recentpopularlog in


Keeping Cori Gauff Healthy and Sane
July 2, 2019 | The New York Times | By Christopher Clarey.

Cori Gauff studies the map of her predecessors' pitfalls

Tennis has its latest prodigy in Cori Gauff, the 15-year-old American who upset Venus Williams, once a wonder child herself, in the first round of Wimbledon of Monday......The list [of child prodigies] is extensive, punctuated with cautionary tales. As tennis has become a more physically demanding sport, these breakout moments have been trending later.......Corey Gauff, the player’s father, longtime coach and the inspiration for his daughter’s name, has attempted to do what he can to help her chances of long-term success. One of his self-appointed tasks: studying tennis prodigies extensively......“I went through everybody I thought was relevant, that won Grand Slams and were good young,” ....“I went through every one of their situations and looked at where they were at a certain age, what they were doing. I asked a lot of questions, because I was concerned about burnout. Am I doing the right things?”....“I studied and studied to prepare myself to make sure if she was able to meet these goals that we’d be able to help the right way,” he said. “That was important. I still sit there and benchmark: ‘O.K., we’re at this point now. How is she doing physically? Is she growing? This is what Capriati did at this stage. This is what Hingis did at this stage, what the Williams sisters did at this stage.’”....Great stories, which prodigies continue to be, attract not just attention but money from sponsors. Parents and advisers can get more invested in success — and continued success — than the young player, and the result can be traumatic......Some precocious talents have experienced physical abuse,.....There is also the physical and mental toll of competing against older, potentially stronger opposition......“The main thing I looked at was how do you prevent injury,”.........The family has sought frequent outside counsel: “It’s honestly been a village of coaches,” he said.

Cori Gauff chose to sign with Team8, the agency started by Roger Federer and his longtime agent Tony Godsick, in part because the Gauffs believed a long-term approach had worked well for Federer, who turned pro at 17 and is still winning titles at 37.
African-Americans  athletes_&_athletics  benchmarking  cautionary_tales  dark_side  due_diligence  injury_prevention  long-term  outside_counsel  parenting  pitfalls  precociousness  prodigies  sports  systematic_approaches  teenagers  tennis  women 
july 2019 by jerryking
A Guide to Your Knees - Well Guides - The New York Times
By Dr. Jordan Metzl

Never had knee pain? Excellent. Let’s keep it that way. And while not all knee problems are preventable, you can prevent many issues and also improve knee function with strength and flexibility training.

With increased muscular strength and flexibility surrounding your knees, the better they bear their load. Muscles are shock absorbers; the stronger they are, the better they can offload the hips and knees and the better your joints will feel — no matter your age.

Lower extremity strength training includes anything that builds muscle around the hips and knees. Stationary biking is the easiest way to start and has the added benefit of aiding knee and hip mobility. Biking can be done several times per week on a stationary or recumbent bike; we recommend biking for 20 to 30 minutes per session.

Functional strength exercises are designed to strengthen multiple muscle groups simultaneously. Unlike a single muscle exercise such as a bicep curl, functional strength exercises like as a push-up, strengthen all of the muscles in a body area simultaneously. When you move normally, muscles work together, so it makes more sense to exercise them together as well........
Bodyweight Split Squat
Single Leg Hip Raise
Single Leg Toe Touch

As sore knees stiffen, the muscles around the knees tighten as well. This soft tissue tightening often amplifies knee pain. A foam roller is a terrific, low-cost option that can be used at home to improve flexibility and reduce pain through a process known as myofascial release.

The Hamstrings Roll

Place a foam roller under your right knee, with your leg straight. Cross your left leg over your right ankle. Please your hands flat on the floor behind you.
Roll your body forward until the roller reaches your glutes. Then roll back and forth over the roller.
Repeat with the other side.
Note: You can also do this with both legs on the roller.

Glutes Roll

Sit on a foam roller with it positioned on the back of your right thigh, just below your glutes. Cross your right leg over the front of your left thigh. Put your hands behind you for support.
Roll your body forward until the roller reaches your lower back. Then roll back and forth.
Repeat on the other side.
exercise  fitness  functional_strength  injuries  primers  knees  mens'_health  legs  glutes  injury_prevention 
march 2019 by jerryking
Running Is the Worst Way to Get Fit - Tonic
Nick English

Nov 17 2016

Running is a crappy way to lose fat and an inferior way to boost cardiovascular health, but it's somehow become the most popular exercise on Earth after walking.....It's an incredibly inefficient way to build strength. And as we all know, a strong body is the number one way to prevent injuries, increase metabolism, burn fat, and stay mobile and functional in old age. Folks "do cardio" because they want to burn off their bellies. And running is a bad pick.

