Posted on: March 3, 2011

Running is one of the best exercises you can do to maintain your health and wellbeing. However, it’s important to ensure you are comfortable when you run; otherwise you could end up with injuries, blisters and muscle pain. Here, Exercise Physiologist Caitlin Reid provides you with tips to ensure you run in comfort.

Running shoes: Choosing the right running shoes is a must whether you’re a beginner, social runner or professional athlete. Purchase your sneakers from a running specialty store so they can help you find a pair that’s perfect for you. Look for shoes that match your foot shape – flat, normal or high arch – as well as ones that match the surface you plan to run on.

Choose the right socks: Instead of running in your cotton favourites, look for modern fabrics that are designed to ‘wick’ the moisture away from your feet, keeping them dry and blister free. Avoid running in socks with holes in them.

Choose the right running clothes: Running clothes can make the world of difference to your performance and comfort during your run. While cotton t-shirts and shorts are comfortable and soak up the sweat, they retain moisture and therefore become heavy. Some cotton pieces of clothing can also causes chafing, which can make the run uncomfortable. Today, high tech clothing materials are designed to ‘wick’ sweat away from the skin to the outer surface so that it can evaporate, helping to keep you comfortable during your run.

Choose the right bra: Bras keep a woman’s breasts supported, reduce the amount of jiggling and help to prevent injury to breast tissue when running. A bra should fit firmly, however the rib band should not restrict breathing and the straps should be wide enough to support the breasts without causing ridges on your shoulders. When choosing a running bra, try on several sizes and brands to make sure you find the one most suited to your body. Sports bras with specific cup sizes are preferable to the generic one-size-fits-all offerings. Make sure your sports bra is flexible, by bending forward and backwards and moving side-to-side to check that it doesn’t roll up.

Limit the accessories: Running accessories such as water bottle belts and iPods can affect your running stride. If you’re concentrating on not losing your accessories while you run, then your body will inevitably adjust to make sure it doesn’t happen. The best stride is one that is smooth and natural, so if your accessories are getting in the way of this, then it’s best to leave them at home.


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