Many people are unfortunate enough to experience pain while running. This can end your run for the day or even months. There are some simple things you can do to prevent injury while running. I will give a list of things you can do to reduce your injury rate drastically.
Proper form is key if you want to get rid of pain while running. Make sure you have light footsteps and do not land on the heel of your foot, rather land on your mid-foot. This will most definitely take some getting used to. This can save you from pain in the knee. Slamming your heel into the ground will cause pain in the kneecap whereas light steps on the mid-foot are much less stressful to bones. Standing up straight is also good to do while running. This probably will not alleviate any pain but it will help your running. This is my go to site on how to have proper form.
Before every run you should go on a very light, slow, warm up. This should be around a half a mile but it depends on your workout. The warm up is essentially just to get the juices flowing and loosen your muscles so you don’t strain them during the workout. Only after the warm up should you stretch. The stretching will be much more beneficial to you if your muscles are warmed up and loose.
A lot of people probably roll their eyes when I say this but it is so important. I cannot say that enough. You must stretch before all your runs and do some stretching after. Before your runs get your hamstrings, quads, calves and any other parts that are sore. When you stretch it should come after the warm up but we are still getting to that. Stretching will prevent pulled muscles and also can help alleviate knee pain. If you experience pain on the side of your knee you might have a tight IT band. The IT band is the outside of your leg. A great way to get rid of knee pain is to use a foam roller on your IT band. I had some knee problems this year and with a few days of rolling I was good as new. Stretching will also increase your range in motion, which will increase your efficiency as a runner.
You can save yourself from a week of injury from taking a day off. Common sense is key when preventing injury. Know your limits and don’t push yourself to far. If you start to feel pain make sure you ice when you get home and either take it easy the next day or just don’t run. For you beginner runners make sure you ease into distance. You don’t just want to start running 30 miles a week with no training. Slowly inch your way up to the desired mileage. Patience is key, add a few miles to your weekly distance each week. E.g. 10 miles week 1, 15 week 2 and so on.