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Ease back into your outdoor fitness regimen to avoid injury

It’s finally nice outside and warm enough to suit up for the season’s first run, bike or whatever activity you enjoy. But before you peel out of your front door, keep these tips in mind to avoid injuring yourself just as you are starting to get back into action:

Don’t overdo it. Doing too much, too soon, too fast is a surefire way to develop an injury. If you are a runner, increase your weekly and monthly running totals gradually. Consider building your weekly mileage by no more than 10 percent per week.

Listen to your body. Overuse injuries typically start with aches, soreness and persistent pain. These signs are important. Ignore them and you may be at risk for an injury that could sideline you for days or weeks.

Vary your routine. Muscles and joints need a break from doing the same motions. You may benefit from cross-training activities to improve muscle balance and stay injury-free.

Warm up and cool down. No matter what activity you do, make sure to spend five minutes warming up and the same cooling down to elevate the heart rate and keep muscles flexible.

Wear appropriate gear. While it makes financial sense to wear last season’s running shoes, your body might disagree. Be sure to don fitness gear that fits correctly and isn’t worn out.


UHS Sports Medicine can help. To make an appointment with a UHS Sports Medicine specialist, call 771-2220. Read more about UHS Sports Medicine.