"That's usually what the mentality is, that it's a way to get leaner and lose weight, but doing other things outside of running will probably have a better effect at catalyzing that result," he says. Boyce's fat-loss prescription, like that of practically any trainer worth their salt, is compound strength exercises. That means multi-joint movements like the squat, deadlift, overhead press, chin-ups, pull-ups, and push-ups......Studies have consistently shown that weight training and sprinting are more effective than running at targeting belly fat and creating a good hormonal environment for fat loss, meaning better insulin sensitivity, less of the stress hormone cortisol, and more growth hormone and testosterone. ....exercising the heart at a higher intensity is a better way to get the job done. Studies have shown that shorter sessions of anaerobic training, like fast-paced resistance training or sprints, are just as good for heart health as long, drawn-out runs and better at maintaining muscle and increasing aerobic fitness (or VO2 max, if you want to be specific). ...."In many ways, sprinting is safer than running,"'re going to have more of a fat loss effect from sprinting for the same reasons you get it from weights: You're doing things that require strength, explosiveness, exertion, and intensity, so your muscles are going to have to work a little bit harder, they're going to burn more calories, and you're going to be more metabolic after you finish your workout as well.".....
aerobic  cardiovascular  compound_movements  deadlifts  exercise  fast-paced  fat-burning  fitness  functional_strength  howto  interval_training  high-impact  high-intensity  injury_prevention  metabolic_rate  military_press  pull-ups  running  squats  strength_training 
april 2018 by jerryking
Why All Runners Should Strength Train
Why All Runners Should Strength Train
This piece was written by guest contributor Jason Fitzgerald, a running coach at and 2:39 marathoner. He is also co-founder of Run Your BQ, a program dedicated to helping marathoners qualify for the Boston Marathon. The view expressed herein are his.

In the old days, runners ran. Ask runners a few generations older than you what they did for their daily workout, and they’ll likely answer, “I ran.” But no matter what race you’re preparing for, you might not want to stick to mom’s old training routine. We’ve learned a lot over the last 30 to 40 years, and running has evolved.

Today, runners need to do more than just run. Runners need to be strong and athletic. If they’re not, they can get hurt even if they practice good running form. In fact, some injury statistics put the annual injury rate for runners at a staggering 66 percent. That’s higher than professional football!

Reducing the injury rate isn’t actually that difficult, though. In fact, we can do so effectively with just 10 to 20 minutes a day of strength training.

Going Strong — The Basics
The benefits of strength training for runners are real — for both injury prevention and performance. So if the goal is to simply run easier with less pain or get faster in your next race, try adding a few strength sessions every week. Using runner-specific strength exercises will increase structural fitness — the ability of your bones, ligaments, tendons, and muscles to withstand the impact of running. Several studies have shown that while most forms of strength training can help improve overall performance, adding heavy resistance exercises can make you faster during the final sprint of a race [1] [2].

Strength work is especially important for injury-prone runners and those who are putting in a lot of miles. So for marathoners, that means at least three strength workouts every week! While building your aerobic engine (read: endurance) through running, it’s key to counteract all that wear and tear with the right exercises.

Making Moves — Strength Work for Runners
Since many of us live fairly sedentary lives in front of a computer all day, it’s no wonder running injuries are so common — we’ve lost all our strength! But which exercises are most effective for runners?

The best exercises for runners train movements, not muscles. So stick to compound, multi-joint exercises in the gym. Some of the classics include deadlifts, squats, pull-ups, chin-ups, bench press, and step-ups onto an elevated platform. These exercises target functional movements you do in real life, like bending down, pushing and pulling things, and picking things up. (Above all else, make sure your form is correct!) Complement these with a good dose of bodyweight exercises you can do in your living room after an easy run (here’s an eight week progression you can follow).

Bodyweight routines are more restorative and help you recover from running while still building the strength needed to help prevent future overuse injuries. A majority of running injuries are caused by weak hips — a major problem area for runners who sit for most of the day. One solution is the ITB Rehab Routine, a series of exercises that treats and prevents IT band injuries but also works well for general injury prevention. It focuses on hip and glute strength — two of the most important stabilizing muscles that are used while running.

