Thursday, June 14, 2012

Post-run Stretching

Thus far into my running career, I've been remarkably lucky on the injury front.  I've had my share of tight muscles and intermittent discomfort, but I've not faced any ailments that have caused me to miss multiple runs.  I attribute much of my good luck to my post-run stretching routine.  Though I sometimes slack off, I try to do a series of stretches after each run, and when I'm really dedicated, I do them on non-running days, too.

It is sometimes tricky to fit in stretching, especially after a long run.  Mommy guilt rares its ugly head when I've been gone for a lengthy run, and I feel like I shouldn't spend the extra minutes stretching.  But my body is always grateful when I do.  To lessen the mommy guilt, I often stretch in my living room with my kids.  They sometimes join me in doing their own "stretches", which always brings a smile to my face.

Neither my running nor my yoga form are this good, but a girl can dream, right?!

I found a couple great stretching resources that I use in my regular routine.  This Runner's World article outlines several yoga poses that are beneficial to runners.  My favorite poses are the Triangle and the Pigeon Forward Fold because they stretch out my hips so nicely.  I've not done much yoga in my life, but I feel like these stretches are easy to do and hit all the major running muscles.  Finally, this psoas stretch is incredible.  It really stretches the quads and hip - it hurts so good!