Updated: May 25, 2020
Have you started walking or running since isolation hit our nation? Are you unsure about how to get started or if you are progressing right?
Getting out for a walk or run is a great way to improve or maintain our cardiovascular fitness and improve our overall health and wellbeing.
Saltfleet Clinic’s Podiatrist and Physiotherapist have developed some helpful tips to do this as safely and effectively as possible to reduce your risk of sustaining an injury.
- When beginning, avoid undulating surfaces and hills e.g. beach, gravel.
- Pick a stable, flat path preferably concrete or paved.
- Start out running at a low to moderate pace
- When considering how far to start walking or running, consider how much walking you have/had been doing within your daily living activities normally. For example, if you used to have an active hospitality job where you were on your feet all the time, you might be able to start with walking a few km’s. In contrast, someone who had a sedentary desk job might have to start out with walking a few hundred metres.
- If you are running, make sure you break up your run with bouts of walking.
- Run in intervals which are comfortable for you and allow yourself a chance to walk a little to recover.
- Rest is crucial.
- Give yourself a rest day in between runs in order for your body to adapt to the new demand on your muscles, joints and cardiovascular system.
- Do not do more than 2-3 runs a week when starting out.
- Complete 5 minutes of dynamic stretching before every run to prepare your body for the workout. This includes high knee walks or runs, butt kicks, leg swings and lunge walks.
- Gentle stretching and foam-rolling afterwards is also beneficial to facilitate recovery.
Following these tips will help your body adapt physiologically to the demands of an increase in running or walking and prevent injury.
Some common running injuries that we see in Saltfleet Clinic include:
- Achilles tendinopathy
- Patellofemoral joint pain syndrome
- Stress fractures
- Medial tibial stress syndrome
- Iliotibial band syndrome
If you've begun running for the first time, or are experiencing pain or discomfort as a result of running (whether you're new or experienced), come visit us at Saltfleet Clinic for advice!
LB & LS