Protecting your feet is not only essential to efficient and pain-free running, but also realistic to achieve with four preventative considerations. Feet are susceptible to injury and pain, especially when they carry your body weight.
Here are 4 reasons why your feet need to recover:
To prevent injury
It’s very likely that more runners than not fall victim to injury. But most injuries can be prevented as long as you give your feet the chance to recover properly.
- Warm up before running – make sure you’re including slow, purposeful stretches that stretch out the muscles in your calves, ankles and foot.
- Cool down properly – again, making sure you stretch out your muscles
- Don’t over train – don’t push yourself beyond your capabilities. You need to train to get up to a certain level of fitness, but if you push yourself too hard, then you risk getting injured and setting yourself back.
Wearing the right shoes is key to preventing injury. The wrong shoe with the wrong support can make you prone to all type of injuries, from small ones like blisters to major ones like ankle pain.
To prevent re-injury
If you don’t recover properly after injury, you’re more likely to be prone to more injury, whether the same one or a different problem.
If you have injured yourself, you need to treat the problem correctly. If it’s a ligament or muscle strains, treat your injury and pain with ice packs or ice baths and with plenty of rest. Depending on the type of injury, you need to look at compressing your foot and keeping it elevated.
The important thing is not the train again until your injury has healed! That’s not to say you have to sit and rest the whole time: switch to a different exercise to keep you moving. Swimming is a great choice as it gives less pressure to your feet while still keeping active.
If you’re back to training, then you need to train smart. Start by following a training plan that slowly eases you back onto the running track. Each cycle of training needs to build on what you’ve done before, so long as your foot has shown signs of recovery. Ideally, this program would be designed and built for you by a podiatrist who understands your injury and can advise on what to avoid and what best to do to get you back into shape without causing more injuries.
To get stronger
Resting is so important for healing and recovery. If you’ve been injured and been told to recover, then it might be tough to just sit it out after you’ve been working out with a goal in mind. Getting out of shape should be the least of your worries: you need to sit this out to get stronger.
You might have even gotten the advice that you should “work through” your pain; that to rest is to be lazy. When really, it’s quite the opposite: to value your strength and to not to backwards in your training, rehabilitation has to be the path you take. You have to heal in order to maintain your fitness and strength, before you can start to make it better.
To avoid ongoing typical foot problems
We know that feet are a hard part of the body to rest. You literally need them everyday! It’s impossible to just decide to rest and stay immobile without having the rest of your life be affected. That being said, understanding that you’ve got to recover and making that easier for yourself is the best way to avoid ongoing foot problems or repetitive injuries occurring.
What are some common foot and toe problems? Other than pain – which is pretty bad enough! – you’ve got blisters, scar tissue, reduced mobility, athlete’s feet, bunions, ingrown toenails, plantar fasciitis, and a heap more.
Support your feet with the right shoes
You still need to be active while you’re recovering. So support your feet with shoes that assist with absorbing shock after every step, providing arch support with its recovery foam moulding to the shape of your foot.
Support your heels and arches by wearing podiatrist-designed casual wear. Designed to be worn after exercise, the new ReGen Slide and Thong both have footbeds that absorb shock and does more for your arch support.