It’s the New Year and the most common resolution of all is in full swing, “I will get in shape/lose weight!”. So as a result a lot of people go out for their first road run in months, sometimes years, or their first long cycle session, or perhaps their first gym session.
This is all fantastic, however, some people have some problems, which stops their good intentions resolution in its tracks – sudden acute pain! Many who go out running can have sudden onset of knee pain, hip pain, shin pain. It’s not all that common for people to tear muscles and sprain ankles as well, after all it is winter – it is cold, wet and slippery!
So to those of you who are now struggling with pain or for those who MAY experience it in the coming weeks at the gym or out and about, here are some potential reasons why you are hurting, but more importantly how you can help get yourself pain free and back out there on track to achieve their resolution!
What could it be?
Here is a short list of some of the conditions you may be affected by and why it happens and ultimately what you can do to help relieve the pain.
DOMS (Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness)
- As it says, this is a delayed reaction from the muscles that you usually feel 24-72 hours after exercise and it can last up to 7 days! * Signs and Symptoms include:
- General aching/tenderness over the muscle with no pinpoint pain
- Sore to touch/palpate
- More ‘achy’ than painful.
It is commonly caused by ECCENTRIC exercise (muscles lengthening under load) e.g. Lowering weight, running downhill.
Causes microtrauma to the muscle fibres, it isn’t a major issue but can stop you exercising.
Your title here…How to treat?
- Usually rest helps but as mentioned it can last 7 days.
- You can exercise through it as long as you avoid that eccentric load or that muscle group.
- Any measure that increases blood flow to the muscle, including massage, hot baths/ saunas.
- It is advised to have sports massage to help speed up recovery.
Top 10 Ways To Avoid Running Injuries
1. Warm up properly! Firstly do some mobilisations of the knees and especially the ankle; pointing your toes to the floor and up towards the body (plantar and dorsi flexion) and do some ankle rotations (left and right). Set off walking, then power walk before breaking into a very gentle job prior to stretching.
2. Stretch before and after running; Hamstrings, calf’s, quads, hip flexors, adductors.
3. Finish your run with a short walk to decrease your heart rate and prevent blood pooling.
4. Don’t run everyday!
5. Run on level surfaces.
6. Do strengthening and stretching exercises on non running days.
7. Wear the correct footwear for your running style.
8. Get enough quality nutrients from your diet and use quality supplements if required.
9. Keep hydrated; not just on the day of your run or prior, but all the time.
10. Maintain your body with regular massage treatment to prevent injuries and help increase your performance. You would take your car in for an M.O.T or go to the dentist for a regular check up, so why not look after your muscles and joints?