REAL Foot Pain Answers: Can I run with plantar fasciitis?

I remember I would run, all day every day. No joke…

As a kid, was there ever a gear below ‘full’ when you could be outside with your friends? Quite literally, even if we did have the rare meal with my friends, we were usually standing or on the move.

And as the years past, things slowed, to the point that running was an ill-thought-of action.

And then, it happened!

I started running again. With my husband’s motivation, we started down the fun road of Coach-to-5k.

But, there was a punchline…

I had developed plantar fasciitis.

Can I still run with plantar fasciitis?

You can, indeed, still run with plantar fasciitis. During episodes when plantar fasciitis flares up, you should rest and take care of the inflammation and pain.

Even knowing the answer, before getting the answer, didn’t help.

That question, “can I still run…” weighed so heavily on my mind. As I went to see my family physician, my podiatrist and then onto my orthopedic specialist, I asked the question again and again and again.

“Running with plantar fasciitis? But how…” I would think. The pain was a beast, and the headaches from treatment were exhausting. Even during times with no flare-up, I thought my runner’s world was ending.

But I kept asking…

The answer, of course, is a resounding YES!

You don’t have to stop your life. Not because of heel spurs, plantar fasciitis nor any of the other developed ailments that could be game-changers in some people’s minds.

Here’s a video…

How can I run with plantar fasciitis?

Well, first, you should know to never run with pain. The first thing you have to due is control and take care of your plantar fasciitis inflammation. If you just try to push through the pain, things will get worse, much worse, until walking, let alone running, just doesn’t work.

Use some rest and ice

Ice and rest will help the inflammation of plantar fasciitis flare ups. These episodes will cut your running time down, however not practicing active control of episodes, as well as prevention, is a bad time. Use ice after runs, and during flare ups to reduce swelling, and help control the pain.

Use stretching

Remember that you have plantar fasciitis. So, practice daily stretching, and sometimes, for every major action that you take. We stretch before leaving bed, before leaving the house, before and after runs and while winding down for the night.

Plantar fasciitis insoles for the win

If you are winning with plantar fasciitis and running, chances are you are using insoles. While over the counter insoles can help, nothing is as good as custom insoles from an orthopedic specialist.

Replacing running shoes keeps you running

You replace tires on your car after so many miles, right? But how often do you gauge distance with your running shoes and make replacements? I have heard numbers from 500 miles to 1000. The punchline? For foot health, keeping you running means changing your running shoes every 500 miles or so.

Massage at different levels of intensity

Here is a plantar fasciitis tip: rollers are so awesome! Want a bigger tip? Use a frozen water bottle as your foot roller! Not only do you get the cooling effect from the ice, but the shape stays solid and true.

So, I CAN run with plantar fasciitis?

Hell yes! Be proactive in keeping inflammation to a minimum. Stretch, ice and rest are the great trio for any type of flare up and maintenance. And, don’t neglect braces, insoles and good running shoes.

For something a big more visual, check out this infographic from ShoeInSoles.

how can I run with plantar fasciitis?
Courtesy of ShoeInSoles





Causes and Treatment for Runner’s Foot Pain

Even the seasoned runners can experience foot pain after running. Medically, the condition is due to “Plantar Fasciitis” or “Heel Spurs”. Both are side effects of long and intense running and are generally found in sports persons other than runners too.

Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar Fasciitis is caused due to overuse of feet surface and heels. Bottom surface of the feet is called plantar surface and the ligament there is called plantar fascia. When this ligament get burnt or damaged due to excessive weight over long periods of time or insufficient support of shoes, runners feel pain in the bends of the feet. Actually it happens due to extra pressure over connective tissue which connects the thick fiber layer and heel bones.

A person suffering from plantar fasciitis feels a hot, sharp sensation under the heel. They even notice the pain while standing for the first time in the morning after waking up. After walking around for some time, the pain lessens or even disappears. Again when they take rest the pain returns in same manner.

Heel Spurs

Heel Spurs is extra deposit or formation of calcium near the heel bone. This is generally caused by excess use of heels during running, heavy sports training, etc. Heel spurs are also formed when heels of a person suffering from plantar fasciitis release calcium to rebuild itself.

A person suffering from heel spurs notices pain as if a pin has been pricked in his skin. The pain increases in normal standing position, especially under the heel area, and reduces while standing on toe.