Other effective exercises you can do almost anywhere include lunges, planks, pistol squats, push-ups, side planks, bird-dogs, and side leg lifts. All of these build the core strength you need to prevent injuries and get stronger.

Strength session can be quick, too: Simply pick 3-5 exercises and do 2-3 sets each, aiming for 4-8 repetitions. And don’t be afraid to lift heavy: Remember, heavy weight helps runners! Just keep in mind these are more intense and should be done just 1-2 times every week.

In Good Time — Strength Work Scheduling Tips
Scheduling these exercises isn’t difficult — simplicity is the best policy here! Follow these three easy principles to make sure your strength sessions fit well with your running schedule.

1. Save the weights for post-run. Since gym workouts are higher intensity, do these after you run (immediately or later in the day) on moderate effort days. Avoid doing them on your long run or workout days since you’re already fatigued from your running. Your form may suffer so we don’t want to increase your injury risk. And keep your easy days easy — no hard lifting when you should be prioritizing recovery!

2. Bodyweight? Piece of cake. Bodyweight sessions are usually a low to moderate effort and can be done on any day of the week. Do them right after you finish your run and they’ll help you warm-down properly by increasing your range of motion and preventing muscle adhesions (when muscles get knotty from scar tissue). By doing this you’ll avoid a lot of the aches and pains that are too common with most runners.

Start with just five minutes of strength exercises (or 4-6 exercises) after your run and build from there. It’s more important to do something than nothing at all, so just get started. Don’t worry if it’s the perfect exercise or routine — you’ll notice yourself feeling better in no time.

3. Ready for more? Once you’re comfortable with the basic exercises, start increasing your reps or the time that you’re doing them. Just make sure you’re adding several types of exercises (mentioned earlier) so you’re keeping the variety up — your body will benefit most when it’s working multiple muscle groups.

When you’re doing 15 to 20 minutes of strength work a day your injury risk will decrease dramatically, allowing you to run more, train faster, and ultimately race faster. You’ll never be sidelined again.

