Tag Archives: Running Injuries

Injury Prevention When Training for a Half Marathon

Running a half marathon requires doing thorough training. Elite runners run over 200Kms per week when preparing for a race. A hobby run will need to run at least 75-100 Kms per week to be able to able to finish in a descent time.  Although running many Kilometres in training is good, it also increases the likely hood of  suffering a running injury.

Simple precautions to prevent injuries when training for a half marathon

Don’t be too enthusiastic

This is common with new runners. Starting to train for a first half marathon can be very exciting. When new runners start to feel the improvements in their performance from one run to the next, and begin to see significant improvements when they look in the mirror, it is really easy to get carried away with enthusiasm and train too hard. Unfortunately that can often lead to a highly demotivating injury, which always occurs at the most inconvenient time.

Listen to Your Body When Training

The first important thing for all runners to do is to listen to their body. Often nagging aches and pains are a warning that we’re pushing too hard. Most injuries give a warning before becoming serious. That is the time to stop, have a few days off running, then start back very gently, being wary of any further warnings. It may be frustrating to have a few days without running, but that is much better than having an enforced month off. And even while you are off running you can still do some cross training or other exercises so the time is never wasted.

Strength Training Exercises to Prevent Injuries

Next runners need to do extra work on various parts of the body. It is very tempting to think that running provides all of the exercise that we need. In reality, most of us need to work on increasing core strength and leg strength. Both help to ensure that our muscles are strong enough for the things we are asking them to do, and they help to improve running posture and movements, reducing the stress placed on joints. Running five days a week may sound great, but sometimes it’s better to run three days, and do some serious muscle building on the other two.

Go Easy on Long Runs

As distance increases, speed should decrease. Trying to run as fast as possible every time you get your running shoes on is only ever going to end badly. It’s fine to do some speed work every week, but that really should only be a small percentage of the total distance run. Even elite runners only do a tiny amount of fast work – use long runs just for increasing endurance. That is the way to long term success.

Get Faster by running less

Finally, sometimes less is more. And with running, it is better to workout often but not too hard, than to end up visiting the physiotherapist. Above all, listen to your body – if it hurts, stop before it breaks!

Find out more about training for a half marathon at www.erunningweightloss.com/halfmarathontraining

Weak Knees : Exercise to Strengthen Weak Knees

Weak knees affects a few runners. A reader of this blog sent me an email asking me what she can do with her weak knees.

The New York times had an article on the issue of running and knees.

Running Makes your Knees stronger

In a Stanford University study researchers followed middle-aged, longtime distance runners (not necessarily marathoners) for nearly 20 years, beginning in 1984, when most were in their 50s or 60s. At that time, 6.7 percent of the runners had creaky, mildly arthritic knees, while none of an age-matched control group did. After 20 years, however, the runners’ knees were healthier; only 20 percent showed arthritic changes, versus 32 percent of the control group’s knees. Barely 2 percent of the runners’ knees were severely arthritic, while almost 10 percent of the control group’s were.

Debunking the myth that Running leads to degeneration of the knees

The word on the street is that running may weaken your knees but In another scientific study runners knees were scanned before and after 1997 Vienna Marathon. Ten years later, they scanned the same runners’ knees again. The results were striking. “No major new internal damage in the knee joints of marathon runners was found after a 10-year interval,”

According to Ross Tucker, a South African who blogs about running injuries he said the best solution for weak knees is targeted strength training. If you work on the the muscles that support your knees, hip stabilizers, quads, hamstrings you will have strong knees. It is weakness in one of these muscle groups that causes knee injury.

Another interesting solution I picked from comments on the NY times article was this one by a Dr. “The issue is weight, not running. The more you weigh, the greater the chance you will develop osteoarthritis as you age. The key is to remain slim lifelong.”

VIDEO : EXERCISES TO STRENGTHEN KEY LEG MUSCLES TO PREVENT INJURIES

This video should help

Health Insurance For Marathon Runners & Amateur Athletes

Health insurance is important for amateur athletes who participate in marathon races, half marathon, 10k or 5K races. Although events cover runners on the day of the race, the health insurance is limited plus it does not cover injury sustained when training.

Before going out to buy health insurance to cover you for running related injuries you need to get familiar with insurance policies. You need to know whether health insurance companies in your country or state cover pre-existing injuries. In the US states such as California and New York are no longer allowed to exclude pre-existing injuries from treatment.

Cost of Health Insurance For Runners

I thought health insurance companies have discount for active amateur athletes but the reality is it doesn’t matter if you’re an athlete or a person participating in organized athletic events at almost any level. You’ll pay the same amount as someone who is overweight and unhealthy.

The winners are the health insurance companies who get premium from a healthy pool.

Analyzing your Health Insurance plan For Running Related Injuries

People looking for Sports Injury Protection should check that the plan covers for fractures, dislocations and torn ligaments. It should also include income replacement benefit if your injury keeps you off work, as well as physiotherapy treatment, dental treatment. This type of insurance can be available separately or as part of private health insurance. Standalone sports cover may provide a lump-sum payment if you break a bone.

Beware of cheap health insurance for runners, if an insurance company quotes you a very low price they are most likely offerign you a very limited cover. Read the fine print.

