Common Running Questions
Here are the most common running questions I receive...
1. Running Questions: Does running cause knee problems because I already have sore knees?
The answer to Running Questions: Running will not cause knee injuries learning to run if you start slowly and go gradually.
There are so many factors to be considered when running and avoiding injuries!
Most knee injuries when you run are caused by doing too much too soon, the wrong shoes, running posture, running stride, leg strength, not warming up or cooling down, obesity, existing knee problems or injuries and biomechanical difficulties.
If you already have sensitive knees or have arthritic knees, it's best to check with your doctor and let him/her evaluate you first.
Also, inform your doctor of your walking or run/walk plan .
The answer to Running Questions: The feeling of having heavy legs is one of those great running questions that can have you really troubled. It can be baffling and uncomfortable and sometimes have you stopped in your tracks!
There are a number of reasons why this happens, more than likely it has to do with overdoing your workouts, hence your legs are tired.
Your body needs to learn gradually while it grasps the stages of running.
3. Running Questions: How do I stay motivated running?
The answer to Running Questions:
- Don't run every day or it gets to be too much because it's hard to stay this dedicated. Life gets in the way!
- Try not to leave more than a 3-day space of time between workouts. Running 3 or 4 days per week is great for keeping you consistent and motivated, Taking too much time off may cause you to never come back!
- schedule reminders on your smartphone or day book, this keeps you accountable.
- Set goals of running a little farther each week on your long weekend run. Don't forget every 3 weeks to reduce mileage to give you a break and keep you fresh.
- Take a week off if you're feeling exhausted all the time. Reassess your running, go back when you feel better and then start up slowly.
- Walk for a few weeks to get back into the habit of getting out there. Once you've got the walking scheduled down, start putting in some running!
- Take your dog running, dogs are great partners!
- Do your measurements for waist, thighs, arms etc and have a goal of taking off inches.
- Set your clothes out the day before so you're all set and ready to go the day you run.
- Develop a reward system like stickers, buying running clothing, your favorite snack, you get the idea!
- Run with a running group or friends and family.
- Join a website like Nike Plus or Dailymile, add friends to your profile and join challenges to help encourage and motivate!
- If you've been running for awhile, find a new and more challenging route.
- know you are doing this for you and nobody else, picture yourself in 6 months! ------> Wow you look good!!
Motivation is a huge issue when it comes to anything where you are trying to better your life. Unfortunately, we get impatient with ourselves and want to see immediate results. This is another one of those common running questions that I hope will keep you going!
4. Running Questions: Why do I always get a side ache that pinches under my rib?
The answer to Running Questions:
It's strange because there isn't really an exact answer for this, but there are some theories that have to do with eating or drinking the wrong foods, drinking too much and not warming up properly before you run. Also if you are female, learning to run or young; you will find you'll get them more. We could talk all day about this phenomena, but I think we'll leave this research to the experts.
You need to really pay attention to what you are eating and drinking. If you are drinking sugary drinks before, opt for water instead. Drink in small sips and make sure you replenish your thirst throughout a regular day.
Eat low-fat meals about an hour and a half to 2 hours before. Experiment with different foods, choosing foods like oatmeal, granola, quinoa, rice or pasta and whole grains bread.
Fruit is also an OK choice, however, be careful to stay away from citrus if you have a sensitive stomach. Citrus tends to aggravate the digestives system.
I call banana the wonder fruit because it's good for you, easy to digest and you can take it with you and eat it during your run!
Don't forget to warm up before you run, do a few side lunges on both sides, march - forward and backward 20 steps and always add the 10-minute walk to prevent the body from being surprised. This warm-up gets your body ready for run/walking and running.
What to do when the side stitch strikes when you are running? ...
Slow down and while you run/walk, stretch by raising the arm on the side it hurts to the sky and twist a bit sideways,then forward - do the same to the other side. Or try putting slight pressure on the area and take deep breaths in and longer breathes out. Most times it gradually disappears, but other times a side stitch hurts so much you have to stop! When this happens, stop or walk, swinging arms gently from one side to the other to loosen the tensed area.
5. Running Questions: How am I going to run in the cold and snow?
The answer to Running Questions: The best way to answer this is to provide you with tips on how to organize your running program and have you ready for the winter season.
- Dress in layers. Make sure that you wear light layers so when you are warm you can take a layer off. A good rule is a windbreaker, liner, and t-shirt.
- Running shoes should have more grip, because of snow and ice Try Yaktrax!
- Water, always hydrate yourself throughout the day. Even though you are not sweating, you still need to drink water to help replenish you when you run.
- Warming up - You should warm up with a 5 to 10-minute walk or light jogging (on the spot) indoors.
- Cool down by walking 10 minutes and stretching.
- Wear socks that pull the wet away from the skin to prevent your toes from getting cold and freezing.
- Wear a light hat and mittens. Preferably good whacking, because sweat can turn into your worst enemy and can start to freeze!.
- Make sure that you have good SPF Sun and Wind protection for your face and lips, even if it is cloudy the sun still has damaging rays.
- Run in the daytime as much as possible or wear reflective clothing.