Cyclists Improve Pedalling Efficacy and Performance After Heavy Strength Training. Hansen, E.A., Rønnestad, B.R., Vegge, G., et al. Center for Sensory-Motor Interaction (SMI), Department of Health Science and Technology, Aalborg University, Denmark. International Journal of Sports Physiology and Performance, 2011 Dec 2. [Epub ahead of print].Effect of resistance training regimens on treadmill running and neuromuscular performance in recreational endurance runners. Mikkola, J., Vesterinen, V., Taipale, R., et al. KIHU-Research Institute for Olympic Sports, Jyväskylä, Finland. Journal of Sports Sciences, 2011 Oct;29(13):1359-71. Epub 2011 Aug 22.via Health and Fitness Articles, News, and Tips -
Fitness  Injury_Prevention  Lifting_Weights  Running  Strength_Training  Weightlifting  Working_Out  from google
february 2012 by marymezzo
How to Foam Roll: Foam Rolling 101
What is Foam Rolling?
A foam roller is a dense foam cylinder typically about six inches in diameter and anywhere from 12 – 36 inches in length, much like a hard, larger diameter pool noodle. You use your own body weight to roll over and thereby stretch muscles and tendons as well as break up trigger points (knots) and adhesions*. This is perhaps the most effective self-massage technique available and, from a cost effectiveness standpoint, nearly eliminates the need for regular massage therapy, though I don’t know that anything can completely replace a good deep tissue/sports massage. Just about any muscle group can be targeted with this simple tool.
What are the benefits of foam rolling?
*Trigger points are more commonly referred to as “knots” caused by micro tears that tear and heal repeatedly, sometimes causeing scarring. Stretching the muscles only stretches the healthy tissue and the “knot” remains. Direct pressure is what you need to break up the knot, and often several “treatments” are necessary to break them up. Adhesions occur when the superficial fascia, the connective tissue just below the skin, becomes stuck to the soft muscle tissue below it causing tightness and/or muscle or joint pain. Foam rolling provides stretching and lengthening of the muscles and tendons, breaks up trigger points, breaks up adhesions, commonly referred to as Myofascial Release, increases blood flow to soft tissue, and increases range of motion.
Foam rolling can reduce muscle soreness and recovery time between workouts. In my experience, foam rolling has been the difference between hobbling around for three days after a marathon vs. mild soreness/stiffness the night after and significant improvement the next day. It also helped me to recover from full blown IT Band Syndrome much faster than the standard “stretch and stop running” approach you’ll get from your family doctor. It allowed me to have an active recovery with use before and after workouts. Its been shown to relieve other muscle and joint pain such as knee pain and shin splints. Muscle imbalances, the source of many running injuries, can be remedied by rolling and stretching tight muscles and strengthening weak ones. I’ll even go as far as to say it has frequently provided me with instant relief from sore, tight muscles and left me ready for the next workout.
What are the most important muscles to roll?
Any sore or tight muscle can and should be rolled, but the list below is what I regularly use my roller for. This is not a comprehensive list and there are many more uses than what I personally use it for. (Note: If you’re new to foam rolling then Hamstrings and Quads should be rolled together, your other foot should be used for support for the IT Band roll, and you should start out without placing your ankle on your knee for the glutes until you get used to rolling. Advanced positions pictured.)
Calves (Not Pictured) (Photos courtesy of Annie from
On an “As Needed” basis I’ll roll:Upper backLower backChestLatsAdductors /AbductorsWhere do you get a foam roller?Again, this is not a comprehensive list, but here’s a list of some places you can get a foam roller:Almost any local running storeTrigger Point Performance TherapyDicks Sporting GoodsREIRunning WarehouseFoam Rolling Tips
Stretching is always better when muscles are warmRoll each area for 30-60 secondsStart out with short sessions and gradually increase the lengthAvoid rolling over bone and jointsRoll slowly and hold your position over painful areas & trigger points until the area softensWork from the center of your body outwardExpect some discomfort – Foam rolling can be painful, but its worth ever bit 
Don’t take my word for it, foam rolling is encouraged by USA Triathlon, Runners World, Running Times, my doctor, my physical therapist, and probably just about anyone who’s ever used one. The immediate results are impressive. Do some foam rolling after your long run and see how much better you feel. Not only that, buy a foam roller for $15-50 and save time as well as hundreds, even thousands on professional massages.
Related articlesRoll it out! ( it Tuesday // How do you ROLL? (
General_Post  cycling  Foam_roller  foam_rolling  how_to_foam_roll  injury_prevention  injury_rehab  IT_Band  joint_pain  massage_therapy  muscle_pain  myofascial_release  physical_therapy  running  stretching  training  triathlon  trigger_point  what_is_a_foam_roller  from google
january 2012 by marymezzo
The 12 Biggest Myths About Stretching
The 12 Biggest Myths About Stretching
Used to getting loose and limber before going on a run? It may be time to think twice about reaching for those toes. There’s a good chance we’re stretching out the wrong way or for the wrong reasons. It’s time to debunk the biggest stretching myths, so we can bend, flex, and stretch— the right way.

Stretching the Truth
Photo by Ben Draper

1. Myth: Stretching prevents injury.
Researchers are finding that stretching won’t necessarily prevent sitting out on the sidelines [1]. Injury is due to many factors, including poor technique, muscle imbalances, and not warming up properly. The upside: Greatist expert and trainer Kelvin Gary says the risk can be minimized by stretching regularly as part of a warm-up and cool down.
Truth: Injuries are complicated, but stretching may be one way to keep them at bay.

2. Myth: Stretching nixes soreness.
Aches from yesterday’s CrossFit W.O.D. might not fade with a few good stretches [2] [3]. In a study of over 2,000 adults, stretching before and after exercising didn’t stop those pesky post-workout aches and pains [4]. (Fun fact: Feeling sore comes from micro tears in muscles, and stretching is not effective in preventing these tears and subsequent soreness, Gary notes.)
Truth: Soreness can strike any athlete, regardless of their stretching regime.

3. Myth: Stretching a few days a week is plenty.
We may not want to hit the gym seven days a week, but according to Greatist expert and triathlon coach Andrew Kalley, consistent stretching is key to increasing flexibility, range of motion, and potentially reducing the risk of muscle strain.
Truth: Stretching consistently is the best way to reap its benefits.

4. Myth: Static stretching should come first.
Stretching before a workout when the body is at rest can be harmful, since muscles may actually tighten up in the process. But static stretching after exercise is typically beneficial, helping the muscles to relax, Gary says.
Truth: Go static after working out— not before.

5. Myth: A bit of light cardio is the perfect warm-up.
A quick jog isn’t all you need before hitting the weights, the courts, or the ‘mill. Dynamic stretching (think: walking lunges, running butt kicks, and power skips) in addition to some light cardio will warm up muscles and prep the body for a safe and effective workout, Kalley and Gary advise.
Truth: A proper warm-up should include dynamic stretching, too.

