When Do You Change Your Running Shoes?
It’s a new year, do you need a new shoe?
If you consider that your feet strike the ground between 600 – 1,000 times per kilometre (depending on your pace) at 2.5 – 3.5 times your body weight while running, it follows that footwear plays a critical role in running enjoyment, performance and injury prevention.
Running shoes that are inappropriately sized, unsuitable for your unique biomechanics or training needs and/or have gone past their use-by date can cause a variety of injuries. Researchers have shown a significant correlation between infrequent changes of running shoes and injury.
What should your expectations be from your running shoe?
- Essentially it is very dependent on how much time you spend in your running shoes. As a general rule a good shoe will allow you to enjoy approximately 900 – 1,100km of running.
Why do running shoes get worn out?
- Research has demonstrated that the midsole material of a running shoe will last for approximately 700-1,000 kilometres or 6-12 months of running. This is dependent on the mileage and intensity of training. The midsole provides the important cushioning and stability to a shoe, so once it has worn out the shoe loses its functional stability and increases your injury risk.
- The outsole of a running shoe is made of durable compounds and is a poor indicator of remaining shoe life. In most cases, the midsole will wear out long before the outsole – especially for heavier runners.
Signs of Wear and Tear?
- You need to examine the major areas of decomposition – the heel counter, the midsole and the outsole – any extrinsic abnormality causes an imbalance of impact forces and may increase the risk of injury to your lower limbs.
- Look at the heel counter – is there any wearing on the inside or outside? Wearing on the inside can actually promote over-pronation and its associated overuse injuries, while wearing on the outside can occur even with a normal running gait pattern.
- Look at the midsole – is there any excessive compression, wrinkling or tilting? Monitor the torsional (twisting) stability of the shoe. Hold either ends of the shoe and twist in opposite directions – is there too much flexibility?
- Look at the outsole – have you worn through the rubber to the midsole? Can you start to feel the irregularities of the ground under your feet?
Tips on how to get a longer life out of your shoes.
- Reserve your running shoes for running only! Not gardening, hiking, cycling or creating a daggy walk to work outfit etc.
- Rotate your shoes: alternate between two pairs of running shoes so as to prolong the life of the midsole beyond that of wearing each pair consecutively. Thus:
- Use one pair for longer runs and any ‘events’ and the second pair only for shorter runs, inclement weather and any off-road runs.
- The first pair to reach 1000 km run, should be given a new job description, (i.e. gardening, hiking etc) and a new pair should be brought into the rotation.
Inflammation is a tricky little concept to identify with because we don’t really come face to face with it until we are in pain or possibly in poor health. Nutrition is such an important way to be able to mediate inflammation on a daily basis. Will better nutrition alone prevent you from having joint pain or developing cardiovascular disease? Probably not, but the cumulative effects of better eating in combination with better lifestyle choices may help to prolong the development or decrease the severity, which sounds pretty good to me
When it comes to nutrition we all seem to be focused on calories, carbs/protein/fat, or the latest trend that we lose sight of what nutrition is all about — NOURISHING THE BODY.
Each time we eat we have an opportunity to provide the body with nutrients it needs to function and nutrients it wants to decrease inflammation that is occurring on a continual basis. Big contributors to increasing inflammation in the body are uncontrolled blood sugar, deficient omega 3, and too much omega 6.
So, simply put, the nutritional rules for decreasing inflammation are:
Choose whole grains that have at least 3g of fibre per serving. Fibre controls blood glucose and therefore contributes to inflammation control.
Include omega 3 fatty acids in your every day
Walnuts, Cold Water Fish, Flax Seed and Fish Oil Supplements. These essential fats have been shown to help reduce chronic inflammation. Try boosting your intake with fatty fish (tuna, salmon, ect), walnuts, and flax. If you can’t get it through food, then supplement with 1-3g of EPA/DHA per day from Fish Oil.
Eat a Rainbow
Fruits and veggies are naturally high in all the good stuff and many times include a variety of nutrient combinations and phytochemicals that simply can’t be found in a pill. Moreover, there are specific foods to look out for that work even harder in the body to put the flame out on inflammation.
Drink More Water
Yes, I know we have all heard it before. But little do we know we are regularly walking around in a semi-dehydrated state. Water helps to lubricate the joints and keep your body functioning well.
