How Recovery Foods Work Wonders For Running Injuries

Food-and-injury

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All runners hate it when they get hurt during their training or power drills. This is most definitely the worst thing to hold them back. It’s annoying to carry on training for long duration with an injured knee or pulled hamstring. While injuries are a natural part of a runner’s life, there are ways to speedup healing process. Massaging, icing, and ample rest are proven to have significant healing effects but there is something more that can help you get back on track faster.

While the resting period seems endless, you can decrease healing time nutritionally. A human body starts healing from inside and nutrition has a role in that. Research proves that the recovery span can be reduced with the intake of right nutrient containing foods. On the flip-side, lack of nutrients can delay or even worsen running injuries.

Malnutrition common in runners

Lack of proper nutrients will not only delay wound healing but can even worsen injuries involving inflammation. With the mention of malnutrition, the only picture in our minds is that of a severely starving child in third world countries. What most athletes fail to realize is the fact that being under-fed is also a stage of malnutrition. As a matter of fact, most athletes, runners or otherwise, are often malnourished while training. This is the biggest cause of injuries to begin with.

Underfed athletes have slower healing abilities

In most cases, if a runner completes his running mileage by running twice a day, its highly unlikely that the nutrients lost will get replenished. If a runner continues to go without resting, more vital nutrients will get depleted. Hence the most prominent reason of undernourishment in athletes is over-training.

Secondly, if you are just filling up your stomach with nutrient-less-crappy-food, it will do no good to healing post-running injuries. The quality of food really matters otherwise you are just taking extra calories that will speed-up weight gaining. When a malnourished body goes in a state of weight gaining, it will affect athlete’s performance at large. If the runner gets injured in a nutrient deficient state, the healing process will take longer than usual. Nutrient rich food is your key to quick recovery.

Alternative Sports Drinks for Running

sports drinks

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Energy drinks for athletes occupy a huge industry and there are always some advertising campaigns lined up for athletes. Marathon runners and distance runners in general are the most likely promoters of such sports drinks. No matter how strong their branding efforts are, some people are just not comfortable with the idea of lab-made ingredients that are part of energy drinks. Those who wish to have a more natural alternative to sports drinks can fashion some healthy drinks from whatever is available in their refrigerator.

It’s true that certain energy drinks are better than water because they offer more benefits than just hydration. However, the main ingredient of these drinks is a sugar maltodextrin which offers an immediate source of energy. This is good for short runs but will not be much help when it comes to distance running. Due to the presence of high amount of readily available sugar in blood, the body will be triggered to produce more insulin.

For distance running, it is important that the blood sugar level is limited to 4 percent so that more insulin is not released. To minimize this effect, a mixture of water and natural fruit juice is recommended. It will prevent sugar level spiking, hence keeping the levels of insulin under control. This means the water and juice must be taken in a ratio of 2 is to 1.

Moreover, the athletes’ body loses electrolytes through sweating. Whether it’s running training or a real marathon, some essential salts will be lost, resulting in muscle cramps. Orange juice can help here since it’s a natural source of potassium. Besides, long distance runners who will exceed 4 hours of running will need a source of sodium to fuel their run.

There is another category of sports drinks that is known as recovery drink. Rather than sipping it during the race, it is preferably taken after the race comes to an end. For instance, you had a prolonged bout and now you are taking some time out. Recovery drinks will provide necessary nourishment to keep you sustained for the next round.

4 Ways to Change Your Mind about Running Blues

running blues

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Not everyone is a fan of running. Perhaps you don’t like it when you have to go the distance. This problem can be addressed if you are sprinting for a mere 30 seconds. Pacing up might give you an adrenaline rush. Some people dislike running because it’s boring.

Add a spice of sprinting and see how things change your way. I am here to change your mind forever. When your running gets long and boring, you need to concise it with sprint intervals. This is a perfect blend of time intervals and distance. Shared below are some running tips for sprinting.

Keep it concise

While starting out, the sprinting time should be as limited as possible. People might mock at your stamina but starting slow will help you build endurance without straining your muscles. Hard runners will feel tired very soon and this is more frequent for new runners. Since your mind is not trained for this much intensity, it will feel tiring in the beginning. Aching muscles will slow down the runner so its better to keep it brief.

Don’t forget to recover

There must be a substantial gap between each set of sprinting. When you are all set to begin another set of sprinting, try slowing it down for a few minutes. This will buy time for your muscles to recover from the stress of high intensity exercise. Also, ample rest prepares you for the next set of sprinting when you can run with revived energy and strength. Without rest intervals, your sprinting speed will eventually decline and your body will not get the benefits of this exercise.

Walk between sprinting sets

Sprinting intervals must have brief sets of rest. If you are jogging during that time, your muscles might not get time to recover. Try walking between sprinting sets. When you will start your next set, it will be easier to maintain your personal best intensity.

Minimize running time

This running routine should not take more than 20 minutes including all sprinting intervals and resting phase. Long duration running is hard on muscles and tests your stamina to an extent that you might prefer giving up.How to approach long runs click here.

Embrace Running Again – 5 Ways to Spring Back To Action

If a runner gives up running for a while, then finding the courage to get out of the couch can be tricky. The unpredictable weather can be your excuse for a few days but if you were a consistent runner, you will never be able to part your ways from this sport. Take some best interval training sessions and it will be easy to jump into some races.

The big question is how to overcome the long lapse of training. For a long while your one day off changed to three days off, the stamina for long distance running was lost and you feel bulkier than before. There is still hope. Getting back in form is just 5 steps away.

start running

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Step 1: Make it routine

In the beginning, putting on your sneakers and making up the mind to run is more important than running fast. First step is always the hardest. If you are past that stage, you will make a consistent runner. Don’t be ashamed of running two miles in a day. At least it’s better than no miles at all. Maintain a consistent and steady routine for one week.

Step 2: Enjoy your run

Run to enjoy, not to compete! And it’s best to leave your watch home for a few days. This is the time when you will adapt to the environment. Watch the sky, slow down to notice your favorite trail in the park. The more you enjoy running, the better will be the chances that you will take it seriously.

Step 3: Find a running partner

A brief trot in the park with a running companion will help you overcome physical and mental exhaustion. Don’t go on bragging on hitting a new mark or complaining about how sore your muscles feel. Notice different runners on the track and make a laugh. Socializing will help you get more consistent.

Step 4: Kick up with more speed

If you are not a professional athlete, there is no need to crank up hard intervals. Only try 10 to 12 minutes of sprinting followed with lots of rest. Another alternative to intervals is uphill running. This will give a similar experience for legs but uphill running involves more muscles.

Step 5: Establish a goal

Setting the goal can never be the first step of any training let alone running. After developing focus and interest in running, it’s time to get back in the habit of running. Try following these running tips in the correct order and you might actually find yourself embracing running again.