Exercise! - HELP! - Shin Splints!!
04-29-2004, 10:16 AM
Can anyone offer me some suggestions for preventing shin splints? I have just started exercising regularly again. I am always relatively active but have set two personal goals for myself - 1) run 3 miles and 2) complete 5 pull-ups.
I have been working on the treadmill every weekday morning for a month now and can't seem to run past a half mile before my shin splints just take over. They get so bad I have trouble just walking afterward. I exercise first thing in the morning and they don't seem to bother me during the day afterward.
I bought new (expensive) running shoes and they have helped a bit but I still have the problem. I'd hate to have my splints stand in the way of my goals. Any suggestions? I am desperate.
04-29-2004, 12:47 PM
I have been working on the treadmill every weekday morning for a month now...
There's your problem right there. Pounding on the treadmill every single day, especially if you are overweight, can definitely injure you. You need to do some cross-training. Get off your feet and use some other machine that's aerobic but doesn't punish your legs, such as the rowing machine or the bicycle. Swimming is another possibility. Ideally you could cross-train every other day to let your legs heal. They will be stronger in the long run if you do this. Good Luck.
04-30-2004, 12:08 PM
Thanks for the feedback on that. I'll take some days off and work on the bike. Do you think that I'll still be helping to build my running stamina even if I'm not actually "running"? Thanks again.
04-30-2004, 01:55 PM
Absolutely. All the major "cardio" machines will help build stamina and endurance. Rowing machine, elliptical, bike, stairclimber, etc. IIWY I'd alternate jogging with a machine that got me off my feet on my cross-training days.
The bike is good, especially the recumbent one, if you can find that, because it works the abs a bit more. You might also try the rowing machine, it builds the shoulders, chest, back, arms, and abs, so you get a pretty complete workout. I'm using weights to build up my upper body as well.
But what I really need to do, and I'm having a lot of trouble with this, is get my abs under control. I can really feel myself bouncing around just jogging gently, and that's not good-- it drains your energy fast. So I'd recommend some ab work too.
And I must say, jogging or running at 47 is just plain tougher on me than it ever was before. These older bones are much more prone to injury, especially in the hips and knees. And my weight puts even more stress on them. So I've been very slowly sidling up to it with intervals, walking, elliptical, etc. Pushing too hard, too fast, just leads to setbacks, for me anyway. I'm certainly not giving up, but it may take months before I can run comfortably again. Just a thought. Good luck with your goals.
04-30-2004, 05:02 PM
Here's a good pre and after running exercise for shin splints. When I was a runner, I did this faithfully: Stand on one foot (use a wall for balance if you wish). Raise the opposite foot so that your knee is bent at a right angle. Pivot the non-supporting foot so that your your toes point upward up and hold for 10 seconds; pivot your foot so your toes point toward the right, down and left - again holding each direction for 10 seconds. Repeat with the other foot. This should really help in strengthening those muscles around your shins. And most importantly, don't push yourself too hard when you're just getting into running OR walking.
04-30-2004, 05:12 PM
By the way, how do you add all this personal stuff after your post (like gw, cw, etc)?
04-30-2004, 05:52 PM
May I make a suggestion?
Make sure you are getting enough calcium (with Vitamin D). When I worked for five ob/gynes, they always added calcium when a patient had shin splints or any kind of leg cramping. My son-in-law suffered with leg cramps at night for ages and they stopped when he added calcium.
04-30-2004, 06:44 PM
To add a signature w/HW/CW/GW, you go to user CP up above on the menu and then to edit signature.
05-06-2004, 10:44 AM
Thanks everyone for the suggestions. I've got so many new ideas - I can't wait to try them out and get running!
05-07-2004, 02:55 PM
When i went to boot camp my biggest challenge was my shin splints. I actually started with a faster run time than when I ended, because I was in so much pain. But now that I have control over where and how often I run, I try to avoid sidewalks and roads as much as possible. I was told to run on dirt trails or grass even, whatever is softer on the legs. Some schools and park districts have those rubber tracks-they're VERY nice on the shins. I also choose to run every other day to give my legs time to rest and recover.
I'm curious if you investigated your shoes before you bought them. Just because they're expensive doesn't mean they're the right ones for your feet. I bought a pair of new balances based on my supportive cushioning need. Go to newbalance.com, click on running, then women, then choose whether you need a training, trail running, or racing shoe. Then at the bottom of whichever page you choose, there should be a pull-down menu asking what shoe benefits you'd like. I chose supportive cushioning, and I've never had a problem with shins since I bought them.