Blisters and cramps and chafing, oh my! The list of uncomfortable things that can happen during a run extends well beyond trudging up a hill or being heckled by a carful of teenagers.
Luckily, there are ways to prevent and respond to some of the most common problems. Here's how to ensure a future with as-pleasant-as-possible runs.
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Starting a run too fast is a common cause of these abdominal pains, so to prevent them, make sure you warm up properly: Walk for three minutes, then ease into a slow jog/walk for five minutes.
Take a walk break and do some deep breathing. Make sure you can feel your stomach rising and falling as you inhale and exhale. After two to four minutes, start running again, very slowly.
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Blistering or Chafing
Friction causes blisters and chafing, so to destroy friction's power, apply lube (like petroleum jelly) or baby powder to sensitive spots before you leave home. Avoiding moisture-absorbing cotton socks and clothing may also help.
Check that your socks or clothes aren't bunching and causing further discomfort. If you have lube or powder with you, apply more.
Cramps happen when a muscle is taxed beyond its current ability or readiness to perform. Complete an adequate warmup and take frequent walk breaks to prevent them. (Find out when exactly you should stretch to avoid running injuries.)
Slow to a walk, taking short, gentle strides until the cramp eases. Avoid stopping altogether if possible-continued movement will help oxygen-rich blood circulate to the affected area.
Make sure to build in regular rest days to avoid sluggish runs. Fatigue can be a side effect of low blood sugar, too. If you haven't eaten for a few hours before your run, consider having a snack.
Incorporate more frequent walk breaks to get back to your starting point, or quit if you're on the treadmill. Take a rest day before attempting your next run.
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