is an excellent way to stay fit, relieve stress, and spend time outdoors. Whether you are a beginner or a seasoned strider, these guidelines will help keep you safe and healthy for many miles to come.
The majority of
over training, overuse, and improper stretching, and therefore can be prevented. Follow these tips:
Alternate hard days and easy days, and plan 1-2 days per week for rest or cross training.
Don't add miles too fast. Increase your total weekly mileage by 10% per week, and every third week drop back a small amount.
Ease into speed workouts by throwing a few short distance surges or uphill sprints into your normal runs. Once this becomes routine, progress to track workouts, again, starting slowly.
Replace your running shoes every 350-550 miles. After this much wear, the shock absorbing capacity is likely gone.
properly, which means regularly, carefully, and thoroughly.
Regardless of the temperature where you're running, you need to replace fluids to avoid
Drink early and drink often—a few ounces every 15-20 minutes; by the time you feel thirsty, you're already on the way to dehydration.
For workouts lasting 60-90 minutes or less, plain water is all you need. For longer workouts, add a sports drink, which provides fluid as well as some carbohydrates and electrolytes.
Get in the habit of drinking at least eight 8-ounce glasses of fluids (not counting carbonated or caffeinated) each day.
Don't Be Anonymous
Unless you do all of your running on a
treadmill, prepare yourself for various obstacles out on the streets:
Dress in layers. The innermost should be a "wicking" fabric, such as polypropylene, and the outer layer should be of wind-resistant and "breathable" material, such as Gore-Tex.
Avoid overdressing. It is better to feel a bit underdressed and chilly as you start out. As you run, your body temperature will rise about 20°F.
Wear a hat and gloves. You can take them off as you heat up and pull them back on when needed. More than 25% of body heat can be lost through a bare head. The best material for your hat is wool or synthetic material.
Wear absorbent socks, such as polypropylene or acrylic.
Warm up well before going out.
When running on wet or icy surfaces, shorten your stride and run slower than usual. If you have the choice of running on snow or ice, choose snow because it offers better traction.
On windy days, run out against the wind and return with the wind at your back. This will lessen the chilling effect of the wind on your body after you have perspired, and make the return trip easier.
In hot weather:
Try to miss the hottest times of the day by running early in the morning or late in the evening.
Wear sunscreen with SPF 15 or higher, or a hat to protect your face.
Wear light-weight shorts and a singlet rather than a t-shirt, to permit evaporation of perspiration.
Stay hydrated before, during, and after your runs.
Stay Safe When Traveling, Too
The beauty of running is that you can do it anywhere. When you're traveling, follow these guidelines:
Ask the hotel staff or concierge for safe routes to run.
Check out your course on a map before you start and bring the map along with you.
Remember the street address of the hotel. Carry a card with your hotel address along with your personal ID.
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care
provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a
substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER
IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the
advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to
starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a