I have a long history with foot injuries and while it’s always an arduous affair getting over any injury, it’s usually an eye-opening and educating experience learning all the ins and outs of it.
It just so happens that 10% of running injuries are related to the feet- which is really no surprise considering our feet are our first point of contact when we hit the ground and absorb the force of 2-4x our body weight with each strike.
Incorporating exercises, drills, and stretches to strengthen and stretch your feet will help you:
Since I’ve become a pseudo expert in foot strengthening, here’s a look at my favorite drills and techniques and how I’ve incorporated them into my routine:
Wake up - While lying in bed, I wake up my ankles with
A.M. - While having coffee and getting ready for my run, I do
Head out to run - During dynamic warmup I add
Post-run - After I shower and while I’m doing school work with the kids I do
Natalie is an Elite Obstacle Course Racer who “stepped in the OCR ring” just 8 weeks after giving birth to her second child. Initially, the goal was to sign up for a few races to get back in shape. Things got a little out of control, and she soon found herself contending with the upper-tier racers in the sport. She realized her potential in obstacle course racing went beyond her running abilities. Coming from a basketball background, her versatility is her best asset in OCR. In her career as an obstacle course racer, she has been on the podium 31 times and placed in the top ten for the Spartan US National Series for the past three years.
Natalie is coached (in running) by her husband, Mark Batres. His training can be found at https://www.mgb-racing.com.
Here’s a couple of quick tips to help you prepare for those events along with a couple more than will help you get ready for Ultra-OCRs once full on race season resumes.