Which Running Mistakes Do You Make
Running is one of the most healthiest and natural forms of exercise people practice, but it doesn’t mean it’s free of making running mistakes.
However, there are studies proving tremendous health benefits of running, and even though you can make running mistakes, at least you are trying to do something good for your health.
A study published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, finds that even 5-10 minutes low-intensity running per day, is quite enough to extend life by several years, compared with not running at all.
What’s more, scientists have shown that running vastly improves the quality of your emotional and mental life, and even helps you live longer.
But, do you know which are the most common mistakes runners make?
1.To Ignore Illness (or Injury)
If you are ill or you suffer from injury, running is not advisable, and if you decide to still practice it despite this fact -you won’t get a complete recovery.
Running through an illness or injury period, can often extend the time frame until you get better, and not just for a couple of days, but for weeks.
Your body is already under stress because it’s fighting infection, so adding additional stress with exercising, is only going to be counterproductive.
And if you’re injured – you risk your injury not to heal properly at all, and make it even worse.
If you ignore them and continue running, these minor aches and pains can become full blown injuries that take a long time to heal.
Therefore, you need to pay attention to any aches and pains.
If pain gets worse as you continue your running workout, it’s a clear warning sign that you should stop running.
2.Reaching High Goals Too Soon
Beginner runners tend to get too enthusiastic and excited about their new sports hobby. They think they’re not improving fast enough, and often end up running too far, too fast and too soon, placing themselves into category of making running mistakes.
When it comes to “more is better” – it isn’t always true you know?
If you have so much high expectations, you may lose your interest and give up, because you want results so soon.
Well, sorry to disappoint you, but you didn’t get out of shape in 4 weeks, and you’re not going to get back in shape in 4 weeks.
All good things take time.
Running shouldn’t be about suffering and torment. It should be challenging and enjoyable at same time.
And if you’re just starting out, start slow, and then set bigger goals.
It takes time, why the rush?
How to start
- Start slow and take more walking breaks to recover or follow a beginners run-walk plan. If you feel out of breath – you’re running too fast.
- Increase your mileage slowly and gradually, and don’t do it by more than 10% on a weekly basis
- Have at least one day as a “rest day”. These days are important so your body can recover, and to prevent injuries. This is necessary so your muscles can repair themselves and grow stronger.
3.To Have Poor Body Posture
Yes, running is easy and you’ve been doing it since you were a toddler. But that doesn’t mean you’re running properly and you don’t make running mistakes.
There’s always space for improvement.
When running, try not to slouch and lean forward.
A good running posture is when your run tall, and avoid the temptation to over-stride, as it will put extra strain on your knees.
4.To Ignore Weakness
All devoted runners love to run. However, they only practice the type of running they enjoy the most.
Every runner has its own strengths and weaknesses, and when it comes to a weakness – you shouldn’t ignore it.
Some of them love to keep their runs short, sweet and intense, while others like it slow, long and steady.
Wherever you can place yourself, you need to identify your strengths and weaknesses, and use them to maximize your running performance.
To become a complete runner you need to work on your weaknesses.
And what are your weaknesses?
Is it running up hill?
Then, you need to incorporate a strength training routine and some hill runs!
You become tired at the very end of a long run?
Maybe you need to work on your endurance and try adding in some long runs.
Got no “inner boost” at the end of a race?
Try to add in a little speed and interval work.
Workouts that focus on your weaknesses can be tough, and can exhaust you both mentally and physically, so you better keep those workouts short and infrequent.
Focus on your strengths, just don’t ignore your weaknesses entirely.
5.Not To Set Goals
First, you need to ask yourself : why do you want to run and what is your goal?
Is it to get fit or to lose weight?
Maybe you want to feel healthier?
Or maybe you want to run a marathon race?
These are all great goals, but they are too general.
You need to expand them more and give them a better definition.
Your goal should be something that will keep you motivated, and give your training FOCUS – week after week.
Set SMART goals.
This is an acronym for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Recorded and Time-bound.
Making your running objectives SMART, can make all the difference between simply wanting to achieve something and actually achieving it.
A smart running goal could be something like – “I want to improve my personal best in marathon run by 3 minutes over the course of 6 months”, or “I want to run 45 minutes continuously in a 3 months period”.
Something like this…
6.To Neglect Strength Training
In the category of running mistakes falls – neglecting strength training.
Runner’s generally ONLY want to run, but most exercise routine should be holistic one that includes cardio, strength and flexibility training together.
As you probably know, running makes your cardio-respiratory system strong, but you also have to be structurally strong.
Strength training should be a key part of your weekly workout schedule, as it allows you to strengthen your muscles, ligaments and tendons, so you can become better, stronger and more fit runner.
