Bulletproof Ways to Prevent Running Injury- from Jason Fitzgerald
This is a great article about running injury free that I saw because Patrick Gallagher posted it on facebook. As with any great running article, I have to add a little bit to it! So read the article, read my comments and then add your own best ideas for preventing injury! Your legs will thank you.
I am about 95% in agreement with the author’s reccomendations.
While I agree with the weight training comments in general, I also think that many runners can do body weight exercise and accomplish the same goals. The squats and dead lifts might work for some but many of us could do lunges, body weight squats, single leg squats and some drills. I will do some weight machines and weighted squats for about 6 weeks during a low mileage phase of rest during the summer.
Respecting the recovery process and searching for variety in running surface, running shoes and running speeds is critical. He makes great points about that which deserve to be amplified! If you skip the rest of his article, read those sections.
His comments about experienced runners changing running form are WAY off. This is the 5% I disagree with 100%. The study he’s referring to was short term. If you change a runner’s form, engaging new muscles and tendons, of course it is more difficult for the runner. The new muscles are not trained nearly as much as the ones that have been trained for years so your efficiency goes down temporarily. The long term benefits for reduced injury risk and gained efficiency outweigh the short term loss of efficiency. So
old Masters runners; fix your form!
Finally two key factors that he left out and I think are too important to skip are:
- Don’t increase your weekly mileage too fast or add mileage and intensity at the same time. His part about respecting the recovery process covers this concept to some degree but runners often add miles on recovery days thinking easy miles and total volume increases are OK. Volume is important. I run 70-80 miles per week and over 80 during a marathon cycle. I believe in it! Just don’t add too much too fast.
- Keep your long run to 25%- 30% of your total weekly mileage. A long run, especially on the roads, really pounds your body. If your total volume is low, your leg strength probably isn’t ready for the last few miles of your long run. Your muscles are toast, your form falls apart and you pound the pavement even harder, leading to higher injury risk.
Those are my comments. Please add yours! We always can learn from the experiences of others.