Starting to run.

You want to start running, super intention! But what are the do's and dont's for beginning runners? When you type ''start running'' into the internet, you are bombarded with different opinions and it is sometimes difficult to see the wood for the trees. In this blog, Team Fysio Fitaal explains to you what is actually important when starting to run. Whether you are running alongside your rehabilitation or as a recreational athlete, we would like to share some great running tips that will give you a flying start. 

Starting running, how do you build up with workouts?  

Our bodies always need some time to adapt to changing conditions. This is why it is important that you don't overdo it when it comes to running. After all, we don't want you to run into overuse issues after a while. Therefore, make sure you take a good dose and allow enough recovery time between workouts. For many novice runners it is difficult to find the right balance between training and recovery, which makes overtraining lurking. It is therefore advisable to work systematically through a training schedule. That way you always have a clear thread in your build-up and, depending on how things go, you can make adjustments. We advise you, as a beginning runner, to start following a training schedule for a 5km run. This schedule may not be very conditionally challenging (especially in the beginning), but the tissues in our body need this dosed build-up to adapt to the load placed on them. 

 Recovery from groin pain
Running shoes.

Planning to get your old running shoes out of the closet to start running again? Leave them there for now. After all, you shouldn't want to use these for sport anymore. Even though you may not have used the shoes very often, they are no longer suitable for running. This is because shoes lose cushioning over time, whether you use them or not. This is because the rubber underneath the shoe dries out. So are your shoes already a few years old? Then we advise you to purchase a pair of new ones anyway. That way you can start working fresh on your new goal and the quality of the material will certainly not become the limiting factor. Regardless of how long ago the shoe was produced, manufacturers also recommend renewing your footwear every 800-1000 kilometers. 

Running clothing.

In addition to good running shoes, appropriate running clothing is also important for a good and responsible workout. running shoes, well-fitting running clothing is essential for a good workout. Of course, this starts with clothes that you feel comfortable in. Some people hoist themselves in real running clothes, others may feel comfortable in the clothes that were still in the closet. This is totally fine with us. Just keep in mind that weather conditions in the Netherlands are quite variable seasonally. Therefore, make sure you can be adequately dressed in all weather conditions. If you would like to score a new running outfit, this is possible in all segments. You can choose from well-known brands such as Nike and adidas, but also stores such as Decathlon or even H&M have excellent running clothes. For female readers, it is also advisable to purchase a good sports bra. For example, during running, there is a lot of pressure on the body due to continuous pushing off and landing. For women with larger cup sizes, a bad sports bra lead can be perceived as uncomfortable. Therefore, make sure you get a well-fitting sports bra that provides adequate support.

The pitfall of wanting to start too soon  

Many beginning runners are very fanatical. Enthusiastic to start again and keen on putting down good results. Sure, we are happy if you are enthusiastic about sports, but it is not a very realistic picture of a good start. Sure it has advantages if your basic fitness is already somewhat in order, but running a top pace is not where you should want your focus to be at the beginning. Other common pitfalls are not dosing your training properly. This can mean overdoing the intensity, frequency or duration of training or not allowing enough rest time between workouts. A pitfall that increases your risk of injury, and of course we don't want that. Examples of running injuries that occur regularly are Jumpers knee and Achilles tendinopathy. (examples with link to blog).


Pain as messenger.

Pain is an indicator by which our body tells us that something is detected in the body that is not as it should be. It is actually an alarm signal with the purpose of protecting you from possible injury. Now it may not be the case that you will be directly injured in this case, but of course our body does not know how to make that distinction. However, it is important to distinguish between different forms of pain. You may experience pain as stabbing or nagging, but of course we also call muscle pain pain. So if you experience pain during or after running, it is advisable to find out which form of pain you think you experience. It is also good to think back to explain what may have caused the pain. Do you find it difficult to explain your pain or does its intensity increase over time? Then it is advisable to approach a physical therapist to discuss what you can best do. Often the solution is not to stop running completely, but possibly to adjust the intensity and/or frequency. Above all, don't wait too long; it's a shame if an injury gets in the way of your goal! 

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Fuel in the engine

Our body functions on fuel, just like your car. Everything revolves around energy. During all physical processes we consume energy, so for every energy that goes out, something has to go back in. When you exercise intensively you demand more of your body, so the engine has to work harder. Nutrients are needed to provide activity, but also to recover from it. So if you make sure you have enough fuel in the tank, you will be able to perform better during sporting efforts. Obviously, we don't want to put you on a special diet. However, we do want to give you the tip to evaluate how your diet is currently designed and whether it is appropriate to what you ask of the body. Possibly with a few small adjustments you can already make steps towards a better balanced diet. In addition to nutrition, sleep is also important for recovery. Sufficient sleep is essential to recover both physically and mentally from everything we do during the day (including sports). In addition, it is known that people who sleep too little for long periods of time have increased cortisol (=stress hormone), which in turn has a negative effect on tissue recovery. The more cortisol, the more unfavorable for tissue repair and thus negatively affects your athletic performance.

A study by H. Koschwanez (2015) showed that in people who experience high levels of stress, there is a lower amount of white blood cells present in the body, which play an important role in recovery. 

In summary; Ensure adequate nutrition and a balanced pattern, reduce stress to the extent necessary and possible, and ensure a good sleep pattern (preferably 7-8 hours per night).

Running with a heart rate monitor. 

As a beginning runner, it is advisable to run with a heart rate monitor. To know whether you are training with a high or low heart rate, you first need to know, what your maximum heart rate is. Therefore, do not always try to train in a high heart rate zone, but also try to train in lower zones (heart rate zones)

running. In fact, you will get faster from gentle workouts, which will eventually push your anaerobic threshold (lactate threshold).

Body posture.

Running technique and body position affect the efficiency of your running. Many beginning runners tend to look short in front of them, causing the upper body to lean forward a bit. In other words, they run somewhat hunched over, so to speak. We know from sports and posture analysis that runners who run more upright perform better. So as a result, we say that an extended pattern is also more effective and energy efficient. This way you make sure that you are using all the energy you generate in the best possible way and not letting it disappear into the ground. We will discuss this in much more detail in a later blog.

physio fitaal physiotherapy
The true nature of a warm-up and a cool-down.

Many people prefer to skip a proper warm-up and cool-down. This is because people often want to 'just quickly' run a lap and the warming-up/cooling-down only takes extra time. It is not so much that you actually become 'warmer' during a warm-up, but it is physiologically beneficial to warm up your muscles and tendons. This is because the purpose of a warm-up is to prepare the tissues for the load that will be placed on them during your workout. For example, gentle walking or jogging can be enough for a good start. Also choose some different dynamic exercises. Dynamic running training can ensure that your body is once again "warmed up" and already gently "booted up. Also on this subject, we will return in detail later. 

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