Marathon Training

It’s at this time of the year that we get an increase in running-related injuries to deal with. This is a combination of the evenings getting a little longer with less of an excuse to huddle indoors, and for those that are training for The Virgin London Marathon, the runs are getting longer. Problems, if they are going to, start to surface. Over the next nine weeks, as we commence the countdown to race day, I will post some snippets of Owl Wisdom based on common questions and injuries that I have dealt with  over the years, and years and years!!

Footwear is a biggy! I get asked about this lots….

Your footwear will certainly make a difference, particularly as you start to increase those miles. We see lots of runners come a cropper in the later stages of training either because they have allowed their running shoes to wear out so that they are no longer providing the support and shock absorption that they need, (remember to change your footwear every 150-300 mile, depending upon your weight, running style and your main running surface) or because they have the wrong shoe for their foot posture. Your running style along with the alignment of the lower leg and foot affects load through the lower limb. For those with a less than perfect alignment a shoe designed to help correct this is a worthwhile investment. Orthotics (insoles) may also be helpful to control excessive movement of the foot. However, be very wary of who you get advice from. Many running shops now offer a ‘foot analysis’ service. Make sure that they use a podiatrist to accurately assess you and beware of off the shelf orthotics and prescribed trainers from outlets that do not at least provide staff that have been trained by a podiatrist or a sports-based physio. Although the foot can appear to be maligned, the problem may not be coming from there at all, but from higher up the chain in the hip or pelvis for example.The wrong correction could increase load through your joints and cause rather than prevent injury. If you’re not sure, it’s best to go for a medium cushioned, neutral shoe.