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horrible habits: stretching

i have read countless articles about how important stretching is for running and the particular stretches that best benefit runners. in fact, my app reminds me after each run that it's time to cool down and stretch. i love stretching, too; when i wasn't working out, i still found time to do basic yoga moves, as i felt they were a key part of my well-being.

this was me in cat form, pre-2014 goals.
but, despite all of that, i have fallen in to the horrible habit of not stretching.

i honestly don't know how it happens every post-run, without fail. when i'm on my way home from the track, i tell myself "first thing you're going to do when you get home is stretch" and then the second i'm through my bedroom door, the nikes come off and the comfy clothes come on. it's like the concept of stretching exists only in my mind at the track and home is for rest.

i tried a few different ways to deal with not stretching. first, i tried stretching next to the track, when the idea is still fresh in my head. but, the track i use has barely any room for stretching along the side of it, and i felt super claustrophobic pushed up against the windows of the gym. to me, feeling squished is the opposite goal of stretching, so i nixed the stretching at the gym thing. next, i decided i just didn't need to stretch. you know, the whole your-silly-rules-don't-apply-to-me thing. obviously, this didn't work, as my legs felt stiff and my back felt tired after pretty much every run.

my plan of attack this week is a foam roller. one of my favorite bloggers talked about her love for her foam roller in a past post and when i read about how it aided her recovery (as i was bent over my computer in post non-stretching pain), i decided to invest in one. i'm hoping that by keeping the bright green foam out in my field of vision for when i come home after a run, i'll be reminded to stretch and recover properly. fingers crossed!

what are your horrible habits? any favorite post-run stretches to share?



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