6. Myth: Stretching won’t help performance.
Dynamic stretching involves movements that jump-start range of motion, making them a great warm-up solution. And like the name suggests, studies show these moves may even help power-up those muscles [5] [6].
Truth: Dynamic stretching might give muscles an extra power boost.

7. Myth: It’s OK to jet out after a workout.
To get the most out of a workout, don’t forget to stretch at the finish line. Kalley recommends static stretching before hitting the locker room to relax those heated muscles. Try foam rolling post-workout/pre-stretching to really get those knots out.
Truth: Foam rolling and stretching are important post-exercise to-dos.

8. Myth: Stretch extra long on race day.
Don’t take those race day jitters out on cold muscles. Researchers have found that static stretching before sprints could both harm muscles and prevent athletes from reaching their A-game potential [7].
Truth: When it comes to stretching, treat race days like any other training day.

9. Myth: Stretching one muscle group will only relieve strain in that area.
Sore in one spot? The source may be another muscle group altogether [8]. One example: Lower back pain isn’t necessarily from forgetting to stretch that back— the culprit could be tight hip flexors. (Sneaky, right?)
Truth: Everything’s connected. Stretch one area, and another might benefit, too.

10. Myth: A five-minute warm-up should cut it.
There’s no way we can squeeze in all those Frankensteins and hit the elliptical in five minutes flat. A proper warm-up often involves foam rolling, dynamic and active stretching, and then light cardio, Gary says, so don’t skimp out on warming up properly.
Truth: When it comes to warming up, take 10 (at least!).

11. Myth: All individuals need the same amount of stretching.
Working long hours at a desk can lead to seriously stiff muscles. So cube-dwellers, remember those muscles might need a little extra attention before and after working out.
Truth: Workaholics may need to stretch more than others.

12. Myth: I’m already flexible, so there’s no need to stretch.
Not necessarily. According to Gary, dynamic stretching and warming up are still important for everyone in order to increase blood flow to muscles. And remember, skimping out on stretching might also decrease flexibility over time.
Truth: Stick to stretching, even once flexibility goals are achieved.

Which workout myths should we debunk next? Tell us in the comment section below! 

This article has been read and approved by Greatist Experts Andrew Kalley and Kelvin Gary.

Further Resources

The New York Times — Stretch for the Right ReasonsAnother valid take on the great stretching debate.

Cool Running — Stretching for RunnersFound time for an 8-mile run? Just don’t skimp on the stretching!

Lastics — Stretching Videos & TipsWatch how these stretching guru are doing it.

Zenshin Aikido Club — 15 Stretches via Kermit the FrogA go-to stretching guide from our favorite Muppet.

Warm-up and stretching in the prevention of muscular injury. Woods, K, Bishop, P, Jones, E. Human Performance Laboratory, University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, Alabama. Sports Medicine, 2007;37(12):1089-99.Forward lunge: a training study of eccentric exercises of the lower limbs. Jonhagen, S, Ackermann, P, Saartok, T, et al.Department of Orthopaedics, Stockholm Söder Hospital, Stockholm, Sweden. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 2009 May;23(3):972-8.Stretching to prevent or reduce muscle soreness after exercise. Herbert, R.D., de Noronha, M, Kamper, S.J. Musculoskeletal Division, The George Institute for Global Health, Sydney, Australia. The Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, 2011 Jul 6;(7):CD004577.A pragmatic randomised trial of stretching before and after physical activity to prevent injury and soreness. Jamtvedt, G, Herbert, R.D., Flottorp, S, et al. Norwegian Knowledge Centre for Health Services, Oslo, Norway. British Journal of Sports Medicine, 2010 Nov;44(14):1002-9. Epub 2009 Jun 11.The acute effect of different warm-up protocols on anaerobic performance in elite youth soccer players.Needham, R.A., Morse, C.l., Degens, H. Exercise and Sport Science Department, Manchester Metropolitan University, Alsager, Manchester, United Kingdom. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 2009 Dec;23(9):2614-20.Acute effects of static, dynamic, and proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation stretching on muscle power in women. Manoel, M.E., Harris-Love, M.O., Danoff, J.V., et al. Department of Exercise Science, The George Washington University Medical Center, Washington, District of Columbia. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 2008 Sep;22(5):1528-34.The acute effects of static stretching on the sprint performance of collegiate men in the 60- and 100-m dash after a dynamic warm-up. Kistler, B.M., Walsh, M.S., Horn, T.S., et al. Department of Kinesiology and Health, Miami University, Oxford, Ohio. The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research, 2010 Sep;24(9):2280-4.The other mechanism of muscular referred pain: the “connective tissue” theory. Han, D.G. Department of Neurolgy, DaeJeon HanKook Hospital, ChungCheongNam-Do, South Korea. Medical Hypotheses, 2009 Sep;73(3):292-5. Epub 2009 May 9.via Health and Fitness Articles, News, and Tips -
Fitness  Cool_Down  Delayed_Onset_Muscle_Soreness  Flexibility  Injury_Prevention  Post-Workout  Stretching  Warm_Up  Workout  from google
january 2012 by marymezzo
The Lazy Runner's Guide to Preventing Injuries
Note: This is a guest post from my friend Jason Fitzgerald from

