Put one house on the market. Started building another. Sold our starter home. Moved into my sister’s house. Still waiting for the house to be completed, but only a few more weeks.
You can imagine what all this change has done to my running routine!
So, if you’re like me and you’ve had a few curve balls slung your way, here are five running tips to help get you back on track:
1. Start Slow. And yes, that means your pace AND the amount you run. Nothing spells “overuse injury” better than too much, too fast and too soon. Take it easy on yourself and stick with the walk-run method to ease your muscles and joints back into running and prevent injuring yourself. After all, you don’t want yet another obstacle getting in the way of your running! And, if it’s really been a while since you’ve run, check your running shoes for too much wear and tear. Here are some basic guidelines from Runner’s World magazine to help determine if it’s time to retire your running shoes.
2. Listen to Your Body. That means if the side of your knee aches; your shins feel as if they’re going to split in two or your arches feel like they’re on fire, you need to cool it. Give your body more time to recover and focus on cross-training exercises that are a little more gentle (cycling, swimming, yoga, etc.). Sometimes two or three days between your runs are necessary when you’re first getting back into it. If you’re experiencing soreness or tightness in your legs, grab The Stick or a foam roller and work your muscles out. Also grab a natural, topical pain relief cream with menthol, glucosamine, chondrotin and MSM. My favorite is Ageless Pain Relief Cream and I love the Joint Support tablets, too.
3. Hit the Weights. You don’t have to be Arnold about it, but your muscles need to be strengthened in all the right places to ensure your knees or other joints aren’t taking the brunt of the run. Strengthen the outside of your hips by laying on your side on the ground; prop yourself up a bit on your elbow and get some leg lifts going if you don’t have access to a gym. It’s amazing how tight your hip can get and how much it truly needs you. Work your abs with basic crunches and then flip over into a plank to challenge your core.
4. Refuel with Protein. When you deplete your muscles, you need to refuel them, especially if you hope to reduce your recovery time so you can go on another run the next day. Science points to undenatured whey protein as the ideal protein to reach for as it has the key branch chain amino acids your muscles crave. I tend to run in the mornings or work out at lunch, so I tend to follow my running or weight lifting with an IsaLean Pro Shake,which has 36 grams of undenatured whey protein and tastes amazing.
5. Get Sleep. Seems so simple and might seem silly, but sleep is your biggest ally when you’re starting a new routine. Rest helps rebuild your broken down muscles and fight off the pesky stress effects of exercise at even the cellular level. Additionally, if you’re hoping to lose a few pounds, research shows that it’s only going to happen if you get an adequate amount of zzz’s, so make sure you hit the hay for at least eight solid hours. (Yes, it’s possible!)
So, are you pumped to hit the pavement? You can do it! WE will do it!
Give Change your best smile, dust yourself off and start anew today. There’s no time like to present to lace up the sneaks and get your runner’s high on.
What else do you think is important to do when you’re getting back into running? Write up an appropriate comment to share!