So you just graduated from nursing school–congrats! The hours and hours of sitting in the library are finally over and now you’re ready to tackle the next challenge…getting back into running.
Let’s face it–as a nursing student, running was probably on the same priority level as your sleep schedule (or lack thereof). Well, now that the insanity of nursing school is over, it’s time to start running again. Here are five helpful tips to get you back in the game.
1. Pick the RIGHT shoes.
We at Scrubs can’t tell you enough how important this aspect is. Picking a shoe too small will lead to bunions, hammer toes, arthritis and more. You’re on your feet ALL day as a nurse; you don’t have time for those injuries! The best way to know if your shoe is the right fit is to use the thumb method, meaning that the width in between your longest toe and the end of the shoe is a thumb’s width apart. Look for a shoe with a firm heel, good support and light weight.
2. Start slowly.
You may think to yourself, “I’m a runner; I’ve been doing this since junior high. I’m just going to hit it hard!” But if you’ve been away from running for some time and jump back in quickly, all you’ll get is an incredibly sore body (not ideal for making your rounds!). So don’t do too much, too fast, too soon.
3. Do some strength training.
When you begin to run after a long break, your body is naturally going to be sore (and if you didn’t follow #2, it will be even worse!). So, we recommend starting a weekly strength training session at your local fitness center to help shore up those muscles. If time is a major factor, try these quick tips.
Running makes your muscles shorter and tighter. When this happens, you tend to overcompensate and that can lead to debilitating injuries–something no nurse needs. If you have 30 minutes to spare to run, do five minutes of stretching before running, three minutes of warm up and your workout, before finally cooling down, then stretching again. Trust us, your body will thank you for it.
5. Pick the right music!
There is something completely off-putting when Fleetwood Mac’s “Landslide” comes through your headphones right in the middle of a tough sprint. We recommend high intensity playlists. The good news is that we have created one just for nurses below!
Have any more tips from your training? We’d LOVE to hear them in the comments below!