Tabbing, Insoles and Shin Splints

Discussion in 'Health and Fitness' started by Spenny, Feb 12, 2008.

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  1. I know the shin splint thread has been done to death, as has the "which boots to buy" thread, but this is slightly different.

    I'm doing a fair bit of tabbing at the moment and finding that as my fitness improves, my legs are recovering quickly after a hard session. The problem I'm having though, is that my shins are sore after a run and killing me after a tab and where I feel I'm ready to run/tab again the next day, my shins need a week or sometimes even more to recover.

    I'm currently tabbing in issue boots with sorbothane double strike insoles, but its not doing much good. I've been considering superfeet (or similar) orthotic insoles as I do overpronate, but as they are rigid plastic I'm concerned that they wont offer the same level of shock absorbing protection as the sorbothanes do.

    Does anyone have any experience with orthotics like these, particularly when doing a lot of running or tabbing in them? Eventually I will change my boots too (probably to Altberg Defender Microlites) but my main concern just now is finding the right insoles and trying anything I can to help my shins (as fast as possible!!).

    I have an appointment with a podiatrist next week for a biomechanical assesment, but in reality I'd rather hear from people who have experienced the same issue under the same circumstances (ie: been out in the hills wearing issue boots, with a 40lb bergan strapped to there back!!).

    Cheers for any help
  2. There are so many factors affecting feet/shins/ankles. To quote Sally on Coronation Street, "feet are more complex than people give them credit for".

    There could be an underlying problem you aren't aware of and nobody on a forum can diagnose that over the net for you, but I see you are already booked in, which was my next suggestion.

    I've had many issues with mine, still trying to resolve it myself but my conclusion = issue boots are a sack of crap if you have feet outside the average shape.
  3. In my experience most shinsplint type problems arise from someone doing too much too soon - ease back training and start again, slowly and methodically.

    With regards to insoles: I did the sorbothane thing for many years but since delving into footcare I have tried out various other types of insoles.

    I have fairly flat feet and Superfeet (blue) insoles worked great for me straight away, I went into a 20mile tab with them and not one blister formed. Superfeet have no real absorption; they just cradle the feet to let your feet, joints and muscles do the job of absorbing impact - which is what they are designed to do.

    See the podiatrist and see what they have to say, if they prescribe orthotics then wean yourself into them and give them a good go, but keep an open mind as there are a few people who have been messed up by too much correction.

    Best of luck: when you eventually find a good boot/insole/sock combination it will be worth all the aggravation.
  4. a tip to prevent shin splints is to leafe your toes on the ground as long as possible and this streaches the muscle. When most people refer to shin splints it is a severe muscular pain rather than fragmentation of the bone. If it is the fragmentation of the bone then stop what you are doing and see a doctor!!
  5. Cheers for the relpies so far lads.

    Bulldoze, my feet are also fairly flat and its the Superfeet blue insoles that I was looking at. Youve said they have no real absorption and really just cradle the foot - with this in mind, do you think it would be possible to put a sorbothane insole (the flatbed one - not the double strike) under the superfeet blue insole to get the best of both worlds?

    Another insole I was looking at was the SOLE product. Similar to Superfeet, but they can be heat moulded in the oven to provide a custom fit. Does anyone have any experience with them?
  6. I do not think the absorption of Sorbothane is really required; not unless you are running with weight and on hard surfaces. Also the Sorbothane insoles are quite thick and if you add both them and the Superfeet then you are simply putting too much material into your boots and this could lead to instability.

    The Superfeet insoles are designed to be cut a qtr of an inch less than the length of the boot so they move slightly with the foot.

    I can't recommend them enough. but as 1manriot points out, feet are very complex and we are all very different!
  7. Im tabbing regularly mate, in issue boots and carrying a 40lbs bergan (if you include water). My training also includes running part of the route on roads (to get to and return from the hills mostly!!) hence the reason Im seeking shock absorsion as well as stability!!

