Posts Tagged ‘injury’

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Get “Up”!

June 23, 2012

Anyone can be a runner. Lace up some sneakers (or not) and put some bounce in your step. It is that easy, right? We agonize over everything from footwear to underwear to nipple-wear. Hydration, nutrition, and compression are meticulously prepared. The problem is that we rarely stop to think about how we are running. It is easy to focus on tangible things- objects that can be acquired and then strapped on, taped up, or rubbed over various body parts. When injuries still occur, it is easy to blame a faulty or worn out product. Not to worry, we all do it. I do it plenty.

This is not to suggest that those things are not important. They are all crucial in their own ways. What we need to realize is that once we start calling ourselves runners and logging increased mileage, we also have to pay attention to the mechanics of that motion. Even a novice runner should be able to notice differences in posture between the start of a run and its end. Form can change throughout a run, and throughout a lifetime. Runners should try to focus more on their movements than on what their GPS watch is displaying. Paying attention to form has the potential to reduce injury, maximize efficiency, and increase speed.

Doing the 100 Up exercise on grass after a speed workout (should have ditched the sneakers, I know)

The importance of form in running is why I recently started doing the 100-Up exercise. There was a challenge that began in mid-April 2012, hosted by a Richmond store that specializes in minimalist sneakers and natural running. Folks from all over joined the aptly-named Natural Running Store to find out whether performing one drill for 30 days could change the way they ran. For me, this repetitive motion exercise would focus on better posture and leg motion. It would also help teach my legs a better technique for how to land on my feet. With plenty of recent knee and Achilles pains, I had my share of skepticism. But having read the New York times article by Born to Run author Christopher McDougall that supported the exercise, I was optimistic about the potential to help my form.
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Time to Change the Tires

December 26, 2011

(Caveat: I do not work for a sneaker company, nor do I receive any benefit, save the occasional Tweet, from them.)

Hello, my name is Runner and I am a heel striker. Although there is no official diagnosis anywhere in my medical history, I have engaged in this type of activity ever since I can remember.

According to a Harvard study, which I am inclined to believe, this is not a healthy habit. My feet hit the ground hard, but the ground hits back even harder. This makes it all the more obvious to my legs when the support cushioning in my running sneakers begins to give way. Conventional wisdom says to change your running shoes after 300-400 miles. This is variable, of course, depending on body type, running form, running surface, and the shoes themselves. Regardless, the importance of knowing when it is time to switch out the old ones for a shiny new set of sneaks may mean the difference between solid performance and disastrous injury.

Part of my Adrenaline collection, old and new

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