Posted by: Armand | May 7, 2010

Stretching

There are a lot of things I want to write about on this blog – as with everything I do, I have added a layer of geekery and obsession to my new running habit. Expect posts on running technology, clothing, New Balance trainers, iPhone apps, music choices, route planning, fitness development, muscle tone, core stability and more… but the one that’s really getting me at the moment is the simple stretch.

I really suck at stretching. I lack the patience and the self-awareness to feel the stretch in the relevant muscles, and so I tend to spend a couple of minutes making what could only be called a token gesture towards stretching before jogging off, and another minute or two at the end dealing with whatever cramps or tightness I’ve acquired.

This week, it went a bit wrong after a 5-mile pre-work jog a couple of days ago, and so now I find myself, cramp-calfed and in search of a stretching routine.

This chap maintains that pre-run stretching is pointless (true?) but does have a number of tips for cool-down stretches that I will try tomorrow after a 10k run (I’m going to shoot for 15k on Sunday, my longest distance yet). I’m hoping that introducing a ‘routine’ to it will give me something to work through…

Anyone else got any good tips? It feels like my muscle tightness, not my overall aerobic fitness, is the biggest barrier to my speed at the moment, and if I have any hope of completing the half marathon in under two hours I’m going to need to sort this out…

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Responses

  1. Pre-run stretching worse than pointless, you do run the risk of damage. Always stretch warm muscles.

    Flexibility will help with base speed a little as your stride opens up, but speedwork will probably get you bigger gains.

    With the cycling you’re doing pay paticular attention to hamstrings.

  2. […] I stretch before I run? No. I’ve talked about this before – the wisdom of Sensei Paul and others is validated by a new US study, which shows that […]


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