Information on how to run faster, lift stronger and think deeper

Injury free Training: Can I hurt myself running?

Posted by Pascal Landshoeft

Aug 17, 2014 5:17:00 AM

 Injury free Training:

Can I hurt myself running?



Yes you can hurt yourself running so be smart about training:


There is a multitude of injuries you can obtain on the journey to improve your run time and fitness level. To avoid those you have to be aware of how much you can take and where your limits are. This is highly depending on your age, fitness level and familiarity with the runs you do.


Your risk of injury is a function of how fast you run combined with how long you run:


I am a friend of rules of thumb which are easy to remember. Especially for new athletes who want to run faster. The longer you run, the longer you are exposed to a risk of injury due to fatigue. Most of these injuries are minor injuries which won't stop you from training, but make you less efficient in training. The faster you run, the more likely it is that you will severely injure yourself in a manner which will stop you from training. The combination of running faster than you should for a long time rapidly increases the risk of injury.


Click for Instagram

This is how the risk of injury looks:




Comfort zone 20 - 60 minutes while you can talk to someone else

The comfort zone are runs where you can talk to your running buddy without killing yourself and last between twenty to sixty minutes depending on your fitness level. If you are a coach potato starting out aim to keep moving for 20 minutes without stopping. If you are reasonably fit, this should be your 5k run. If you are a year into your running training this will be most likely your 10k run.


Out of comfort zone: Speed you run


This is usually a minute faster per km than your comfort zone pace. You won't be able to speak to anyone else whilst performing on this level. For unexperienced runners this is the swicth from walt to jog or jog to run. For moderately fit runners this is your 5k race pace. For experinced runners this is in the area of their 10 k race pace. You have to train at these levels to improve, but avoid maintaining this speed for too long as this is where injuries occur.


Out of comfort zone: Time you run


As a rule of thumb this is mmore than twice as long as your duration of your average training runs. If your comfort zone is twenty minutes of running and you want to improve your stamina keep the same pace but go for a maximum of 40 minutes of running and build from there. 


Danger Zone: Run too fast for too long


You get into the danger zone when you do too much too fast. if you push yourself out of your comfort zone to improve do it either on the speed scale or the duration of the, but not both at the same time. There is one excemption from the rule where you can go near the danger zone and that is races. I stick with one race a month with two days of rest before. The other runners and the adernaline that will pump through your vein will enable you to combine the speed and stamina you developed in your injury free training to get your new personal best.

Progress is made over time. Be smart and stay in the game.


Training is training and competition is competition. Challenge yourself in your training, but do not risk your season or health by getting impatient. You will improve graduallly and leaps in performance can't be forced, they will just happen the better your conditioning will get. If you force leaps in performance, you expose yourself to risk of injury and exclude yourself from further. Be Smart, stay in the game.

Further reading 



Topics: Injury free training