As a runner, you are 20 percent more likely to be injured next year than an NFL football player.

That's right. Some estimates put the injury rate for distance runners at 75% per year. That’s 3 out of every 4 runners who get hurt every single year!

It’s amazing that runners continue to lace up and head out the door when their chances of getting hurt are so high. But they do. Visit any running message board and you’ll see the cries from injured runners:

Arch pain like a rock in my shoe!
From knee pain to shin splints?
A year with this!

Sports like football or lacrosse typically cause more acute injuries from getting hit by other players. As runners, we’re lucky that we don’t have to deal with that. The occasional cut from a cross country spike is the worst impact injury I’ve encountered.

Our main problem is more insidious: self-inflicted overuse injuries. There’s nobody else to blame except ourselves because we so often run too far, too fast, too soon. Then we’re struck down by plantar fasciitis, runner’s knee, achilles tendonitis, or something worse like a stress fracture.

There are entire books devoted to preventing running injuries. For you lazy runners who want the maximum bang for the least amount of work, here’s your 3-step plan.

Becoming Injury-Proof
The best way to prevent running injuries is to stop running. But who wants to do that?! I don’t think anybody here, so we’ll do the next best thing.

Step 1: Correct imbalances
Your first strategy to prevent the imbalances and weaknesses that running can cause. So make sure your running form is as good as it can be. Poor form is really inefficient and puts a lot of extra stress on your muscles, bones, and tendons. Focus on:

Increasing your cadence to about 180 (that number isn’t set in stone and it depends on how fast you’re going)
Leaning from your ankles – no slouching!
Landing underneath your center of mass instead of “reaching” in front of your body. No over-striding!

Time to implement: no extra time! Just work on it while you’re out running. If you need a good example, watch this video of one of the greatest marathoners of all time run on a treadmill. It’s poetry in motion.

Step 2: Avoid overtraining
Next, you want to make sure you’re never running too much, too fast, too soon.

If you’re not excessively stressing your body, the likelihood of an injury is going to plummet. Instead of being tired and sore all the time, you’ll be refreshed and ready to train. Only you know when you’re tired and sore, so pay attention to your energy levels and how your legs feel.

Err on the side of caution when it comes to resting. A slightly under-trained runner is much better off than an over-trained or injured runner!

The common rule is to never increase your mileage by more than 10% per week. I have a slightly different view on mileage changes: you can rapidly increase your volume until you’re at your “baseline” mileage, then your increases should be in the 2-5% range.

Your baseline mileage is what you’re comfortable doing. It’s what your average running volume is per week for the last 3-4 months. This will vary widely per person, so get to know your body, what you’re used to, and what you can handle. Be cautious when you’re in uncharted mileage territory.

Time to implement: no extra time (in fact, you’ll probably save some time)!

Step 3: Increase flexibility and durability
Now let’s work some specific exercises into your training to help you stay healthy. You could spend 1-2 hours a day on prevention and rehabilitative work, but I’m assuming you have a life and want to spend your valuable time on other things that matter to you.

With only about 20 minutes of focused effort on the days that you run, you can get the vast majority of benefits without sacrificing hours of your precious free time. Done before you run, this extra work increases blood flow to your muscles, opening capillaries and speeding up your heart rate. It also increases your range of motion and prepares your body to run.

You’ll also just feel a lot better after you get into the routine of doing this stuff regularly. Little aches and pains won’t be as common and you’ll probably feel a lot less sluggish. I have suggested specific routines for the runners that I coach and all of them have told me they feel better and more energized on their runs. And very few of them get injured!

