Achilles problem advice needed

New runner (4 weeks) suffering a bout of TMTS itus. I've been happily following a plan and building up slowly but last week did an extra run with friends and really felt it the next day in my calves/now realised Achilles. Didn't help I tried out a pair of new balance mt10s either, as before running in my asics 1170s. They're really painful first thing, loosen up by mid morning, and ok till entering. Been taking ibuprofen and trying to ice and gently stretch. Thought they were ok Sunday did a steady 3 miles and felt great, however this morning could barely walk and had to go downstairs on my backside. They eased with ibuprofen, there's no swelling and I've been trying to ice and elevate, and have promised myself I will not run this week but they're still painful at moment. At what point to I give in and go to the doctors - would I really have caused that serious a problem from an extra run? (~2 miles?) Not sure in healing time, and wondering what else I can do - am I right swimming is still ok? What about cycling? Thanks

Comments

  • Hi Darren,

    I think it's a combination of increase in mileage and trying the MT10s.

    MT10 is a pretty minimalist shoe as a result is fairly flat compared to your ASICS 1170 which has a reasonable heel on it which takes some pressure of your achilles. Also the 1170 is Structured Cushioned shoe so has much more stability.



    The morning pain and stiffness is probably due to inflammation, continue your plan of rest and ice. You may also want to try offload taping. Details on that and other treatments available here;



    http://runningphysio.wordpress.com/achilles-tendonopathy/
  • Still resting and been icing and using ibuprofen gel as needed, got some kt tape last night and tried that to give it a bit more support/rest.



    Finding hardest thing is to not run! Just want to get back out but dont want to make this worse than it is. Left foot seems about 90% now, just the right that's probably 70-80% so hopefully ok by Monday!
  • As an update have kept up with the taping, using the offload technique linked above, left foot today is 100% no issues image

    However right foot... not great.

    The tightness in my calf muscles seems to have subsided, and pain on walking isn't really noticable, but any movement loading the tendon is causing pain at my heel.  I've also noticed my heel looks a bit yellow, like its bruised, so don't know if thats a symtom or cause...

    I've checked and doing the wall test my left toe is happily 10cm from wall with my knee touching, right cant get past 6-7cm so I believe that is tight.  Any tips on lossening it up?

    I can do calf drops and raises, normal straight leg calf stretch is fine, calf stretch with toes raised (on step) is fine, but as soo as I bend my knee and try the stretch it really hurts.  

    Can anyone offer any more advice - still resting, did a very short flat bike ride just to get the muscles warm this lunchtime and have stretched as much as I can, will retape soon and hope all well for monday i suppose

  • Hi Darren,

    Are you doing the soleus stretch?

    It's number 5 on this page;

    http://www.runnersworld.co.uk/staying-healthy/the-rw-complete-guide-to-stretching/484.html
  • Hi Tom,



    Yes number 5 is the one that hurts on the right foot, pain seems to be right on the heel, no visible swelling and no pain along tendon even if squeezed firmly. Have prodded all round, can't produce the pain without loading the tendon or doing that one stretch - I was fine before this though!
  • Hi Darren,

    Do you have a race monday?

    I wouldn't worry too much, it sounds like it's progressing well. Your first post was only Monday and I wouldn't expect it to settle completely in 4 days. Try that stretch but don't push into pain, just find the point where you can feel a stretch and try and hold it. Stop if it hurts.

    It may need a little time to totally resolve

    Tom
  • Thanks Tom!

    Yeah fun run Monday 5k not competitive so taking it very slow!

    Training for half marathon September 30th!!!



    Think I'm being ultra aware of any little twitch in that foot right now
  • Half marathon eh? Great distance to do, any target time?
  • Just to finish ! Then next one I get competitiveimage
  • Have a horrible feeling I've misjudged this, pain more under the foot =PF??? Hope not just saw the recovery times for that!!!
  • Hi Darren,

    I doubt it's Plantar Fasciitis, it's more likely just feeling a bit sore because the calf is tight. The calf muscle attaches to the heel bone via the achilles and that blends with the plantar fascia so calf and PF are interlinked. Keep doing your stretches and I'm sure it'll settle.
  • After several reps of stretching yesterday feeling better today! Not quite there yet but def healing.



    Thanks Tom for the help!
  • Good stuff! Glad you're getting better!

    Good luck for your 5k tomorrow.
  • 5k done, foot felt ok this morning, couple of twinges but like a 1 out of 10. Concentrated on bending knees, relaxing calves and steady pace - ended up slowing few times for my running partner, did it in 39.09 so lots of stretches I think and hopefully tomorrow it doesn't flare back up.



