Some runners are able to log tons of miles every week with no fear of pain, soreness or anything else slowing them down.

For the rest of us, we need to do something to deal with the aches and tightness. Stretching can help, but it’s often the last thing we want to do after a workout.

And if you’re getting older, you can add stiff joints to the equation when you wake up the morning after working out the day before.

Finding time to stretch can be difficult, especially if you’ve got a limited amount of time allotted to getting the run in. If you’re pressed for time, the first thing you’ll cut is the 5-10 minutes you’ve set aside for stretching afterward. I’m definitely guilty of this, especially during the week when I run in the morning and have to get showered and go to work. Sometimes this means I take a few minutes before I go to bed to stretch.

But it’s not just stretching. There are many different ways to address those aches and pains. One popular tool is the foam roller, a cylindrical device that allows athletes to use their body weight to apply pressure to muscles while rolling over it.

Foam rollers comes in many shapes, sizes and densities, and there are also variations like roller massage bars/sticks that are portable and useful before or after a race to loosen up the calves, quads, hips and other muscles. Depending on how much pressure you put on the roller, the experience can vary in intensity. You can work the muscle lightly or really dig into troublesome spots, and it can be pretty painful at times.

A paper published recently in Frontiers in Physiology (https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fphys.2019.00376/full) reviewed 21 studies conducted on the effectiveness of foam rolling as a way to improve muscular performance and flexibility as well as help athletes deal with muscle soreness. Of the studies examined, 14 dealt with pre-rolling and the other seven used post-rolling. Fourteen of the studies used foam rollers and seven used roller massage bars/sticks.

The review found that pre-rolling as part of an exercise warm-up routine resulted in a slight improvement in sprint performance and flexibility, with a negligible effect on jump and strength performance. When post-rolling was used as a recovery tool, participants found that they recovered exercise-induced decreases in sprint and strength performance more quickly than passive recovery. They also experienced a small reduction in the severity of muscle pain. The researchers also found that foam rollers offered larger recovery effects than roller massagers, but there was not much difference between the types of foam roller devices used for pre-rolling.

However, the review warned that the physiological mechanisms of the potential benefits of foam rolling are not fully understood, so care should be taken to not overdo it and risk damage to muscles, receptors, vessels or bones.

Foam rollers certainly aren’t a miracle cure for muscle pain, but they’re helpful. You can buy the traditional smooth foam rollers, but there are also “trigger point” rollers with all sorts of painful ridges that can dig into those tight spots. But if you don’t feel like dropping a lot of cash on a new device, you can get creative and turn to other sports: a golf or tennis ball is useful for foot and heel soreness, while rolling over a softball can be used to really target soreness in your legs or glutes. And you should combine foam rolling with traditional stretching; again, that requires a few more minutes, but it’s well worth it.

To get more intense relief, I’d recommend going to a licensed sports massage therapist. The occasional massage can help you deal with the wear and tear of running and other physical activities. But foam rollers and their ilk are definitely beneficial tools to get you through the day-to-day aches and pains of running.

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Starts and stops:

- The 3rd annual Griffin’s Gift Run/Walk is scheduled for Wednesday, July 3 at 6:30 p.m. at Danvers High School, 60 Cabot Road, Danvers. The event will celebrate the late Griffin Lamar’s 5th birthday with a timed 3.5-mile run and a non-timed 1.5-mile walk The event is in conjunction with Griffin’s Gift Family Field Day. Visit http://high5em.com/?page_id=1026 for more information.

- A correction to a race mentioned in the last On the Run column: The JCCNS 5K by the Sea is now planned for Sept. 28 instead of late July. It’s the fourth race in the 2019 Marblehead Race Series. Visit http://www.marbleheadraceseries.com/ for more information.

- The inaugural Run Your Bunns Off 1-Mile Run and Walk will take place at 10 a.m. on Sunday, June 9 at the Village School track, 93 Village St., Marblehead. All proceeds will benefit the Caring for a Cure fund at Massachusetts General Hospital, which will provide for non-medical patient needs such as sneakers. The race is held in memory of the late Jim Bunnell. Visit https://runyourbunnsoff.redpodium.com/run-your-bunns-off for more information.

On the Run is a biweekly column about the North Shore running scene. Send any questions, comments, or news to jay.kumar@gmail.com.

Upcoming races

Sunday, June 9

The 10th annual Run/Walk for the Beach, Dane Street Beach, Beverly, 9 a.m. Visit https://www.northshoretimingonline.com/reglive2017.aspx?eventyear_id=1591 for more information. Proceeds benefit Salem Sound Coastwatch.

