Proactive Not Reactive
The hundreds and thousands of miles we all do take their toll on our bodies… That’s the truth – running is a brutal sport.
The constant impact, the tearing of muscles, and the adaptation function we put our bodies through is outrageous. So ask yourself this; how many times have you found yourself being complacent with the 1%ers; the parts of training like: stretching, core exercises, massage, and general body strengthening exercises? The interesting thing about the ‘maintenance stuff’ is commonly amongst runners and athletes it’s treated as a secondary component, and almost treated as an afterthought. How many times have you stretched and worked on strengthening this week? My guess; not that much!
I guarantee you’ve all heard about this all before, but let’s face it, you’re probably being lazy and not doing it much. So without talking about myself too much, I’ll give you some insight as to what’s happened to me, and how I’ve learnt from my mistake.
I was injured for about 5months last year and couldn’t run at all. Slowly, I managed to get back running in December of last year. When finally I was able to complete some regular training, I had a wonderful idea to run a marathon; my first one. I was also motivated to incorporate more strengthening and stretching into my program, focusing on this component weekly as well as my standard training. So, from February until now, I’ve smashed myself with the focus on running further and harder for longer… but I forgot my intention to also incorporate the 1%er training into my program too. Yes, I stretch here and there, but I can probably count the number of times, on my fingers and toes, that I’ve spent strengthening over the last few months. I simply got carried away and wasn’t looking at big picture training. So now, three weeks out from the Christchurch Marathon, after running 3 months of perfect training, I’m experiencing pain from my Hip Flexor.
Now, it’s not too bad, but it’s really frustrating and will limit my final training before the Marathon. But what’s more frustrating is that I know I could have avoided this injury if I simply did a few squats and a few more stretchers per week. So that’s my point, it’s really easy to get caught up feeling good in training, thinking you’re bullet proof where nothing can impact you. But, reality is different. When you’re pushing it to the max and running hard, you need to look after yourself – the extra miles and workouts you’re doing at one end, need to balance out with body maintenance at the other end. Squats, calf raises, core and full stretching is a great place to start. Do it, and do it every few days.