Running requires many parts of your body to work in tandem and under stress for a prolonged period of time. Generally, your muscles and bones are good at working together—but there is room for error even in the best circumstances. As a runner, there are a few measures you can take to minimize your risk of these common injuries.
What are shin splints?
Shin splints are a sharp pain down the front of your shinbone. They’re especially common for new runners and those returning to running. They can also crop up from overuse or running on surfaces you’re not used to—like concrete, grass or a treadmill.
How can I avoid shin splints?
Avoid shin splints by running on similar surfaces as much as possible, increasing your mileage gradually, resting between runs, and wearing supportive shoes (replaced every 300 miles or so).
What is plantar fasciitis?
Plantar fasciitis is an incessant pain in the bottom of your heel. It’s a frustrating injury because the pain persists whenever you’re on your feet—whether you’re running, walking or standing. In some cases, plantar fasciitis will go away on its own, but it could also last anywhere from six months to several years without treatment.
How can I avoid plantar fasciitis?
Good running shoes are key—especially for runners with flat feet or high arches. Adequate support goes a long way. Stretching before and after running—particularly your hip flexors, calves, and hamstrings—can also help prevent plantar fasciitis.
What is a stress fracture?
A stress fracture is an overtraining injury caused by repeatedly putting stress on your bones by running too far, too often, at too high of an intensity and without adequate recovery. Eventually, they start to crack. Stress fractures are very serious and painful, and usually require six to eight weeks of recovery.
How can I avoid a stress fracture?
Ease your way into running and progress overtime. Also, get rid of any running shoes that you’ve logged 300 to 400 miles in (for most runners, that’s every four to six months).
Remember to stay mindful during your training. Always listen to your body, stick to a progressive routine, and take time to rest and recover. It’s the best way to avoid injuries and keep yourself on track for long-term success.
Please note: This blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.