Since I posted about my strength training routine the other night I thought I would write a post about the other non-running routine that is a regular part of my training. As with my strength training routine I also have a stretching and mobility routine that I follow twice per week.
Part of my routine involves yoga stretches that do not require any extra gear. The rest of the routine involves gear that I have accumulated over the past few years…
There you can see my foam roller, roller massager stick, ProStretch and foot massage ball. The foam roller is great for massaging and stretching most leg muscles. I make use of all of these tools throughout the week when I am in a training cycle.
The roller massager stick is great for hitting my calf muscles and is more portable than the foam roller. The ProStretch is great for stretching my calf and hamstring muscles and also stretches the muscles in my feet. Finally, the foot massage ball is something I received in a Stridebox last year has seen so much use it is no longer round and has warped itself into more of an oval shape.
I find this routine to be as important to my training as my strength training routine. I think it has helped my recover and prevent injury.
Do you include stretching as a regular element of your trading routine?
With Christmas fast approaching I decided to put together a list of ideas for the runner on your list. Here are some of my suggestions:
- Books are a great idea. There are many good books on running out there. Here is a list of suggestions I put together, some I have already read and others that I want to read. You could also get them a subscription to their favourite running magazine like Canadian Running or Runner’s World.
- Energy bars and gels make for great stocking stuffers since runners are always looking for carbs to fuel their runs. I like GU Roctane gels and Clif Bars. If you are looking to get them something different check out these new gel options made with maple syrup – Endurance Tap and Untapped.
- With winter approaching wamr gear is a must in many places now. If you know a runner like me who is often misplacing them gloves are a great option. You can find several options here.
- Injury prevention and recovery are very important for runners. I have the following items that have been very useful in helping me recover from long runs and precent injury – a foam roller, a Pro-Tec Roller Massager which is great for calf muscles and a Prostretch Plus which is useful for stretching tight hamstrings and calf muscles.
- Finally, if you are out of other ideas a race entry. Whether it is a local race or an out of town race in a location you want to visit a race entry would be appreciated by any runner on your list.
That is just a short list for now. i may add to it if I think of anything else to add as Christmas approaches.
What would be on your wishlist?
It is time once again for another edition of Saturday Stories, a collection of some of my favourite stories and blog posts from the past week. As always, if you came across anything you feel is worthy of mention here feel free to post a link below.
Here are this week’s stories…
A reminder about the importance of sleep with regards to training and performance.
A review about one of my current favourite shoes, the New Balance RC 1400.
A post about the beauty of training.
A post about the benefits of foam follers for recovery.
Today was a scheduled day of rest for me. It comes at a good time as the new #runchat challenge announced today is a cross training challenge. For that reason I am going to write about tonight’s cross training.
To start off the day I initially planned to get in an easy bike ride this morning. This is something I have been doing on my rest days for the past two weeks. However, I was too tired when the alarm first went off this morning so I decided to get more sleep.
As a result, my cross training this evening involved a series of stretching. My current stretching routine involves going through the “10 best yoga poses for runners”. I found these exercises online earlier this year and have been using them regularly since. The exercises have certainly helped improved the flexibility in my legs.
The second series of exercises I used tonight was this series of pilates moves for runners which my wife found for me in an article on the Runners World website. Tonight I took the time to go through each one after I did the previously mentioned yoga stretches.
To top it off tonight, I got out the foam roller and rolled my legs to finish off my stretching for the evening. My quads and it bands seemed to need it the most tonight.
What forms of cross training do you incorporate into your training?
Sensing it was about time for a new pair of shoes as my current pair of new Balance 860 now has over 600 km on it my plan for Sunday was to grab a new pair.
Unfortunately, for whatever reason, they were soldout in my size and I had to have the store order me a pair. Of course that means using my current pair which are now past their prime.
The result is less cushioning and aches in my joints that I usually don’t feel. For example, tonight’s run left me with a bit of stiff knee likely a combination of my worn down shoes and the fact that I have been neglecting to use my foam roller on my legs.
Getting back to using the foam roller regularly and replacing my current pair of shoes will be key to helping me take care of the aches in my joints and help me avoid a recurrence of the ITB problems I had a few years ago.
How often do you replace your shoes? What else do you do to try and prevent injuries?