Brainsport Times

Weekly updates on running news in and around Saskatchewan.

Brainsport Times Feb. 20, 2019

Saskatoon can be a cold, dark and snowy place to run in the winter. Many athletes will hop on a treadmill to avoid battling adverse conditions. Though opting for the treadmill can be a smart way to get in a hard workout on an icy day, training exclusively on the machine can result in injuries or development of poor technique.

Bruce Craven, a sport physiotherapist, strength and conditioning coach and co-owner of Craven SPORT Services on Second Avenue, spoke with the Brainsport Times about how to maximize treadmill workouts and when they can be most beneficial.

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Put the incline at 1%

Craven says one of the biggest problems runners encounter when they’re on the treadmill is they don’t use their glutes to push off the ground and propel themselves forward. Instead, the treadmill belt pulls their feet back into extension.

“Then really you just become a recovery runner instead of a pushing runner and the pushing is what’s so critical when it comes to running outside,” Craven says.

As a result, runners who run exclusively on a flat treadmill can be prone to hip flexor issues.

The solution? Put the treadmill at a 1% incline.

“One per cent is kind of ideal,” Craven says. “That just gives you enough incline to actually have to push off a bit.”

But don’t bump the incline up too much. If people run at too great of an incline they may push off too much with their calves and could end up with problems such as tight calves, sore Achilles tendons or shin splints.

Focus on form

Craven often reminds the athletes he sees that running is a skill that requires focus and attention. That can be lost on a monotonous treadmill run.

“Sometimes on a treadmill if you’re watching TV, not really having to pay attention because you don’t have anything around you that’s creating any stimulus other than just keeping your feet moving to the belt, you can run into some major technical faults,” Craven says.

If running form deteriorates, it can lead to a wide variety of injuries. 

On the flip side, the monotony of treadmill running can be beneficial for people trying to focus on proper running technique because there are no other distractions, Craven says.

“You can actually demand focus because you’re not having to pay attention to other things,” he says.

Find uneven surfaces

Craven recommends people who do lots of treadmill running go trail walking or find other uneven surfaces to traverse. This will help prepare them for running outside, where the ground is not as smooth or predictable as a treadmill belt.

“Walking is a great cross training for running,” Craven says. “If I’m only doing treadmill running, the good cross-training is good walking on uneven surfaces because it’s the uneven surface that protects the body.”

A good tool to start running

Despite some of the drawbacks to treadmill running, Craven says there are some instances when treadmill running trumps running outside. 

For example, the treadmill may be the safest way for runners recovering from injury to get back into the sport.

“You never get far from home, you can control the speed exactly and the pace exactly. And if you (put) the setting at some degree of incline, it’s helpful, but sometimes even in return to sport or running, being flat is good because you’re just getting that cyclical movement,” Craven said.

The treadmill can also be a good way for runners to start interval training because most machines allow athletes to set interval workouts, which makes the workout simpler.

Running on the treadmill is not the same as running outdoors, but sometimes going outdoors is not an option and hopping on the treadmill can be better than not running at all.

“It’s the closest you’re going to get,” Craven says


 

Upcoming Events

Sunday Mar. 3, 2019: Brainsport Brainfreeze
Brainsport’s Brainfreeze is a winter run that raises money for the University of Saskatchewan cross country team. Enjoy the snow-coated scenery as you choose from a five-kilometre, 10-kilometre or half marathon distance along the beautiful South Saskatchewan River. Register now.

Saturday May 11, 2019: Step Up for Mental Health
This inaugural race hosted by Cameco offers five- and 10-kilometre run and walk distances. Cameco is matching every dollar from entry fees to fund local mental health projects. Register now.

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Saturday May 11, 2019: Royal Road Race (Regina)
The ninth-annual Royal Road Race, hosted by the Jaleta Pacers and the RCMP is once again being held on Mother’s Day weekend. Since it began, this race has contributed over $161,549 to local charities. Held on the RCMP Training Academy grounds in Regina, this fast course has something for everyone with five-kilometre and 10-kilometre races, a five-kilometre walk, a five-kilometre wheelchair and a one-kilometre Mini-Mountie run for children. This race sells out fast so make sure to register soon. Prices increase Mar. 31. 

Sunday May 26, 2019: Saskatchewan Marathon
The Saskatchewan Marathon is the oldest marathon in Saskatchewan. The event is organized and produced by the Saskatoon Road Runners Association. The 2019 Saskatchewan Marathon features Craven SPORT services five-kilometre, Goodlife Fitness 10-kilometre, half-marathon and marathon event distances along a scenic course highlighting the world-renowned Meewasin Valley. Easily deemed one of the most scenic running events in Canada, the Saskatchewan Marathon is also a qualifier for the Boston Marathon. Sign up today. Prices increase Mar. 1.

Sunday June 2, 2019: RunRegina First Responders Run (Regina)
Featuring five- and 15-kilometre distances, the inaugural event supports first responders and mental health initiatives for first responders. Register now.

Friday Sept. 6 — Sun. Sept. 8: GMS Queen City Marathon (Regina)
Saskatchewan's largest road-racing festival features three days of races from Friday to Sunday. There are mini marathons ranging in distance from one- to three-kilometres for kids and distances from the five-kilometre to the marathon for runners of all ages. Register now.

