Right before the 2017 NYC marathon, Meb Keflezighi came to Custom Performance to kick off the weekend with a Q&A session. When talking about training and racing he said "I really believe that during preparation it’s 90% physical, 10% mental. When the gun goes off it’s 90% mental and 10% being healthy.” As racing season ramps up, let’s not forget that mental training is just as important as physical training.
As PTs, we are often asked when to use ice versus heat for injuries. The answer definitely depends on the injury. Ice and heat can both be used to reduce pain, but they are best applied in different situations. A recent literature review conducted by Malanga, Yan, and Stark examined the differences between heat and ice applications and their effectiveness.
Did you run this morning? Why? Did you run with a group? Did you listen to music? Did you start your watch or check your pace? These are some questions you may want to ask yourself when you are discovering what your real goals are. Every run should have a purpose, even if it is just to relax and enjoy yourself! Here are some suggestions for a more purposeful run:
A little over two years ago I was running through the mountains of Virginia. Things were going well... until they weren’t. I would find out later from the esteemed, all-around amazing PT, Cat Fitzgerald, that years of running, cycling, and all manner of exercise (without the proper stretching or strength training) had finally caught up with me.
Strength exercises are important to a long distance runner, especially if you are trying to get faster. This is not a secret. When you name your target areas, you often think of the back, core, shoulders, chest, legs... but don’t forget your feet! It may seem silly at first but for runners, actual intrinsic foot strength is VERY important.
To be at peak performance and minimal injury risk, strength training should be an integral part of all running programs. For your strength training to be effective, you should should be specific and deliberate when choosing your exercises.
Hypermobility vs Flexibility? Is Mobility a Bad Thing?
What is hypermobility?
When talking about fitness, many people use flexibility and mobility interchangeably, but the two concepts are actually very different! Mobility refers to the range of motion in a joint. Mobility is influenced by both the joint structures (where one bone meets another) and the soft tissue that surrounds that joint. Flexibility refers only to the soft tissue itself.
The relationship between running injuries and the amount of vertical force (up and down movement and impact) during running has been well-documented through many recent studies. “Vertical ground reaction force” (VGRF) is the force that the ground exerts up through a runner’s leg when landing. The rate at which these forces are applied to the body is called “vertical impact loading rate” (VILR). So if the vertical ground reaction forces are applied too quickly and not absorbed well, injury risk can be increased significantly.
We all have heard the recommendation to change shoes around 300-500 miles of use, but why? Where does this recommendation come from? When running, forces more than 2.5 times your body weight are applied up the leg and through the musculoskeletal system. Footwear has been designed to assist in absorbing these highmagnitude forces in order to improve performance and reduce injury risk. The cushioning in shoes can absorb shock and reduce how fast the force of landing acts on the body.
“Low Back Pain” is the most commonly treated diagnosis in America, and certainly in NYC. LBP is an umbrella term than can include many different issues from joint derangement, nerve involvement, hip dysfunction, and muscular involvement. There are a few things that most people can do on their own to improve pain.
In February, it became official: I was running the TCS NYC Marathon! As a physical therapist working in a running-based clinic I figured I had a pretty good idea of what to expect from the training. The miles, time commitment, nutrition; I was ready for it all, right? I quickly found out that it was much more work than I expected.
Chronic exertional compartment syndrome (CECS)—can be a completely sidelining injury. It’s a condition most commonly seen in the lower leg among athletes, especially endurance runners. Symptoms typically develop as a tolerable pain, but as the runner continues running the pain worsens until it becomes unbearable and the runner has to stop.