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Starting a new running routine? Here's what you need to know.

January 8, 2020

With a new year ahead, several New Year’s Resolutions across the country include starting a new running routine. As one of the best forms of exercise, running is a great way to help meet your new fitness/health goals this year. When starting a new running routine, there are a few things you should know and watch out for! As your local Wyoming/Nebraska physical therapist, we are here to help.

Getting Started
Getting started on a running plan can be intimidating, overwhelming, and ultimately scary! But it doesn’t have to be. It’s best to establish a running plan for your first 6-8 weeks and while doing so plan your walk to run ratio. If you are just starting out, stick to a 2:1 ratio to help your body adjust to the sudden surge of physical activity. Aim for a walk/run workout for 3-4 times a week, and to help your body further adjust make sure to cross train. An elliptical workout is a great way to help your body adjust.

Runners, particularly newbie runners or those that run often, are prone to more injuries then you’d anticipate. Make sure to keep an eye out for symptoms of the following common injuries, and see your doctor if you are experiencing any pain.
Runner’s Knee: Also known as patellofemoral pain syndrome (PFPS) affects the cartilage under the kneecap - this irritation occurs in approximately 40 percent of running injuries. If you start to experience pain surrounding the knee cap, try to take some time off from running and rest. If this pain occurs for more than a few days of rest - see a primary care physician.
Shinsplints: Ever heard of these? Shinsplits, also known as medial tibial stress syndrome, is a pain that occurs around your tibia when small tears develop in the muscles. Shinsplits occur for overuse, and are particularly common in those who just start running and working out again. Take your time, and be careful not to overdo it.
Achilles tendonitis: When your achilles tendon becomes stressed, it strains and becomes irritated. This irritation can make it difficult to walk/run, and is one of the more common injuries for runners. 

If you start to develop an injury while practicing your new running routine, be sure to reach out to your primary care physician, they can help guide you on the right treatment path. At North Platte Physical Therapy, we are here to help meet your needs. We serve the communities of Wyoming and Nebraska with 22 clinics offering a full range of physical therapy services. Contact us today for more information.