Returning to Running After Shin Splints

Go slow when it comes to returning to running after shin splints.Runners in the Lakewood, CO community have a great resource available in the form of the Belmar Running Club. The group meets up every Thursday at 6:00 PM—at either 100% Chiropractic or Runners Roost Lakewood—before heading out and following either a 3, 5, or 7-mile route. Afterwards, the group goes to Rocko’s Cantina. If you are interested, you can find more information on their Facebook page.

Now, you might enjoy running either with a group like the Belmar Running Club or by yourself, but you won’t enjoy it if you have sharp pain in your shins. After you’ve been treated, you need to know how to return to running after shin splints.

Your health and wellbeing is our primary concern, so we are here to help! Here are some tips to make your return to running easier and safer after your sore shins heal:

  • Cross-train while shins are healing. Use low-impact activities like water exercises or cycling to maintain your conditioning, while avoiding stress on the shin muscles and tendons.
  • When returning, increase mileage slowly. Ideally, the increases should be no more than 10 percent every week.
  • You may wish to consider switching your running shoes. It is possible the injury was sustained because your shoes did not match your pronation style, so come see us to find out if this is the case, and we will be glad to help.
  • If pain—even if it is slight—is still present while you are healing, avoid hard surfaces and hill running until it is gone. If you want to incorporate theses into your training, gradually reintroduce them to your routine so you can lower the risk of recurrence.
  • Make sure you stretch your calf muscles and Achilles tendon on a regular basis to prevent the shin splints from returning.

Generally, shin splints simply need some time for the tissues to heal. If you are experiencing chronic issues, or have a case that will not go away, you may need some professional care. Our doctors at Rocky Mountain Foot & Ankle Center can determine what is happening and how to fix it.

Remember, running before shin splints have healed completely could lead to greater damage, so come see us at one of our four Colorado offices – Wheat Ridge, Golden, Evergreen, or Granby—for advice and care. Call us at (303) 423-2520 for further information, including business hours at each location.
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