    Thanks for the advice Tom - you're a star dude!
  • No worries, glad you got round ok!

    Ice would be a good idea now, help prevent too much inflammation.
  • Already on that one! Feels great still, not had to take ibuprofen for once! Some tightness but that's to be expected.
  • Hi Darren, just wondering how your achilles is now?

    I've haven't ran for the last 10+ years and recently got back into it. I decided to sign up for a 10k in july, and was training towards that. It took a while to get going but after a few weeks I wasn't feeling any pain the day after. As I was just getting into I managed to get just under half way distance (2.8ish mile). I felt awful when I finished it, I felt like it took ages too. My right achilles heel was very painful and could barely walk on it afterwards.

    That was just under 3 weeks ago now and I'm still having problems with it. I can do all of the stretches without any difficulty and walking is fine. It is only now if I try to run that I still feel a niggle.

    Did you have this problem too? If so, what did you do about it, and how long did it take to go away??

    I'm really worried that come July I'm not going to be over it and no-where near ready for my run image

  • Hi Simon and Darren

    I have a similar situation to Simon. I did the Manchester 10k  just over 2 weeks ago and got to 5k when my achilles started to hurt. I carried on but by the time I had finished I had difficulty in walking.

    I have rested for 2 weeks but now started to do stretch exercises and exercises to strengthen the calf muscles. Unfortunately this has made my achilles very sore.

    I don't know whether to continue or rest.

  • When mine hurt I decided to rest/ice and take ibuprofen, but for me after 5 days rest it was stretching that really helped. In hindsight I think it was my lower calf causing my issues, and the inflamed Achilles was secondary to that.



    At the start of the run it felt a bit sore but this soon went and by the end was fine - but I had warmed up, cooled down and stretched properly for once!

    I was shocked that Tuesday after the run Monday I was fine moving on the foot first thing - didn't expect to be walking and did 15km on the bike and all still ok.



    If rest and icing aren't working try taping your foot like in the link Tom posted to take some strain off it.



    Hope you both manage to get it sorted I hated the idea of not being able to run!
  • Ive been resting it, tried the ice pack on, got tubular bandages on, used voltarol, and had ibuprofen! I was doing those stretches against the wall today and my foot was fine.

    Thinking I might be able to run on it, I decided to run down the hallway, which resulted in feeling another twinge, this time though it was actually coming from midway down my calf! 

    I might have a look at getting a roller nd some of that tape!!

    It's so frustrating, it's been long enough now, I've learnt my lesson, I just want to get going again!!

  • Suddenly felt a lot better today, been having plenty of ibuprofen, stretching, and been wearing my tubular bandages. 1 over my foot/ankle, and 1 over my calf.

    Anyway, decided to be brave and go out and see if i could run/jog on it. Jus did a lap around the estate (about 1 mile) and it felt fine image Did my stretches and cool down etc. 

    I think it will still be a little stiff first thing in the morning, but I'm over the moon that I managed to get out again  

  • I could also use some advice on this subject. I started running again about 6 weeks ago after quite a while off. Both of my achilles are stiff and a bit sore first thing in the morning, but soon ease off and then don't bother me unless I have been sitting for a long time, when they again have to ease off after walking a bit. The right ankle is really the worst. There is no pain while running,  no bruising and only a little swelling over  the inner side of the right achilles area. I had my gait analysed at sweatshop a couple of months ago, and I am a fairly neutral runner, with only a little overpronation in my right foot, so the guy said that the Brooks Radius 7's I am using are fine, although if I wanted they could make me an insole for the right foot. At the time I decided against it. I stretch calf and soleus after each run, and do heel lifts and drops when I remember. Am I OK to carry on running, providing I continue to follow the golden 10% rules about increasing mileage / time etc, and carry on stretching? I'm loathe to stop running now to rest having just gotten back into it, but at the same time, I have a 10K planned in September which I don't want to miss out on. Any advice gratefully received  - thanks image

  • I'm just a beginner, but i'd say that if you feel ok when you run then run! I found the tubular bandages and plenty of ibuprofen helped! 

    Try ice and elevation after runs to reduce any swelling

  • A little stiffness in the Achilles first thing in the morning is not unusual - give it a few minutes to wrm up and allow the natural lubrication of the tendon to ease the stiffness. Problem is caused by the tendon being in a shortened position overnight. The main issue with the Achilles is when it starts to get painful during a run - my advice is to slow down and stop to prevent the problem getting any worse. Swelling around the Achilles area is probably a bad sign, as it probably indicates some kind of inflammation. I am afraid rest is the best cure for Achilles problems. I speak from bitter experience, as I did not rest when I first had some Achilles problems last year and ended up with a three month layoff.

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