September 24th, 2013
Running is a repetitive motion activity and with repetitive motion comes repetitive strain on the body. Do you see where I’m going with this?!?! Increasing mileage too quickly, as well as speed (which is often overlooked), can lead to injury. We refer to this as “too much, too soon, too fast”. At this point, you may be asking “If I’m feeling good & I don’t have any significant injuries, why not increase my mileage?” Here’s one reason why: muscles adapt faster than bones and joints, this is a period when many runners experience injuries. So, be smart, be patient, and follow THE 10% RULE (see link to article below). It’s important to allow yourself to rest and incorporate some cross training days in your program including core strengthening. When increasing your mileage, be smart with all of your aspects of training. Concentrate on good running form, wear proper footwear, concentrate on tight and weak muscles, and incorporate proper nutrition (I’ll address each of these in detail later on). One final point: when you set a goal, whether it’s to compete in a 5K, a half marathon, or a full Ironman triathlon, make sure you leave yourself enough time to train (weeks to months depending on the distance) and allow your body to become accustomed to your race goal distance before you actually race. Godspeed!
I apologize for the links not working. Please copy and paste into your web browser to see the following article:
August 29th, 2013
I recently started running some of the toughest hills on Long Island and I feel my running is improving. Here’s why:
The benefits of hill running:
1. Building strength – Hill running is a form of resistance training that builds up the muscles in your calves, quads, hamstrings, and glutes more than running on flat surfaces. Who doesn’t want that?!?!
2. Increase speed – Hill running uses the same muscles as sprinting. Strengthening these muscles will increase your speed.
3. Increase endurance – After incorporating hill runs in your training program for a couple of weeks, run one of your regular flat routes and you’ll see just how much easier it is to complete. Hill running will definitely work your cardiovascular system more than flat ground running which will translate into improved heart function.
4. Prevent boredom – Running on flat courses can get monotonous. Hills can prevent your workouts from being dull.
5. Reduced injury risk – People are under the impression that running hills regularly will lead to injury. Au contraire! As long as you ease hill running into your training and do not overdue it, hills will allow your leg muscles to become stronger which will considerably reduce the risk of suffering from running-related injuries.
6. Improve upper body strength – Uphill running forces you to drive your arms harder than you do when running on flat ground, so you’ll improve your upper body strength.
7. Building confidence – Regular hill training will help you boost your confidence for those intimidating races that have hills. Go out and kill that next race!
Godspeed to you all wherever your running adventures may take you. – Dr. Ken
August 5th, 2013
How many of you use a foam roller? If you do, then you probably have felt the torture but reaped the benefits of using one. However, do you really know why it helps?
Foam rolling is a type of self-myofascial release. As you are well aware, running is a repetitive activity and with long-term repetition comes wear & tear injuries to the body’s kinetic chains. The kinetic chain is made up of the soft tissue system (muscle, tendon, ligament, and fascia), neural system (nerves and CNS), and articular system (joints). The injury and repair cycle that occurs in the kinetic chain can cause a variety of problems including muscle tightness & imbalance, trigger points, sprains & strains, and inflammation & pain.
So, how do we counteract this wear, tear, and repair cycle? One easy way is by using a foam roller. By applying pressure to specific points on your body you are able to aid in the recovery of muscles and assist in returning them to normal function. Normal function means your muscles are elastic, healthy, and ready to perform at a moment’s notice.
If you have any questions about foam rolling including specific techniques, do not hesitate to ask us. Dr. Jim and myself are just a click or phone call away. You find our contact info on the top of any page on the Champion Performance website. – Dr. Ken
Here is a short but informative article regarding foam rolling (just cut & paste in your browser): http://www.runnersworld.com/injury-treatment/almost-magical-foam-roller
July 26th, 2013
Definition of over-training: Over-training is a physical, behavioral, and emotional condition that occurs when the volume and intensity of an individual’s exercise exceeds their recovery capacity. They cease making progress, and can even begin to lose strength and fitness. Over-training is a common problem in weight training, but it can also be experienced by runners and other athletes.
So, as you can see, over-training not only has a physical component but also a mental one. As many of you are well aware, exercise and training can be addicting due to it’s physiologic component. This is due to the natural endorphins and dopamine generated and regulated by exercise – also known as “runner’s high”. Therefore, it’s imperative to take the time to adjust your training schedule to allow for rest days to avoid physical injury and maintain mental freshness and clarity. – Dr. Ken
Take a look at this concise but informative article (copy and paste into your browser): http://www.nsmi.org.uk/articles/causes-sports-injuries/over-training.html
July 24th, 2013
We all know about the health benefits of running – both physical AND mental – but it may also cause repetitive strain on body parts and be a source of injury. By maintaining adequate flexibility and strength, you can limit your chances of suffering from running injuries. How do we do this? By incorporating different types of activities, such as cross-training, yoga, and core strengthening to name a few. For more information, read the article below (by copying and pasting into your web browser) or call/email/message Dr. Ken & Dr. Jim if you have any questions:
July 10th, 2013
Great article about breathing and how it relates to not only sport-specific activity but also everyday activity and function. Just copy and paste the link below into your browser.
Good stuff! – KN
July 8th, 2013
Core exercises train the muscles in your pelvis, lower back, hips and abdomen to work in harmony. This leads to better balance and stability, whether on the playing field or in daily activities. In fact, most sports and other physical activities depend on stable core muscles. Yes, this includes running! Click on the link to find out why. – Dr. Ken
June 26th, 2013
We have another hot & humid day. Be careful if you are doing any activity outdoors today. Here are some more “beat the heat” tips: