Ouchy, ouch! For regular runners, it is very likely that, at some point in time, pain in the feet will occur.
From top to side and bottom, the stress that running puts on the feet is a lot. While foot pain can often be light and simply caused by a sore muscle, in some cases, the pain is a sign of an injury or serious issue. Although it might be tempting to just take a day off and keep running once the pain is gone, in all cases, it is important to accurately access any pain, treat it properly, and know the signs of those bigger issues like plantar fasciitis.
What is Plantar Fasciitis?
Essentially an unbearable pain at the bottom of the heel, there is more to the story.
According to Healthline, “Plantar fasciitis is one of the most common orthopedic complaints. Your plantar fascia ligaments experience a lot of wear and tear in your daily life. Too much pressure on your feet can damage or tear the ligaments.”
While doctors seem to go back and forth on how plantar fasciitis pain is caused--whether by inflammation, deformation, or deterioration--one thing about this issue is for sure. The heel acts as a shock absorber and when the ligament that connects the heel bone and toes is under increased pressure or strain, pain occurs.
Now, when looking at how runners use their feet, it’s easy to see why plantar fasciitis is a common runner issue. Did you know that on average, with each step, a runner’s foot takes roughly two and a half times the bodyweight? Yikes!
When the miles start to add up, so does the strain on the heel.
How To Take Care
As we now know, high impact can lead to increased foot pain. However, some other things are suggested to increase the chances of developing Plantar Fasciitis. These include:
- High Arches
- No Arches
- Changes in training intensity
- Changes in body weight
- Shoes that do not fit correctly
- Improper running form
Being mindful of these things and taking care to correct or prevent the above-mentioned issues, could help reduce Plantar Fasciitis pain.
4 Tips To Support The Feet
Wear Good Running Shoes
The most important part of a runner’s outfit, shoes play a huge role in protecting the entire body. Yes, shoes affect posture while running, stride, shins, and more. Choosing a pair with good arch support, cushioning, and a proper fit for unique foot types will go a long way. On top of that, it is important to change shoes regularly. With use, shoe structure changes and wears down, which can affect foot support.
Support Your Arches
Speaking of foot support, it is important to add the right kind. Many runners swear by taping or compression socks. Used to increase blood flow and add extra support, this tip is one that could provide rapid benefits. Once on, the foot reacts to the extra support and finds relief. Hello, improved inflammation and flexibility! Not to mention many compression socks offer an extra cushion layer too. Check out some of the Crazy Compression’s favorite cushioned styles here.
As we said above, it is tempting to just train without concern or push the body once the pain is gone. While at first, this may seem like no big deal, in reality, pushing can cause more harm than good. Some things to keep in mind while training carefully are to not increase running times or speed abruptly. Always let the body adjust to new levels slowly. To further that, make sure to always train with the proper form. Increasing training intensity can change form. Don’t be afraid to ask a professional or coach to check your strides. Lastly, never run without shoes. Actually, for that matter, even while walking around the house, add some type of cushion.
Ice when needed. Stretch, stretch, and then stretch some more. Use painkillers when needed but be sure to rest according to what the body feels. Maintain good body weight. And, see a doctor regularly. All of these things can help improve recovery time and lower pain. Staying proactive in the long run will become a foot save.