28 Feb '13
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Common Running Injuries

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Running does many wonders for our health. It lowers blood pressure, increases bone density, burns fat, and improves lung function. Despite all these benefits, running can have a dark side. There are several injuries that are common among runners. It is important to understand them if you plan on starting or continuing a running regimen.

Achilles Tendinitis

Tendinitis is an overuse injury. The Achilles tendon is the one that connects your heel to your calf muscles. When the tendon undergoes too much stress, it tightens up and becomes irritated. It’s easy to succumb to this injury if you try to dramatically change your running routine in a short amount of time. This is especially a problem for casual runners who begin training for a marathon. It’s important not to continue running if you sustain this injury. Rest will drastically reduce the time you need to heal. Icing it will also help. If you have strong calf muscles, you are much less likely to get achilles tendinitis.

Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis occurs when the tendons and ligaments in the bottom of your feet suffer inflammation or even small tears. It can cause pain that is generally felt on the arch of your foot. Again icing the afflicted area, as well as rest, is the best way to facilitate a quick healing process.

Shinsplints

Also known as medial tibial stress syndrome. The will cause a pain in your shin where small tears in the muscles have taken place. This usually results from an overuse of the calf muscles which causes them to stiffen and pull on the muscles of the shin. It’s easy to sustain this injury as a new runner, or if you have taken an extended break. Again, ice and rest will be your best friends.

Keep in mind that the risk of injury does not outweigh the benefits, but is important to understand that these injuries do exist. If you feel pain in your body when you run, do not ignore it. Running through the pain will most likely exacerbate the issue.

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