I want to start this post by congratulating all the runners out there who completed the Chicago marathon today. Hats off to you for your strength and determination. It was a great day for runners everywhere to see this race completed safely by all its participants.
As anyone who has trained for a marathon knows, running that many miles can easily take a toll on your body, leaving you with injuries like shin splints and stress fractures. When I see marathoners and triathletes in my Houston podiatrist office, so many of them have sustained foot and ankle injuries because of one basic mistake: overdoing it during training.
Regardless of whether you’re a seasoned athlete or a newbie runner, you need to approach marathon or triathlon training with caution. Don’t make every run a long run; don’t run every day. Rest is crucial for all runners, especially those of you who are logging long distances.
In addition to building in rest days and mixing short runs with longer ones, it’s important to include weight-bearing exercises and other cardiovascular activities in your training in order to prevent running injuries. People get hurt when they do the same exercise over and over again because they repeatedly put pressure on the same muscles and bones without allowing any time for healing. Including strength training in your workout regimen helps build up the muscles that support your runs; varying your cardio more evenly distributes the stress impact of exercise, giving muscles extra rest time between runs.
I am married to a triathlete so I understand the need runners feel to get out there and get their miles in, but I also know how important it is to follow my suggestions in order to stay healthy enough to compete in a race. For more race training tips or for help with running injuries, follow me on this blog or come see me at Tanglewood Foot Specialists.