Mom Knows Best : How To Run Again After An Injury

Monday, February 8, 2016

How To Run Again After An Injury


This was a run that I did called The Dirty Dash



 I love running, but I have not ran for six months. I had to stop running six months ago due to a hamstring tear. Now most people get hamstring tears from too much running, but not me. My hamstring tear was the result of a bad fall. I fell while I was running because I was wearing the wrong type of running shoes. It took me three bad falls, with the hamstring tear being the final fall, for me to finally realize my shoes were causing my falls. I was starting to think I was just clumsy, but my falls were the result of me wearing train running shoes while running on pavement. I bought the shoes online and did not even realize they were for trails.The traction on the shoes were getting stuck in cracks on the sidewalk and street, thus causing me to fall. I learned my lesson about buying the right shoes for running.

 I am now ready to start running again. My mind has been ready to run for a long time, but I delayed running for six months as I wanted to make sure my body was healed not only from the hamstring tear, but also from an Achilles tendon problem that I also have been dealing with way before the hamstring tear. I know I have to start easy with my running as to not have any other injuries. Here are some tips that I want to share about running after an injury.

Running shoes

I bought a new pair of running shoes. When buying running shoes, it is important that they fit well and are designed for your type of feet. I have high arches, so I always look for shoes that are made for high arches. Try several brands of shoes on to find a pair that fits well. I recommend buying running shoes at a running store that has a treadmill as the staff can make sure you are wearing the right type of shoe. This is very important for us people who have had an injury, as the injury may have been the result of wearing the wrong shoes.

Stretching

I hate stretching before I run, but I have learned through my physical therapy appointments that I received after my injury, that it is important. Stretching will prevent many injuries.Don't know where to start with stretching or what type of stretching to do? I found many good stretching exercises for runners just by doing an online search. Here is a video that shows the ten best stretches for runners that I found helpful. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yF8x_SIPRYo
 The main thing about stretching is to get those tight muscles ready for running. Stretching also good for after running to help your muscles recover.

Warm up

I like to fast walk for about five minutes before I start running as it is a great way to get your heart rate up and also get those muscles warmed up.

Running

 I have found that schedule that incorporates a mix of running, walking and resting is best for beginner runners. This combination helps reduce the risk of injury and fatigue while also boosting your enjoyment of physical activity. When one takes up running, they will find it hard at first but with the run/walk/rest schedule, it helps your body get used to running. I found a great run/walk/rest schedule on the Mayo Clinic website that was created by Olympian Jeff Galloway.  http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/fitness/in-depth/5k-run/art-20050962 This schedule has you starting with 15 seconds running and 45 seconds walking on some days, repeating for a 30 minute exercise period. Then the next day you just walk for 30 minutes. You alternate these days so your body has time to rest and recover. It is a seven-week plan that increases the time you run every week and gets you ready to run a 5K. Here is what week one looks like.

Week 1

On run/walk days, walkers walk only. Runners run for 15 seconds/walk for 45 seconds.
MondayRun/walk 30 minutes
TuesdayWalk 30 minutes
WednesdayRun/walk 30 minutes
ThursdayWalk 30 minutes
FridayRest
SaturdayRun/walk 3 miles (4.8 km)
SundayRest or walk

Pain management

I know that I will have some soreness in the first week or two of running. I have discovered that treating pain right away with ice helps it to feel better. I like to these flexible gel packs as they are so much more comfortable than a bag of ice and less messy too. The large gel pack is awesome as it is big enough to wrap around my leg. The other gel pack item is these cool socks that have cold gel packs in them and they feel great on your tired feet. The company makes many other cold and hot packs that are great for running. Check out this link to find out more.



So this is my plan to get back to running. I am hoping all goes well and I am able to start running again without any injuries. I will keep you posted on my progress. I will also include tips that I discover along the way of my journey. My goal is to run a 5K this summer.

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