    I realise that its a complex situation, that everyones body is different and that its not going to be resolved fully over the net, hence the reason Im going to the podiatrist. The problem is, a podistrist doesnt do 10 mile Tab's in full kit - thats why Im seeking advice from the lads on here.

    Cheers again
  8. Are you in the Army? If so speak to your PTI.
  9. Good insole , expensive but well worth the money.You put them in the oven for 2 minutes then put them in your boot and they mould to your feet.
    I have used them for the last year . I wear my boots nearly every day and never had any problems .
    Linky here
  10. It does look like a good bit of kit - the support of Superfeet insoles and the shock absorbing properties of sorbothanes (if you believe the hype!!)

    Boney have you ever tabbed in them mate and if so what were they like? There are plenty of reviews on them on the web, but they all seem to be from Septic SF and Ranger type blokes.

    5.56mm, it was a PTI who put me in touch with the podiatrist mate.
  11. Cutaway

    Cutaway LE Reviewer

    Spenny pal,

    I can offer no further advice than what has been given so far on the thread - except to ignore 5.56mm, he's a cadet in the Overenthusiastic Underachievers Coy.
  12. Whats wrong with offering advice? I have suffered from shin splints with marathon training, so I think I should be allowed to put my input in.
  13. Cutaway: Message received, over. :p

    Thanks for the input guys. Ive done some more research on the SOLE Softec Insoles and to be honest, they seem a really good product. Ive decided to go with them, see the Podiatrist on Monday and see how it goes.

    Im doing a 10 mile tab on Sunday and its over a real barsteward of a route, so this will put the insoles to the test.

    I know shin splints is a real problem for a lot of people, so I will post back here once Ive given the Insoles a good test drive and once Ive had some treatment from the Podiatrist.

  14. Sarastro

    Sarastro LE Reviewer Book Reviewer

    Lo mate, been in exactly the same situation with slightly wonky overpronating legs, started off getting pretty bad shins but managed to fix them & now free of problems, unfortunately not exactly sure how. So general stuff that I've done for the problem:

    1. Podiatrist / physio is still a good idea, because they can tell you how your feet are going wrong, and make you tailored insoles.
    2. Rigid insoles just sound wrong, I've got orthotic types from physio and they are still Sorbothane soft, there's just more material around the arch.
    3. Riot is right, if your feet don't fit issue sizes, you can't avoid problems. Get your own, Altbergs preferable because they'll tailor them for you.

    Biggest thing I suspect, however, is that your body will naturally get used to carrying the weight and such. As your muscles strengthen, then you'll get less shin pain. Unfortunately, most people here tend to be working to a deadline for fitness tests, so slowing down your training routine probably isn't possible for you.

    So, recovery is just as important as prevention. Find what works for you. I do a variety of stuff including: hot shower/bath then stretching, walking / cycling at slow pace for long distances, supplement called MSM (might be bollox or a placebo, but it's the only supplement balls I've ever taken & it does the job for me), having a few bevvies before bed (muscle relaxant...seriously, it works).

    Finally, stop running on roads. Just don't do it. Running as part of a tab is one thing, but if you look at those units who do it regularly, it's done on metaled roads, tracks, grass or soft surfaces. The hardest surface I ever run on with weight is tarmac paths in a park - and that's basically a thin layer of plastic springy stuff on earthy springy stuff. Roads or pavements are generally hard stuff on more hard stuff. Running to and from your tab on tarmac, or worse, concrete, will murder anyone's legs. Either walk & take longer to get to your start point, or find another method of transport.

    Good luck with it!

    PS Before you think of changing your boots btw, be sure that whatever you are preparing for allows non-issue boots if it's a course.

  15. Cheers for the post mate.

    I will try to avoid roads as much as possible......... easier to do in the summer with the lighter nights, as I can get my arrse up the hills instead of pounding the streets.

    You were spot on though mate, with a deadline to meet its a fine balance between quality rest and pushing yourself harder to meet the standards.

    Re boots I was going for Altberg Defender Microlites, but I will be limited to how often I can wear them at the moment, instead of issue boots. PM inbound re this.