I haven't run in a year, but used to love it. However, I hurt myself last year (that's why I stopped running) and my ankle has never really recovered. I've also always had knee problems. Is there any way for me to ease back into running?
Please don't say see a doctor/sports specialist, I can't afford that.
Hi. I know the feeling all too well. I sprained my ankle last year as well and have had some recurring problems since due to the weakness and immobility of my ankle. I've posted some exercises that you can try that my PT friend recommended. I would try to strengthen the ankle and start off very slowly with the running. With the correct rehab exercises and a little bit of patience, you'll be back to running before you know it.
What kind of rehab have you done? Proprioception is key for ankle injuries, for example balancing on one foot, doing squats on one foot, etc - really focus on balance! Also, working on the glutes will help to provide stability to the pelvis and legs, preventing further injury. I have to say it - follow up with your health care provider who will be able to put together a plan for you and tailor the rehab to your specific injury. These are only suggestions and may not be useful for your particular injury.
Strength training with exercises like lunges and squats will help you build muscles in your legs that can help you to avoid injury (or further injury, in this case). Like Candice said, start slow with perhaps a run/walk program and build up with no more that a 10% increase in mileage per week. If things start to hurt, stop! I would also suggest researching proper running form, especially forefoot running, and invest in a new pair of shoes since I presume your old ones are over a year old now! Finally, cross-train like a bandit; nothing improves running like running, but cross-training can help you to avoid overuse injuries and build your cardio without potentially reinjuring yourself.
Start of slow and short and incorporate cross-training! Start out by going on one mile run and slowly increase as you feel comfortable Swimming is a great way to cross-train since there will be absolutely no pressure on your ankle. Yoga could also be a great healing method for your ankle since it increases flexibility and mobility! I hope this helps!
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