Starting a Running Program While on the "Stay at Home" Order

I've realized that while on "stay at home" orders, some people are taking the opportunity to spend time outside. With the spring weather, it's a good time to take long walks and go for runs. People who have been meaning to start a running program are no doing just that, since it's something they can do safely on their own, while maintaining social distancing. We're starting to see some problems, with people getting foot or ankle pain because of their new running endeavors.

There are some guidelines that I like to share with my patients. First of all, be sure you stretch, either before your run or after you've warmed up. These should include a good calf stretch, quadriceps stretch, and hamstring stretch. Stretching properly is very important.

Also, it is common to run too much too soon. If you find that you are starting to develop some pain, ask yourself how fast are you increasing your mileage. You should only increase your mileage by about 10%. So if you ran 1 mile, your increase should be no more than 1.1 miles. It doesn't seem like much more but it will be easier for your body to adjust to the increase in mileage.

Finally, you may feel some symptoms centrally in your body, known as your core. We sometimes neglect our core when starting a running program. In addition to running, try simple exercises such as sit-ups, planks, pushups, or squats. A good strong core will help you when you start your running program.

When you're under home restriction, you are still able to get out and exercise, but do it safely. If you are having a foot or ankle problem, much of these issues can be handled virtually through telemedicine or we can see you here at the office. Feel free to contact us for an immediate appointment.

Dr. Andrew Schneider
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A podiatrist and foot surgeon in Houston, TX.