If you find yourself suffering from any of these symptoms, don’t panic. Here are some tips to handle these injuries.

Ice Packs

Water is the most necessary element for you even now. Roll your heels over a frozen water bottle or pop bottle for minimum 10 minutes twice a day. This process will dissolve the extra calcium and repair the tissues fast.

Medical Help

Visit a specialist doctor when you start experiencing foot pain after running or heavy workout. Medicated injections can provide immediate relief. The doctor can also go for Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy (ESWT) to cure the problem using sound waves. If all else fails then surgery is the last option to remove heel spurs and repair the damaged tissue and ligaments.

Physiotherapy

You can go to a physiotherapist directly or on the advice of your doctor. They prescribe medicines and tell you exercises that will heal your heels and feet.

Complete Rest

You should stop all activities like running, workouts, dancing or any other activity that puts excess weight over your feet. Even if you feel better after a couple of days, take rest as prescribed by your doctor or physiotherapist. Resuming activities even partially may further harm your feet.

And yes, these even means not taking that late-evening stroll, so put your best walking shoes away as well.

Use Customized Footwear

Wear the correct size of shoes and check them for comfort before using. Use special accessories like heel cups, insole and custom orthotics.

Never ignore warning signs of foot pain. If you are a runner, you need to take care of your feet the most. So the moment you feel the first pangs, take remedial measures discussed here.

4 Notes about running shoes and high arch feet

While standing, walking, running or doing any other activity on one’s feet, a person’s full body weight is taken by the feet, especially the soles. The bottom part of the feet, from toes to heels, is called sole.

If you are a runner, your soles take even more stress regularly. So you need specialized shoes according to your sole type. For that you first need to identify your sole type. After that, you’re walking shoes or track shoes will become a much more to run with.

Types of Soles

All human beings have different physical construction of sole. The structure of sole can be divided into three types – flat arch, normal arch and high arch – according to contact area between sole and surface. Flat arch is also known as low arch. This type of sole gets more friction with surface while running or walking. Normal arch is also called medium arch and found in maximum people. High arch is the rarely found sole type and needs extra attention in selecting right footwear.

How to Recognize Arch Type

Here is a simple experiment to determine your arch or sole type. Place your feet onto a wet surface and then put the feet over plain paper. Now watch carefully the print of sole over paper. If the complete surface area appears on paper then you have a flat arch. If only toe, heel and outer area appear then you have a normal arch. And if a ball, thin outer lines and finger prints appears then you have a high arch.

Problems with High Arch Feet

A high arch foot has minimum area – balls and heels only – touching the surface. This means greater stress on the feet and its inability to absorb shock during any vigorous activity. If you are a runner this could lead to pain or stress in lower foot, ankles, knees, and at times lower back. And this is the type of cause of foot pain that can easily be remedied before it even happens with a little research.

High Arch Running Shoes

High arch running shoes are designed to provide extra support to the runner’s feet to prevent unbalance and tiredness. These shoes use special technologies to prevent physical injuries like muscle pain, factures, joint pain etc. High arch shoes provide ample cushioning, correct flexion angle, side support and flexible sole design for better support and shock absorption.

Features of High Arch Running Shoes

To give you an idea of the features you should look for in good high arch running shoes, here is a quick review of one of the best shoes for your needs.

Plantar Fasciitis and Heel Spur Pain

Brooks Men’s and Women’s Glycerin

The Brooks Women’s Glycerin 11 Running Shoes have specially designed inner sole and added accessories for greater comfort. Its OMEGA Flex Grooves underfoot gives improved traction and flexibility. These shoes also have BIOMOGO DNA midsole to provide customized ride for runners. The appropriate cushioning of the shoes supports main areas of feet, like heel, mid foot and forefoot. The shoes are almost weightless for an effortless running experience.

Correct high arch running shoes are must for you if you have high arch feet surface, to achieve great positioning and timing while running.

At-home foot pain diagnosis and you

Foot is complex structure with 26 bones and number of joints, muscles and ligaments. Foot pain is common complaint now days. Almost 75 percent of Americans experience foot pain at some point in their lives. It may be caused due to some common negligent practices affecting your foot or may be related with systemic diseases.

Why is foot pain more common?

