Running is an exercise that’s supposed to keep you fit. Still, some runners, beginners and seasoned alike, miss the opportunity to maximize what running can do for them. If you’re a regular runner, be wary of some bad habits you might be getting into. Bad habits may hinder you from enjoying the benefits that you should be getting from running regularly.
Watch out for some of these bad habits that you might be practicing, otherwise the efforts you exert on working out regularly may just go to waste—or worse, it can lead to injuries that may prevent you from running.
It’s common for beginners to become fascinated with seasoned runner’s skills. This fascination or admiration can easily lead to wanting to be a seasoned runner as fast as they could. One of the bad habits runners have is doing too much too soon. Yes, you want to run as fast as you can, you want to be a pro when it comes to running, but don’t forget that even the best runners have started out as beginners. It took time and effort for them to master their running skills. Being in a hurry in developing your running skills can lead to injuries. Take one step at a time. The habit of trying to do too much too soon is common with experienced runners as well, especially those who are recovering from injuries. As much as it’s inviting to get back on track and get your former running pace back, you have to take it easy. Make sure that your priority is to fully recover from the injury. With sufficient time and proper practice, you’ll catch up to your old running pace.
Staying up late at night is another bad habit some runners follow. Getting enough sleep and rest is crucial to every runner as it aids in recovery and restoration of muscles from strenuous running. According to Ralph Downey, Ph.D., Chief of Sleep Medicine at California’s Loma Linda University Medical Center, “Sleep enhances the restoration of cells that are damaged from running.” Having adequate hours of sleep not only helps your body recover, but boosts your running performance as well.
If you’re planning on being a regular runner, you ought to know that you have to invest in the right shoes. The right pair of shoes doesn’t mean the most expensive ones; but choose a pair that suits you well and you’re most comfortable wearing. Wearing a pair of running shoes that do not protect your feet or do not fit you well may cause foot injuries.
Forgetting to wear sunscreen is also one of the common mistakes runners make. If you’re running outdoors, protect your skin from the sun by wearing sunscreen, even if the weather doesn’t seem sunny.
Another bad habit some runners practice is ignoring dull aches and pains. While it’s true that body aches and pains are an aftermath of running, watch out for pains that have lasted for more than two days. Don’t self-medicate by just drinking pain relievers, consult a health professional to prevent the injuries from getting worse.
Some runners also forget the importance of cooling down after running. Cooling down by walking or jogging after running helps the body recover more quickly.
Breaking bad running habits may be a challenge but once you’ve steered clear of them, it can be a great deal of help in improving and maximizing your running performance.