Sore Shins

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05/08/2002 at 06:26
Hi Guys

Just a query... I started the beginner's schedule around 2 weeks ago and am currently varying from 3 miles to 6 of jog/walk. I've found since I started I have sore shins.

I have a relatively new pair of Adidas trail (same as stability control) shoes which are really comfortable. I stretch and warm up and down.

Anyone know what it is and will it improve..? It doesn't seem as bad as when I started. Also what else can I do to minimise the problems..?
05/08/2002 at 14:40
It is normal to get some aches and pains, especially at the start, and sore shins are common. As long as the pain continues to get less as time goes on, don't worry too much.

You can minimise the effect in a few different ways:

Run on soft surfaces. Grass/trail is best, but if you have to run on pavements, tarmac is slightly better than concrete. (As your shoes are trail shoes, you may find they are not as cushioned as those designed specifically for road use).

Don't increase your mileage too quickly - 10% per week is the general rule of thumb.

Apply some ice to the affected area (a bag of frozen peas is a good size/shape) for 10-20 mins after your run to reduce any inflammation.

If you are getting discomfort when walking, especially if you have done all of the above, and after a couple of rest days, you may have to think about changing shoes, but as you say the pain is getting kess, this is unlikely.
05/08/2002 at 18:20
Hi Cath
Have you tried running on softer surfaces grass etc and don't over do it to begin with
05/08/2002 at 18:30
Hi Guys

Thanks for the responses. I must admit I prefer the stability of trail and tarmac but I run in a park so I'll try the grass verges and see how I go. Also someone from work recommended some stretches which have helped today.

Also, I don't think I'm over doing it. I'm still only jog-walking 60 seconds each for 8 reps over 3 miles or so (the upper of 6 was mainly walking :D) and I've been doing this a week already. The schedule says to move up to 120 seconds of jogging but I think I'm going to stay where I am until this settles down.

Nessie - I think I may go for a new pair of shoes anyway even though mine are comfortable. I'm just scared really of having to start over with all the breaking them in etc :) Also, I never thought about the ice/ frozen peas. Will try that on my next run day (Tuesday).

Thanks again Guys
06/08/2002 at 14:12
Increase your mileage slowly as mentioned earlier 10% per week week max. alternatively try some cross training. Get some professional advice on shoes. I know how important they are, I suffered from shin splints for about 18 months (I'm tall and 16stone) finally I discovered NB 1220's and the splints are history.

Anyway good luck

06/08/2002 at 15:33
I had shin splits every time I ran when I first started out. The right shoes help, as does ice. The main thing to remember is "if it hurts, back off", save the heroics for racing. Trying to go too fast too soon was my problem, I have learnt to slow down and work on distance before speed. No more shin pains from training, only from racing and that's my fault cos I'm afraid of coming last (last but one is ok).
06/08/2002 at 15:53
Don't forget those soleus stretches, they worked for me. (See rw stretching guide.)
06/08/2002 at 22:38
Hi I am so glad I have found this website, I also am getting fed up with sore shins or shin splints, I am trying to improve my running ( only a beginner ) but after everytime I really do suffer, I put on a cold gel Ibropfren gel and cool ice pack, but how can I prevent it happening instead of just treating it after it happens. I would really like to enjoy running/ jogging but feel fed up when I suffer

07/08/2002 at 19:34
Hi Guys...

Just thought I'd say a big thanks for all the advice. You'll be glad to know that after seeking help with shoes, I bought a new pair of Asics GT 2070 and I've only worn them last night (dog walking) and at lunchtime today (treadmill) and already I've noticed the difference. I ran well today and normally I'd be laying on the ice afterwards and taking anti-inflammatories but I'm fine. My muscles feel like they've been worked but generally the pains in my shins is much much less.
08/08/2002 at 14:46
Another update. This is the day after my longest run so far (1.6 miles - I know that sounds pathetic but I was pleased!) but anyway, just to let you know that the shin pains have more or less dissipated now and today, surprisingly I haven't even got any muscular aching like I had last week - only the "worked muscles" feeling - no pain as such. As you can imagine, I'm quite pleased with this in one respect - I will be able to step up my training but on the other hand... now I know I can run 1.6miles I'm going to have to push myself to do it more frequently!!