The reason for foot pain being so common than other parts is the anatomical location of foot. The external and internal forces affect feet more commonly that other parts. Some common causes are:

  • Aging and being over-weight
  • Ill-fitting /high-heeled shoes
  • Poor Posture & poor balance
  • Running and other high impact exercises
  • Walking regularly on hard surfaces
  • Systemic diseases including Arthritis, Diabetes and Gout

Making a diagnosis for foot pain

While you doctor makes a diagnosis about your foot pain, a complete general and medical history is important in order to distinguish between various causes. These points guide about diagnosis of foot pain:

  • Onset of pain (sudden or gradual)
  • Exact location of pain in the foot
  • Whether pain radiates in foot or not
  • Which factors exaggerate pain and which factors relieve pain
  • At which specific time of the day pain occurs

General examination of foot is made by doctor to rule out any cause of pain. Many foot problems are obvious from a simple foot examination. This includes an inspection of foot for any swelling on foot, abnormal skin texture, color change and any other in born visible deformity in foot. An important thing in this regard is to check range of motion at ankle joint. Watching you stand and walk will also be helpful in making a diagnosis.

X-ray although is not very important in this scenario but it can be taken if your doctor suspects a bone fracture due to stress or trauma or if there is any abnormal thing related to ankle joint. If diagnosis is not clear yet you may have some other tests like MRI, blood tests, scanning of bones, vascular testing and neurological testing as recommended by doctor.

Common foot problems leading to foot pain

There are many common foot problems associated to foot problems. Most are very clear, usually diagnoses by a simple visual examination.

Plantar fasciitis

The most common cause leading to foot pain is plantar fasciitis. It is in both athletic as well as non-athletic persons. Some manifestations of such a case are: It may occur in one foot or may be in both feet with more severity in one. Being localized in inner side of foot, typically it is worse in the morning with first few steps and then may come down. It improves actually with walking but keep in mind prolonged walking always aggravates it.

Walking with weight on forefoot and walking on hard surfaces for a long time can also worsen the scenario. A vigorous and sudden athletic activity may result in severe and sudden pain in foot and considered as typical case of plantar fasciitis. For plantar fasciitis exercises and more, check out all of our articles at Plant and Run.

Athlete’s foot

It is a common fungal infection of the foot, most commonly caused by fungi of the trichophyton genus. This is also known as ringworm or tinea pedis. Fungi attacks the moist parts of the foot and leads to itching, flicking and pain. If the infection remains untreated, bacteria can attack the wound, worsening the condition. It can also spread to the other body parts such as groin. You can also prevent this by changing your running shoes.

Warts

Warts are small and rough over-growths found commonly in the foot. These resemble a solid blister. It is caused by a viral infection and warts have a tendency of recurrence. The treatment involves removing the wart by procedures like electrodessication and cryosurgery.

Callus

Callus or callosity is the thickened and hardened skin due to repeated pressure, friction or other irritations. The calluses are not serious problems but they are prone to become infected and can convert into painful blisters. Frequent walking is the most common reason to develop callus on the foot.

Prevention of foot pain

If you are generally healthy, proper shoes and over-the-counter foot products are usually all you need for most foot problems. Reduce your body weight. Avoiding impact activities is especially important in athletes, who can cross-train with non-impact sports such as cycling or swimming.



3 Basics Types of Plantar Fasciitis Insoles

Plantar Fasciitis is painful condition of foot involving inflammation of plantar fascia. This tendon runs along the bottom of foot. Sometimes this tendon can become sore from normal use or strenuous activity.

Although there is no one absolute cause for the condition, it remains clear that this condition, while painful, can be corrected with products such as footwear, night splints, insoles and a variety of other products.

Role of plantar fasciitis insoles

Plantar fasciitis insole is an inside sole of a shoe designed to provide comfort in above mentioned condition. For people with these feet problems, wearing normal shoes are not sufficient because they do not have the proper support that your feet needs. Plantar fasciitis insoles are among the less invasive, more effective and cheaper ways to correct some direct results of the problem. Because of their high success rate and their low cost these insoles are now among the most recommended form of treatment by GP’s and foot specialists.

Plantar fasciitis insoles are designed to re-align the foot and support the arches. As a result, excess strain and stress on the plantar fascia ligament is greatly reduced. These insoles address the cause of this medical foot condition, whereas most other treatments merely relieve the symptoms, providing only short-term relief.

