I really need to be stretching more, both before and after my runs. Over the past few months, my distance running has led to some pretty irritated hamstrings, and as a result my pace is affected. I have really spent some time doing some research on the best stretches that I should be doing to help the cause. I have found a lot of useful information during my research, and have incorporated simple and more complex stretching into my daily routines.
I am not one to spend fifteen minutes just doing a series of stretches, as I find this incredibly boring. What I have done however, is incorporate several hamstring stretches into my daily routines. I turn normal activities like sitting on the couch into a stretch. Instead of laying my legs to the side, I sit up straight and prop my legs up on the coffee table. I lean slightly forward and do mini stretches while watching TV. Or, while playing a game on my IPad, or while blogging, I stand up straight, and bend at the hip, stretching my hammies while typing away while the IPad is on the countertop. I find that doing stretches while I make my way through the day doing regular activities makes the stretching more tolerable.
I found that as I age, my aches and pains associated with running are becoming more frequent. Hard effort usually results in more lengthy recovery time. I can’t just lace up and run like those young 20 somethings do. I don’t just walk away from a run or race feeling non-affected. I need recovery, and stretching has really helped. I just need to continue to put focus on this.
My birthday is coming up this weekend, and guess what? I don’t have a foam roller. I’ve only ever used one once. Are you a believer in foam rollers? What can you share about your experiences with them, and is there one that you would recommend? Do they really help? Do you think it would help with my hamstrings? Maybe I need put one on my wish list. Please share…..