Running Injury Essentials

Unfortunately I’ve struggled with a few injuries during my running life, mostly a result of imbalances in my body brought to light by increasing the amount of exercise I do. While the most important way to deal with these injuries is to address the root cause of the problem, there are a few essential items I swear by to help me recover quicker, be in less pain, and reduce the likelihood of a recurrence.

Running Injury Essentials

Ice pack

 

I have this one from Amazon– it comes with a cloth cover with velcro fastening so you can attach it around your leg, foot, knee, arm whatever needs icing! I just keep it in the freezer all the time so it’s ready when I need it, although you can apparently heat it up for warm therapy too. Applying ice after long runs helps with recovery, and icing an injury will reduce inflammation and speed up healing.

Running Injury Essentials for Prevention and Treatment

Rocktape Kinesiology Tape


ROCKTAPE is a premium brand of kinesiology tape, which is used to treat injuries and pain. When the tape is applied with stretch it can be used to support areas which have been strained or weakened, and when applied with no stretch it decompresses the tissue under the skin. This allows swelling to go down, increases blood flow bringing oxygen and nutrients for healing, and causes less pressure on nerve endings thereby reducing pain.

Running Injury Essentials for Prevention and Treatment
I promise I am wearing shorts in this picture…

There are plenty of videos which show you how to apply the tape for various different injuries, and I’ve found it invaluable in helping me to still run/walk with problem knees and other issues. ROCKTAPE is one of the best brands I’ve found as it stays on for several days, even with showering.

Supplements


These aren’t necessarily essentials but there has been much evidence that suggests there are certain supplements that can help those who exercise regularly and who are therefore prone to joint problems.

I’ve recently been taking these two supplements (not together as they’re basically the same thing), which contain glucosamine and chondroitin.

 

Running Injury Essentials for Prevention and Treatment

Glucosamine is a naturally occurring nutrient and is a major component of cartilage which is the body tissue used to absorb impact and cushion our joints when we move. IN Rebuild also contains CMO (Cetyle Myristoleate) which stimulates the production of new bone and tissue growth and has achieved amazing results in alleviating the symptoms of osteo and rheumatoid arthritis and a host of other chronic conditions.

I can’t say I’ve noticed any amazing results from taking these supplements, but it is hard to tell. I was struggling with niggling knee and IT band problems in the run up to Brighton Half and on the day had minimal pain and managed to run a PB! Since then I’ve recovered well and had no pain at all, so it can’t hurt to keep taking them!

Natural Hero products

I love the Natural Hero Hot Ginger Muscle Rub for after easing tired muscles after a workout. The ginger root creates natural warmth which helps to alleviate muscle stiffness and fatigue. Their Cool Peppermint Muscle Spritz delivers the opposite effect, creating an instant cooling sensation that can be used to help ease trouble spots that need a bit of extra help to recover or get going- I’ve used it on my knees quite a lot!

Running Injury Essentials for Prevention and Treatment

 

Self Massage


Whether you use a foam roller, tennis ball, or the ominously named “The Stick“, self massage or self-myofascial release is an important part of running recovery.

Running Injury Essentials for Prevention and Treatment

By using the foam roller to apply pressure to trigger points on your body, you are able to aid in the recovery of muscles and assist them in returning to normal function. Working out the knots helps to re-establish proper movement patterns meaning that you can perform better and avoid injury.

How to foam roll correctly:

  • Apply moderate pressure to a specific muscle using the roller and your bodyweight.
  • Roll slowly and when you find areas that are tight or painful, pause for several seconds and try to relax.
  • Rolling or working on tight/sore muscles is painful! But it should be uncomfortable, like the pain you get while stretching, not unbearable and when you are done it should feel better.
  • Never roll a joint or bone, and avoid rolling your lower back or neck as these areas can be more sensitive and require professional attention.
Running Injury Essentials for Prevention and Treatment
Photo courtesy of Leah- foam rolling at Spitfire Scramble!
I use The Grid foam roller, which is ridged allowing you to control the intensity (apologies if that sounds a little dodgy!). It is sturdy so doesn’t squash over time like the solid foam ones, and as it’s hollow it means you can pack it easily into your luggage buy filling the inside with clothes!



What are your injury essentials- both for prevention and treatment?

Beki x

*items sent to me for review. All opinions my own.

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  1. Georgina March 26, 2015 / 10:32 am

    Great kit bag! I've got a massage stick too, brilliant for self massage. I'd also recommend taping two tennis balls together to make an 8 shape, you can roll your back or either side of ITB with this really nicely, and a resistance band to do banded walks and clam etc.

  2. carla March 26, 2015 / 10:32 am

    I neeeeed the stick for my racewalking rehab!

  3. Susie Suzlyfe March 26, 2015 / 10:42 am

    Love Rock Tape–by far my favorite of the KT tapes!. I think that the best thing for injury prevention is indeed just that–preventative measures, like doing PT work to strengthen your stabilizers and work on activation. But having a good hot/cold pack, foam roller, lacrosse ball, and KT tape never hurts!

  4. I have the Enso roller and the Rumble roller, I love them both for different body parts although I admit I do not roll as often as I should. I haven't had to use rock tape, but I do have some just in case!

  5. Scallywag Sprints March 26, 2015 / 2:23 pm

    I have a foam roller; resistance band; and take joint supplements. Honestly my no 1 thing for injury prevention is strength training!

  6. Angela March 26, 2015 / 9:16 pm

    Ahhhh foam roller my new best friend!!

  7. Maria March 27, 2015 / 8:41 am

    I like foam rolling although I prefer the smooth ones to the bumpy ones as I found the bumpy one didn't get to the right parts of the muscles no matter how many times I rotated it.
    That ice pack is a great idea- I have some deep freeze gel which I use after long runs, and compression socks to put on after too, which help hugely.

  8. Beki Cadd March 27, 2015 / 8:44 am

    Oooh yeah resistance bands are great! You can use them for stretching too, such as seated forward fold to stretch your hamstrings, if you can't reach your toes! 🙂

  9. Beki Cadd March 27, 2015 / 8:44 am

    You are so right Susie 🙂 I definitely need to work on strengthening certain areas- you don't realise how unbalanced you are until you start running!

  10. Beki Cadd March 27, 2015 / 8:45 am

    Ah I forgot to include compression socks! I definitely find they help too 🙂

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