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Four tips for safe and effective running this fall

Normally, around this time of year, runners get ready for marathons and sporting events. However, COVID-19 is causing the cancellation or delay of many such events and could cause runners to reconsider their goals for the fall season. But even if you're not taking part in a running competition, running, among many other benefits, can be a great de-stresser, especially in these challenging times. If you're continuing to train or you're a new runner, here's some tips to help you run safely and effectively this fall.

Multiple workouts are better

Manage your muscle soreness (foam rolling is good for this) consistently. Also focus on improving your leg strength through strength training and consider incorporating various exercises such as yoga, cycling or swimming into your fitness routine. Not only will this improve your performance, but it can make a huge difference in reducing injuries.

Mix it

It is best to do several runs during the week. Running three to four times a week is ideal:a speed or track interval workout, a long and slow run, and a shorter pace or faster pace. You can perform another half, relaxed tempo if needed. The variation will tax your cardiovascular system in a few different ways and keep you from getting bored.

Keep your running/training groups small

There is still a pandemic going on, so it's important to continue to limit your contact with others. If you'd rather not run alone, only run with those you see or interact with regularly. If you are running in a small group, wear a face mask. Be respectful of others on the road by keeping a distance of 1.5 meters. Avoid spitting and allow enough space when passing. The safest way to run is still solo or with your dog on a quieter route with less foot traffic.

Keep running outdoors

Don't run if you feel sick. Also, try to avoid running indoors at the gym. Viruses like COVID-19 and the flu are much more transmissible indoors, especially in an environment where others are breathing heavily, growling or talking loudly, so staying outside the gym is the best choice to stay safe while exercising.