See all events at the Brainsport events calendar.

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Courses and programs

MaraFun
The Marafun program gives students aged six to 13 an opportunity to run a marathon in a novel way.
For 10 weeks starting in March, students will walk, run or wheel 40 kilometres. This training will lead them to the Saskatchewan Marathon race day on Sunday, May 26 when all participants come together to cap off their hard work by running or walking a fun 2.2-kilometre race on part of the marathon course.
Throughout the program, the young athletes learn about an active lifestyle, how they can maintain an activity program to promote health, and the importance of having personal goals.
Being involved requires is a team leader and young participants. Team leaders get children to run, walk or wheel a specific number of kilometers per week and coordinates attendance to the Saskatchewan Marathon on May 26.
The fee is $15 per student (increasing to $20 on March 1), which includes a t-shirt, medal and trip to the food tent on race day, along with other things to encourage them to complete the program and build a lifelong love of being physically active.
Team leaders can get more information and register their schools for a 10-week program here.

ONTRACK
New this year, the organizers of MaraFun are launching a high school running program for MaraFun grads and new runners. The eight-week program prepares students aged 12 to 18 to run a five-kilometre race at the Saskatchewan Marathon. Team leaders can organize students who are attending high school, home-schooled, or who are part of an organization or group. Team leaders should contact Jeff at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. before registering. Registration can be done here.

Spring Learn to Run
Coach
: Kimberlee Galus
Date and time: Wednesdays starting at 6 p.m. from March 20 until May 8
Location: Brainsport (616 10th Street East, Saskatoon)
Cost: $80
Prerequisite: No previous running experience is required to join this clinic. Just show up ready to have some fun!
This clinic is ideal for anyone interested in learning how to run, or those that need a refresher. If you have ever wanted to start running, Coach Kim is here to help you with that goal! This eight-week program will teach you the essentials of running in a safe and fun environment. This clinic will culminate in a special event designed just for you on Saturday, May 18th. In addition to the weekly coached run, we will be offering informational sessions on topics such as injury Prevention core stability, running technique, and more. Register now.

10-kilometre Clinic
Coach: Ian Klassen
Date and time: Wednesdays starting at 6 p.m. from March 20 until May 22
Location: Brainsport (616 10th Street East, Saskatoon)
Cost: $100
Prerequisite: It is recommended you be able to run 30 minutes consecutively before joining this clinic.
This clinic is ideal for less experienced runners or those looking to improve their previous 10-kilometre time. This 10-week program coincides with the 2019 Saskatchewan Marathon on May 26, which offers a 10-kilometre event. In addition to the weekly coached run, we will be offering informational sessions on topics such as injury prevention, core stability, running technique and more. Register now.

PatTrick Running Clinic (12-week marathon training program for the Saskatchewan Marathon) 
Coach: Pat Somerville
Time: Tuesdays starting at 6 p.m. from March 5 until May 21
Location: Brainsport (616 10th Street East, Saskatoon)
Cost: $120
Prerequisite: You must be able to run 10 kilometres easily prior to joining
This clinic will get you ready for the Saskatchewan Marathon at the end of May. Register now.

PatTrick Running Clinic (27-week marathon training program for the Saskatchewan and Queen City marathons) 
Coach: Pat Somerville
Time: Tuesdays starting at 6 p.m. from March 5 until Sept. 3
Location: Brainsport (616 10th Street East, Saskatoon)
Cost: $200
Prerequisite: You must be able to run 10 kilometres easily prior to joining
This clinic provides continuous training for events like the Saskatchewan Marathon (May) and the Queen City Marathon (September). Register now

Just Tri-It (JTI) Women-Only Introduction to Triathlon Training
This eight-week triathlon program runs from March 17 to May 12. Visit http://www.triathlonsaskatoon.org/just-tri-it/introduction-program for more information or to register. 

Virtual Cycle Sundays and Virtual Pilates Mondays
Take part in a fitness class from the comfort of your home through virtual classes hosted by Transition Sport and Fitness. The Sunday rides run from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. and the Monday pilates go from 8:15 p.m. to 9 p.m. The pilates class is tailored towards triathletes. Visit www.transitionsportandfitness.ca or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more information.

Breathe Move Be Yoga for Athletes
Breathe Move Be offers a Yoga for Athletes course Thursday evenings from 5:45 to 6:45 p.m. from Jan. 10 to March 14 at Midwest Karate Studio. $140 to pre-register for all classes. Drop-in spots will be made available for $18 when space is available. For more information and to register contact Leanne Parsons at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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Product of the Week

New Balance bunnyhugs and sweat pants


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The warm and cozy New Balance bunnyhugs and sweat pants are perfect to slip on before or after a workout or while lazing around the house.
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The Brainsport Times brings you news and stories from Saskatoon's running community every Wednesday. If you have a story to share, an event you want featured or suggestions for future content, please email Brainsport Times editor This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Brainsport Times Feb. 27, 2019
Brainsport Times Feb. 06, 2019

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