Getting back to physical activity after a while? Feeling you need to get fitter and start looking after yourself a bit more? Fatastic! But be mindful not to do it too quickly and push yourself too much. When we get back to running, working out at a gym, or any other sport, we tend to overdo things which in turn leads to…injury. Very often our body gives us clear signs to stop or do less but being willing to make good progress and feeling ok we carry on thinking that those pains and aches will disappear (which sometimes they do)
When getting back to running, a golden rule is not to make massive increaments weekly but rather increase distance by 10% every week. This is recommended by Tom Goom, Running Physio,specialising in running injuries. Read his article here for more info
So, say you did 3 miles this week, aim for 3.5-4 miles next, not 15 or 20. Otherwise your body is likely to tell you STOP, I can’t carry on…What is interesting is that often,buzzing with serotonin (effect of exercise) we really do not want to limit ourselves too much but progress rather quickly – however taking shortcuts and doing things too quickly can be painful and result in injury. Simply put – reaching peak performance or be ready for a marathon takes time!
In a study conducted by Nielsen at el (2012) those already running regularly and doing say 40-60 miles weekly were at lower risk of injury as compared to beginners. Increasing distance when you are already an experienced runner does not put you at higher risk at all!