Don't Let Plantar Fasciitis Get in the Way of Your Run

Whether you are new to running marathons, or an old pro, there’s one common condition that can attack any runner and is always unwelcome. Plantar fasciitis. If you are someone who has dealt with repetitive cases, you know about the debilitating pain that can thwart your marathon training schedule.

Generally, plantar fasciitis causes a stabbing pain in the bottom of your foot near the heel. For most of us, the pain is worst with the first few steps after awakening, and it can be triggered by long periods of standing or even just getting up from a seated position.

In reality, the pain is the result of inflammation within the connective tissue that forms the arch of your foot. Tight arches, over-pronation, and tight calves all lead to the inflammation that becomes plantar fasciitis.

The best way to beat this painful condition and get back to pain-free training is to take a three-pronged approach:

  • Invest in quality arch supports or orthotics. They should be full length and flexible—not the kind made of hard plastic.

  • Stretches of the calf muscle will help relieve arch tightness because the heel bone acts like a fulcrum and pulls back the arch tissue if too tight. You can perform gastroc and soleus stretches regularly to assist.

  • Roll a golf ball under the affected arch for a half-hour once a day. It can hurt for the first week or so, but if you keep at it, you should find significant relief by the end of the second week.

Jay NevansComment