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1. Drink water! Drink adequate fluid 30-45 minutes before running and then a cupful every 10-15 minutes. Experts have recommended 6-8 oz every 20 minutes while you run. After exercise you should try and drink water to speed up recovery.

2. Join a running club. Learn how to improve your running technique. Visit the website for Coventry Running Club to find out more: www.coventryrunningclub.co.uk

3. Avoid concrete as much as possible. It’s about 10 times as hard as asphalt, and is a terrible surface for running. Try to find grass or dirt trails to run on, especially for your higher mileage runs. Consistency is important too, because a sudden change to a new running surface can cause injuries.

4. Overtraining is the number one cause of injuries, so try to remember that progress takes time. Don’t increase your mileage by more than 10% per week.

5. General soreness one to two days after a run is normal (Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness) butpain that reoccurs in the same area each time you run needs to be looked at by a professional.

6. Ice aches and pains immediately. A cool bath followed by a warm shower if you need to warm up is better than soaking in a long, hot bath, which feels nice but may aggravate inflammation!

7. The latest research leans towards stretching AFTER your run to increase your flexibility. Stretching cold muscles, i.e. before you run is more likely to lead to an injury than to help you, and can hinder your performance for a specific workout.
8. Join a Yoga or Pilates class to keep your muscles supple.

9. Work ALL your muscles. Injuries sometimes occur when you’re paying too much attention to your running muscles and forgetting about the others. For example, knee injuries sometimes occur because running strengthens the back of your legs more than the front of your legs. Weak quads aren’t strong enough to keep your kneecap moving in its proper groove, which causes pain. Strengthening your quads will often ease the pain. Try mixing your runs with cycling.

10. A general rule is that most training shoes will only last for around 400 miles. You may only get 300, somebody else may get 600. Keep a running log of your total miles, so that you know how many you’ve done. Look for obvious wear on your trainers.

11. Keep safe. Pay special attention when running with music.

12. Have a Gait Analysis! Ever wondered if the way you’re walking/running is giving rise to pain? A small problem with your feet can give rise to ankle, knee, hip and back pain. Walk across the force plate, which has over 4000 sensors, to get an accurate, moving 3D image of your foot. Combined with a complete biomechanical assessment, if it is determined that you will benefit from orthotic therapy, the precise imprint of your feet is used to manufacture a custom made pair of orthotics. These comfortable insoles reduce stress and strain on your body by realigning and stabilizing the bones in your feet. Improve your efficiency when running and reduce the risks of injury!