Running injuries

Whilst this blog was on hiatus one thing I ended up doing quite a bit was some outdoor training. Most of the work done was cardio based and naturally incorporated a fair amount of running. Pretty soon I found out that I wasn't much of a runner and faced two immediate problems. Shin splints were my first nemesis, I started getting them mostly in my right leg and only 15-20 minutes into my training. This, for me, ended up being a quick one to fix and it all went away with a new pair of correctly fitted shoes. Apparently my right foot rolls out a bit whilst my left is fairly flat.

The second problem relates to stitches, both in the middle of my chest but especially on my right side. I googled, as one would, and found out that there's the lucky ones who don't really ever get stitches, and then there's the rest of us. It was good to know that I wasn't alone! I came across a site that lists 25 body hacks (very geeky, I know), including this gem:

During or after a run, some people will occasionally get a "side stitch." This pain in the side is generally a product of exhaling as the right foot hits the ground, thus putting downward pressure on the liver and causing it to pull on the diaphragm. To avoid side stitches, exhale as your left foot hits the ground during runs.

Well that explains it fairly well the why bit and how to avoid it. I have also found that not taking in as much water in the hour leading up to training and also doing a stretch to the left also helps quite a bit. I put this to the test a couple of weeks ago for an 8km fun run and am happy to say that it did work for me! It was the first time I ran that distance without stopping and had a personal best time of 41 minutes 45 seconds!