By: Gregory Moy, PT, DPT, CSCS
Hello to all the NYC Marathoners out there! In just a few days, you will be taking on those 26.2 miles and enjoying an amazing day as you accomplish finishing the race. Hopefully, most of you have been sticking to your training program and are starting to taper your mileage as you get closer to race day.
However, the reality for many of you is that life got busy and you just need to get that last 20-mile practice run under your belt to know that you will be okay when race day comes around. One of the most important ways to prevent injury is to make sure that you are allowing your body to adapt to the amount of running that you are doing. With the race less than a week away, it is a little too late to worry about training programs. However, you can still take care of your body to prevent injury.
As Physical Therapists, we hope to enable you to perform at your highest potential, as well as keep you injury free. If you have been struggling with running pains or want an individualized evaluation to maximize your body’s performance, come check us out at SPEAR PT! If you would like extra information on injury prevention and running-related topics, check out my running Instagram: @run_dpt.
Here are 3 things runners can do to take care of their bodies and prevent injury:
Warm Up Dynamically Before You Run!
Most of us don’t like to warm up before we run. However, research has shown that a dynamic warm up is most effective in improving quadriceps strength, hamstring flexibility, and even vertical jumping ability.What is a dynamic warm up? It is series of sports specific movements that prepare the muscles for performance. Here are some ideas for what you can do on the streets of Manhattan before you run.
Stretch After You Run!
Stretching is important. It increases muscle flexibility and range of motion, signals your body to relax, and just feels really good. When you don’t stretch, your muscles can tighten up, stress your joints and change the way you move. Now you shouldn’t stretch right before you run, but you should stretch daily! Most of us know some easy hamstring and quadriceps stretches to do, but here are a couple of other stretches that can be helpful in keeping you loose.
It is always important to vary the type of exercise you do. Any single type of exercise will overuse some muscles, and underuse others. To ensure that those differences don’t lead to injury, it is a good idea to supplement your main type of exercise. That could mean anything from playing basketball, doing pilates or yoga, or weightlifting. Here are a couple exercises that you can do to help supplement your running.