Spice It Up
Certain spices, like curry, cinnamon and ginger have been shown to contain anti-inflammatory properties. Try curry with rice dishes, cinnamon with your cereal and latte and ginger with your tea, sushi and salad dressing.
Try to cut back on the 4-legged animals and increase weekly consumption of animals that have no legs such as fish, beans and 2-legs poultry. This will help reduce amount of inflammatory proteins that you consume that could lead to joint pain.
Learn to love those Antioxidants
Antioxidants help fight free radicals, which may be damaging to the joints. Aim for a diet high in Vitamin C, Vitamin A, Vitamin E, and selenium. Remember to Eat A Rainbow Often and choose yellow and orange fruits and vegetables such as carrots, rockmelon, apricots, and dark leafy greens for vitamin A. Good sources of vitamin C include capsicum, broccoli, citrus, papaya and raspberries. Avocados, almonds, peanut butter and whole grain breads are good sources of vitamin E, and for selenium choose brazil nuts, salmon, and brown rice.
Look for the Bro…
Bromelain – the active enzyme in pineapple has been shown to demonstrate anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties. Several studies have examined the effects of bromelain and other enzymes like papain in patients with osteoarthritis.
… and other lean proteins provide the essential building blocks for muscle and cartilage which are linked to joint health. Eating lean sources of protein helps to build and repair tissues. Good sources of lean proteins include beans, skinless poultry, fish and seafood, and nuts in moderation.
Get a little guidance
Make sure you seek out a health professional if you have any queries about joint pain or ways you can enhance your nutritional changes with physical rehabilitation. Evidence supports the benefits of strengthening for joint pain secondary to conditions such as arthritis
And if that wasn’t enough info…
Nutrients that Nourish Your Joints. Eating foods rich in these nutrients will help provide your body with the building blocks it needs for better joints.
- Vitamin C: May slow the wear and tear on your joints by playing a key role in the formation of collagen, which is a key component of cartilage and bone.
– Vitamin C rich foods: Strawberries, blueberries, bell peppers, raspberries, oranges, cantaloupe and broccoli.
- B vitamins: May help to reduce joint inflammation and pain.
– Vitamin B Rich Foods: lean meats and fish, tofu, cottage cheese, sunflower seeds, eggs, whole grains, bananas and soybeans.
- Vitamin E: May vitamin helps ease osteoarthritis pain and leg cramps.
– Vitamin E Rich Foods: almonds, hazelnuts, walnuts, sunflower seeds
- Calcium and Vitamin D: Assist in prevention of additional bone loss and in maintaining healthy/strong joints
– Calcium Rich Foods: Low-fat milk, Greek Yogurt, String Cheese, other low fat dairy products, Kale, Okra
– Vitamin D Rich Foods: Eggs, Salmon, Makerel, low-fat milk products
The Office Athlete loves to combine environments where our performance thrives. Whether this is at the desk, on the field or on a plane?
I certainly couldn’t resist writing about this workspace when I stumbled across it. Physiotherapists are diverse creatures, working magic in varying environments, however this ‘environment’ is certainly sprinkles on a Sundae when it comes to work. With winter’s unveiling of Etihad’s VIP residence interiors, could airborne luxury get any better?
Nike’s flying Physio room exclusively for the US Basketball team.
Seattle’s Teague teamed up with the Nike design department to imagine a cabin fit for a 15-strong team of American Basketball players – titled…
“The Athlete’s Plane: a sky-high, pre- and post-game training and treatment facility”.
Teams on the national or international competition schedule would agree that those time-zones and lengthy plane trips catch up on them and affect performance. Physical and psychological well-being are tested throughout the competition season with those regular long-hauls.
Call them precious, however this unique cabin comprises a host of zones and functions to cater to the player’s needs. Now let’s skip past all those other bells and whistles and get to the exciting stuff…
The Recovery Room…
Injuries are initially assessed and analysed on a screen upon entering the recovery room which is stocked with state of the art technology, medical facilities, rehab space and a stretching room.
Basketballers being the vertically blessed people they are can stretch out on seats that accommodate someone 7ft tall and if that isn’t enough, a transparent shell-like lid which partially encloses an individual and stops athletes breathing on each other.