A blog by runners. For runners.

How to get a running injury: a step-by-step guide

How to get a running injury: a step-by-step guideHave you signed up for a marathon, but you don’t want to meet your goal? Are you sick of waking up early to go run and want an excuse to stay under the covers.

Fear not!

Just follow this guide to getting injured*, and we guarantee your race day will go horribly wrong or won’t happen at all:

  1. Run in any old shoes. Forget about getting fitted by a professional at a running store. Pfff. Who needs that?! And don’t even worry the slightest about replacing your running shoes every 300-500 miles. Just run in any old pair of athletic-looking-ish shoes you can find on the bottom of your closet. The older, the better!
  2. Run as hard as you can on every run. Those easy runs on your training plan? Ignore them. They’re for wimps. If you want to get faster, you need to run HARD on every single run. If you’re not pushing the pace and completely out of breath and doubled over after each run, you’re doing it wrong and, if you’re not careful, you might give your body enough time to adequately recover. <shudder>
  3. Don’t take rest days. Like we said above in No. 2, don’t take it easy on yourself EVER. Run every single day no matter how sore or tired you are – and never, ever rest.
  4. Increase your mileage as quickly as possible. Don’t wait until week 10 of your marathon training plan to do your 20-miler. Give it a go in week one. Building up your mileage gradually won’t help your chances of getting injured. In fact, there’s no reason to do cutback weeks either. You might as well do a long run every week of training. Make sure you keep your pace fast on those long runs, too (see step #2).
  5. If you feel a twinge in your knee/ hip/ foot, ignore it and keep running. That pain is probably nothing. It was most likely caused by sleeping funny or cross-training. It didn’t hurt until you stopped running the other day, so clearly running isn’t to blame. Keep running as much as you can, even if the pain gets worse. If you’re lucky, you’ll get a stress fracture!
  6. Only run. Forget about strength training, cross-training, yoga, and all of that other mumbo jumbo that’s supposed to keep your body strong and balanced.
  7. Don’t vary your running route or surfaces. Run the same route every day, preferably on the hard concrete sidewalk. If you run on a track, make sure you always run in the same direction, ideally in the lane closest to the inside of the track.
  8. Don’t foam roll, stretch, or use ice. Your muscles don’t need any TLC to heal from the demands of all of your running. While other runners are wasting time foam rolling, stretching, or taking an ice bath, you should head out and run some more.

Oh what’s that? You don’t want to get injured? We thought so! Just do the exact opposite of all the tips above and check out our 10 ways to avoid injury.

Written by Jen Matz.

*Please don’t actually follow this guide. Because that would be bad. If you’re really sick and tired of running, just take a break. It’s cool. We promise!