Running may be great for your body, but tell that to your sore muscles and tight joints. Bounding up hilly streets and pounding the treadmill can leave you in need of some TLC, so taking a few minutes a day to do flexibility training can help you feel your best.
Flexibility exercises will not only help soothe your achy body, but will make you a faster runner as well; they also help ensure you're not sidelined by injuries like pulled muscles or overuse problems. Stay healthy and happy with by incorporating any of these three ways to increase your flexibility into your weekly workout routine.
- No more knots: Foam rolling muscles twice a week helps loosen those still muscles and keep painful knots away. Pick up an inexpenive foam roller and perform this 15-minute foam-rolling routine while you're watching TV; your muscles will thank you!
- Hip openers: Stretches that focus on opening up your hip flexors help you run better and help alleviate lower back pain that is common in many runners. Doing a few of these essential stretches for tight hips several times a week will help with hip tightness.
- Foot ball: Your feet do most of the work, so don't neglect them either. Making sure you keep the fascia on your soles loose helps prevent painful plantar fasciitis by rolling a tennis or golf ball under your feet. Foot and toe exercises keep feet healthy as well — do feet flexes and toe scrunches every day while you're sitting at your desk or on your couch.