The same time each year I start to see more runners booking into the clinic with multiple niggles. Why? its marathon season. Training load and the capacity to handle that load is the key to many of these injuries seen amongst runner.
Tissue load is dependent on your training volume (how much), intensity (how hard), frequency (how often) and type. Your other activities like work and hobbies and anything in life that loads tissues all forms part of your overall load.
Loading tissues through exercise is healthy and promotes strength gains, improvements in fitness, and tissue healing. Problems occur when tissue load increases too quickly.
Tip1: Changes in training need to be gradual
Tip 2: Mix 80% slow and easy intensity with 20 % high intensity speed work
Tip 3: Mileage should be increased by 10% increments but also think about the intensity, it is usually best to drop intensity whilst building mileage.
Tip 4: Every 3-4 weeks should have a drop in intensity or volume to allow recovery
Your muscles, tendons and ligaments take time to adapt to load so do not be tempted to run high mileage just because your lungs let you and it feels good, it will not last.
Also when injury does occur the load capacity becomes less so your usual mileage may become too much and you need to reduce your training and build it back gradually with the aid of some strength exercises. Don’t try to jump straight back into your usual mileage, it will not work.
Also consider sleep, stress and health issues as contributing factors to your injury.