Any Tips on training techniques?

Hi Guys,

 I have always suffered with Shin Splints.   I have had all the correct shoes, (over pronator), been checked by video analysis etc, and have a sports masage once a fortnight for my calves/shins etc.  I also have recovery drinks to aid muscle recovery after every run!

 No matter what I try and do they always creep back after lay offs.  The worst culprit seems to be when I incorporate speed sesions into my weekly workouts.  The trouble is, without speed sessions, I have no way of bringing my times down, but I know this is what is killing my shins!

 I have also tried dropping a few extra pounds in the hope that will ease the joints/muscles, but to no avail.

Any ideas/suggestions/help would be fab as I'm on the border of giving up which I really don;t want to do, but its sooooo frustrating image

Comments

  • MoraghanMoraghan ✭✭✭

    Malakite - the speedwork isn't causing the shin splints it's provoking the root cause to react.  Have you been to someone qualified to identify the root cause?

    What's your definition of speedwork?

    There are a number of ways you can get your times down without resorting to typical speedwork.

  • Running off road should help and if you find a good course with plenty of ups and downs you will get a speedwork effect by working harder on the ascents.
  • MalakiteMalakite ✭✭✭
    Hi Guys, By SPeedwork I mean running for miles at a time a lot faster than I would and out of my comfort zone (by the definition from Smart Coach on here)....

    What ways are there to get my times down without speedwork then??

    Also I do run offroad, up and down hills, I try the lot image
  • Have you had a pshyio check out your legs? If not might help and you can get it on the NHS. As a gut feeling and bare in mind easy to give bad advice on the internet I rechon you are training to hard to get your times down.

    Take a deep breath ditch the speedwork for now and work on distance and also core strength stuff to help with your legs. Ever weights and/or yoga. Problems with the knee's and shins are a lot more commom with ladies due to boimemcanics (oh spellingimageimage) I've had it explained to me in detail once by a boffin but must admight I would struggle to repeat it.

    You might want to consider taking in a little swimming to brake up your training because it's zero inpact and also fun.

  • MoraghanMoraghan ✭✭✭
    Malakite wrote (see)
    Hi Guys, By SPeedwork I mean running for miles at a time a lot faster than I would and out of my comfort zone (by the definition from Smart Coach on here)....
    Could you be more precise, or rather could you be any less precise?
  • When you start back how long before you're back to the same workload you were on before? You need to build up slowly to give the muscles time to develop evenly.
  • How about swapping for example 5 runs a week for 3 runs and 2 cross training sessions.

  • MalakiteMalakite ✭✭✭
    Hi guys,

    Firstly I'm a bloke - had this confusion before - must be the PInk avatar image
    Secondly I do swim every week, and yes I've seen a physio! - all appear NOT to be helping image

    I might not build up as slowly as I should sometimes but other times I increase very slowly and then it STILL happens!!

    I don't understand how one week I've been consistently running 25-30 miles for a couple of months, enter a Kilomathon without any difficulties whatsoever, then literally the next week, when doing very little mileage, for no reason whatsoever, the shim splints rear their ugly head again! It makes no sense at all and is really getting me down as I'm so keen image
  • MalakiteMalakite ✭✭✭
    .
  • Hog-mouseHog-mouse ✭✭✭

    When you swim do you use a pull buoy? try resting your legs in the water more. Also don't push off from the side of the pool. (This is for when you have shin splints).

    I'd really like to know what exactly you mean by 'shin splints' as this term can encompass a few different symptoms. Is it a general pain in both shins or a localised single point of pain.

    Your last point -

    Malakite wrote (see)

    I don't understand how one week I've been consistently running 25-30 miles for a couple of months, enter a Kilomathon without any difficulties whatsoever, then literally the next week, when doing very little mileage, for no reason whatsoever, the shim splints rear their ugly head again!

    It makes no sense at all and is really getting me down as I'm so keen image

    It makes a lot of sense. Your legs are tired and you are over training. Rest more, run slower - you need more recovery after a race than you are giving yourself. Stretch your muscles after each run - kneeling stretch and calf stretches and achilles stretches. Shins splint is / are an over use injury.

    http://www.youtube.com/StretchingInstitute

    If you have shin splints you need to slow down and run off road. You need to allow time for your shins to recover. Nearly every runner suffers from an injury of one sort or another and has time out. You need patience or you will never fully recover.

    You need to strengthen you leg / ankle muscles - if you swim do leg drills, both front and back crawl to even out muscle development. Don't use fins. Do the same amount front and back - say 3 easy lentghs of each. Before you run do drills to loosen and strengthen your ankle musles - find someone who can show you how to do them properly. It's about striking the ground with your forefoot and then your heel and looks a bit like moonwalking - the dance thing.

    Drop the speed work. You can get faster without it. Simply increase the distance of you LSR's Long Slow Runs. There are very many runners who have found that by increasing LSR's and avarage weekly milage speed improves. (this includes me but ask Curly45 as well).

    Listen to what people here are telling you.

    Type shin splints into youtube and you will find a wealth of information on how to relieve the symptoms and strengthen and stretch your legs properly. Core work such as calf raises will help. Try a foam roller or wooden rolling pin on your calf muscles to massage them.
     

