Running - Is It For Everyone + What To Do When You’re In Pain?

Running - Is It For Everyone + What To Do When You’re In Pain?

The short answer is a simple “no”. The truth is running does take a strong knee, some practice, and a strong back to name a few things. However, just because your body isn’t designed to power through a 10K marathon or hit a 4-minute sprint, it doesn’t mean you can incorporate some running. Yes, there’s no denying that running to some is fun so here’s our question to you - do you enjoy it?

If you enjoy running, and providing you’ve checked with your doctor to make sure the exercise does not take a huge toll on your body, you can incorporate running into your workout routine. You’ll just need to set realistic expectations for yourself. Don’t beat yourself up if you can’t join a marathon in your first month. Your goal should be to simply run a kilometer or two. This is true even for those who are physically fit - you’re technically still starting from scratch (or at least close to it). Hitting an optimal level takes time and it sure takes practice. Also take things slow and start to build up gradually. If you have any pain developing, stop.

Let’s talk about injuries. For those who have lower back pain for example, you’ll have to monitor how you feel. If the aches become worse and you’re in more pain, it could be serious. If you’re running and you feel your back acting up, first stop and stretch. If the pain continues to increase, you should definitely ditch your run and seek help. If you continue, you might injure yourself seriously and recovery back to a place of health could take a lot of time and a lot of pain too unfortunately. For those of you who experience foot pain - either from walking, or running, or a numbness-type of feeling - you can start by wiggling your toes a bit as you run. If it persists, you’ll also want to seek help. Now a twisted ankle. If you’ve unfortunately landed yourself with a twisted ankle, please stop and do not run. If you do, you’ll further damage the ligaments in that area making you more susceptible to another twist. Instead, go home, rest, apply ice and compression and keep the leg raised. Lastly, the infamous knee pain. If it’s a dull ache under your kneecap (commonly known as runner’s knee) move to a softer surface. You can also try changing your shoes. But we recommend seeing a physiotherapist as if it’s not looked at, it could worsen. 

So we get it - running is fun, a great way to clear the head and can also be addictive. But it does take a strong body so you’ll want to make sure you’re constantly priming yourself - especially when you foresee an injury coming along. Start slow and always stop when in doubt.