Why I Love Running Now

I would never have classed myself as a ‘runner’ in the past, more of a quick run on the treadmill occasionally, type of runner. Running had always been something I thought of as too hard and would disagree with my calf’s and knees. Having read up on running much more recently with launching the Holistic Core Restore®️ Fit to Run programme, I realised that I could add running to my weekly activity routine and enjoy it with a gradual and supported approach. 

Running Buddy

At the start of Lockdown 3, I decided I wanted to get outside and walk/run with a friend, allowing restrictions. Having someone committing to running simultaneously was so valuable for me – it meant I was less likely to give up on days I didn’t feel like running. We held each other accountable and agreed which days we would go out within our work/family commitments. Almost four months on, we have stuck to our routine, and I look forward to every Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday mornings when we run together.

Building Up Slowly

We started with an interval approach where we walked one lap of a local field and then ran the next lap. Many new runners or previous runners make the mistake of trying to do too much too soon. If you had never driven a car before, you wouldn’t expect to jump in and go, would you? The Couch to 5K is an excellent programme for beginners to start with an app to help you on your running journey. 

Is Running Bad for Your Knees?

A common concern when starting running is it will be bad for your knees, but actually, a study in 2019 found ‘robust evidence to link marathon running with knee joint health’ Horga et al. 2019. If you have never run before or have any injuries, then you need to do some strength training to ensure your muscles around the feet, knees, hip, and back are strong to support you. Running and stretching will not serve you well to prevent injury and rehab injuries. The British Journal of Sports Medicine found that ‘static stretching’ will neither improve performance nor prevent injury. 

One of the most common injuries sites in women over 35 is the feet and ankles. We need to build strength and mobility in our feet, ankles, and calf’s as running is very much a one-legged activity. 

What Exercises Will Help Me Run Better?

Exercises that target the feet, ankles, knees, hips, and back are essential for running efficiently and avoiding injury. During the Fit to Run course, we start from the ground up with feet and ankle work in Week One and move up through the body through to week six, where we then add some impact work after building strength and mobility through all joints. Recent clients have seen less stress through joints and can run further without any of their usual niggles. 

Running Buzz

One of the main reasons I’m still running is the buzz I get during and after doing it. The mental health benefits of exercise should be one of the key motivators for us all. I feel amazing after running even if I felt tired or unmotivated before; the buzz after is so worth it. Being outside and amongst nature on a run is also a mood lift and will make you feel energised and release those happy hormones. Running has been my Lockdown 3 saviour but has now become a regular part of my week. You might think you don’t have the energy to run, but if you build up nicely, you will feel more energised and have more energy as a result.

Fit to Run – A Women’s Wellness Running Programme 

Having completed the first Fit to Run programme recently, I have experienced the benefit of this strength and mobility programme as a Coach but also from a clients perspective. I can now run without any intervals and have recently started running a nice loop around local woods. I would never have been able to do that back in December when I started. I loved how the programme worked through the different joints with lots of exercises to improve strength and mobility to support foot, knee and back health. Leaking whilst running can also be a concern for some women, so this was addressed with hip mobilisation work, which can often contribute to leaking when running. A leading women’s health physio has designed the programme: Michelle Lyons, backed up by research and science. I’m looking forward to starting the next course in April. The early bird offer is extended to Good Friday. Click here for more details and to sign up.

Claire

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