    I have been told that soft tissue injuries can take up to 12 weeks to heel so you really do need to take it very easy when you return to running.

  • Malakite wrote (see)
    Hi guys, Firstly I'm a bloke - had this confusion before - must be the PInk avatar image Secondly I do swim every week, and yes I've seen a physio! - all appear NOT to be helping image I might not build up as slowly as I should sometimes but other times I increase very slowly and then it STILL happens!! I don't understand how one week I've been consistently running 25-30 miles for a couple of months, enter a Kilomathon without any difficulties whatsoever, then literally the next week, when doing very little mileage, for no reason whatsoever, the shim splints rear their ugly head again! It makes no sense at all and is really getting me down as I'm so keen image
    image I'm really sorry about the mistaking you for a lady. I'd go with the above from BM and see if that makes any difference.
  • MalakiteMalakite ✭✭✭

    Biker-mouse - fantastic response thank you so much for the stirling effort.

    In answer to your question, my shin splints are on the inside of the shins - always have been.

    I do all the strecthes you mention, and also regularly use my foam roller.  

    I shall ease up on the speedwork but its not just that that causes the problem, I just think I'm doomed captain Mannering, which is really annoying as I'm an asthmatic and it really does help with asthma (the long running that is!).

  • I thought Bikermouse's "listen to the advice" was her best advice. That and everything else seems to have been wasted. Like you I give up. Never mind eh?

  • Silver_FoxSilver_Fox ✭✭✭

    do you also do things like icing your shins?

     I do this after every run, pain or no pain. that helps to prevent the onset of them.

     once you have them, then I find the only solution is rest up. Also running style can make a difference too I have found. There is loads of stuff on google about the pose running technique which many claim will prevent stuff like this.

    I wouldn't say I've fully adopted that but what I have taken on board is trying to make sure my landing leg is underneath my centre of gravity not in front. Also to land with knee slightly bent, i.e. not straight legged. It takes time to get used to this but it effectively results in less impact on lower limbs in general and reduces injuries. Many claim it also makes you run faster which is what you seem to be aiming for.

     If you are disciplined enough to try to adopt pose or a better running technique, try downloading the book "running fast and injury free" by gordon pirie which looks at running technique but many other possible causes too.

    http://www.williamsichel.co.uk/documents/Running_Fast_and_Injury_Free.pdf

     Good luck

  • Silver_FoxSilver_Fox ✭✭✭

    when you say you have the correct shoes, what do you mean? correct shoes have a minimal heel which discounts 95% running shoes you find in a running shop...landing on the heel which most running shoes force you to do, causes shin splints so take a look at that too.

     You also say the injury onset ties in with introduction of speed sessions. if you read gordon prie's book, he says that often this can result in (inefficient) overstriding to force the pace. i.e. you are landing with foot in front of the centre of gravity and therefore on the heel. that in turn may be causing the rolling heel to toe motion which encourages shin splints. I'd say that this is a strong possibility in your case so try out some of his ideas and see if it makes a difference.

  • If you land on your heel you will probably always suffer from shin splints if thats what you are prone to, see a running coach who specialises in running efficiantly, pose, chi etc. I had shin splints always untill I changed my running style to a midfoot plant a year ago, no more shin splints.
  • Hog-mouseHog-mouse ✭✭✭

    You can suffer with shin splints however you land. According to all the info I read it is more common in forefoot strikers, though I think this may have a lot to do with running short distance at speed both in races and training.

    .

  • All I know is I ran for four years heel striking and sat with ice on my shins every week, since changing my style a year ago I have no more pain, I didnt just change my foot plant though I changed my posture and learned to run more efficiently. I dont run fast whichever why I run tho, lol
  • Silver_FoxSilver_Fox ✭✭✭

    I agree with Nelly; that was what I found also.

    It is also true it can be got with different strikes but it is caused by the rolling action, contraction and release of the shin muscle. when the calf relaxes and shin muscle takes up the slack (muscles working against each other), the inflammation is caused by slight vibration in the shin muscle before it fully takes up the slack. that in turn is due to shin muscles being a bit weak or calves being excessively strong. I believe that  the problem is generally more of a problem when rolling from heel to toe. LIke Nelly I've passed this wisdom onto others and they've had less of a problem also by changing the foot strike.

    Because it is inflammation of the soft tissue next to the shin bone, thats why ice helps as long as the condition is mild.

     I think the other key thing is not to land with leg straight. i.e. by landing with a flexed knee, the impact is that much less on any particular part of the leg.

  • mtbrDotmtbrDot ✭✭✭

    sit down on a high stool, take a barbell heavy enough between your feet. Raise the barbell only with your feet .

    That'll make these front muscle stronger. Don't know about how much and how many, moderate weights,  >25 reps, several sets will do I guess. The muscles should be fully recovered to perform this routine, obviously.

  • MalakiteMalakite ✭✭✭
    Thanks so much for all of this advice guys, it's very much all taken on baord - I've been resting for 5 days now and they are feeling better so I'll give it until next week and then start running SLOWLY again I think image
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