As the days get longer and warmer, we’re more apt to engage in outdoor activities like walking and running. Spring also begins the season for charity 5k races and half marathons―great inspirations for starting a new exercise program. Unfortunately, spring can also be the season for injuries caused by overuse or improper training when you push yourself too far, too fast.
The best approach to increasing your running (or walking) speed or distance is to work slowly and steadily. This protects your joints and muscles, and allows your body to adjust to moving in a new, more intense way. We call this the 10% rule, a training principle that advocates increasing your weekly mileage by no more than 10% over the previous week. It’s also important not to attempt to up your speed and distance at the same time.
Working with a physical therapist helps you learn effective ways to meet your goals without risking injury. After we assess where your body currently is and listen to where you want it to be, we will design a program using an individualized, steady progression of exercise.
For those worried they aren’t in good enough physical condition to start even a slow walking program or who are recovering from an injury, physical therapy can be a lifesaver. From unweighting systems that alleviate pressure on joints to special exercises that stretch and strengthen the muscles needed to support balance and agility, we have many safe ways to get you moving.
If you’re in a rush to prepare for a big race or anxious to get yourself back to running or walking after an injury, training with the 10% rule can feel agonizingly slow. But it’s better than being in real agony from an injury caused by overdoing it. With our help, you will see results and won’t be sidelined due to damaged joints or strained muscles. Call our office for an appointment. Together, we will design a safe, steady program to meet your goals in the proper amount of time.