I think one of my worst running fears might have come true… getting injured.
It all started when one week ago I went for a six mile run that felt pretty tough on my shins. I didn’t pay too much attention to it. Next day (Monday) I went for a five mile treadmill run that felt even harder on my shins. I had difficulties for walking normally afterwards.
I took a three-day break from running until I came back for another five miles, the pain was really awful afterwards.
I wanted to hit the mileage for my week of training and so I decided to go (with my sore shins and everything) for that six mile run on a Saturday night. Two miles went by and there it was… that stabbing/burning pain on my shins again. The one that made me throw the towel with my half-marathon training. After many attempts of running and lots of tears I decided to walk back home. For the first time, running made me cry.
Once I was back home I texted my Dad (of course), and started looking for pictures to explain him exactly what I felt and where I felt it. This is the most accurate one I found.
Stress on my shins might be the problem, and I had no idea. I don’t know exactly if I’m injured or what, but after two days of not running (or doing any cross training) I’m still feeling pain.
These are some things I believe it started affecting my shins:
– The Treadmill of my gym: That one specifically. After my first run there I ended up with calf tightness, something I’ve never experienced before and something that could lead to shin issues.
– Not enough sleep: Because I’m a full time graduate student with a part-time job and sometimes my life gets a little crazy.
– Only running three days a week: The approach of my current training plan is putting more miles in less days. I used to run the same amount of miles distributed in more days.
– Not stretching before running: I know. I know. I’ve always felt like stretching cold muscles was something unnatural. Walking for a few minutes was the only thing I did to cool them down.
– Cutting out the leg strength exercises: Because I didn’t want to run on tired legs. So, I focused all my strength on my arms and core.
This is definitely an opportunity to adjust some things on my running habits for better. I don’t plan to stop my training plan so far. I’m only planning to take one week off from running and see how I feel afterwards.
Have you ever suffered from shin splints?
What did you do to treat them?