It's marathon season. And if you're one of the many Seattleites training and prepping for your next race, Kelly Singer the scoop on to get into gear.
The third annual Seattle “Rock & Roll” marathon is just six weeks out. The famed band-lined streets, flat waterfront course, and excited spectators have Seattleites out training for the race, rain or shine. If you are one of the 17,000 runners registered for the full or half marathon (or one of the many running events happening throughout the city), you should be getting close to your longest training run. You’ve prepared with hydration, fuel, and gear but there’s another critical component to making your long runs a success and injury free – foam rolling.
The risk of an over-use injury significantly increases when your training jumps to intervals of 20 miles or more. A simple but extremely helpful preventative measure is to use the foam roller before and after your runs. Foam rolling is essentially a deep tissue massage and while regular use brings many benefits, its key function is to improve circulation. Circulation helps your body work more efficiently during the run and helps it recover afterward. Try these exercises, moving slowly (think massage strokes) and stopping to apply pressure to tender spots. Roll before and after every run, spending 5-10 minutes per area, per side.
Iliotibial Band Lie on your side with the roller under your hip, rest your other leg's foot on the floor. Move along your outer thigh. Increase pressure by stacking your legs. (tip: this one might be really painful, so it’s important to roll slowly)
Piriformis: Sit on the roller and place one foot across the opposite knee. Lean into one side of your seat and roll forward and back, using your supporting leg to control the pressure.
Calves: Put the roller under a calf. Rest your other foot on the floor or stack ankles to add pressure. Roll from the ankle to below the knee. Rotate the leg in, then out.