- Always carry around ID or wear an ID bracelet and always carry a phone.
- Wear sunglasses, sunshine rays can be very hard on your eyes when it reflects off the snow.
- Keep an eye on the weather and arrange your schedule around better weather.
6. Running Questions: How do you push through that first several minutes to keep going? (these are the hardest for me!).
The answer to Running Questions: it can be hard when you're first starting out on your run, your body feels like you're running through molasses.
- This is normal, your body is just trying to get into the rhythm of running.
- The best way to avoid a hard transition is warming up and taking it slow and easy.
- Walk for 10 minutes before you start running,
- Do gentle arm swings and do about 10 forward and backward gentle marching steps.
- Get that heart rate going, your body deep down will be ready for what's going to happen.
- When you start out too quickly, you actually shock your body.
- The uncomfortable adjustment in the beginning of your run is your body trying to tell you to slow down and warm up and, that it's too hard to change gears and run.
If you are just starting the program or running regularly make it easier on yourself by getting that warm up in. You may still feel a little uncomfortable in the beginning, but it won't feel as difficult. If running is still hard, all you have to do is slow down and walk for a bit.
7. Running Questions: How do you keep with your running when it's so busy?
Answer Running Questions: "Record it somewhere and schedule it in."
This is the ONLY way to get your mind activated and on the ball.
Do it like it's routine, (example: brushing teeth). Always leave room for exercise!
It's a simple thing, but not always easy to make into a habit! 🙂
Record reminders in your smartphone (or Calendar or day book) ... Set the reminder early enough so you can prepare and get things ready.
Get those clothes out for running, so there are no problems with no socks cleaned, a missing running shoe or the dog eating your earphones etc.
Have a goal of running a certain amount of miles before year's end. You've got 20 days left to run whatever mileage you think you can do!
Do not listen to that negative voice, this is not your inner voice of wisdom! It's a part of you that wants you to fail. Listening to this voice never has you living in your happy space!
8. Running Questions: Should I run in the winter when the weather is cold or can I take a break?
The answer to Running Questions: It's completely up to you!
It's nice to give your body a rest.
Be aware that every time there is an obstacle in your way, (in this case it's winter weather) this is an opening for good change. You're always moving forward, if you put on your thinking cap you will always have a solution!
If you're training really hard and you feel you need a 1 to 3-month break in the winter, that's OK. You need to do other things to keep your fitness.
BUT...If you want to run year round to maintain consistency, make sure you give yourself a week break every 3 to 4 weeks with easy running or occasionally no running. Your body will love the rest!
It takes about 3 weeks to begin to feel and see some fitness losses, so try not to go past this point to maintain consistency.
So let's kick down barriers and I'll give you some ideas!
A. You can call this your offseason if you've been running for awhile and engage in some strength training or yoga. Any exercises that work on your core muscles will help your supporting muscles and make you a better runner!
B. If you're one of my new subscribers, you may want to get this shoe on the road (so-to-speak) and start your program.
Either way, you will be forced to explore some indoor options...
Here are some ideas to get you started 🙂
1. Use a treadmill at home or at the gym.
2. Run in the mall before opening time, you'll find lots of walkers and runners.
3. Run/walk the big mall parking lot parameter. They are usually plowed well, just watch for traffic and dress in appropriate layers!
4. My Favourite - Use Wii Fit programs, I love them! Yoga, strength training and balancing exercises!
5. Work on strengthening your core muscles at the gym or with a DVD.
6. Get out there and snowshoe, cross country ski and/or downhill ski.
7. Swim, run, do weights, yoga and/or Pilates!
8. Join an indoor non-competitive sport like soccer, basketball or floor hockey.
Applying a few of these fundamentals from these common running questions will have you fit for spring,summer, fall or winter!
9. Running Questions:
I'm old... Is running my age good or will I ruin my body?
The answer to Running Questions: I'm not sure of the age of this person, I'm betting between the ages of 40 to 70 years. This is a question I get often with women and men over 50 and 60 years :D!
Three keys to keep in mind when starting out:
- Get a thumbs up from your doctor! Make sure you mention an injury or problem you have already so it doesn't interfere while learning to run. Even show your doctor the Run/Walk program.
- Follow the program by starting gently, slowly and gradually.
- Listen to your body and when something doesn't feel right, stop. If it persists go see your doctor! Move back a week if it's tough.
Here are some awesome benefits!
- Running sets your body clock back and reverses signs of aging deep down to your cells!
- You'll be in better condition in your 50s, 60s, and 70s!
- Bones grow stronger and denser making them less likely to break if you fall!
- Improves muscle tone and strength, helps you with better balance, flexibility and heart health.
- Improves organ function and prevents diseases like cancer, autoimmune, heart and lung diseases.
- Running enhances brain function by increasing blood flow to the brain. Mental processes will bring a better memory, attentiveness, and alertness.
- Running is great at helping to prevent Alzheimer's disease.
- Running Increases your happiness and well-being; being close to nature and yourself!
These are all great common running questions!
If you have any more running questions please don't hesitate to sign up for the newsletter on the right or contact me in the section above!