There are many of you who are winding down on you training season, and many who are training for fall races. In our day and age of technological gadgets we use watches, GPS devices, heart rate monitors, and many other devices. They can help you determine if you are in a zone, keeping pace, and going far enough for your training.
This can be helpful for beginning runners to know they are training appropriately for a new distance. They can help the seasoned runner know if they are maintaining a certain level or if they are improving. However, I have a challenge for you. Take one run per week (only one) and just go for a run. Listen to your breathing and how the run is feeling in your body.
If you feel good and want to push it go a little faster or a little further. If your body is recovering from your last run and is feeling like you need to slow down, do it. There has been much research done about perceived exertion and how accurate this can be in determining the level you are exercising at (compared to a heart rate monitor). I recently did this and remembered why I love to run. Enjoy being outdoors and exercising to help both your mental and physical being. I found it made me look forward to my next run.
As a Physical Therapist, many of the running injuries I see are from over training issues. If we occasionally take the time to listen our bodies will tell us what we are capable of doing and we may be able to avoid pushing into an injury. These technological advances have a purpose and can help you achieve your goals, but also listen to what your body is telling you. So go for a run and have fun!
Kristi Moore, MSPT
Alpine Physical Therapy, North
2965 Stockyard Rd.
Missoula, MT 59808