Spring has sprung and this means the weather is getting warmer, which we can all agree is amazing! With warmer weather comes an uptick in outdoor sports — running being one of our favorites at WPT. So, if you find yourself running in this beautiful weather we wanted to give you some tips to help reduce your risk of injury and keep you going!
It is important to prime your body for movement before starting to run in order to allow your body to move through the complete range of motion necessary and prepare the muscles to activate properly with every stride. Warm-ups should be dynamic allowing the body to move through various motions to allow the muscles and joints to move appropriately. Here’s an example of a pre-running warm-up: air squats, butt kicks, high knees, jumping jacks, vertical jumps, & walking lunges. Simply complete each of these for 1-2 minutes continuously before tying up those laces and going for a jog!
2. Progress Distance Gradually
If you are just beginning to run for the first time of the season after the long winter, then it is key to make sure you start small then build up your mileage over several weeks and months. In running, there is something called the ‘Ten Percent Rule’ this means that per week the mileage you are running should increase by no more than 10% from one week to the next! This rule is a quick and easy way to reduce your risk for injury when increasing your mileage.
3. Hydrate Properly
When you begin running, you will undoubtedly sweat — with this loss of fluid you need to make sure you are replacing this fluid through drinking plenty of water. Generally, it is recommended to drink 8 glasses of water per day, however knowing that both exercises (sweating) and the outdoor heat can cause fluid loss make sure you up this intake by a glass or two when upping your mileage to prevent dehydration!
4. Cross Train
Running is an awesome form of exercise for our cardiovascular fitness, however ensuring that we are training out muscle for strength and control is also important. So, for runners it is key that we integrate a handful of resistance exercises several times a week. Key muscle groups to strengthen for runners include the gluteals, hamstrings, quadriceps and the core.
If you have any questions about how to safely start a running program or how to reduce your injury risk with running come see us at WPT!