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RUN
INJURY FREE

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NIKE PERFORMANCE COUNCIL MEMBER DAVID MCHENRY, PT, DPT,
BREAKS DOWN THE MOST COMMON RUNNING INJURIES AND HOW TO PREVENT THEM.


Being sore after a long run or a really tough track session: Totally normal. Limping around
on one foot after an easy 3-miler: Err, not so much. Anyone who has ever been injured
knows there is a clear difference between an ache and a pain. But everyone—whether you're
a beginner or (knock on wood) an elite whose body never seems to break down—should
learn how to spot (and prevent) some of the most common running injuries, just in case.
So we asked Nike Performance Council Member David McHenry, PT, DPT, lead therapist
and strength coach for the Nike Oregon Project, to help break down the basics for us.

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WHAT TO LOOK FOR
"The most common issue among runners is overuse injuries, which are caused by too much
loading on a tissue (think 180 foot strikes per minute at loads of 3 to 5 times your body weight
with each foot strike) and too little recovery," says McHenry. The ones that seem to pop
up most are Plantar Fasciitis (inflammation of your plantar fascia, a thick band of tissue that
runs along the bottom of your foot and connects your heel bone to your toes; often causes
a stabbing pain in your foot in the mornings), Achilles Tendinitis (inflammation of your Achilles
tendon, which connects your calf muscles to your heel bone; creates pain along the back
of your leg, near your heel), IT Friction Syndrome (one of the most common causes of "Runner's
Knee," or pain above the outer part of your knee) and Tibialis Posterior Tendonitis (inflammation
of your posterior tibial tendon, which attaches your calf muscles to the bones on the inside of
your foot and holds up your arch; causes a flat foot, or lack of stability and support in your arch).

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SPOT IT
Generally, if there is a nagging ache, soreness and/or pain that doesn't get better
in 3 to 4 days of self care, it's likely that there's something going on that's more serious
than just a normal training irritation, notes McHenry. "All of the above injuries can be
classified as various types of tendonitis and often feel better when you're running
and worse (more stiff and achy) afterward or in the mornings. Swelling might also occur."
If you see signs of injury, consult your doctor and/or physical therapist immediately.

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PREVENT IT
You've heard it before, but we'll say it again: An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
To start, McHenry recommends you incorporate strength training into your routine.
Make progressive increases in your training volume (ie, don't go from running 10 miles one
week straight to logging 30 the next!): A good rule of thumb is to not increase your total mileage
by more than 10 percent each week. Take recovery—hydration, nutrition, sleep, stretching,
etc.—seriously. And last, but not least, be sure to rotate your running shoes out regularly.