I get shin splints. I have ever since I was on the San Rafael Junior High track team launching into the sand pit over and over again as a long jumper. Recently, my cousin Vaughn Jensen talked me into doing the original distance relay race Hood2Coast. So I have been running. I have been running pretty consistently. Even though I hated distance in high school and college I am really learning to love it. It is very therapeutic listening to the rhythm of my feet and feeling the air reach the very bottom of my bronchi as my lungs expand fully. Although I started to feel big improvements in most areas of my health, the more I ran the more my right shin hurt. It was getting worse with each run. The pain was bearable but consistently was getting worse with each consecutive run. I had to get an answer quick before the issue became to much. I asked everyone I knew that was into running and received some great answers. Here is what I have done to control and even get rid of my shin splints.
- Compression socks - This has been the best thing for my shin splints. No longer does my condition worsen when I run. They really feel good when I put them on. I haven't tried compression sleeves but some people prefer the compression sleeves to the compression socks. The sales person that I spoke with said that for long runs compression sleeves tend to cause the blood to pool in your foot where compression sleeves eliminate this issue. I purchased Swiftwick Men's Twelve Aspire Socks. Not only do these ones feel great but they have a cool logo on the calf. The store recommended(slightly more expensive) socks are CEP Men's Compression Running O2 Socks I have linked to both below as well as a pair of 2XU Compression Calf Sleeves.
- Ice - After each run, long or short, I ice my shins. This instantly reduces shin splint pain and helps long term with the constant aches. I ice for 10 minutes after each run.
- Alleve - If I am doing a long run I take an Alleve before the run to reduce inflammation. This serves the same purpose as #2 but in a preventative way. I never take drugs or medication but this has been so helpful in reducing the inflammation and preventing the shin splint pain.
- I also stopped running on my toes. I focused on my form and tried to have a proper foot placement.
Make sure to watch the video. It is amazingly informative. Some of the info listed is:
- Find the right fit in shoe. Look for a shoe that has arch support.
- Take it easy. Don't go to hard to soon.
- Bone density. Eat food high in calcium and vitamin D to strengthen your bones.
- Shorten your stride. Make sure to take 85-90 steps per foot per minute. This puts less load on the feet.