As Runners we tend to head out the door without giving injury a second thought. BUT injury can occur so easily, especially soft tissue injury affecting our muscles, tendons and ligaments...and recovery can be slow. So, in this episode we delve into the 3 key phases of soft tissue injury and how nutrition could support speedy repair and recovery so you can get back to your running as quickly as possible.
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Defining Soft Tissue and explaining the differences between soft tissue and connective tissue. Also, confirming the importance of both soft and connective tissue in achieving overall muscle power and strength and thinking about soft tissue adaptation and how it differs from muscle adaptation.
Delving into Phase 1 of soft tissue injury and considering the chemical and physiological changes at this time. Thinking about inflammation and how it is experienced (pain, swelling, redness) before moving on to discuss the key nutrients to consider to help prevent chronic inflammation setting in. Nutrients including: calcium, magnesium and proteolytic enzymes.
Considering the female factors linked to soft tissue injury. Thinking about the prevalence in women and the influence of diet and female sex hormones.
Discussing Phase 2 of soft tissue injury linked to repair and recovery before moving on to consider the key nutrients to support the healing process. Key nutrients include: vitamin C, manganese and protein all of which are important raw materials for the synthesis of collagen.
A brief conversation about Phase 3 of soft tissue injury. This is called the wellness and prevention phase so the emphasis is on the layering effect of phases 1 and 2 whilst also introducing specific nutrients in phase 3 to help prevent re-injury and deterioration of soft tissue.
Remember that soft tissue is made up of muscle, tendons and ligaments and they are all equally important in giving muscle its power and strength.
Remember there are 3 phases to repair and recovery of soft tissue injury and specific nutrients need to be considered for each phase.
In phase 1, nutrition is really important in helping prevent chronic inflammation setting in. But, this said, the ACUTE inflammatory cascade is IMPORTANT in the overall keeling process.
In phase 2 swift introduction of specific nutrients may help minimise scar tissue. This in turn may help reduce the risk of re-injury and/or tissue degeneration.
Phase 3 nutrition is about building on the nutrition introduced in phases 1 and 2 to attain/maintain tissue health so you can return to your running whilst minimizing the chances of r-injury.
Lastly, Ladies, remember that we are more prone to injury than men, so consider the nutritional changes YOU may want to introduce to help PREVENT soft tissue injury – prevention is always better than cure!!
The suggestions we make during this episode are for guidance and
advice only, and are not a substitute for medical advice or treatment.
If you have any concerns regarding your health, please contact
your healthcare professional for advice as soon as possible.
Aileen Smith and Karen Campbell met at as nutrition students (Institute for Optimum Nutrition, London) and became lifelong friends and nutritional buddies! Both have a love of running and a passion for nutrition, delicious food and healthy living.
Together they host RUNNERS HEALTH HUB. A place for like-minded runners who are looking for simple ways to support running performance, energy, endurance, and general great health.
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