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How To Run Better Post-Injury

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“Injury” is one of the scariest words in a runner’s vocabulary. It’s the one definite obstacle that gets in the way of our next run. There are different levels of injuries ranging from uncomfortable movements that may require a couple days rest to major pain and overuse that may require a couple months break from running. Plantar Fasciitis is one of the most commonly known injuries in the running community that can range in intensity but luckily there are many techniques and tools that can help ease the pain and keep you running. 

Once you are feeling better, there’s nothing more exciting than the day you can get back into running! But even if you're all cleared by doctors for running there may be some bumps along the way or new things to get used to once you get up and running. Read along to learn some tips from fellow runners on how to get back into running post-injury. No matter your injury, Fit2Run can help you get back to running.

*Be advised the following information is based on personal experiences and accounts from other runners. Please consult a medical professional for any injury related treatment and/or questions.

Find the training plan that works for you:

If followed correctly most training plans won’t be the cause of any injuries, but if you do start to feel uncomfortable or in pain, maybe you need to reconsider your current plan. Sometimes the demands within a workout might be more strenuous than we expected and there is a greater risk for injury. If you’re a beginner runner, start with a level one training plan, or if you’re coming back from some time off it’s ok to start at a lower level and work your way up to higher levels once you feel comfortable. Find a plan that challenges you but doesn’t injure you. Keep in mind most training may be challenging at times as they are designed to make you stronger and/or faster but it should never be the cause of an injury.

Start slow and work your way to where you were:

No matter how ready we might feel after an injury it’s important to remember you probably won’t feel like your old self right away. Chances are that your first run post-injury will feel a little more tiring and difficult than before. While this is perfectly normal after some time off, it’s important not to get discouraged. When you start again, you may want to consider cutting the mileage back a bit or slowing down your pace for the first couple of days. Don’t expect yourself to be in the same place you were pre-injury. It doesn’t mean you can’t get back to where you were or even progress past where you were, but take it slow to start, remind your body in a way that is comfortable for you and your running goals.    

Rest more often:

When you’re a runner on a mission you don’t let anything get in the way of your running, even an injury. Whether you are following a training plan or running is part of your regular routine, a rest day(s) between workouts should be a priority to avoid future injuries. If you start to feel pain in any particular spot whether it’s been injured before or not, consider an extra rest day or at least some more time between your next workout. (ex. don’t follow a night run with a morning run the next day). Remember after an injury your body may need a little more time to recover. The important thing is to not get discouraged, listen to your body.

Keep your gear in top shape:

We can’t stress enough the importance of having your running gear in the best shape so it can help keep you at your best. Running shoes, for example, should be replaced after about every 300 miles (brands and models may vary). The material in running shoes breaks down over time and takes a beating as you pound the pavement, even the most durable shoe won't last forever. As a runner you depend on your shoes to keep you comfortable and supported out on a run. It’s important to properly care for your running shoes so they take care of your feet in return as well. So keep an eye on your running shoes because it may be time for them to retire from running so you don’t have to!

Study and analyze your Gait Cycle:

To ensure you have a great pair of running shoes you should understand the Gait cycle of your feet. The Gait cycle is the  unique biomechanics of the foot in motion. Gait cycle analysis is one of the three steps in our complimentary Fit Process offered at every Fit2Run location. While normally it’s a good idea to go through the Fit Process at least once a year, it’s highly recommended to do so after coming back to running post injury to see if the injury has affected your running movement in any way. Important factors like pressure variations, pain points, and arch height, for example, can affect your running and it is possible that these vary in different stages of your running journey but especially after an injury. 

Injury doesn't mean the end of your running journey

While experiencing an injury is never a fun thing, it definitely doesn't have to mean it’s the end of your running journey. Runners experience injuries of all levels on a regular basis and after proper recovery, come back stronger and more motivated. If you experience any pain or injury in running don’t let it deter you from running all together, consider it part of the learning in your journey. Remember that running is not always easy, but part of the reason that we love running so much is because of the challenges that come with it. Even though we all want running to be fun all the time, it’s ok to need a reminder on how to love running again in frustrating times. The important thing is not to give up and remember you’re not alone. Fit2Run and the running community are here to cheer you on every step of the way!  

 

Connect with us and share your recovery stories, tips and tricks and the running community on social media @Fit2Run_TheRunnersSuperStore Whether you’re a new runner or an experienced athlete we want to hear your stories, At Fit2Run “there’s a place for every pace”.

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