Heel Injuries From Running

Heel injuries from running are quite a common issue for runners, both for newcomers and experienced runners. The reason heel injuries from running are common is because your heels take the initial shock when you land on your feet, each and every time.

Types of Heel injuries from running

Heel Spurs – The pain is felt at the front part of your heel, where the arch and the heel meet.

Plantar Fasciitis – The pain is felt at the center of the heel. To diagnose plantr fasciitis press really hard with your thumb on the center of the heel. If the pain is felt at the center, it is indeed plantar fasciitis.

Heel injury picture : Heel injury photo

Running Injuries Lower Leg

Lower leg injuries consist of running injuries that afflict the knee going downwards. These are injuries on the shin, calf, heel, ankle and the foot.

The lower leg injuries can be mild, in the case of muscle soreness or serious cases like stress fractures.

Cause of Lower Leg Injuries during running

Researchers from the University of Calgary found that weak hip muscles are to blame for 92 percent of lower-leg running injuries.

Exercise to Stregthen Lower leg

Try exercises such as squats and step-ups to target-harden yourself against these sidelining lower leg injuries.

Knee Joint Strengthening Exercise Video

Knee injury is another common running injury. Knee injuries while running are usually caused by increasing the intensity or duration of running too quickly.

A knee injury could be a knee tendonitis or just a muscle train. Moderate knee injuries can heal by themselves but when the knee injury is serious, it is important to see a physician.

Treatment of knee injury involves exercises to strengthen the muscles that support the knee. The following video demonstrates knee joint and muscle strengthening exercises.

 

Barefoot Running Injuries Stats

2010 will go down as the year when barefoot running became a craze. The running fraternity was bombarded with research papers telling us why going barefoot is the way to run.

Image courtesy of madetorun.com

The scholars told us barefoot running prevents hurtful running injuries! Really?

Now there is growing evidence barefoot running is causing injuries, from aching heels, ankles and top of the foot. Doctors are reporting seeing a rise in barefoot running injuries.

Steve Pribut, a Washington, DC podiatrist and one of America’s most respected running injury specialists, says he has experienced a recent influx of barefoot runners at his office as well. And, asked by email whether he could confirm a barefoot running injury trend in his clinical experience, Lewis Maharam, a.k.a “Running Doc,” replied with two words: “Oh, yeah!”

From Running Network Barefoot running epidemic.

I just have had the opportunity to meet up with 3 ‘barefoot runners’. Only one of them is still doing some drills barefoot; the other two were disillusioned because of the injuries. One with stress fractures from his Vibrams; and the other could not shake “Top of Foot Pain” – it was not until he went back to his running shoes would it go away, only to return again when he tried to transition.

It was the nature of the “Top of Foot Pain” in barefoot running that intrigued me, so I did some looking up and it is commonly reported by barefoot runners.

From Podiatry Arena Barefoot running.

Surgery For Runner’s Injuries

While majority of running injuries (runners knee, ankle sprain, shinsplints, Achilles tendinitis etc) are treatable by home therapy of rest, massage and pain killers some cases are severe and may require surgery treatment.

Running times have a series on running injuries and in this weeks podcast, Sport podiatrist Brian Fullem discusses advances in surgical techniques for runners that enable a faster return to running.

To listen to the podcast click RunningTimes-ModernFootSurgeryForRunners835.mp3

You may also download the podcast by right clicking on the link and click save.

Running Injuries Statistics

With all the amazing advancements in sports medicine, you’d think that our rates of shinsplints, runners knee, ankle injuries and stress fractures should be under control.

A recent runnersworld.com poll revealed that 66 percent of respondents had suffered an injury in 2009.

Read the full article at runnersworld

Learning How To Run A Marathon

The marathon is becoming more popular, according to latest statistics over 420,000 American runners finished the distance in 2007.

If your goal is to run and finish a marathon, let me remind you, finishing the 26 miles is a big challenge. Training for the full marathon, usually the programs are anywhere between 4 and 5 months long.

How to run

Learning how to run for a marathon is more than running around the block, You have to learn how to run, you have to learn how to and when to conserve your energy, when to give it that last blast. You can only learn this by getting out and running.

Learning about a runners nutrition

Another important area is nutrition. You need to eat right while you train for the marathon. A nutritional balance of carbohydrates, proteins and essential minerals is important. This will help in replacing lost energy and repair of tissues.

Learning about Injuries

Running injuries are part of running, you cant escape them. As you train you will suffer injuries, dont let them discourage you. When injuries happen, take a complete break from running and seek treatment. The first step of treatment is ice the injured area and maybe take a pain killer. If that doesn’t work seek medical help.

Remember to take rest days. This will allow your muscles to recover from fatigue.

Staying hydrated is also important. Make sure you are drinking enough water during training and also after your runs. Proper hydration is important for proper functioning of the body and it helps to prevent running injuries.

Talk to running experts

It wouldn’t hurt to set up a meeting with a personal trainer if you’re really committed to doing one of those 26.2 mile runs. If you dont know where to find a personal trainer, talk to fellow runners. Most runners are friendly people and are willing to give a hand.