Running is the ultimate exercise for overall fitness in terms of weight management and body toning. It may seem simple enough for you to just get up and get started, but once you get regular there's a few things to keep in mind to enjoy the running bliss:
1. Level Up Progressively
After the first few highs of a good run, the enthusiasm may convince you to pile on the stats in your fitness tracker. Don't do it, because that will cause a physical overload on your body which will lead to minor aches and pains in your feet, knees, hips and lower back. The generally accepted good idea is to increase your distance by 10-15% each week and keep track of how your body responds to it. It works differently for everyone so you'll need to identify what balance of running duration, pace and frequency suits your body.
2. Have the right tools
Buying shoes as a runner is very different from just buying running shoes. The good looking ones could end up hurting your feet and body. It is crucial to get perfectly fitting running shoes, and don't worry if it takes you while to find the right treads. It would be ideal to take the help of a professional trainer or go to specialty stores for running gear. Some feet require special make and build of the sole of the shoe, so check with a podiatrist should the need arise. This helps to know exactly which kind of shoes to ask for the next time you buy a pair.
3. It's not me, it's them
Quite often, it is not the running that is aggravating your feet but the rest of your footwear choices. Lace up shoes offer more support than loafers and fit better too. Also, wearing rubber soled dress shoes that offer more cushion is a better pick than the hard soled ones. Ladies, you need to be very careful about how often you wear those heels, as they are the worst for your feet and responsible for all sorts of trouble from aches to blisters. There's a reason why podiatrists say heels should be made illegal.
4. Dealing with Blisters
For something so small, a blister can keep you off the running track for quite some time. The right shoes and the right socks help, but run enough and inevitably you'll have one. Taking proper care in this scenario can make the difference between a mild annoyance and few weeks of down-time. No matter what, don't pop it! Just clean it well and pad around the spot to ease the pressure. If you do pop it, bandage immediately with an antibiotic cream but don't remove the skin.
5. Cooling off
Your feet take a real walloping while running, so doing stretches and massages after a long run is very important to keep avoid aches and speed up the recovery. Ice baths work amazingly well on sore feet, the cold water reduces muscle soreness and allows you to maintain performance levels even after a high-intensity long run.
Foot care is a big deal for runners! What are some of the ways you take care of yours?