This article was originally posted by Ryan at the original HillRunner.com Blogs.
Have you ever found something not feeling quite right and ignored it? What was the result? Chances are you ended up injured not too long after.
Pay close attention to these things. It’s true that we can’t always cut back our training every time something is a little off or, especially as we age, we’d never be training at full capacity. However, we can and should at least pay attention to these things. We can be proactive immediately and, if they get progressively worse or don’t go away for an extended period of time, we can adjust our training before we’re forced to take time off.
Being proactive doesn’t have to mean rest. It can mean "prehab" as some people call it. A little extra stretching, some strength work to target weaknesses that may be the root cause of the problem, maybe a massage appointment. Whatever it takes, it’s better to do a little up front than to be forced into a long time off down the line.
If being proactive isn’t enough, then it’s time to make some hard decisions. Will reducing training load for a week or two help? Will taking a day or two off, even a week, now prevent a longer forced time off later? If so, isn’t doing that worth it?
I will definitely expand on this in the future. As for now, just a quick reminder to pay attention to the little things and deal with them before they become big problems.