09/08/2002 at 09:14
Hi Cath, I'm glad that your shin pain is now under control, I would agree with all the advice you have recieved so far. I note that Lizzy is also suffering with a similar problem so I though I would emphasise the importance of purchasing the right kind of shoe for the individual runner. Persistant shin pain can usually be attributed to pronation of the foot. i.e. your foot rolls inward as the heal strikes and causes strain at the point where the muscle attaches to the front of the shin. Go to a proper running shop, preferably one with a treadmill where you running style can be checked out in various shoes.
If in London, I can recomemnd Runners Need at Liverpool Street.

09/08/2002 at 09:57
Hi Cath,
I got shin splints at the beginning of the year. Never had it before, and so I wasn't aware of why I was getting pain. I unwisely didn't adjust my training, and developed a stress fracture, - very painful. I was limited to swimming and cylcing for nearly 2 months.
It frightened me!
Now I run 3/4 runs on the grass, I buy new shoes more regularly, and I take care to buy the correct shoes (i.e. nop longer just those on special offer).
So far so good.
Take care
15/07/2003 at 09:13
I have read all the info on this thread and am still panicing! I dont know what shin splints feel like, but I am in my 3rd week back in training after a 4month break due to a fractured fibia (running induced), and this morning as I went out the door I had to stop and turn around straight away. I have a sharp shooting pain every time that my foot hits the ground running up the right side of my left shin bone. (The fracture was on the other leg - so not related) I can also feel a dull ache just sitting still. I am petrified that this is going to sideline me YET AGAIN. Anyone know if this sounds like shin splints? What are shin splints?
15/07/2003 at 09:34
Sounds like the shin splints I had.
Must rest otherwise you could do some damage.
Go swimming and cycling.
There are various excercises you can do to strenghten the connective tissue. Also check that its not a bio-mechanical problem like over-pronation or collapsed medial arech causing it
15/07/2003 at 09:46
How do I know if it is a "bi-machanical" problem though?
15/07/2003 at 11:16
Hi Cath!

Glad to see you getting going again.

Although you had made pretty good progress before all that chemotherapy, it might well be the case that you have to pretend a little bit that you were off for several years rather than just 9 months, in terms of not offending grisly/stringy/bony bits of you.

I know starting back running (and I had kept quite fit dogwalking) it was six months or so before I stopped pulling muscles for example. That doesn't trouble me now.

Tessa, good luck. Get advice.
15/07/2003 at 17:28
Do you get back pain, knee pain, hip pain, ankle pain, plantar fasciatis, do you overpronate or have fallen arches?
If so, could be bio-mechanical, spent £25 and go and have a consultation with a proper physio/podiatrist.
Alternatively, shin splints can be due to too much too soon, i,e, the connective tissue takes longer to strengthen compared to muscle tissue, therefore you tear it and it hurts. in this case, rest till its better and take it a bit easier.Also, you can do lower limb excercises.
good luck
15/07/2003 at 17:45
I think it may well be a case of too much too soon. I am a little over eager to get back to my old fitness level I think!! Might have to substitute some runs with swim sessions/treadmill sessions.
Thanks alot for the advice - good to share these worries sometimes!
09/03/2010 at 14:21


 I am overweight and have taken up running, at the moment I am following a walk/jog 1 min each x 6.  Since the first run on monday, my shins have been really sore more than yesterday, even when walking.  My feet are quite sore too, especially around the sides?  I have had my gait done and have bought the correct trainers so dont think it is that?  Possibly my weight!!!

 Will this carry on, throughout my training?


17/03/2010 at 17:28

Sounds like the kind of thing you'd expect when starting off.. I think its really important to allow time for the body to heal after running. Especially if like me, you work in an office.. All you are doing is sat down all day long and then suddenly get up and start running - it puts a lot of stress on your joints and muscles.

I had very bad shin soreness when returning to running after a long lay off, I did a few runs then immediately thought i could put in a lot more mileage without a slow build-up. After that it took a whole week for the soreness to go away (its no good trying to run again until the pain has completely gone)

Well, I learned my lesson after that and now I'm being very careful to a) run slowly  b) increase distance gradually c) make sure to take adequate breaks between runs

I've bought a couple of bags of frozen peas which I put on both shins immediately after my run, it's actually quite refreshing and seems to help prevent the shin soreness coming back. Hopefully soon i wont need them anymore.

I would say that it seems to be more of a problem when running on the roads than it is on grass, but unfortunately there's not much of a choice where I live.

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