Wellness Blog

Running Strong: Spring into Action with Fresh Fitness Goals

Written by Dr. Nicki Evans

Running Strong: Spring into Action with Fresh Fitness Goals

Running Strong: Spring into Action with Fresh Fitness Goals

In January, your New Year's resolution may have included embarking on a new fitness adventure. Perhaps this endeavor is still going strong, or maybe it has faded into the background of life. Spring provides the perfect chance to revisit your fitness objectives and embrace the outdoors as warmer weather prevails, allowing your fitness goals to take center stage. Spring is an ideal time to initiate or continue a fitness journey—running, in particular, is my activity of choice. It enables me to enjoy the aroma of freshly cut grass, feel the sunshine on my face, and explore new scenery. Spring is when I can fully appreciate nature, as winter often confines me indoors and on a treadmill.

Whether you are a seasoned runner with specific targets or someone looking to dive into a new fitness regimen, running offers boundless opportunities. As a physical therapist, many people ask me how I assist individuals in starting or returning to running. While many perceive physical therapists solely as rehabilitation specialists, I provide invaluable guidance for wellness programs, injury prevention, and sports performance enhancement. My approach begins with an evaluation, consisting of a systematic assessment or screening tailored to your goals and current condition. This helps identify potential areas of weakness that could hinder your performance.

After the initial running assessment, I use my Helix 3D, a state-of-the-art 3D running gait analysis machine, to detect any bodily asymmetries. This analysis is crucial for developing a personalized plan that aligns with your goals and minimizes injury risks. I also offer monthly reviews or check-ins to ensure you stay on track and make consistent progress toward your objectives. Additionally, I assist in rehabilitating injuries if you have already experienced one.

With the arrival of pleasant, warm weather, numerous opportunities arise to engage in your favorite fitness activities outdoors. Popular choices include walking, running, and biking, each offering limitless possibilities. If you enjoy running near the beach, the boardwalks of Bethany Beach, Ocean City, and Rehoboth provide a softer surface than paved paths and a sensory boost from the sounds of crashing waves, the smell of saltwater, and the chirping of seagulls. If you can't make it to the boardwalk, your local area likely features several appealing running paths, such as paved loops in Millville at Evans Park, Bethany Beach Central Park, Northside Park in Ocean City, and Veteran’s Memorial Park in Ocean Pines. State parks like Cape Henlopen, Gordon’s Pond, Assateague Island, Trap Pond, and Killens Pond offer additional scenic spots that enhance the sensory experience.

Physical activity is crucial for everyone and can vastly enhance your life, whether by introducing new experiences or improving existing routines. Although trying new activities can be daunting, the benefits—physical, mental, and social—are substantial. Running, a versatile sport, accommodates various paces and distances, catering to different fitness levels. It offers significant cardiovascular benefits, aiding in efficient blood circulation and reduced heart rates, and contributes to weight management and bone health. Mentally, running provides a chance to clear your mind and focus inward, effectively reducing stress. Socially, you can join running clubs or participate in races, which are great ways to explore new places and meet new people.

No matter your age or experience level, it’s never too early or too late to embark on your fitness journey. If you are interested in running or looking to enhance your performance, give me a call. Together, we can develop a tailored plan that meets your specific needs and goals.

Published: May 02, 2024