RaceGrader - Authentic Race Reviews - Swim, Bike, Run

Returning From Injury

Posted by: on January, 27 2012

Hi Coach,

I have been training with Nike+ since August, and two weeks ago I ran my first half marathon.

On Tuesday, I went running and got injured. The doctor said that I hadn’t warmed up properly and that had caused a hamstring strain. He prescribed some medication and suggested that I get some rest.

The injury got better, but I still can’t run. I assume that I will have to rest for about 10 days.

When I get back on the track, what do you suggest doing? Should I carry on my regular half-marathon practice? Should I start over from week one? Can I still do the intermediate level, or should I repeat the beginner training? Is there something I could do in the meantime to maintain my good form?

Thank you very much!



Hi Maria. I’m so sorry to hear that you’re struggling with a hamstring strain. Definitely an annoying injury, yet with a little rest and an intelligent training plan, you should be able to get back to running.

I think we should work backward—from where you want to be, to where you are now. Because you want to be running, I think you should make racing a 5k your goal and forgo the half-marathon training. Why? Simple. We have a 5k training program on the site that not only includes the running training you’ll do each day but also lays out the ancillary training you’ll do each day—the work that you need to rehab your hamstring and get it back to its original strength. We have a set of videos in addition to the training PDF, so you’ll have a full complement of resources to help you with your training. I recommend that once you complete all the rehab prescribed by your doctor, you start at the beginning and do the beginner 5k training program on this site.

Your doctor said you failed to warm up properly, and the good news is that in this training program you will be introduced to a warm-up called the Lunge warm-up. This warm-up gets you moving in all three planes of motion. Simply watch our video demonstration and follow along. Same goes with the Myrtl cool down and the Back Routine; both exercise routines you’ll do after your run. The only downside to what I’m recommending is that this type of approach to training takes more time than simply going out and running; you’ll be doing exercises before your run, then running, and finally doing exercises after your run. But that’s what you need to do to stay healthy. To use a car analogy: your chassis was weak and couldn’t handle your engine; we want to strengthen not only your hamstring but the entire back of your body before we go forward and build your heart and lunges (i.e., your engine).

Stay patient, Maria, and after you’ve completed the assigned rehab from your doctor, start the Beginner 5k program.

-Coach Jay,

*Coach Jay’s advice is provided as general training information. Use at your own risk. Always consult with your own heath care provider for questions relating to your specific training and nutrition.

And don’t forget, if you have a training question for Coach Jay, email him here: coachjay@nike.com.

Interested in Coach Jay’s General Strength videos? Click here to check them out.

Always be in-the-know. Follow Nike Running on Facebook.