Sports Science Tips for Runners
By Dr. David Cosman in Hong Kong
Frequently Encountered Running Problems
Muscle cramps can be prevented with hydration that includes sufficient calcium and magnesium. Muscles should be supple or flexible to a degree through warm up and stretching, and by having good fascia integrity.
Some cramps might be compensations of old injuries and old fascial adhesions (even from very old fractures or surgeries, or blame can lay with dehydration from alcohol, caffeine and other diuretics.
Cramps and fascial adhesions can also originate from prolonged posture such as sitting at work or laying in bed while ill. Receiving treating only at the site of pain commonly misses the big picture and the root cause of the injury.
Topping up with food, drink and minerals is a runners’ faux pas. Race on the same good habits that your body is accustomed to during training. Don’t shock your body at the starting line with something that your body doesn’t need yet, like sodium and potassium.
I would & I wouldn’t:
I wouldn’t pop a blister if I am 200 miles in the bush with limited medical supplies. I wouldn’t drink the water from a stream in paradise unless I boiled it first. I wouldn’t use new shoes or new orthotics for long runs or for races.
I would enjoy running and not let that word get in my head prematurely, and that word is “race”. I would race when I am truly ready and wise. I wouldn’t hang my hat on every article that I read in running magazines. I would consult with coaches and running doctors/therapists. I would stick to the plan.
Recipes for success:
Master the technique. Find your running rhythm in the warm up of each run.
Hydration is something that you get down and keep up before race-day.
Implement a body and mind maintenance program.
Plan your training and stick to a well thought out racing strategy.