Question for veteran runners please...

I am just starting out (truly just a beginner in the run~walk~run stage) and I have a question I would like to ask those of you who have been running a while.
I don't seem to run out of breath so much but find that my shins start to ache and ultimately that is what stops me from running and I walk until the ache subsides which seems only moments; then I can run again for a minute or two. Did you all get achy shins when you were starting out running? When does the shin ache go away? Any insight and/or feedback would be greatly appreciated - Thank You!

Replies

  • tpt1950
    tpt1950 Posts: 292 Member
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  • AmyRhubarb
    AmyRhubarb Posts: 6,890 Member
    Are you following a program or just doing your own run/walk and stopping when you need to?

    I started out with the Couch to 5k program (or c25k) at the start of this year, and never had a problem with sore shins or shin splints. It starts you out with a five minute warm up walk, then alternates you with running & walking, similar to what you're doing, but will gradually increase your run times over 9 weeks until you're running 30 minutes or a 5k distance without stopping.

    Good shoes also make a world of difference on the feet, shins and knees. Do you have a good running shoe? Are they new or worn down? If you can, go to a good running store where they can analyze your stride and recommend the best shoe for you. Since I started running, I've had my knees bug me a couple of times, and in both cases, new shoes made it stop.

    Check out the c25k program - Google it for an overview of the program, and if you've got a smart phone, there are a lot of free apps out there that you can download and take with you, they give you all the prompts for when to run, walk, cool down etc.

    Good luck!
  • dawlschic007
    dawlschic007 Posts: 636 Member
    Whenever I had issues with my shins, it was always due to the shoes I was wearing. Try getting fitted for a pair of running shoes and see if that helps. Also, socks can make a difference, too.
  • scottb81
    scottb81 Posts: 2,538 Member
    Yes , I had that pain when starting out. For me it lasted a few weeks and then went away. Then it came back for a week a year later and then went away again. A few things will help.

    1. Good shoes.
    2. Good running form. Google " Good Form Running"
    3. Stretches for shin splints. You should be able to google up a few of those.

    A variety of pains are pretty much standard when first starting. Most will pass after a month or two. If something starts to really hurt though stop and figure out the problem. You don't want something minor to progress to a stress fracture or torn tendon.
  • First off, good for you! It's hard to take those first few steps and harder still to keep going.

    Possible causes for your shin splints:
    1) Doing too much too soon - it doesn't sound like it in your case, but some new runners run further because they have the stamina for it. But their leg muscles aren't ready yet for too much mileage.
    2) Shoes - Running is a cheap sport, so don't skimp on a good pair of shoes. See if there's a running store nearby that will analyze your stride and make recommendations. You may pronate a little or be a forefoot striker, either of which might cause shin pain.
    3) Running surface - I run quite a bit (60 miles per week at the end of a training cycle) and do perhaps 50% on asphalt and 50% on dirt. Asphalt gives you a firm surface that still has a little give to it. I prefer trail running because it breaks up the monotony and is easiest on my legs. But stay AS FAR AWAY AS POSSIBLE from concrete. It will kill your shins, your knees, your feet, your back ... just don't do it.

    A lot of beginning runners will have shin splints, so don't get discouraged. Don't overdo, rest when you need to, and they should disappear before you know it! Good luck!
  • tpt1950
    tpt1950 Posts: 292 Member
    Thank you all so much for your responses - I truly appreciate your help.
    I am doing my own program - taking my time.
    I do think it's my shoes and will take care of that this weekend.
    You have all inspired me and I look forward to becoming a "real" runner
    Thank you !!
  • Di3012
    Di3012 Posts: 2,250 Member
    I am just starting out (truly just a beginner in the run~walk~run stage) and I have a question I would like to ask those of you who have been running a while.
    I don't seem to run out of breath so much but find that my shins start to ache and ultimately that is what stops me from running and I walk until the ache subsides which seems only moments; then I can run again for a minute or two. Did you all get achy shins when you were starting out running? When does the shin ache go away? Any insight and/or feedback would be greatly appreciated - Thank You!

    If your shins are aching due to you just not being used to running quite yet, that will subside over the weeks. However, if your shins are giving you gyp and that aching or if it begins to get painful starts earlier and earlier each session and starts to NOT subside, you most likely have shin-splints. Once you get splints, they do not go away on their own and just get worse.

    Things you can do to combat it and prevent it starting are:

    Get your running gait analysed and get fitted for the correct shoes, this is vitally important and can mean the difference between no injury or you having to cease running.

    Run on soft ground (grass, dirt track, gravel).

    Do not sprint on pavement or hard ground.

    Sorbothane insoles put into your trainers take away 80-90% of the shock caused by your feet striking the ground. They are expensive but have a 10 year lifespan, don't be fobbed off with "these are not Sorbothane, but they do the job" either. I had that happen to me once, it didn't work.