In short these are the reasons to use insoles in plantar fasciitis:

  1. Arch support
  2. Shock absorption
  3. Efficient weight distribution
  4. Foot or ankle alignment
  5. Gait or posture support and correction
  6. Correction of musculoskeletal deformities
  7. Improvement of athletic performance
  8. Cushioning and comfort

Types of plantar fasciitis insoles

Orthotic insoles are made by a professional orthotics. Orthotic insoles are a functional device, designed to correct our foot biomechanical deformities and optimize our foot function.

Custom-made orthotics is made from molds of the feet with computer imaging and mapping techniques. The orthotics are usually made with wide range of materials, which are guaranteed to last for years.

Choosing an insole

When buying these, it is important to buy the correct types to which fit the shape of your feet. You would not want to end up with one that is too small or too large as they will make you even more uncomfortable.

For those people who want a better choice, there are also custom made insoles which you can order. This is usually done by a podiatrist who will measure your feet and analyze the shape and depth of your foot arch. They will then mold the orthotics to match your feet perfectly. While this will certainly cost you much more, they can be very effective indeed because of the level of customization that you are receiving.

Normally, a normal insole purchased online would be sufficient, but if your condition is in its late stages, it would be better to go with custom made ones. You should discuss this with your podiatrist and seek the best advice for your situation.

Where to buy from?

The simplest ways to purchase these is through an online retailer, like Amazon. For some solid choices at insoles, look at Dr. Scholl’s Tri-Comfort Orthotics Inserts, Women’s Size 6-10, 1-Pair Packages (Pack of 3) or the Syono Orthotics Gel Insoles and Shoe Inserts for Men and Women. Both of these are under $25 (US currency), and will meet your needs for cushioning, support and your medical condition.

In the end, choice is yours to have any any one type of insole, but you should always go for it instead of ignoring the problem. Ignoring the problem and wearing just normal shoes worsen the problem.

Pain in Bottom of Foot – Causes and Home Remedies

Pain is a feeling of hurt that a person feels in any particular area for some time period. It can be classified basically as acute pain or chronic pain, and occasionally a mix of the two.

Acute pain is one that lasts only for a small time period, whereas the chronic pain lasts for a longer time period. Pain in bottom of foot will usually be an acute one. This is because, pain in the bottom of foot occurs usually due to overload of work and that pain remains only for a short duration. There are chances of it being a chronic pain in case of accidents, like fracture, etc.

Let’s look at the bottom of the foot

The bottom of the foot consists of toes, ball of the foot, and the heel. The toe pain will usually occur due to improper shoe structure or less comfort shoes. But some times it can also lead to severe issues like arthritis.

Toe pain can occur at any stage of working. It is wise to consult a doctor when the color turns odd, or if the swelling is noticed. Toe pain need not be necessarily due to some specific scientific reasons. It can also occur due to physical injury such as cuts or burns. One should always be clear and clever in finding the abnormalities in his body condition, for instance, finding whether it is a major issue or not.

Metarsal Bones in the Foot

Now the next part is the ball of the foot. The largest bone in our feet is the metatarsals. Metatarsalgia is a condition in which this bone, metatarsals is affected. The home remedy includes keeping ice in the affected area and giving rest to the feet. If the remedy doesn’t work or if the pain still continues, it is better to consult a doctor.

The next very common disease in the foot can be said as Plantar Fasciitis. It is nothing but an inflammation found in a tissue called plantar fascia. This plantar fascia is a tissue that connects the heel with the mid bones of our foot. This condition can sometimes be helped with extreme methods like injections or medicine, as well as stretches for plantar fasciitis.

Some of the major causes for this could be unusual increase in weight, usage of comfortless shoes and over work load. There are remedies that can be done to control it right from home. And the exercises are also effective to make it not to relapse again.

Bottom of foot pain – recap

Problems associated with heel can be cracked heel, heel spurs, heel pain and plantar fasciitis. Apart from these there are several other factors that disturb the foot, such as weakness of nerves, filaments and bones.

The feet together has 1/4th of the entire bones that we have. Each foot consists of 26 bones with 2 sesamoid bones. Our foot has such a complex structure and it needs to be preserved rightly. But we fail to give enough rest to it and spoil the structure by giving it over load and the mechanism collapses at some stage or the other.

