Thursday, May 3, 2007

Question:

I have decided to become a runner.

Yes, this is crazy talk, i understand that, but i will do it nonetheless.

I've been doing good so far, but i am not sure what stretches are best for runners. I don't want to accidentally overlook a part of my body that i am not used to stretching. Also... how long do you stretch? I want to know what is recommended, and how long everyone actually stretches. I've seen people at the gym "stretching," but they are just striking poses. Does everyone do this? Am i going to be ridiculed for thorough stretching?

3 comments:

mcbc said...

So, this is bloggerspace. It's kind of cozy. You feel like you can write anything you want and really only people that want to listen to you will read it. How comforting. Congrats on the decision to enter the running world. It's full of many differnt people, and about as many theories and strategies. Stretching is important, and before you run you should stretch, but you don't need to stretch too long. Before a run, you need to "loosen up" most people can acheive this by walking or slowly jogging for a few minutes (read 5) before they start their workout. It is likewise important to stretch after your run, and this should last minimum 10 minutes. If you are stretching by yourself you can do 5-6 stretches in that amount of time. I would suggest stretching with a partner, where you each stretch each other, it is MUCH better.

Muscles that are a must stretch:
quads
hip flexors
adductors
hamstrings
calves
glutes

That should cover it, also throw some arms in there from all that extra swinging.

Amanda said...

I've never stretched with a partner. After I run, I stretch (in this order) my calves by leaning on something and pushing my heel back, then my hip flexor by bringing up my heel and siting down, then my quads by putting my foot into my hand and doing the dancer's pose. Repeat with other leg. Then I sit on the ground and do some forward folds, and twists flow style.
I dislike running very much, but I do it because if I get nothing else done that day, I can say to myself, 'at least I went running.'

Tara said...

According to my training in this area:
5-10 minutes warm up is best slowly increasing speed. You don't need to stretch first, infact according to research you can do more harm than good in streaching before your muscles are warm. You can find great pictures and directions on-line of stretches you can do...you can also use the fitness center staff you can demo some stretches for you. You want to hold each stretch for 10-20 seconds for best results. Remember stretching shouldn't be painful, you could damage your muscles. Also taking the time for stretching after running will be of great benifit so don't skip it just because others think that a couple of poses will be fine, improved flexibility will benefit you for the rest of your life!