It’s that time of year again for America’s Favorite 10K race, the Bolder Boulder. Most people are concerned that running will hurt their back. But did you know that studies show that running can help strengthen it? There’s a connection between regular exercise and spine health, and researches have concluded that people who exercise frequently by vigorously walking or running have healthier discs in their spines as compared to those who don’t. So if you’re joining these events, here are some tips to keep your spine healthy when you’re running.
1. Keep good body alignment. While in a standing stance, maintain a straight line running through your ear, shoulders, hip joints, and ankles. Do the same to support the stretch phase of your running stride.
2. Improve body alignment by core strength and relaxation. You need to strengthen muscles and relax. The tension should be in your core and not in your extremities.
3. Don’t slouch. While running, imagine yourself being pulled forward by a cable through your heart, so your chest raises up and not slouched with your shoulders forward. Also, imagine that cable is pulling you towards the finish line.
4. Limit the total time of your stationary sitting. If there is one thing that is damaging to your spine—it’s not moving nor standing — it’s SITTING. Spinal discs load more weight that is, in fact, three times more when sitting as compared to standing. Therefore, think about how much damage your spine will get when you’re sitting at your desk or in front of a computer for a long time. Lying down helps your spine to heal. So don’t just sit there! Grab yourself some good quality mattresses and pillows and take that rest you deserve.
5. Eat Anti-inflammatory. It’s no secret that improving your diet is the key to your health, especially if it’s anti-inflammatory. Inflammation reduces your athletic performance and increases your risk of injury. To reduce inflammation, consume foods such as fruits, vegetables, legumes, and meats. Avoid dairy, gluten, grains. Also consider eating foods rich in calcium like broccoli, yogurt, and sardines because they can contribute to bone health.
Optimize your spinal structure and neuro-behavior, your spine is the key to your health. Compromised spinal structure, neuro communication, and behavior patterns are detriments to every aspect of health, including running performance. So make sure your spine is strong, healthy, and well aligned to diminish curvatures and maximize disc spaces. Check if your joints are flexible and that your nerve system is responding to the now and not past injuries. Contact us for a complimentary consultation and learn more about the integrity of your spine. See if you’re a candidate to optimize your spinal structures and neuro-behavior, it’ll contribute to every aspect of your function and quality of life. Call us today at 303.998.1000 or click the link below for a free consult where we will connect with you about your health in what you may want to have less of an more of in your life experience.