Q&A with Catherine Reese, MD, CAQSM, Franciscan Health Sports Medicine specialist
My biggest tip is to give yourself plenty of time to train.
Plan: There are a lot of tools available, such as our free online training program., that can help you figure out an appropriate training schedule. Typically, you answer some questions about your current running ability, fitness level and type of race you want to do. A tailored program is then created for you. Just make sure you gradually increase your distance and include rest days.
10% rule: When adding distance, follow the 10% rule. Studies show that if you increase your distance more than 10% a week, you’re more likely to get injured.
Take breaks: Running 3 to 4 days a week is plenty. Take at least one day a week off and instead add cross-training, such as cycling or swimming, to avoid overusing the same muscles.
Listen to your body: If you’re having a lot of pain, slow down or stop and see if it goes away. If not, see a doctor.