Falling into a rut on occasions happens to even the most dedicated runner. Whether it’s a case of becoming dissatisfied with your current routine or an injury that’s put you out of practice, it’s all too easy to let motivation fall by the wayside if you find yourself trapped in a situation that doesn’t seem like it’s going to change any time soon.
Many people, unsurprisingly, find themselves stuck in a rut following an injury which has disrupted their running routine. As your muscles become de-conditioned, it can seem like an insurmountable challenge to take the steps needed to get that running regime back on track.
But all is not lost. Here at Wimbledon Clinics, we offer a specially designed Return to Running programme to make breaking out of that rut just a little bit easier. Stacey Baker, Treatment Coordinator at Wimbledon Clinics, found herself out of action and dreaming of return to running after a car accident left her with a broken collar bone and no choice but to take a step back from the activity. She was offered the opportunity to take part in the Return to Running programme, so we spoke to her to gain some first-hand insights…
Stacey found herself stuck in a rut after an accident which left her unable to run during recovery. When she was finally ready to run again, she realised her level of fitness and muscle strength had decreased to the point where she began having pains in her knee as she tried to get back into the sport. The anxiety this pain caused when she would attempt to run began to cause such negative associations with running that she ended up avoiding it more and more, despite harbouring a desire to return to the activity she had so enjoyed before her accident.
The Return to Running programme successfully broke her out of her rut. She underwent an analysis of her gait as well as her running style whilst being observed on a treadmill – this ascertained whether there were any flaws in her technique which could potentially lead to issues with her knee or provoke further discomfort. She was advised on the correct trainers for her feet and added insoles to provide support for her high instep.
Stacey was given a thorough biomechanical assessment by one of the clinic’s specialist physiotherapists in order to provide the running coach with detailed information about her muscles and body which needed strengthening. She also met with a dietician who analysed her diet and provided advice on the best types of food and when to eat them to ensure maximum results from the programme, whilst also providing the proper nutrition for her muscles to recover.
The running coach, a qualified personal trainer, was then able to put together a bespoke running and exercise programme, specifically tailored to meet Stacey’s individual requirements. She found her coach “approachable and supportive” and praised the flexibility of the programme which could be adapted depending on her needs. For example, when her knee gave a few twinges, the strength training that accompanied the running was increased to ensure the necessary muscle groups would be able to handle the load they were taking. The plan progressed over a couple of months and now running is back in her life and strength and conditioning training have been built into her exercise regime.
As well as receiving professional help to get you safely back into running, you might want to try a few other routes to break out of your own personal rut. You could try:
- Mixing up your running route.
- Shortening your journey – instead of focusing on miles, challenge yourself to complete the circuit faster.
- Signing up for a new event or alternatively, place a ban on events for a period of time if the routine of training is leaving you cold.
- Mix up your workouts and incorporate other, novel activities into your exercise regime.
- Run socially – just being with others is highly motivating and can be a lot more fun.
If you need assistance to break out of your running rut and would like more information on the programmes and treatments, please speak to one our Treatment Coordinators on 0208 944 0665 or email: [email protected].