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Injured runner cartoon

Rest, recuperate and resume: the three R's for injured runners

The latest parkrun blog rang a few bells for runABC South news writer and coach Alan Newman. The subject matter is that unfortunate, occasional side effect of running – injuries. Coincidentally, the author of the excellent article is former world 5000m Paralympic record holder and full-time physiotherapist, Noel Thatcher, whom Alan recently profiled here in runABC South.

Noel Thatcher is a parkrun ambassador and has been featured as a parkrun Pacer, dispensing valuable training advice. However, his latest piece deals exclusively with how to avoid and manage running injuries. Having suffered a major ankle injury a few months ago, and shared his pain with runABC readers here, Alan was keen to compare notes with an expert therapist.

Noel's top tips for avoiding injury in the first place include ensuring variety is included in your training and to progress steadily and consistently to higher workloads. Keeping some form of diary is an essential aid to monitoring progress and this is something any coach would advise inexperienced runners.

If injury strikes, and for most of us it will at some time, Noel has some practical and sensible self help advice to follow before limping off to see your GP or a sports injury therapist. Alan sums up this advice in his title for this article: Rest, Recuperate and Resume. If only all injured runners knew their three R's and followed such eminently sensible advice there would be far fewer people sidelined for long periods.

All of which rings true for the author of these words today. Alan's sprained ankle five months ago turned out to be a minor fracture with partial ligament tear that did not take too kindly to returning to running within a matter of weeks. A classic case of failing to follow the three R's!

Of course, if you are an injured parkrunner you will receive a warm welcome and possibly some tea and sympathy as a volunteer at your local event.

You can read the full Noel Thatcher parkrun news blog on running injuries here

If you are currently out of action runABC wishes you a full and speedy recovery.

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