San Diego is full of runners. You see them everywhere, from beach boardwalks to steep trails and hills. Unfortunately, running all the time sooner or later often leads to one thing… injury. Some injuries heal quickly, but others are more long-term problems that may interfere with the ability to run at all. For runners who are used to *only* running, it can be really stressful to have to stop. If you’re an ex-runner (or a temporary ex-runner) there are plenty of ways to keep moving — just keep reading to find out how.

1. Keep your heart pumping

One big reason runners hate getting injured is that cardiovascular endurance is “use it or lose it.” Anyone who’s started running knows the hardest part is building endurance, and any injured runner knows how quickly that endurance is lost. To keep it up, you’ll want to try other exercises where you can get to a comfortably hard steady-state heart rate. The good news is, there are plenty of options to choose! Swimming, hiking, cycling, and indoor machines like elliptical, spin bikes, and stair climbers can all give you your endurance fix.

2. Move those legs

Running works your leg muscles really extensively, but only in one type of motion. Most runners run forwards in a straight line. Your legs can do much more than that! Moving laterally
(sideways) and with different combinations of motions will mean you’re working those muscles in new and challenging ways. Squats, lunges, and balancing movements have endless variations and you’ll find them at our outdoor personal training groups.

3. Stretch it out

Tight muscles are a common problem for runners. Yoga is a great way to incorporate extended stretching to keep your mobility and flexibility up. Many people find that regular yoga classes allow them to feel restored and keeps complaining muscles quiet. Yoga can also aid in relaxation and promoting restful sleep, which are essential to helping the body repair itself.

4. Prevent injuries

If you’re running now and love it, maybe this article is bumming you out! You don’t have to stop, but consider adding in these cross-training activities. The change of pace isn’t just for fun—working different muscle groups with strength training, stretching with yoga, and getting cardio in high intensity intervals are all ways to prevent injuries and aid in conditioning. Start incorporating these things now, and maybe you’ll never be an ex-runner!