Numbness in Foot during running

Numbness in Foot

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13/01/2003 at 15:55
Would anyone know what could be wrong with my foot/ankle?This is an ongoing problem for over 2 years.The outside of my right ankle will get uncomfortable and then my foot will go completely numb starting at the big toe and working to the whole foot.I can't run on it as my foot feels like lead.I have no pain when I stop running.This seems to occur randomly and may not appear for a couple of weeks or it could appear everyday for a week.Running uphill seems to ease the numbness.I have been to countless physios but nobody to date has diagnosed the problem.I haven't met any other runners with the same problem.
16/01/2003 at 20:45
Funny you should mention it... me too. I get numbness mainly in my right foot, sometimes both. After 20-30 minutes running I have to stop and massage some feeling back into my feet. But, this only happens with one pair of shoes - Brooks (b*****d) Beasts. I've had asics, nike, Mizunos, no problem. The only way I've found to prevent this is to lace the shoes very loosely but this is uncomfortable anyway. I really should have ditched these shoes, I hate them, but after shelling out 90 odd quid I intend to persist with them a bit longer.
In the 2 years you have had this problem have you changed shoes? I suggest you try a completely different pair.
Hope this helps.....
16/01/2003 at 23:16
I am experiencing the same problem. My shin goes tight and calf then my foot goes numb, feels like i am running on a stump, been running for years and have never had the problem before. I have bought some new shoes about sixty miles ago. Could it be shin splints? I am thinking maybe its lack of circulation, I know I cant wait for it to pass. I am still running on it and it comes and goes. Good luck.
17/01/2003 at 00:07
I got something very similar especially on longer runs

started running in shoes 1 size too big and that worked very well until I upped my distance further

it came back on a long run this week but went away quite quickly when I stopped to loosen my laces, take my anti-blister socks off (wondered whether they might have shrunk in the drier along the way), and wiggled my toes

sounds obvious and trite but it worked for me and I did have all sorts of worries going through my head
17/01/2003 at 14:16
Matty I -- I've had shin splints and would say the numbness in the foot is not related. Shin splints are like a horrible stabing pain in your shin and the surrounding area (sometimes hard to tell it is your shin). Not numbness. I have had the numbness problem, maybe 5 or 6 times in the past two years. Seems to happen especially if I am very hot. I have read somewhere before, probably in RW or on this forum, that it can happen if your shoes are laced too tightly and to make sure your heel is all the way to the back of the shoe when you lace up. You can do this by gently kicking your heel against a wall just after you put your shoes on and then tie them.
17/01/2003 at 15:24
YES YES YES!! I thought I was the ONLY person in the world to have this problem! It totally freaked me out when it first came on. It gets worse when I try to up my distances (which is frustrating as I'm training for my first half now)

EXACTLY the same symptoms as you guys.

I've bought a pair of Adidas trainers - I can't remember the name but they're the BIG cushioning ones, and that made a huge difference, although the numbness (and stump) does come back now and again.

I think the tight calf is key because I've started stopping every 3/4 mile or so and stretching them for a while. Yes it's frustrating but the fact that I can keep going makes it more than worthwhile. Toe-wiggling helps too.

If anyone finds the cure, please let me know? I'm desperate to sort it once and for all...

But thanks for this thread - it's really encouraged me!!
17/01/2003 at 16:16
I'm glad I'm not the only one. Both my feet start hurting around the ball of foot, toe area at about 3 miles, then I get the pins & needles and finally at about 5 miles they go completely numb and feel like I'm running on a couple of rocks. I changed from Asics to Nike Pegasus but problem remains. Its really getting me down as I can't increase my distance. Might have to fork out to see a specialist soon.
17/01/2003 at 16:25
Thinking the same, Jacqui. If anyone on this thread sees a specialist, please post the would be so welcome.
18/01/2003 at 00:18
I too have noticed the problem. I am training for my second flm and a few weeks ago notice a numbness and tingling in my right foot when sitting at my desk at work. I also on a few of my long runs suffered a painful inside ankle bone on my right foot. I noticed last week on a short 3 mile run that my right leg seemed to be stiff when running and not going back like it normal does when running. I am now noticing a slight tingling up my calf muslce and up as far as my knee along wihth a numb feeling. Geting a bit down as dont know whats causing the problem and i dont know what it will do on training days or if it will improve. I have been using newbalance 854's with no problems so anyone know whats wrong? I havent been warming up or down as of late so could i have injured myself this way and also I have a bruised toenail on my right foot so could this affect the muscle or nerve maybee and why do the symtoms also occur when sitting down?

