It's that time of year again. The Cooper River Bridge Run is only 2 months away. Many of you are thinking about starting a training program in preparation of the big run at the end of March.
Due to the large number of overuse foot injuries we see in the office following the Bridge Run, we have decided to write a Foot Injury Prevention Series to hopefully decrease the amount of heel pain, joint pain and ball of foot pain to our locals and out of town runners and walkers.
Two important factors can aid in proper training and prevention of overuse foot injuries. The first is a new pair of running shoes. As a shoe is worn over time it gradually loses its stability and cushioning, which would normally help decrease strain to the foot. Visit any of our knowledgeable running stores in Charleston to be fitted properly.
The second factor is a plan to gradually increase your mileage each week. If you are just getting off the couch and have not been very active then try a walk/jog program for the first week or two. I generally start my patients out with 3 minutes of walking and 2 minutes of jogging for a total of 15 or 20 minutes. If there are no increased aches and pains the following day then we will progress to 2 minutes of walking and 3 minutes of jogging and continue this pattern until you are able to jog for 20 minutes straight. Try to avoid consecutive training days if possible. I prefer for my patients to run 2 sessions at the same rate and distance before progressing to the next stage. A gradual increase over the next several weeks of short and long runs should have you ready for the Bridge Run.
If at any point in your training you begin to have constant aches and pains try returning to a time and distance of a previous run where no foot pain was present and try to progress at a slightly slower rate. If pain continues try taking several days off with rest and ice or see a foot specialist.
Good luck with your training. See you on the bridge!