Notch Sunday Meters for Liters, Notch Brewing, 283R Derby St., Salem, 11:30 a.m. Free group 5K or 10K run from the brewery. Beer and pretzels provided to runners after the run. Runners who complete 10 runs (aka 50,000 meters) will receive Notch swag.

Wednesday, June 12

The 26th annual Louise Rossetti Women’s 5K, Lynch Park, 6:30 p.m. Visit https://www.northshoretimingonline.com/reglive2017.aspx?eventyear_id=1577 for more information.

Danvers 5K Fun Run, meets at Panini Pizzeria, 11 Maple St., Danvers, 7 p.m. Run starts and finishes at the corner of Elm and Page streets, near the Danvers Fresh Market Place. Free, timed run. All welcome. These events are part of a weekly 52-race series. E-mail adam@danvers5k.com.

Meters for Liters, Notch Brewing, 283R Derby St., Salem, 6:30 p.m. Free group 5K run from the brewery. Beer and pretzels provided to runners after the run. Runners who complete 10 runs (aka 50,000 meters) will receive Notch swag.

Lynn Woods trail races, Lynn Woods Reservation (Great Woods Road entrance), 6:30 p.m. Each week, there are three free trail races of varying distances. Visit http://lwrun.org/ for more information.

Thursday, June 13

Gentile Run Club, ABV: 3.1, 59 Park St., Beverly, 6:30 p.m. Free weekly 5K run from the Gentile taproom through Beverly and back.

The Bent Water Thunder Squad Weekly Running Club, Bent Water Brewing Taproom, 180 Commercial St., Unit 18, Lynn, 6:30 p.m. A free weekly 3.2-mile run from the taproom to the beach led by local runner Angel Dee. Runners who complete seven runs receive a Bent Water t-shirt.

Weekly 5K from True North Ale, 116 County Road, Ipswich, 5:30 p.m. Free, weekly

timed 5K from the brewery.

Sunday, June 16

The Beverly Coast 10-Miler, Cove Community Center, 19 East Corning St., 7:30 a.m. It’s the third race in the 2019 North Shore Brooks Running Series. Visit https://www.northshoretimingonline.com/reglive2017.aspx?eventyear_id=1626 for more information.

The 4th annual Freedom Run 5K and 1-mile walk, Temple Emanu-El, 393 Atlantic Ave., Marblehead, 9 a.m. Part of the Marblehead Race Series. Visit http://high5em.com/?page_id=1315 for more information.

The Rockport Father’s Day 5K, Rockport High School, 9 a.m. Visit www.northshoretimingonline.com/reglivecb.aspx?eventyear_id=1583 for more information.

Notch Sunday Meters for Liters, Notch Brewing, 283R Derby St., Salem, 11:30 a.m. Free group 5K or 10K run from the brewery. Beer and pretzels provided to runners after the run. Runners who complete 10 runs (aka 50,000 meters) will receive Notch swag.

Wednesday, June 19

Danvers 5K Fun Run, meets at Panini Pizzeria, 11 Maple St., Danvers, 7 p.m. Run starts and finishes at the corner of Elm and Page streets, near the Danvers Fresh Market Place. Free, timed run. All welcome. These events are part of a weekly 52-race series. E-mail adam@danvers5k.com.

Meters for Liters, Notch Brewing, 283R Derby St., Salem, 6:30 p.m. Free group 5K run from the brewery. Beer and pretzels provided to runners after the run. Runners who complete 10 runs (aka 50,000 meters) will receive Notch swag.

Lynn Woods trail races, Lynn Woods Reservation (Great Woods Road entrance), 6:30 p.m. Each week, there are three free trail races of varying distances. Visit http://lwrun.org/ for more information.

Thursday, June 20

Gentile Run Club, ABV: 3.1, 59 Park St., Beverly, 6:30 p.m. Free weekly 5K run from the Gentile taproom through Beverly and back.

The Bent Water Thunder Squad Weekly Running Club, Bent Water Brewing Taproom, 180 Commercial St., Unit 18, Lynn, 6:30 p.m. A free weekly 3.2-mile run from the taproom to the beach led by local runner Angel Dee. Runners who complete seven runs receive a Bent Water t-shirt.

Weekly 5K from True North Ale, 116 County Road, Ipswich, 5:30 p.m. Free, weekly timed 5K from the brewery.

Friday, June 21

The Beverly Relays, Beverly High School track on Sohier Road, 6:30 p.m. Visit https://www.northshoretimingonline.com/reglive2017.aspx?eventyear_id=1614 for more information. The event consists of three-person teams running a 2-mile relay.