Please help
18/01/2003 at 00:22
do your feet swell up?

are the laces tightening up and putting pressure on nerves?
18/01/2003 at 10:14
Thanks for the advice folks I am running 14 mile trg run on sunday I will let you know how i get on. I shall try the lace trick, kicking my heel and all that. Bloody pain though isn't it.
19/01/2003 at 13:27
Done a fourteen miler today with the laces alot loser. Got to about four miles and the old feet went numb again. Stretched of the calfs at a water stop and the rest of the run i was fine with no numb feet. I think my problem could have been a combination of laces and tight calfs stopping circulation. Hope that helps
19/01/2003 at 16:20
interesting i have tight calves as well especially for first few miles - maybe when I was wiggling toes I was in fact loosening my calves too

I also started wearing waterproof sock things which are a bit looser than normal socks and that helps me go longer before the numbness creeps in
20/01/2003 at 09:07
Hopefully this might help somebody. I am so glad there are people out there with the same problem as me. I never met anyone with this problem before and was beginning to think I must be abnormal...

Hav been going to a sports specialist this past few months and don't know if this, decreasing my miles or doing more running on grass is helping prevent the numbness. However, I am now upping my mileage again for London Marathon and am dreading the numbness coming back. I change my shoes every couple of hundred miles (though Mizuna's seemed to be the worst for me) and it does not help. I also have tried all the advice re loosening laces, wearing a bigger sized shoe, stretching out, etc.

My sports physio cannot pin-point the problem, but seems to think it may be something to do with the sheath/band at the bottom of my right ankle that covers the point where the tendon and muscle meet (I think I have got this right!). Apparently, this sheath protects the tendon and can sometimes become damaged. She says when you run (especially longer mileage) and increased blood pumps through your muscles, they expand causing the sheath to expand also. If this is damaged it may not expand and thus can compress the muscle and nerves, thus causing the numbness. By holding some part of my ankle/foot during one session, she was able to reproduce the numbness in my foot. She also said tight calves may be a factor as well.

When she works on the area around the tendon, it is extremeley painful but seems to be doing the trick (however, I also decreased my mileage at the same time which might be a factor). I was told after every run to stretch and ice this area of my ankle. She also said, to turn the water to cold when showering and run on my legs for as long as can be beared, which will help reduce any inflamation.
21/01/2003 at 10:07
Good luck Cait, Plenty of stretching helped me during training runs, remember it does not matter if you stop and stretch when your training. stop the watch if your timing your self and restart it once you get going, and be positive.
21/01/2003 at 19:32
I got this problem after wearing XC shoes on frozen ground at the Minnis Bay XC recently.

My ankles cramped so bad I had to stop and walk, afterwards towards the end of the race my right foot went numb and continued until I finnished.

The coach at my running club thought It may have been induced by the very cold weather (1 degree centigrade and icy wind) plus the fact it was like running on piles of bricks. In hindsight I would have been better off running in my normal Aasics, as the XC shoes are a tighter fit (which is needed in thick mud etc, but not on frozen mud) and probably caused that numbness.

27/01/2003 at 14:54
wow! I thought numb toes was just my problem.
I have recently swapped from squashy Nike Pegasus to Aasics1080 and fing the harder sole helps a bit. Overpronation could be putting extra compression on some nerves perhaps?? I found stopping for 10 seconds or so and wiggling my ankle helped hugely and occassionally running with duck feet spread out for a few paces! Maybe RW could run a whole big article on this!!
27/01/2003 at 15:08
I am now running in Asics 2070's and find these a lot better. Maybe it's because they are a broader fit thus not squashing my foot and compressing the nerves.
28/01/2003 at 14:35
Have just done 5 miles and had numb feet after 3 miles. I had kicked my heels before tying my laces a little looser and went for the toe wiggle as a last resort.

Now it may not be very scientific, but I found it easier to wiggle my toes if I wiggled my first 2 fingers at the same time. Numbness disappeared in 50 metres and I didn't have to stop running.

I also run in Asics 1080's

28/01/2003 at 14:40
hey Bullfinch, waytogo! it's pouring here and I'm snowed under with work-rather be running!! Any advice anyone on running on a blister-it hurts!
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