice Compression, Elevation)

Now this is all good, but is it enough? Many runners focus on one or two aspects of this, Ice being the number one choice. Many ignore the first one! If you feel an injury coming on, do all of these, but most importantly rest. A few days off can do wonders.

Build prevention into your training

Rest (notice a common theme here)? Try alternative form of exercise for a few days (swimming, bike, dare I say it walking). Do something that you can do pain free. Sleep, it’s when our body repairs itself, most of us do not get enough of it. Turn of the TV, Computer, put the book down, and try and get 8 hours of sleep. I get at least 8 hours or more of sleep 4-5 days a week; I can tell when I don’t.

Injury prevention should be your first goal in training. Stretching, strengthening, rest, using ice or ice baths to nip those early aches and pains, and not over training is a good start. Not training everyday, or doing a low impact form of exercise on your non-running days.

If you do all of these you should avoid the injury bug. But even the most dedicated get injuries. If you do get injured, go see your local physical therapist, they should be able to get you up and running soon.

Good luck!

Bradon Griffith, ATC, PTA, CSCS
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Andrew Vertson

Andrew Vertson

Andrew received his Bachelor’s Degree in Exercise Science from California State University, Fresno in 1991. He then earned his Master’s degree of Physical Therapy in 1996 and his Doctorate degree of Physical Therapy in 2002 from Loma Linda University. In 1996 he also earned his Certification as an Athletic Trainer. He has also completed extensive post-graduate course work in orthopedic manual therapy through Kaiser-West Los Angeles and the Ola Grimsby Institute.
Andrew Vertson

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