Ready, Set … Run!


ORLANDO, Fla. (Ivanhoe Newswire) — Running works out your heart and body but can do a number on your feet and legs. More than 50 percent of regular runners will get hurt each year, however there are ways you can protect yourself. Find out the details on what can help.

Ready. Set. Go! Running is one of the most effective and inexpensive ways to work out the body. But whether you’re a marathon runner or a beginner, proper preparation before and after running is crucial. One of the biggest mistakes runners make is doing too much too soon.

“You can’t just run 20 miles and expect your body to actually say ‘hey that was great, let’s just do it again tomorrow,’” explained Gina Pongetti, MPT, MA, CSCS, Achieve Orthopedic Rehab Institute Sports Medicine.

Instead follow the ten percent rule, where you increase your mileage no more than ten percent each week. Also choosing shoes for style over fit and comfort can damage your feet. Eighty-five percent of people are wearing the wrong running shoe size, causing blackened toenails and the increased risk for ankle and knee injuries. Make sure your big toe is at least half an inch from the front of the shoe. You may want to go up a size or two from casual shoes to get a proper fit. And most importantly hydrate, before, during, and after running. Proper hydration now means a better workout tomorrow.

“The next day when you work out, you will actually be able to put more energy into the workout as opposed to the body still residually recovering from the day before,” Pongetti continued.

Getting the new year started off on the right foot.

Want some motivation to start running? Three good apps are: COUCH TO 5K, MAPMYRUN, and RUNKEEPER. All provide motivational features to keep you going. The DJ feature in the app RUNKEEPER even finds music on your phone to match your running speed.

Contributors to this news report include: Milvionne Chery, Producer; and Roque Correa, Editor. 

REPORT #2818

BACKGROUND: Regular physical activity is one of the most important things you can do for your health. No matter your age, ability, ethnicity, shape, or size, everyone can experience benefits from physical activity. Regular physical activity can help keep your thinking, learning, and judgment skills sharp as you age. It can also reduce your risk of depression and anxiety and help you sleep better. Both diet and physical activity play a critical role in maintaining a healthy body weight, losing excess body weight, or maintaining successful weight loss. Regular physical activity can help lower your blood pressure, improve cholesterol levels, and reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome. It’s also known that aerobic, muscle-strengthening, and bone-strengthening physical activity can slow the loss of bone density that comes with age. Finally, science shows that physical activity can reduce your risk of dying early from leading causes of death, like heart disease and some cancers.


ADVANTAGES AND DISADVANTAGES: Jogging has a number of benefits for the body and mental health, but it can lead to injuries. Because running is a repetitive, weight-bearing exercise, it causes injury in many cases. According to an estimate by experts at the Cleveland Clinic, the sport causes an injury in 60 percent of all joggers at some point. Certain factors, such as not wearing the right running shoes, can make runners more prone to injury. Shoes help cushion the impact when your foot lands on the ground. But according to osteopath Jessica Zarndt from the University of California, Los Angeles, the most common reason joggers injure themselves is because they are doing “too much too fast”. Most overuse injuries can be overcome with rest, ice, and pain relievers like aspirin or ibuprofen. However, running can help strengthen your bones and muscles, improve your cardiovascular health, and maintain a healthy weight. The sport also helps your psyche. When you run, your body releases endorphins, which are considered happiness hormones.


LOOKING BEYOND: Exercise isn’t just a physical activity. It’s becoming more known to boost your mood, improve your sleep, and help you deal with depression, anxiety, and stress. It’s a powerful medicine for many common mental health challenges. Studies show that exercise can treat mild to moderate depression as effectively as antidepressant medication, but without the side-effects. A study done by the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health found that running for 15 minutes a day or walking for an hour reduces the risk of major depression by 26%. Exercise is a natural and effective anti-anxiety treatment that relieves tension and stress, boosts physical and mental energy, and enhances well-being through the release of endorphins. Physical activity immediately boosts the brain’s dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin levels—all of which affect focus and attention. Evidence suggests that by really focusing on your body and how it feels as you exercise, you can actually help your nervous system become “unstuck” and begin to move out of the immobilization stress response that characterizes PTSD or trauma. Every little bit of activity is better for you than none.


* For More Information, Contact:

Lisa Stafford, Public Relations

Free weekly e-mail on Medical Breakthroughs from Ivanhoe. To sign up: