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How to survive the City to Surf

By Tully Hogan-West
Physiotherapist at Life Ready Physio Midland


Every year, thousands of us look at the Chevron City to Surf as inspiration to start running, to beat our personal best, or to help raise funds for a cause close to our hearts. Unfortunately, injuries afflict a number of people every year.

So here are a few tips to help you survive this year’s City to Surf.

Training Load

This is one of the most important aspects of any runner or athlete’s preparation. Allowing time to build up your distance and pace over the course of 6-12 weeks is ideal, but let’s be realistic, life is seldom perfect and interruptions happen. Friends convince us to go out for diner, early morning plans come unstuck and life can be too busy to train.

If this is true for you the best advice would be to take your time and don’t push yourself too hard leading up to the event or on the day.

Walking for a minute every few hundred metres could mean the difference between running or hobbling over the line and could dramatically reduce your injury risk and recovery time.

Too much training too fast is a key indicator of injury risk and you stand a higher chance of getting injured at a time that could knock you out of the event all together, which is the last thing anyone wants.

Pre-Race Prep

If all is going to plan and you’re running great, it can be helpful to slowly ramp down your training load just prior to the event. This is to ensure you have adequate energy to blast through the run on the day.

Even though pre-run nerves can get the better of us sometimes, making sure to get some solid sleep and drinking plenty of water in the days leading up to the run will do wonders to your performance and recovery.



So, you trained well and ran the distance. Now what? AFL players like to take a dip at the beach on freezing cold winter mornings in budgie smugglers, but that may not be everyone’s cup of tea.

A good post run recovery involves a short period of reduced activity. This means you can go for a long walk to work out the kinks, or perform short easy runs that aren’t too taxing on the body. Doing so will let your body recover from the strain of the exercise and training over the past few weeks.

The most important part: have fun and don’t get caught up in anyone else’s run. Run your own race and be proud of what you’ve achieved.

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