1. Invest in a good pair of running shoes
Investing in a really great pair of running shoes is a definite must especially as a runner, equipment isn't necessarily needed, so consider your shoes your only equipment! Keeping your feet happy while keeping up with your runs is integral for long term success in your running journey as it will provide proper arch support, cushioning for your feet and a comfortable fit especially while you run. There are a variety of different types of running shoes, so it is important you get the right type for your body. Our friends art the Running Room (located on Fairview St.) store will be able to help identify which shoes are right for your body.
2. Rest Days are probably the most important 'training days'
The purpose of rest days are to allow the muscles to properly recover. Without proper rest, muscles over time will be over trained and strained, therefore leading to potential injuries and eventual burnout. Working through a tough workout (or run in this case) will cause microscopic tears in your muscles, leading to inflammation, which with time will help you to recover. If the inflammation is drawn out for too long, this can cause injury or potentially cause you to be sick (as the immune system is in overdrive). How do you know if you need a rest day? If you're feeling tired or sore, not feeling yourself (whether your sick or just not feeling great) or if you feel like you simply just hit a plateau, then a rest day is required.
Stretching is an excellent way to keep your muscles flexible and to maintain (or increase!) your range of motion during and after exercise. Stretching before and after is suggested and it can be incorporated in your warm-up and cool down routine if you're looking to save time. It can also aid in removing the build up of lactic acid after a workout (which normal leads to muscle soreness and stiffness). Check out our 'Rolling Into Mobility' blog and YouTube Video for a detailed look on how to roll out your muscles especially after those runs!
4. Make sure you give your body a proper warm up and cool down
Warming up properly prepares your body for movement and increases your blood flow. A proper cool down is essential for a good recovery. Once you're completed your run, please ensure you still keep moving, slowly dropping your heart rate and regulating your blood flow. This will help reduce chances of developing blood clots. Warm up and a cool down don't have to be extensive. It can be as simple as walking to and from the gym!
5. Cross train is just as important - Such as Pilates 😉
Not only does cross training help increase your run time and improve your endurance, it can also prevent injuries. By strengthening and moving your body in different ways other than always running, any muscle imbalances will improve (which can be quite common!) The more we allow these imbalances to progress, the higher risk of injury we are exposed to. An exercise regime (such as Pilates) will help identify the body's strengths and opportunities to develop and balance. You can check out our blog 'The (Run)derful Benefits of Pilates' for more information on how PIiates can help you.
If you're looking for more information, please feel free contact us or you can visit your local Running Room who can help you with a variety of running related advice.