With our beloved gyms re-opening this week, people are bursting at the seams to get back into their normal workout routines!
You’re not alone if you’ve slacked off with HIIT training since the closure of gyms in March. Or maybe you’ve swapped the weights for at-home yoga or running. Either way, it’s safe to say that we haven’t been in the same exercise routine as we were pre-COVID.
Aside from the obvious de-conditioning that comes with not being at the gym, many of us have also missed out on much of the incidental exercise we used to get from things like commuting into work, walking around shopping centres or heading to brunch. If we’re using the structures in our feet and ankles less, our overall capacity for loading will decline. That means that when we return to our normal HIIT/strength class, those structures may not be able to handle those loads as well as we used to. This can contribute to injuries such as:
To best avoid injury during this time, here’s some tips:
More is not more
- Even if we could previously squat 60kg or run 5km on the treadmill pre-gym closure, we may not be able to lift as heavy a weight, or run as far or train as frequently if this is something we haven’t done in months
- If we try and do too much too soon (lift too heavy of a weight, do too many reps or train too high of an intensity), this can lead to functional decline rather than gains in strength, putting you at risk of injury
Take a rest day (or two… or three!)
- Rest days are really important, particularly if we’re building load!
- They give our body a chance to repair the micro-tears we created during our training and become stronger
Focus on form
- Rather than focusing on lifting heavier or doing bulk reps, focus on controlling movements
- If you’re unable to maintain good technique throughout the duration of the exercise, you should decrease the weight or intensity of the exercise to where you can keep good form
Check your shoes!
- A good pair of shoes should be:
- a) in good condition
- b) suitable for the activity you’re doing
- c) suited to your foot type
- As a general rule, a running shoe should be structured, cushioned and be higher at the heel than at the front of the foot. This allows us to get a good, efficient heel to toe movement during running
- On the other hand, a gym shoe can be slightly flatter and more flexible to allow for multi-directional movement and extra feedback from the ground during training
- It’s best to be fitted by a specialty shoe store (such as Active Feet, The Athletes Foot or The Running Company), or alternatively your podiatrist can make recommendations based on assessment of your gait.
Listen to your body
- If you’re feeling a little niggle here or there, it’s important to know when to take yourself to see a professional
- We always aim to keep you active throughout your recovery, and seeking professional treatment sooner rather than later can be the difference between being able to continue normal training throughout treatment and having to modify or miss training all together for a period of time
- If your pain persists beyond 4 consecutive days it is worth getting things checked out!
Feel free to contact us via email if you have any questions, we are here to help! Alternatively, you can call 1300 945 789 to book an appointment.