There are two (quick) parts to these routines:

First, do 5-10 minutes of flexibility exercises before you run:

Leg swings (front to back and side to side)
Mountain climbers

I developed a complete routine that I do before most of my runs simply called the Standard Warm-up. It includes about ten mobility and light strength exercises that bring your body from sedentary to ready to run. I never run without doing at least a few minutes of these exercises. I think it’s one of the reasons why I haven’t had a major injury in nearly three years.

Now on to the second part: After you finish running, spend 10-15 minutes doing body weight strength exercises and core work. No need to get too fancy, stick to the basics. I like:

Any ab work with a medicine ball

I do 2-3 sets of a routine I call Standard Core (I need a better naming system) a few times a week. One set takes about 5-7 minutes depending on how long you do each exercise. It’s a comprehensive core workout that’s specific for runners – highly recommended.

With these two small changes you’ll feel better during your runs because you’re more warmed up. You’ll have better overall strength, fatigue less often, and be a little more efficient. As far as I can tell, every runner is looking to feel better and get in better shape.

Looking for more? I have two extra pieces of advice for you if time isn’t an obstacle and you want to take extra precautions.

1. Hill sprints. These are definitely a little advanced so I don’t recommend them for very new runners. But if you’re comfortable running very fast in workouts, then give them a try. Instead of me explaining hill sprints, just read this article on Running Times. Author and Coach Brad Hudson details exactly how to do them to get all the benefits.

2. Sleep a lot! This isn’t even running-related, and it’s obvious, but sleeping more is highly underrated. You recover and adapt when you sleep, so getting more high-quality sleep is essential. If you’re training for a race, the typical 6-7 hours that most people get isn’t going to cut it. Aim for at least 8, but see how you feel by adding an extra 30 minutes to an hour of sleep to what you normally get every night.

These small investments in your general strength and flexibility will pay dividends as you make them a regular part of your training. Consistency is what makes good runners, so preventing injury and being able to run regularly can make you a much better runner!

Jason Fitzgerald is a 2:39 marathoner and coach at, a community of runners who want to reach their potential. Join the Strength Running Team for access to the Runner’s Gear Bag – a collection of free ebooks, workouts, and exclusive content not on the blog.
Running  injury_prevention  prevent_running_injuries  from google
november 2011 by heykate
How To Improve Your Posture And Awareness In 5 Minutes
Whether you’re trying to pick up a hottie across the bar, suffering from chronic low back pain, or simply don’t want to end up with a hunch like your 80 year old great aunt, building perfect posture is vital. Our spines are incredibly flexible armor for our delicate nervous system. Slouching all the time will not only hurt the self confidence vibes you send off to others, but will damage the natural shock absorption power of the spine. Resulting in no dates and a slew of disc, nerve and degeneration in the spine later in life. No one wants to be a hunch back. Follow me for a long lengthened supported spine…

Below I offer a simple technique I use with my clients to awaken their mind/body awareness. By drawing our intention and focus to a certain part of the body we are forced to still the mind and feel the body from the inside out. Feel present instantly! By tuning in to your posture and mindfulness first thing in the morning you can walk into the day with more clarity and energy. Feeling yourself rooted to the ground through your foot centers and the reach of the crown of the head through the ceiling is the oppositional energy you’re cultivating.

How To Improve Your Posture And Awareness In 5 Minutes from Amber Zuckswert on Vimeo.

As a dancer and teacher I constantly work on my posture, but have spent massive amounts of time hunched over my lap top and carrying around 50 lb bags across the world. I feel you. Like everything, consistency is what’s most important. The more we can remind ourselves to stand tall the better. Using imagery like a tall collar really helps me. Some of my clients sit on fit balls at the office and even create little pop up “sit tall!” reminders on their computer desktop.

How do you remind yourself or work on your posture? Did you feel taller after following my video? Give me the scoop in the comments.
Body  Injury_Prevention  Inspiration  Longevity  Mindfulness  Pilates  Reduce_Stress  Wellness  awareness_exercise  back_health  back_pain  back_pain_relief  bad_posture  clarity  core_strength  happiness  how_to_improve_posture  hunch_back  low_pack_pain  Meditation  neck_pain  perfect_posture  poor_posture  presence  spine  spine_health  stress_relief  tight_shoulder  from google
march 2010 by tinynow

Copy this bookmark:

to read