When choosing a pair of shoes that we hope will enable us to run a certain distance, most runners will begin to ask themselves some other questions. These questions may be related to injury prevention, improving performance, specific running techniques, as well as the best way to care for your body both pre- and post-run. Let’s have a look at the most common questions asked by runners.
Those new to running usually start off with high levels of enthusiasm. This may drop as soon as they start to run and feel aches in their knees or ankles. This leads them to eventually hanging up those brand new running shoes.
If you are worried about knee damage, doctors advise that you take shorter steps over short distances. Moreover, be careful not to increase your mileage or speed too quickly.
Each running injury will vary greatly from person to person. Moreover, the injured area will also have an effect on the length of time required to make a full recovery. Additionally, some runners will rush back from an injury too quickly. This can result in more severe injuries occurring that do not easily go away, however long someone may rest. For this reason, if you do suffer an injury, it is best to rest until the symptoms of the injury are completely healed. You may even want to consult a doctor before returning to your run training.
Even when not injured, runners should always have a period of recovery. This gives the body time to repair any damaged cells and increase muscle strength.
If someone suffers from health problems or congenital conditions, they should consult their doctor in order to help keep the disorder at a safe level and to be certain that they will not be at any danger from running. When running a certain distance or wishing to increase distance or speed, runners should pay close attention to how their body responds, including whether or not any irregularities arise. Furthermore, carry essential medication along on all runs in case of emergency.
The simplest way to assess your fatigue is to try and hold a conversation while running. When running at a comfortable pace, you should be able to speak and run at the same time. This is a form of strength and development assessment which can be fun to undertake while running. Be sure to take notice of your improved breathing a short while after you’ve begun practicing talk tests. If you are able to hold a conversation, speak in full sentences while you run at a steady pace, it shows that your fitness is improving.
The brand of shoes might affect how the runners run, differently. However, it doesn’t mean that the more expensive the shoes, the better. To choose the right pair of running shoes, runners should select according to their individual requirements, taking into account their running style and foot shape. Additionally, it is extremely important to find the correct size. The right pair of shoes of the perfect fit will reduce impact and prevent injuries.
Many runners will probably feel that their legs are quite strong and defined in a muscular sense. Then, why do many people suggest weight training in addition to running? While running does indeed strengthen the leg muscles, runners who do not undertake regular weight training will tend to feel fatigue in their buttock and hip muscles. This is a sign that the core and lower core muscles are not strong enough, which also increases injury risk. Therefore, when building strength in your leg muscles, you should also be building strength in your core and lower core muscles.
If your aim is to lose weight, you should not be running too quickly. In other words the intensity of your runs should remain at 60-70% of your maximum heart rate. You can work out your maximum heart rate by subtracting your age from 220, or by using devices designed to provide you with heart rate information. Alternatively, you could train according to your levels of fatigue. This means analyzing how much of a conversation you can hold while running. To burn fat effectively, you should be running for 30 minutes or more, 3-5 times per week. However, these groups of runners should also be thinking about their diet and weight training to strengthen muscles effectively in a way that also burns fat at a fast rate.
Running will firm up the muscles in your legs. As your muscles become stronger, this may make you feel like your legs are also getting bigger. That being said, women who are worried about this issue, should understand that whichever way you decide to exercise your muscles, making those muscles bigger is not that simple at all. Firmer muscles are not necessarily bigger muscles!
Drinking too much water immediately before an exercise session may lead to a stitch. This is due to the liquid not having enough time to reach the lower digestive system. However, avoiding water also carries its own risks. Hence, runners should be taking on liquids 30 minutes prior to exercise, in amounts of about 2-4 deciliters per time. Additionally, water should be sipped regularly throughout a longer run, or during exercise that takes place outside in the heat. This is because profuse perspiration may increase the risk of dehydration, which is a particularly dangerous condition.
M.D., Faculty of Medicine, Siriraj Hospital, Mahidol University, 2007.