So it is one’s duty to give equal amount of rest and work and to have a balanced health. Also, to take great care in treatment of injuries and issues, and to find the right quality footwear like orthopedic shoes or high arch running shoes as you need.

5 Night Splints for Plantar Fasciitis

The inflammation of plantar fascia, known as plantar fasciitis causes a severe stabbing pain in the foot. Night splints are employed in the patients of plantar fasciitis to combat this pain. Night splints are one of the most effective and major home remedies for plantar fasciitis. The main aim is to prevent the excessive mobility of foot that can result in aggravation of the inflammation and pain.

Why should you use a night splint?

The plantar fasciitis typically becomes more pronounced in the morning time in most of the cases. The main reason for this enhanced morning pain is the immobility of lower limb throughout the day. The fluids get accumulated in the fascia as the foot is in relaxed condition allowing only a minimum tension to prevent engorgement of foot.

Plantar fasciitis foot pain

The fluid in the inflamed area is the main reason for producing severe pain in the morning. The night splints are helpful in this case owing to their stretching effect on the calf and foot muscles. The splints exert a certain amount of pressure on foot so as to avoid the fluid accumulation. Night splints help to maintain and enhance the strength of plantar fascia reducing pain and inflammation and boosting the healing process.

Types of night splints

Night splints are available in a number of different shapes and designs aiming to comfort the patients to the best. Regarding the shape of night splints, following are two main classes of night splints.

Boot night splints

This design is the most commonly used for plantar fasciitis. Such splints also cover the leg providing support to the heel. These night splints include a soft and soothing inner layer with adjustment angle while outer layer is hard and rigid that provides mechanical support to the foot.

Dorsal night splints

Dorsal night splints are created in such a way that these only cover the dorsal surface or front of foot. Dorsal night splints are considered to be the most comfortable night splints present there in the market. In some cases, straps are also used that stretch the toes and help to obtain a good dorsal flexion with stretching of Achilles tendon.

Workings of night splints

The main benefit of reducing pain by the use of night splints in case of plantar fasciitis is achieved by maintaining the length of plantar fascia and avoiding the edema of the inflamed part. Normally the foot assumes a plantar-flexed position due to muscular tone at rest. This plantar-flexion exerts a pressure on already damaged fascia increasing the inflammation and pain.

Night splints play their role by preventing this tension on the inflamed fascia. The pronounced pain in the morning, known as post-static dyskinesia is also reduced as strain of splints prevents the fluid filling in foot.

Recommended night splints

You can find a large number of night splints in the market available for you but choosing the right product with maximum comfort is the crucial thing. The efficiency of different night splints varies with severity of the plantar fasciitis. Below are some of our recommended products that can be obtained on Amazon to help you get rid of pain.



Simple, Yet Effective Plantar Fasciitis Exercises

Every injury has a treatment. For plantar fasciitis, the best thing that you can do is prevent the pain on the outside of the foot, inflammation and injuries with this diagnosis. Today, we will be looking at some plantar fasciitis exercises, including stretches, strengthening and support for related parts of the foot, ankle and legs.

Before discussing these particular exercises, let’s have a brief look on what plantar fasciitis is all about. It is nothing but an inflammation in “plantar fascia” – a tissue connecting the mid foot bones and the heel.

Plantar Fasciitis Examples and Definition

Tension tends to increase in this tissue and it finally leads to bulging and causes pain. The root cause for this can be sudden weight gained, wearing worn-out shoes and overload of work in day to day, etc. This can be overcome by following a few easy plantar fasciitis exercises. People will get relieved soon, depending on how regularly they follow the exercises; and don’t forget about the right kind of running shoes for women.

Stretches for your legs and feet

Stretching is one of the best remedies to reduce the pain caused due to plantar fasciitis. Combining stretching, with some strengthening exercises will yield a stronger architecture in your foot, while minimizing injury and down-time.

Standing Calf Stretching

Calf stretching is one of the effective exercises used. Stand against the wall and place the hand palms straight in the wall. Keep one leg front, toe facing the wall, palm fully placed in the ground. Keeping the back knee straight, bend the front knee till you feel the calf muscle tightening. Continuing the same for both the legs alternatively, will give better results.

