How to build an injury-resistant body and prevent running injuries
Weather you are a seasoned runner or embarking upon running as a new years resolution, injury proofing your body with strength training and adherence to training protocols can keep your goals in sight.
One of the major reasons that runners get injured is because their bodies are unprepared to handle the physical demands of the activity. Tissue overload then occurs, either because of a sudden introduction to the sport, or a relatively sudden change or increase in training mileage or intensity (like hill repeats).
When it comes to building an injury-resistant body, this analogy is useful, “Don’t let your engine outpace your chassis”, meaning don’t let your aerobic fitness (endurance built up by running) outpace your structural fitness (bones, tendons, ligaments and muscles).
If you do, you’re setting yourself up for injury.
In fact, runners need weight training even more than you may realise. Strength work accomplishes three big goals for runners:
1. Prevent injuries by strengthening muscles and connective tissues, to better handle the loads while running.
2. Run faster by improving neuromuscular (nerve-muscle) coordination and power.
3. Improve running economy by encouraging coordination and stride efficiency. Improving your upper-body strength can also boost your running efficiency. With a stronger core, you’ll be able to maintain a stable upper body, minimising side-to-side movement – and better hold your form at the end of a run when you begin
to tire. And by developing strength in your arms, you’ll improve your arm drive so you can inject more power into your stride, especially uphill.
That’s why we’ve put together two downloadable PDF resources to help you introduce some strength training for your running programme, along with other strategies to reduce injuries.
As usual, if you have any concerns or questions on this topic, please feel free to get in contact with us either directly or through our website.
We’re here to help.
And please feel free to share the link to this blog post with anyone you think can benefit from these resources.
Enjoy an active 2022!