Most hobby runners or those who just simply want to lose weight or do running/ jogging as routine exercise often land up with various types of injuries which demotivate them to continue to reach their goal. In fact, runners having higher running goals like a half marathon also at times do certain mistakes which leads to disruption in their training schedules. Running is more technical than you think. Hence, today we will bring out some avoidable mistakes which most runners do.
We all know that we must warm-up before running. However, the confusion with few is that if we move and stretch our muscles, that warms them up and we are ready to start running after a static five-minute of stretching. However, this leads to slower starts, more effort towards running, and lower performance. It is thus important to do some dynamic warmup and truly warm up your muscles. When we talk about dynamic warmup we mean to move our muscles in a wider range of motion that stimulates our running profile. These movements not only prepares our skeletomuscular system but also our cardiovascular system. Such a 5 to 10-minute warmup truly prepares us for our training.
Eating too much or too heavy
There are many who want to do running on an empty stomach. Various researches have shown different results for people with different aims. However, to get the best out of your training one needs to plan what to eat, how much to eat and when to eat. Remember that the moment we start running, the body diverts blood flow to muscles performing the act. Digestion is low in priority at that time. So if you eat something heavy or something which is slow to digest, the stuff is going to sit in your stomach and hence cause problems. There are various morning runners who like to run on an empty stomach in order to avoid stomach discomfort. Although we do not advise running empty stomach unless you are training for less than 60 minutes. Over a period of time, you can find a suitable food which you can consume about one hour before training and provide essential micronutrients to the body before, during, and after training. Eating light food 1 to 2 hours before a run is okay. Remember to consume a high protein and carbohydrate diet after your run as absorption is at its best at that time.
Dehydration is very common among people running in warmer areas or during the warmer times of the day. However, one must also not over-hydrate. The best way to keep hydrated is to sip water in smaller quantities all day long. Drinks containing too much sugar must be avoided. Water requirement depends on weight, activity level, area, ambient temperature, gender, and body profile. Too little water will make you hit the wall too soon. Too much water especially in one go will cause GI issues during the run.
Read body signals
Every runner has good days and bad days. The body however gives you a signal if having a bad day. Never overdo things and never ever force yourself to run through discomfort and pain. If you find a sudden change in your breathing, heart rate, or tiredness, stop immediately. Try and establish a reason for this. If required slow down and re-access yourself. Still if you face any issues, do not hesitate to reach out to a doctor.
There are many hobby runners who have been running at the same level for many years. They do not realize that they have kept the level same but the body’s biological age has changed. It is important to monitor progress at every stage. As we grow older, we have to make certain changes in our training to remain fit. If you monitor your basic parameters such as beats per minute, blood pressure, VO2Max, etc. you can always make adjustments to your training profile.
Not having enough proteins
Endurance runners or those who run over 60 minutes think that they don’t need proteins as they are not doing weight training. However, they forget that body needs fuel to run. Once the body finishes its carbohydrate source, it will turn to fats and proteins. Burning proteins is never a good idea. Consuming enough proteins helps faster recovery and retain muscle mass.
Take home message
No matter what kind of runner you are, it is important to stay injury-free and get the best out of your workout. If one is able to avoid above mentioned mistakes, training can continue without injury breaks. Also, maximum benefits and results are achieved if these basic things are followed.