Marathon – hard work or good for you in the long run?
Preparing for a marathon can be a daunting task. From scheduling training runs to ensuring you have your nutrition on point, there is lots to consider. There is a time and pace (pun intended!) for everyone, so it is is vital to take expert advice on how best to prepare yourself.
Why do runners get injured?
Running can be very good for your long-term health and is a great way to get fit. Almost everyone can run as you don’t need special expensive equipment – just some good trainers and the ground! Yet it’s important to remember that running is basically a repetitive movement activity. In a marathon or other event, the aim is to cover a certain distance as fast as possible. If we consider the basic equation force = mass x acceleration, we can see that for each stride, the runner’s bodyweight is multiplied. And this force increases the faster you go!
For marathon runners, the problem arises in that the further the distance, the longer you are subject to this force acting on your joints. And the more you repeat something, the more wear and tear you are likely to experience over time. If you have a spinal or pelvic misalignment, then this wear and tear could be concentrated more on one specific area. Eventually, this can lead to serious breakdown or injury.
What injuries can runners expect?
Common problems for runners include knee pain, shin splints, inflammation of tendons and muscles. For long distance runners, marathon runners, or those doing increased amounts of training, there is a greater amount of stress placed on the body. Any small issues with joints being out of alignment can lead to greater problems flaring up as training or distance increases.
Sometimes, you may not realise you have a problem until you start experiencing pain. Runners often only book in to see a chiropractor after they have suffered an injury. Also, some people may not know that a chiropractor can help with the whole body, not just the neck and back.
What can I do to help my body if I’m training for a marathon?
It is often worth coming for a regular appointments; before, during and after your marathon training. This way your chiropractor can identify any areas that could be likely to cause problems. They can ensure you are getting the most out of your training programme by keeping you in alignment. And after the event, you could speed up your recovery by having chiropractic treatment or deep tissue massage for example.
Chiropractic care can help not only with bone issues, but with soft tissue injuries too. Your muscles will recover faster with a healthy blood supply, and this can be helped by manual therapies. Not only that, having your body functioning properly will help everything work more effectively. The key to maximising performance may well be keeping all your joints healthy and well aligned. Your marathon may not feel like such a mammoth task if your body is working with you! So whether you’re heading out for a marathon PB or recovering with a peanut butter and jelly sandwich after the race, why not book a visit with your chiropractor?
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