Try to incorporate 15-20 min twice a week for strength training if you want to achieve the label of good runner.
7.Not To Stretch
Strength and endurance are important for runners, but so is flexibility.
Running is very repetitive activity and has a relatively short range of movement. This in return, can lead to short and tight muscles causing muscle imbalance, poor running performance and notorious – muscle knots.
When you’re flexible enough, your body has a greater range of motion, your endurance and strength levels are higher, and you become less prone to injury.
You will recover faster and feel better.
Do stretching after running, or stretch later in the evening. Stretch your calves, quads and hamstrings for a total of 10 to 15 minutes.
It only takes a few minutes but can save you weeks of missed training.
If your flexibility is poor, consider to do some additional stretching sessions throughout the week.
And in case you suffer from muscle knots, try foam rolling to help release them. Be sure to always warm-up (dynamic warm-up) before, and cool down after a run.
A favorite stretch of runners is the runners lunge:
- Take a large step forward and bend your front knee
- Lower your rear knee to the ground
- Make sure your front shin is and remains vertical to the ground
- Keeping your torso upright, slide your rear leg backwards and allow your hips to sink down towards the floor
- Hold the deepest position you can comfortably hold for 30 to 60 seconds before changing legs and repeating
The runners lunge stretches your hips and can undo much of the shortening affect of running.
If you feel your hips lack mobility, or you spend long hours sitting at a desk, or in your car, you can perform this stretch a few times a day in order to keep your hips supple and healthy.
8.Not Having “Rest Days”
When you are a passionate runner, you want to constantly improve. You want to run faster, further, longer.
But, if you want to continue your progress as a runner, you need to consider having training seasons or cycles.
You need to have “the step back period“, where you need to allow your body to recover between harder periods of training.
Make sure to incorporate a periodic rest week into your training, for example one week in every 5 ones.
These mini-breaks are important so you can prevent and reduce your risk of suffering overuse injuries.
You need to take a break in order your running to improve slowly, surely and consistently.
9.Not Eating Before Run
It’s important to fuel your body with the right nutrients before going on a major run, but the timing matters as well.
A lot of runners load with carbs for a 7 a.m. race at 6 p.m. the day before.
By doing so, they give a chance for glycogen to store and give enough time to actually burn off, rather than be useful as fuel for the race.
Plan a late dinner the night before a big race, or set your alarm for 2 to 4 hours before you wake up. Force down to some complex carbs and resume sleeping to make sure the fuel is fresh in your body.
10. To Have Poor Lifestyle Habits
If you want to become a good runner but you practice unhealthy habits – sorry guys, its IMPOSSIBLE. No matter how hard you try, you can’t outrun unhealthy habits.
You definitely need to avoid:
Insufficient sleep: aim for 7-9 hours good night sleep
Nutritionally-poor diet: If you want to power your body through your running workouts, always aim to eat plenty of fresh produce, lean meat and healthy fats.
Try to avoid processed foods, excessive fat and sugar and very low calorie diets. Don’t forget that you need energy and quality nutrients if you want to endure through your running session.
Too much stress: Avoid stress if possible, or at least try to learn how to manage it
Smoking: It’s time to cut down and quit this habit. Smoking and running don’t go together.
Excess alcohol: Moderate amounts of alcohol may help improve cardiovascular health, but too much is definitely a bad idea. So cut down for the sake of your liver.
Not drinking enough water: You need to hydrate during running, so you can add up lost electrolytes through sweating. Always carry water reserves on your running sessions (coconut water is the best for this).
11. To Run With The Wrong Running Shoes
Over time running shoes lose their supportive and cushioning ability, which can lead to possible injury.
If you notice this, change your running shoes. Do it on a more regular basis and not simply because they’re looking dirty and worn.
External signs of wear and tear are not a always a good indicator that your shoes are past their time, as the materials that cushion and support your feet are on the inside and are not so visible.
By the time you can see the mid-sole material poking through the out-sole, or once the sole under the heel looks crushed, the running shoes are long past their prime.
It’s hard to tell exactly how long a pair of running shoes will last, as it depends on a number of factors including your weight, running style, and preferred running surface.
But most experts agree that you should replace your shoes every 300 – 500 miles.
If after a regular run it feels as if your running shoes aren’t providing you adequate protection, they probably aren’t!
Most runners replace their shoes too late.
So, guys, before you start running, checkout these common running mistakes people do, and try to avoid them if you want to have pleasurable running experience every time.
And check out your running shoes.
They might be worn out!
At the end, we like to share an interesting infographic regarding favorite sports among people in each country in the USA.
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