Load is a tricky term but can loosely be explained as the amount of energy expended during any given activity. As such it represents the duration (time), mileage (km’s), effort (difficulty) of each and every run or training session. Current scientific research has found that the total amount of load in training isn’t the only contributing factor to overuse injuries. Changes in load are the biggest factor, with an increase (or decrease followed by an increase) of greater than 15% increasing your risk of injury 7-fold. David will be discussing these more in upcoming blogs.
There are endless studies that try to break down the ideal biomechanics for a distance runner. Although complex, there are a few key fundamental movements that we know can considerably reduce your risk of injury. The tracking of your knee is vital, with inward knee tracking contributing to almost all lower limb overuse injuries. Stand in front of a mirror and do a small squat while standing on one leg. If your knee isn’t staying straight in line with your second toe – you have some work to do!
Many of the most common and basic injuries come from footwear that is either the wrong fit or hasn’t been broken in. Allow plenty of time to get used to a pair of shoes and although more expensive initially, getting two pairs and alternating them is good practise. Unless you are a seasoned racer it is advised to wear the same shoes on race day - remember, change as little as you can on the day!
We all know that fitting marathon training in around a busy lifestyle that often includes family, friends and work is hard. When you are tired, your risk of injury increases – specifically overuse injuries as your biomechanics are often at their worst when tired. Try to make a concerted effort to get to bed a bit earlier, especially before those longer runs.