Sitting Calf Stretching

This exercise is as easy as the first one. All that a person needs to do is to catch hold of the toe, till a stretch is experienced in the muscle. Continue to hold it for thirty seconds which assures the relaxation of the strained muscle.

Shin Flexxing

The third exercise is again not a difficult one to be followed. Just relax in a chair and cross your legs, ankles facing upwards. Pull the toe upward, such that your muscles are sure to face a stretching sensation. Hold it for 30 seconds. Repeat it at least thrice a day for better results.

Sitting Tennis Ball Roll

Exercises are followed not only to get rid of the pain, but also to strengthen the muscles in due course. One such exercise is to roll a tennis ball under your feet, by sitting in a chair. This solves 2 purposes simultaneously. It reduces the pain as well as strengthens the foot muscles.

Towel Strengthening

The next exercise uses a simple object; a towel. Your towel will be placed near the foot. Try to bunch the towel without stopping the curling action. This strengthens the plantar fascia tendon and supporting muscles, and keeps you free from muscle pain.

Stairway Calf Raises

Next exercise is easy and involves no expensive thing to do it. Stand in a staircase and hold the side walls for grip. Place your feet flat in the step, making the heels to get off the steps. Now just lower your heels. Do not bend your knee. Maintain the posture for 30 seconds.

One last word on preventative exercises

The above exercises are very easy to follow and do not require any expensive equipment. Though there are several other remedies such as steroid injections, shock-wave therapy and surgeries, it is always better to go for the natural remedy.

By following these above exercises, I’m hoping you find relief, as well as a preventative method of treating your flair-ups. If you want more information, please consult your physician or orthopedist today.

Foot Pain Diagnosis, Plantar Fasciitis and You

Foot pain is one of the most general problems faced by half of the population in day to day life. Causes for foot pain can be many and it usually varies from one person to another, depending on their background.

Some of the most common reasons behind foot pain are wearing high heel shoes, worn out shoes, over stress given to foot muscles, sudden increase in weight, diabetes, ingrown toe nail and/or plantar fasciitis – a muscle inflammation. Foot pain, from running even, is rarely caused due to some of the systematic diseases like arthritis, gout, etc.

If foot pain at one stage starts to affect the daily routine, then it is then necessary to diagnose the starting point or the root cause for the foot pain. Treatment is necessary for severe foot pain. However, before even that, diagnosing the foot pain completely and giving appropriate treatment gives a better result. Calculating the severity of the problem also paves a good solution to solving it in the right path.

Common foot pain diagnosis

Pain occurs usually at four stages in day to day life:

  • While doing an activity
  • Before or after an activity but not affecting the activity
  • Before or after an activity and also while doing the work, say running
  • Aches so much that it affects the performance of the particular job
Foot Pain Areas

Our foot is a sensitive body part. Not only because we are on our feet for most of the day, because of the structure; there are 26 bones and 33 joints in it. All these are very sensitive and the chances of damages are high.

Initial diagnosis

Usually the initial stages of diagnosis gives a clear picture on which part of foot the pain occurs and why it has occurred. The diagnosing part of foot pain includes the initial question of previous medical history, latest jobs that added stress to the patient, injury on that particular part, etc.

Later in the diagnosis, things like physical examination and X-rays occur in cases that are serious and that needs high attention. Certain swelling in feet are typically an external signal that there needs to be an X-ray for further discussion.

Analyzing foot pain

X-rays are used to analyze problems such as arthritis, bone fractures, foreign metal particles and bone tumours. Physical examination also includes stretching the foot with weight and without weight to get a clear picture or the exact location of the injury.

The affected person will be subjected to walk or even run to find how severe the pain is. And his nerves are also tested to confirm that there are no abnormalities. People think that X-rays are just to check the abnormalities in bone or to locate the fracture. However, it also deals with the soft tissues in our body. Thus the painful area is easily located by its inflammation.

Final diagnosis of foot pain

Once the entire diagnosis is over, the treatment stage is initiated. Treatment usually involves stretching, physiotherapy, plantar fasciitis exercises and taking rest, giving sufficient time for the problem to heal. Exercises are not only to heal and correct the issue; it also deals with strengthening of the muscles and bones.

The foot is a small structure, yet a complex one. It deals with most of the work that a man does for the whole day, thus it needs sufficient care and rest for its service to continue.