At the first sign of injury, most people have the same reaction: Ignore it and keep training. Taking the time to find and fix an injury before it becomes chronic will give you a better chance to train injury free for the rest of the year.
The most common injures adventure racers suffer from including Achilles tenditis, plantar fasciitis, Iliotibial Band Syndrome (ITBS) to name but a few.
It seems like a strange thing to start with but rest is so important when it comes to avoiding injuries. You should have at least one complete rest day and then another day which is like an ‘active recovery’ day where you walk, swim, and cycle. You will know you have pushed yourself just enough if you feel fatigued at the end of your training session but fully energized and ready to attack the next one.
Warm-up / Cool-down
A warm-up will help to prepare your body for exercise, get the heart pumping faster and the muscles warm and more flexible. Warm and flexible muscles are less prone to injury. A good warm-up should not include stretching as it would increase your risk of injury.
Gradual Increase Training
Don’t be tempted to increase your training distances too quickly. Stick to your training program and gradual increase the intensity of your training.
Maintain / improve flexibility
A lack of flexibility is a big contributor to injuries. Introducing yoga or pilates into your training plan can help gain strength and flexibility.
Many new runners don’t undertake any form of strengthening work for their legs, thinking that all the running they are doing will be sufficient. Strength training is essential for preparing the body for training and racing.
Fuel up post exercise.
You should eat 15 to 30 minutes after exercise, preferably as soon as possible. This ensures your muscles are replenishment and repaired after a run.