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Sunday, June 5, 2011

Daily Fitness Tip: Stretching

Personal Experience

You are already aware that while training for the marathon last year I got injured in the Iliotibial Band. (The stretch I do now for that area is the second-to-last photograph in the "My Favorite Stretches" video in yesterday's Fitness Tip). This was due mainly to not streching adequately or enough. 

My training schedule consisted of short runs (2-5 miles) three days during the week, and fartlek (interval) training, with a long run on the weekend. For the long run I made sure to warm up properly and stretch but for the short runs and intervals I was lazy. All of this eventually wore down my body and as a result my knee suffered. 

Thinking back, I was extremely lucky that I didn't receive any more injuries. 
I was running, on average, 20 miles during the week. Plus whatever miles I'd run during the weekend. 

One reason I started yoga was to get back on track and to force myself out of my laziness. I get embarrassed in class when I can't do the positions (a post coming soon on my yoga classes!). It's good for me. It renews my commitment to taking care of myself. Streching has also been essential for my recovery. For at least four weeks all I was able to do was stretch. Honestly, what's the use of doing exercise if you're not at 100%?

In my workout regimen I incorporate 5 minutes of warm up on my static bike, followed by 8 minutes of stretches, and 8 minutes of stretching at the end. I admit I am not always strict with the cool down sessions but I do highly recommend them.

If this helped you leave a comment and let me know how it goes.

I hope you enjoyed your Daily Fitness Tip and will add it to your Recipe for Health

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