by John Stanton
As runners, we all have to start somewhere. If you’re a beginner, your early experiences with a running or walking program can make or break your chances for success. Novice runners who approach their training with a “go hard or go home” attitude often experience overuse injuries or just plain discouragement. This is not the recommended way to begin a running program.
As with all fitness programs, start with a visit to your family physician. He or she may recommend that you start by walking or by following a combination walk/run program. Be patient and stick with it—in as little as 10 weeks, you can progress from couch potato to athlete. Just remember to commit to 10 weeks, not 10 minutes or 10 days. The lifelong benefits are well worth the investment. Continue reading “Starting Out”
by John Stanton
To get the most out of your training, you should set an ultimate goal followed by several smaller goals to get you there. Your ultimate goal might be to run a particular race, but before that, you must first train consistently.
It can help to run some smaller, shorter-distance races as targets to test you along the way. Many runners will tell you that the real reward comes from the training, not the race itself. Continue reading “A Multi-Goal Approach to Training”
by Sandy LeBlanc
I have yet to meet a symmetrical person. We’re all a little wonky, either due to structural differences like leg length discrepancy or scoliosis, and/or habitual imbalances such as playing a single sided sport, handedness or poor posture. For most people, these imbalances don’t affect quality of life—until you add a highly repetitive, sagittal plane sport such as long distance running. The good news is: we can fix many of these imbalances with strategic strength and flexibility training. Continue reading “Cross Training for Runners”
with Dr. Reed Ferber, Ph.D. CAT(C)
I’m always happy to see injury prevention research being published, and I thought I’d synthesize some of the more recent findings into practical tips for you.
A recent systematic review and meta-analysis was performed to figure out the best injury prevention strategies. Twenty-five different research studies were selected, which resulted in the analysis of 26,610 athletes who sustained 3464 injuries. A surprising discovery in the data was that stretching did not show any protective effect, regardless of whether the stretching was performed before or after exercise. On the other hand, strength training was protective and reduced sports injuries by about one-third. These authors went further and suggested that overuse injuries, such as those experienced by runners, could be reduced by almost half if a regular strength training program was combined with some type of cross-training. Continue reading “The Science of Injury Prevention”
by John Stanton
In the winter, daylight is a precious commodity. Many of us experience the daily challenge of leaving the house when it’s dark and returning after the sun has already set. However, with proper planning and a positive attitude, you can maintain your fitness and still enjoy your training. Here are some suggestions to help you dodge the darkness.
Get out there during the day.
Take advantage of the daylight as much as possible. If your schedule is flexible, prioritize your run in the mid-morning or early afternoon. If you have a more traditional work day, try to run or walk during your lunch hour at least once a week. Exposure to natural light helps regulate your inner body clock and provides a bonus helping of vitamin D. Continue reading “Dealing With Darkness”
by John Stanton
How you train will influence your results, whether you are trying to maximize your potential or simply improve your overall fitness. Most programs emphasize structure, consistency and slow progression toward a goal. This requires a delicate balance of listening to your body and striving for continual improvement. Here are four considerations as you build your personalized training program. Continue reading “Customizing Your Training Plan”
Frostbite is nasty stuff. Once you have been frostbitten, you can be scarred for life and you can have permanent circulation problems in the affected areas.
You get frostbite when you have skin exposed to severe cold temperatures for a period of time (the amount of time depends on body type, size and other factors). Your body stops sending blood to that area to save the rest of the body. Once this happens, freezing is not long off. Continue reading “Frostbite”
by Cara Hazelton
Runners are always in search of ways to improve their performance. As an Authentic Pilates specialist, the one thing I often see missing from regular training regimes is a strong, supple and stable relationship between the pelvis and spine.
In simple terms, a human body is a torso with levers. If the torso is weak, rigid or unstable, the levers will not work properly or with ease. The levers (our arms and legs) are attached to the torso (which contains the spine) by a variety of muscles. The legs are not solely attached to the pelvis, just as the arms are not solely attached to the shoulder blades. Both the arms and the legs are attached to the back, which is why a strong, supple and stable spine allows for healthy movement of the limbs. Continue reading “Pilates for Runners”
by John Stanton
There’s “snow” doubt about it—running and walking are healthy activities that can be enjoyed year-round. If you’re a runner who is recovering from injury or seeking an alternative to running during the winter months, consider walking. Walking is a gentle and safe option for many athletes, since the impact force is little more than the body weight you carry when standing upright. Here are some of the benefits.
Continue reading “Walking in a Winter Wonderland”
by Dan Chabert
A marathon is an enormous distance, and training for one takes a lot of commitment and time. When you decide to register for a marathon, one of the first thoughts that comes to your mind might be how in the world will you be able to train for such a huge distance while still honouring your other obligations related to your work and family while also still having something of a normal life. As long as you remain flexible, be creative, and don’t mind some planning, you can do it! Here are some tips to get you started. Continue reading “How to Train for a Marathon and Have a Life”