All You Need To Know About Running
All You Need To Know About Running
“Running is the greatest metaphor for life because you get out of it what you put into it"
Craze for running has picked up in the recent years across the world as a favorite sport by fitness enthusiasts.
Studies have shown that in India the participation in marathon between 2008 and 2018 has increased by 229%, which is the highest in the world.
Health benefits of running are countless, let’s name a few:
- Running is a good cardio exercise which is a straight forward way to get most benefits of workouts.
- Since it improves aerobic fitness, running is a great way to improve Cardio vascular health and condition the heart and improves the lungs functioning.
- Running regularly helps to release endorphins which helps to fight depression and keep stress at bay.
- Running, being a weight bearing work out it helps to strengthen the bones and muscles.
- Lifestyle diseases like diabetes and blood pressure are well controlled with running.
Although we all know that running is an excellent form of work out but there are different forms of running:
In a base run, you run to your natural pace to build up aerobic capacity. As these types of runs are not very challenging, they are done more often.
It’s a bit more challenging than base run, where you run at your natural pace but keep progressing it naturally, finishing in a faster time (Negative splits in runners language).
Fartlek in Swedish means Speed Play, it’s a type of running routine similar to speed interval but with a fun factor. In this you run at a fast pace to a dedicated point & then slow down to recover & then speed again to next point & repeat it till you burn out. This can varied & structured in many different ways.
This type of training is most popular & beneficial by most type of runners including professional athletes & recreational runners. It is a mixture of low-moderate & high intensity runs, where you have a short bursts of fast runs followed by a slow jog. This again can be varied into different distances depending about the type of training you are going through.
These are short distance fast runs. These actually help you build up muscle strength & power to help you run faster in all form of distances.
These type of runs are very good to build up endurance. In this you run up & down on inclines of shorter distances. Runners regularly practicing this feel less fatigued in their long distance runs.
Practice of these type of runs is most beneficial for marathoners. These are runs at a pace bit difficult than your comfort pace that you can maintain for your marathons. The motive is to increase your threshold so that your muscles don’t fatigue as fast so you can keep running for longer.
Finally as we know nothing positive comes without a shadow of negative, so even runners do suffer some injuries, but most of them are due to negligence, improper training & wrong choice of footwear.
We will now list 4 most common injures that runners suffer & how they can be prevented:
(Disclaimer: these prevention are just a suggestion by the coach, any treatment should be as per advice from a Doctor)
- RUNNERS KNEE :
This is most commonly referred to as Pattelofemoral pain syndrome; in this you get a dull, achy pain under your kneecap while running. The basic cure for this is using a knee brace, taping your knee, cutting down your mileage and / or taking anti-inflammatory medicines.
- PULLED MUSCLES:
This is another common running injury. It’s a small micro-tear in muscles such as hamstring, quads, calf or groin which are usually caused due to overstretching of the muscle while running. This can be treated by icing the affected area & by using compression.
- ACHILLES TENDINITIS:
Achilles tendon is the tissue that connects your heel to the lower leg muscle. It is inflammation caused when the tendons come under a lot of stress while running, causing pain & stiffness. This can be treated by using ice & doing regular calf stretches.
- SHIN SPLINTS:
Most of the runners at one time or another have experienced an aching, stabbing sensation in the front or inside of the lower leg along the shin bone (tibia). This often happens when you change the pattern of your workouts like increasing number of running days or increasing pace &mileage too quickly. As a basic treatment for this, it is suggested to use a right pair of shoes which properly support the arch & other areas of foot. Also excess hill running should be avoided.
HOW CAN A GOOD SHOE MAKE A DIFFERENCE?
Of course investing in a good pair of shoes that are apt for your running style & foot form is very important to avoid running injuries in long run.
My personal choice from past three years has been BROOKS, not only because the comfort they give me while running, but at most of retail outlets across India , they do a running analysis called RUN SIGNATURE, which helps you choose the right shoe from the range . This has helped keep most of the running injuries discussed above at bay. Particularly the knee & ankle aches have gone just by choosing the correct shoe.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Vivek Soni is a mechanical engineer by profession & runs a business in Industrial Hardware. He has been a runner since 2011. He is an ACSM (American College of Sports Management) certified Marathon Coach & is currently Running Coach with Joints N Motion (JNM). He has run more than 6 full marathons, 5 ultras of 12 hours & many half marathons & 10 K runs. He has also done a certified course in Marathon Route Measuring. He has been a Pacer at many esteemed Half Marathons & Joint Race Director for more than 10 half marathons & one 100 mile ultra. His Message to Runners:
“Run Right, Run Safe, Run Injury Free & RUN HAPPY“