Autumn is pretty ideal for running, so most runners plan their goal race in the fall. Runners should be close to their peak fitness after training all summer, but fall is when we typically see more injuries.
As the summer ends and we get back to busier schedules, it is harder to fit in all those miles, let alone the extras to recover and prevent injuries. There are three critical activities runners should perform: dynamic warm ups, foam rolling, and core strengthening.
Lack of mobility is a common cause of running injuries. A dynamic warm up engages large muscle groups through a range of motion, preparing them for running. Examples include walking lunges, skips, high knees, and butt kickers.
Foam rolling is a great way to “unlock” tension areas, promote blood flow to muscles, and elongate tissues. Runners can roll before or after running or any time of day. Runners may find it easier to stick to a 5-10 minute routine if they think of it as “pre-hab”—a way to prepare your body for the next workout. Try targeting quads, hamstrings, IT bands, and calves. Consult your physical therapist or visit our website Here for additional foam roller information.
Finally, making time for core strengthening is essential. A stable core provides the base for our arms and legs, helps us maintain an upright posture, enhances stability for our hips and pelvis, and provides our source of power uphill.
If you have any questions, have pain preventing you from enjoying your running, or are interested in more personal and specific programs, you can find your local Therapeutic Associates Physical Therapist Here.