About four years ago, Lee Walls fell in love with running.
What started as a step toward getting healthier simply by running a few miles near his home turned into a refuge through the stressors of daily life.
“Just being alone, on a road with a curated playlist was just a really good way for me to clear my head, ” said Wall space, IT analyst with Duke’s Office of Information Technology.
Somewhere along the way, the idea of running the marathon got into his head. He built a training plan on a spreadsheet and stuck a printout on the fridge. After weeks of work, he ran his first marathon within Wilmington in November 2020; the second upon the American Tobacco Trail in April of 2021; and their third within Charlotte last November.
“I loved each minute of it, ” Walls said.
With warm weather and a gradual return to some pre-pandemic rhythms, many in the Fight it out community are reviving fitness routines, or starting new ones, so staying injury-free is key.
“Any activity level, as long because it’s safe, is ideal, ” said Tim Bisantz, health and fitness program manager for LIVE FOR LIFE , Duke’s employee wellness program. “With busy schedules, the require for work-life balance and the demands associated with taking care of a family, any physical activity that people can pursue and enjoy is important. And making it a part of the routine, and expand on it, can be essential for personal health and wellness. ”
Here are simple tips from Duke colleagues who make physical exercise a big part of their own lives and how they’ve taken on challenges plus remained injury-free.
High on Hydration
When it comes in order to athletic thrills, Duke Interdisciplinary Priorities Coordinator Amy Feistel finds hers in the passenger seat of powerful, nimble cars rocketing around tight turns and over gut-churning hills. The motorsport of rallying features two people – one navigator and one driver – teaming up to guide cars upon timed circuits of white-knuckle courses or even on marathon journeys throughout rugged landscapes.
For the particular past several years, Feistel has served as the navigator intended for different drivers in races in New York, Tennessee plus elsewhere along the east coast, studying courses beforehand and speaking precise moment-by-moment directions during the particular race.
“It’s pretty cerebral, it’s about timing, it’s about understanding the vehicle and teamwork, ” Feistel said. “There are therefore many different pieces associated with it that I really enjoy. ”
In addition to the ability to stay calm when buzzing with adrenaline, rallying also requires navigator to be fit enough in order to endure the jostling of the ride, where cars can reach 80 miler per hour, as well as the heat from the fireproof suit.
Feistel uses yoga and weight training to help with core strength plus balance. But when it comes to staying hydrated during a race, she knows that will it involves more than having water within the car.
Cheyanne Oakley, a Duke Health & Fitness Center exercise physiologist who helps clients create and implement fitness plans into their particular lives, points out that hydration assists athletic performance by keeping joints lubricated, keeping your body cool and helping important cellular functions, such since those involved with burning fat, going.
“Water is necessary for all associated with our bodily functions, ” Oakley said. “When you exercise, you’re actively losing water. So drinking water content, when it’s low, negatively impacts your body and it is hard to get it to function effectively. ”
But within order to reap the particular benefits of hydration, you need in order to make sure the fluids you drink are fully absorbed. To do this, drink fluids slowly throughout the day, plus consume plenty well before your exercise. The Institute of Medicine recommends that will adult women consume around 2 . 7 liters associated with water from all sources during the course of the day; adult men should consume around 3. 7 liters.
“Paying attention to hydration is important, but it’s something you have to do in advance, ” Feistel said. “When I’m coming up on the competition, I start thinking about it two or three days ahead of time. ”
Secret of Stretching
Whether she’s running or hiking, Meera Gandhi , physician assistant from Duke Urgent Care Croasdaile, lives to become outside.
Her hikes, which range between five and 10 miles, have taken her to Alaska, California, the Himalayas, the Andes and Costa Rica. But she understands that the thing that may stifle her wanderlust is usually injury. That’s why the girl makes sure to stretch out the muscles in the girl legs before, and after, each run or hike.
“I’m obtaining older, plus I’m finding that I’m a little more injury prone, ” stated Gandhi, 34. “So I know stretching is definitely incredibly essential. ”
Oakley sunglasses sale said warming up prior in order to exercising along with dynamic stretching, or moving your joints through their full range associated with motion, can be preferable to stretching cold muscles, which usually can lead to injury. Instead of simply extending muscles, LIVE FOR LIFE’s Bisantz suggests trying jumping jacks, squats or arm circles as movements which can get your own heart rate upward while furthermore starting to warm up crucial muscle groups.
And after a workout, stretching muscles far enough to feel tension – but not discomfort – can help you build flexibility and reduce your risk of injury shifting forward.
“After you’ve been exercising, it can sometimes be hard for your muscles to fully relax right after they’ve already been put under that stress, ” Oakley said. “So taking time to stretch out your muscles plus force them to lengthen out all the way, gives all of them a chance to relax and relieve tension. That is really important for preventing muscle soreness and avoiding injury. ”
Build to Your Goals Gradually
When Fight it out OIT’s Lee Walls began running seriously in 2018, he has been only able to operate two or even three kilometers at a time. When he set the goal of completing a marathon, which is certainly 26. two miles, this seemed borderline impossible.
Yet Walls gave himself a lot of time – roughly six months – and trapped to a plan, adding distance to his runs gradually, until the longer 16- and 20-mile training runs didn’t seem so daunting. His approach worked as he stayed injury-free and was ready when race day arrived.
“I just made the plan plus stuck with it, ” Walls said.
Regardless of whether you’re planning something ambitious or just hoping to weave more movement into your own day, it is important to follow Walls’ gradual approach to avoid putting too much strain on your body. One common approach is to increase the period or intensity of your workout by small increments each week. For example, if you’re coaching for the race, try push the distances of your long runs slowly. If you run five miles one week, do 5 and a half the next. Then attempt six mls a week later.
Quickly adding as well many miles to your own runs, or too much time working out, can increase the particular risk associated with injury to important joints and muscle tissue that aren’t able to adjust to the increased tension.
LIVE FOR LIFE’s Bisantz said it’s also helpful to document your progress. Whether or not you write the length or duration of the workouts on a sheet of paper – like Walls did for their marathon teaching – or even with the help of the watch or phone app which counts your steps or logs your exercises, having a record of your progress helps with inspiration and accountability.
“Regardless of what you’re doing, if you keep track associated with it, a person can see how much a lot more you’re performing, ” Bisantz said. “If you’re capable to document your improvement, it may make a huge difference. It’s a snowball effect. It can help you stay consistent. ”
Send story ideas, shout-outs and photographs through our tale idea form or write [email protected] edu .