Stretching Guide

Stretching is an often neglected aspect of training that can lead to sub-optimal performance or even injury. I recommend stretching before and after each and every run. It is hard enough to find time to squeeze in your runs between every thing else life throws your way. It is difficult enough not to smack the snooze button and drag yourself out of bed. It’s dark and cold; the last thing you want to do is stand there and stretch. I admit that I don’t stretch all the time either. I get it!

Well, I realize that I may not be able to convince you to stretch before and after every run. I could try, but I don’t even do it myself; so, I won’t preach at you. Meet me part way on this though! If you are doing speedwork or it is race day, please start your workout with some dynamic stretching! Dynamic stretching gets your body ready for higher intensity activity than static stretching. Prior to your workout, you can’t get as deep into static stretches, so they are just less effective. Also, I find that dynamic stretching prepares us better mentally to run. Static stretching is a good option after your workout as your muscles are warmed up though.

Here are just a few articles about Dynamic vs. Static Stretching or fire up your Google machine:

UW Health- Dynamic vs. Static Stretching

Semi Sport Med

For a deeper dive! Prehab Exercises

Dynamic Stretching (Before, sometimes after)

Here are some videos and links to give you some ideas for dynamic stretching. In general, you want to find stretches that mimic movements you will be performing in your workout. Below are mostly running-specific exercises. There are a ton of options and if you have a nagging injury; you’ll want to target that! For example, I have a nagging hip flexor issues, so I spend more time on those.




Static Stretching (After)

Static stretching works out much better after a workout since your muscles are warmed up and you got the blood flowing. This is an ideal time to break out the foam roller too.

Here a few more links: