Running pains

Discussion in 'Health and Fitness' started by BrunoNoMedals, Sep 4, 2008.

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  1. BrunoNoMedals

    BrunoNoMedals LE Reviewer

    I'm intending to join the TA in the next couple of months, but before I do I'd at least like to get back to my old level of fitness before I'd become a career desk-jockeying civil servant (before my suits shrank and the tabs took their toll).

    I've started playing a lot of 5-a-side and going running. I'm not expecting any miracles in the fitness department quite yet, but I'm worried by the number of injuries and random pains I'm picking up.

    My knees aren't the best, partly due to an active basketball hobby for 10 years and partly due to me now being a fat barsteward who still tries to work out. I'm wearing supports and reducing impact with decent footwear, but still managed to pop something at footy last week. It's fine now, and I jogged on it yesterday, but I could barely walk for about 5 days and it's a worrying sign.

    Similarly, when jogging, I regularly find my ankles aching, my ankles are aching, or my lower back starts to go. It's nothing major, but the constant pain starts to affect the jog.

    I'm pretty sure the knee and ankle problems can be sorted by shifting the weight, so I'm working on that. I also know how to strengthen my lower back and take that out of the equation. Currently my main concern is the shin splints, because I expect to be doing a lot more running once I've signed up and I certainly don't want it affecting my entry tests.

    Are there any exercises I can do, or any change in technique, to avoid this or my other problems in future?
  2. Lower leg excerises, squats, lunges, etc. Although depending on your knee injury how servere I found this helped(I was out for a year), squats may aggravate it. To avoid shin injurys its a case of shifting the weight, streching and strengthing the calf muscles. A good on is raising on to your tip toes, do 3 sets of 10, try walking on your heels for 15 secs. Ankle injurys is also a case of shifting the weight, I have injured my left ankle three times this year due to twisting it on the run. So I am trying to build stability up around it by balancing on one leg. Apparently streching your ankle is bad as it loosens the muscles making you more susepatable to twists and sprains, but I am not sure if that is true. You also need to go without the supports as using them to often will become your knee to be lazy and the muscle not build back up and support the knee. Take this as advice from my own running experiences but people will be able to give you better advice on here, people with qualifications etc. It may be an idea forking out on a PRIVATE physio though and getting a diagonoisis on your knee injury as with some you can run through them and not have an affest but running through others lands you in the shit.
  3. I've suffered in the past (17 odd years ago) with shin splints, stress fractures and dodgy knees. Im also planning on joining the TA but like you want to get fit first.
    Ive just started cycling to and from work (approx 20 miles a day) is this a good exercise to strengthen my legs before I start running and will this help me avoid injury?


  4. If you're new to running (or returning from a long lay off) or more than a stone or two overweight then search for the Couch to 5K running program on google. It looks really easy but that's irrelevant, the point to the program is to get you running 3 miles/5k without any injuries. I've suffered shin splints before and am recovering from a torn knee ligament. I followed this program and before you know it, you're out running like you used to. It takes a bit of willpower to hold yourself back if you are used to running previously but I think in the long term it's worth it.

    edit- forgot to add: I did a lot of cycling before running and the main benefit of it is that it really helps you loose weight withough stressing the joints. It's sort of proven that there's little cross over between the two activities except the general fitness you get from it.
  5. It helped build my legs up, although cycling pulls on the IT band so when I returned to running my IT band was very tight causing pain and took alot of streching to sort out. Start cycling first if you want, but make sure you strech your IT band before and after.
  6. Top tips, bike machine or real is good for leg knee lower back as it is non impact and after few weeks does build strength and increases weight loss, saying that sort your diet out just keep a diary of what you are eatin/drinking and reduce portions increase carbs/ individualy required, remember when you get back into running/phys it hurts but there is a difference between hurting from doing new exercise and injuries so take it easy for a few weeks, this will sort your body out and prepare you for any increases it will also sort your mind out which is probably 90% of the battle, to jog for just 20 minutes might seem sh*te to some of us that have been doing it for ever but it is a start, good luck yo all.
  7. I dont have a problem with excess weight, if anything I could do with gaining a few pounds.
    Having done lots of running in the past I tend to find my stamina is way above my fitness levels and I tend to push myself too hard.

    I have noticed my calf muscles seem to be very stiff these days, is that something to do with age or perhaps diet? Is there something (other than long warmups) I could do to combat that muscle stiffness, ie diet?

    Im not afraid of putting in the hard work, Im more afraid of getting injuries again.
  8. could be as simple as dehyration, what pain? cramp/muscular, give more details.
  9. Im getting tight calfs and lower back when running, find it eases off if i slow down and stretch a bit. My usual routes are concrete and an equal mix of uphill, flat and down hill. Any advice? Thanks
  10. Try warming up on the stairs before you start out. One foot on the second step and the other well back, lean into it and then change over, be very gentle with it to begin with. Then a standing exercise, raise your knees up to the front of your body.

    Try some arm exercises as well using half kilo weights in each hand - this will help with your back problem.
  11. Are you wearing the correct running shoes? Pronation which tends to occur with age to some degree can put excess pressure on the old joints. May well be worth going to get analysed and you may find you need a pair of supportive running shoes.