Friday, March 13, 2015

Jeff Galloway Says: It IS Possible to Run Injury Free

One of the things I love about the Jeff Galloway run/walk method is that is gives you the opportunity to run [mostly] injury free. Research has shown that incorporating walk breaks into your run can help you reduce the probability of injury as you are putting less stress on your structural and muscular systems than straight running.

Galloway is really the expert on this topic, so you'll find his tips below- with my two cents added in! 

Training and Motivation Tips 
by Olympian Jeff Galloway
Runners from Austin, Duluth, Denver, Metro Dc, NW Indiana, and Montgomery County, MD - We are coming to you! There is a Galloway Training Program starting near you in the month of March! Check the calendar for more information: March Galloway Program Kick-offs

JG: Most injuries experienced by my runners are due to 
1) pacing long runs too fast, 
2) increasing the weekly mileage too quickly, 
3) lengthening stride and 
4) stretching.

SR: I would add an additional cause of injury- running as your ONLY activity. My stress fracture was a direct result of ill-fitting shoes and too much running, not enough cross or strength training. See also "The 10 Laws of Injury Prevention."

JG: The principle in staying injury free is to balance gentle stress with the right recovery periods-allowing for rebuilding. (for more information, see my book RUNNING INJURIES)

SR: Yup! When I was over-training in the summer, I did not allow enough rest for my skeletal system to catch up with my muscles, tendons, and ligaments, thus causing an injury.

JG: Finding the right Run Walk Run strategy from the beginning of a run has been the best way I've found to stay injury free, come back from an injury and in some cases, continue to run while the injury heals. (See my book RUN WALK RUN)

·    Are you concerned that running will damage joints, and other body parts ? I was told this regularly, from my first week of running over 50 years ago but the research shows the opposite result: Runners have healthier joints, etc. than non runners as the decades go by.

·    While researching for my book RUNNING UNTIL YOU'RE 100, I reviewed dozens of studies and could not find one showing that running harms legs, feet, joints, etc.

·    It may surprise you to know that many studies show that runners have fewer orthopedic issues compared with non-runners as the years go by.

·    A respected and large population study out of Stanford following thousands of runners over 50 who had run for more than 20 years concluded that runners had less than 25% of orthopedic issues compared with non runners of the same age.

JG: As long as you stay below the threshold of irritation you can often continue to run while the injury heals.

SR: My orthopedic doctor and my physical therapist both encouraged me to run/walk as I came back from my stress fracture. And both are huge fans of the Galloway method- they say I'll be able to run well into my 70's as long as I keep taking walk breaks :-)

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What's the best way you've found to avoid injuries?


  1. Isn't he the nicest person? I've been fortunate to meet him a few times and every time he gives me the best advice. And there are some times when I skip the walk breaks- occasionally on short runs or if I'm running with a group. But I definitely feel better when I do incorporate them into the run :-)

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