Whether or not running was the source of your foot or ankle injury, getting back into a running routine after weeks or months of being sidelined with an injury can be a difficult process. You’re going to want to jump back in your regular routine, but if you’re not careful, you can wind up back in the doctor’s office because you suffered another injury. In today’s blog, we’re going share some tips for safely getting back into a running routine after a foot or ankle injury.
Running Again After Injury
Here are some tips to keep in mind when transitioning back into a running routine after an ankle or foot injury.
1. Take It Slow – First and foremost, you’re going to need to ease into a running routine. If you were running for five miles prior to your injury, set your sights much lower with a mile or two. See how your injury and your body responds, because all body systems are going to need time to get back into the swing of things. If something hurts, cut your run short. Setting these expectations low is a good way to avoid frustration and potential injury as you ease back into a routine.
2. Consider a Treadmill – Most people prefer running in nature, but a treadmill provides some unique benefits. For starters, you know that you’ll always be stepping on a flat surface, which can help keep your ankles stable if you’re getting over an injury like a severe ankle sprain or ligament damage. It also means that if you have to cut your run short, you’re not far away from home. At least for the first few runs, consider jumping on a treadmill.
3. Take Stretching Seriously – Stretching allows your muscles and ligaments time to transition from a resting state to an active state, and that’s very important if your activity levels have been limited recently because of your injuries. If you don’t take time to help your muscles stretch before activity, you’re at an increased risk for strains and sprains. Before your run, give yourself at least five minutes to stretch.
4. Pay Attention To Your Injury – Finally, make sure that you are paying close attention to your injury site and seeing how it responds to activity. If something just doesn’t feel right, shut it down. There’s no need to suffer a significant setback because you were too eager to run again. There are other ways to exercise and stay active that don’t involve as much direct pressure on your feet if you’re still not healthy enough to run. Consider biking, swimming or walking until your injury no longer affects you when running.