The winter holidays are just around the corner and a popular way to eat and drink as you please while not gaining weight is to run winter races. These races are a great way to burn off some calories to offset the fun ones. These races are most commonly 5k (3.1 miles) in distance. If you participate in a winter 5k this year be sure to take a few things into account before you toe the starting line:
- Make sure you train for the race! Although 5k is a moderately short distance to run, it is still not a distance I would recommend running without properly training for it. In the sport of running, injuries often occur when someone increases their weekly mileage too quickly or pushes their body to a distance that it is not trained to run.
- Dress for the weather. Here in the Midwest, the weather can change dramatically in as little as a day. With these races being held towards the end of November, temperatures can range from brisk to downright nasty. Take a moment to check the weather forecast in the days leading up to the race and be prepared for what Mother Nature has in store. Often, this means dressing in layers, possibly wearing gloves and a stocking hat and wearing shoes with good tread in case of wet or slippery conditions.
- WARM UP! One of the biggest mistakes a participant can make is showing up to the race right at race time and not giving themselves the proper time to warm up. Take some time before the race begins to get your muscles ready to perform.
This holiday, start your morning off with one of the many winter 5ks held around town. It is a great way to start the day and make some caloric space for an extra piece of pumpkin pie later. Just make sure that you do so safely!
If you have questions regarding local Turkey Trots, training for a 5K race, or how to warm up properly before a race, feel free to contact your Optimum Stride Physical Therapists at OrthoNebraska at (402) 609-1750.