When she’s not treating patients, Dr. Suchko is training for her next marathon. After her first half marathon two years ago, she’s addicted. She talked to us about her experiences, running advice and what keeps her motivated.
How long have you been running long distance?
In actual half and full training: about 2 years. My first half was the Pittsburgh Half Marathon in May 2015. My first marathon was the Columbus Marathon 2016. I have run multiple half marathons and plan to run the full 26.2 at the Flying Pig next year.
I have been playing soccer my whole life so running wasn’t anything new to me but the difference was in the mental aspect. Running for fun and running for soccer are two completely different mentalities with two different goals.
Why do you run? What’s your #RunForSomething?
Two years ago I would have told you I run to cross something off of my bucket list. However, after my first half all I could think about was “there are people out there doing 13.1 more miles, what I did was just a scratch on the surface”. That’s when I caught the running bug and knew I wanted to run a full 26.2.
Now, I would have to say I #RunForSelfImprovement. There is something calming and exciting to me about knowing I am against myself in any race that I run in. It doesn’t matter what the person next to me is going to run their race in or how they are going to run it. I set my goals long before I set foot at the starting line. That is what the months of training are for. Self improvement is also about being healthy and staying healthy to me. Running can bring out a lot of aches and pains so what I do when I’m not training for a race is just as important to me as when I have my goals for the next race.
What advice would you give to someone who wants to start running?
I haven’t done it yet, but join a running group! I have patients from so many different groups in the area and the support system they have is great. There is a great deal of running experience in the groups from people starting the journey of their first half to someone who has run their 25th full.
Can you tell us about a running injury that you’ve had and what you did to help recover from it?
I did have an Achilles tendonitis issue while training for the Columbus marathon. I talked with Dr. Nabi to see what my best plan of attack would be and agreed that a week of resting would be in my best interest along with exercises. I used a frozen water bottle as a “foam roller” and rolled out the muscles along my calf and foot. I also performed ankle mobilization exercises to help get my ankle moving in a more beneficial way for when I started to run again. I used kinesiology tape throughout the day while I worked to help support my ankle/Achilles.
What are some marathon training tips that you recommend to clients?
Don’t change anything up last minute. Stick with what you have been doing throughout your training — that is what your body is used to. Listen to your body. Sometimes running through the pain can make things worse so get it checked out. And last but not least: have fun!
As a specialist in your field, what advice would you give to someone looking to prevent injuries while running/training for a marathon?
Train hard. Train smart. Runners normally have the train hard part down. With increased mileage, hill repeats, sprint work, etc. there is no training easy. Training smart is figuring out where your weaknesses are and making them stronger. Why is that IT band are ALWAYS so tight? Why does my knee hurt after running 2 miles? Why can’t I ever stretch my hamstrings out enough? Those questions are not simply answered: “because you run too much, slow it down.” That is where I find our team at Norwood Chiropractic strive to help our runners. We seek the cause of your pain and not just simply treat your symptoms. We want you out there training and running just as much as you want to be.
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