Rachel Grunwell is an award-winning writer, magazine columnist, yoga teacher, marathoner & recipe creator

By Rachel Grunwell: Award-winning journalist. Good magazine’s wellness columnist & smoothie chick. Multi-Marathoner. Qualified Yoga Teacher. Blogger. Mum. The order of importance is in reverse.

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Injury Advice – Tips & Motivation

If you love to chase that runner’s high, then you will want to avoid getting injured. Runners can get all kinds of injuries including: runner’s knee, shin splints, plantar fasciitis, stress fractures, sprains, pulling a muscle, iliotibial band syndrome, just to name some!

I can relate to this topic first-hand. I’ve been running for around five years and run a lot of miles marathon-training. So, inevitably, I got an injury – in 2016. It was a stress reaction in my left leg. While this sounds like something I might feel when my six-year-old throws a tantrum, I learned it is the precursor to a stress fracture. This is where the bone becomes weak at a cellular level and causes pain. Eye-watering pain where you might not use words that are very, well, er, lady-like.

I was sidelined from running for 3-months. I was devastated initially. Running is the way I de-stress and keep fit. But then I looked at this time instead with a positive mindset (that’s the yoga training within me!) and saw it as an opportunity to do yoga, cycling, pool running, and strength work until I healed. After that, I returned to running with a strong body (and mind) and only weeks later ran the Chicago Marathon with a not too shabby time.

10 Top Tips Around Injuries:

  1. * Have a good run form. I’d recommend seeing an expert to make sure you have a good biomechanical form. They also give you tips on how to run more smoothly – and efficient! Decode: Faster!
  2. * Don’t increase mileage too soon or go too fast too soon. You are begging for an injury if you do.
  3. * Warm up and cool down. Gentle dynamic stretches for a few minutes before running is great, and some static yoga stretches for a few minutes afterwards is awesome.
  4. * Wear good shoes that fit your feet well.
  5. * Do some strength training. It’s as important as the run miles.
  6. * Be smart. If you can’t shake a “niggle” or problem then get expert advice and follow their recommendations. You will heal quicker and know what you can do and shouldn’t do to recover. Knowledge is power.
  7. * If you are injured, accept your injury and don’t dwell on it. Staying positive influences healing time frames. 
  8. * Focus on what you can do while injured- not what you can’t do. For example, I stayed strong with other fitness options when I couldn’t run.
  9. * Practice a positive mind-set and patience. The injury will heal eventually in most circumstances – and so put things into perspective. See adversity as a challenge and grow from it.
  10. * Take recovery seriously. Things like yoga, massages, using a roller and incorporating some mindfulness into your life is what smart runners do.

Other related blogs by Rachel:

Yoga Tips for Runners blog click HERE

7 Stretches For Runners click HERE