And it can also can be done anywhere.
It is spring time, the weather is nice and the hours of daylight are longer. A lot of people find this time very motivating and suddenly I see a lot more people outside jogging and running. This is really great! However, within a few weeks I usually see a lot more people in my practice coming to see me for help due to running problems.
Pain associated with running can come from a lot of different reasons, such as tight hipflexors from too much sitting. Poor running technique putting too much pressure on the knees and ankles could also be a reason. Too much too soon, just increasing the kilometers in too short of a time, and not letting the body adapt is also a common mistake.
But, one of the main problems that I see, and I get this confirmed when talking to clients, is that there is no warm up and cool down. The reasons being as what I'm told: there just isn't time for that, I don't really need it, I warm up while I run...
“Flexibility is crucial to my fitness. Incorporating a good warm-up and cool-down into every session decreases my chances of injury.” -Samantha Stosur, pro-tennis player
Do yourselves a HUGE favor and take the time and get warmed up before running or taking part in any kind of exercise. This is just a few minutes spent prepping your body for what's about to come and getting to areas that you might not get to while running, like your hips. This is not "extra" time, this is something that should be included in your exercise time frame every time. You might have been able to get away with it in the past, but it is just a matter of time before it catches up to you, so why not stay ahead of the game and create a good work-out routine that includes a warm-up.
"By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail."
A good warm-up prepares the body for what's coming. Your nerves get stimulated which means that your reactions will be quicker, and the dynamic movements increase the blood flow getting the body ready for action. Movement and warming up in different planes than just running keeps your body more flexible and less injury prone.
Below is a very streamlined warm up from The Run Experience, but it's right on target and actually gets something done. I really like this combination and use it pretty much daily no matter what type of workout I'm doing. Do this dynamically before your workout, inside or out, and you can even slow it down a little and use as a cool down. Going one step further you should add something for your upper body as well but as we are keeping it very minimalistic, for now start with this.
After a couple of minutes of running I also like to add some lateral jumps into my routine. So if I was running forward I would turn to one side and jump sideways roughly 10 times in the same direction as I was already going in, then turn to my other side and do the same thing. This is a great way to get some more hip movement into the early part of your running routine, and increase body readiness.
A warm up should always be a part of your training. No excuses! 😉
Warm up and cool down info https://youtu.be/zMReVEkdEnI
Osteopathy, sports massage and functional nutrition in Haarlem. Taking care of zombies to olympians since 2007.