The JogBlog Guide to Running Injuries

It is a well-known scientific and medical JogBlog fact (i.e. even more inaccurate than Wikipaedia) that if you take up running, you’re going to get injured and probably sooner rather than later.

I know I did. I got injured after my first ever race after training injury-free for months. Thankfully, I recovered in time to train for my first ever 10k but then the dreaded runner’s knee struck while training for my first ever half-marathon. Waaaaaaa.

Although that was almost nine years ago, I’m still gutted about missing my first half that I’d been looking forward to so much. I had especially been looking forward to it because Joggerblogger was also taking part and I’d never met another running blogger before (unlike now when they’re flipping everywhere like maggots in a cat food can that’s been in the bin for weeks because your housemate hasn’t taken the rubbish out and you’re on rubbish-taking-out-strike).

Lightning may never strike twice but, unfortunately, the same can’t be said for running injuries and I’ve been injured a couple of times since then. Despite my injuries being bad enough that I could barely walk, let alone run, I didn’t think they were severe enough to go and see a specialist; for example, a physiotherapist or a chiropractor. But they were painful and persistent enough for me to get them checked out, so I went along to a minor injuries unit, where each time I was told to rest and take ibuprofen. Each time I was slightly miffed not to be diagnosed with an ailment I couldn’t pronounce or show off about, but I suppose if you want to be diagnosed with something you can’t pronounce, you’re going to have to pay for it.

One injury I have recently learnt to pronounce (and spell correctly) is plantar fasciitis. This is because Helen recently got injured while training for the Brighton Marathon and, because she paid for treatment, she got a fancy name for her injury other than ‘hurty foot’. Unfortunately, Helen had to drop out of Brighton but, being hardcore and saying ‘pah’ to her plantar fasciitis, she managed to hobble round London Marathon two weeks later and even hobble around in it an impressive 6 hours something (which, let’s face it, is probably quicker than I’d ever run it in peak foot-health).

London Marathon seems to bring out the determination in people. I don’t know whether it’s because it’s likely to be a one-off opportunity (unless you’re one of those charity runner types and go for a golden bond place) and they might not get another chance or it’s simply because I know all the hardcore/stupid people. As some of you will remember, Shaun got a stress fracture at mile 11 of London 2010 but heroically/stupidly carried on the final 15 miles with a broken leg. I saw him limp past me at my spectating/drinking point at mile 23 but when I found him crumpled against a wall somewhere not too far from the finish line, he couldn’t walk an inch. We spent the evening in A&E where he was x-rayed and diagnosed with a stress fracture (see above re having to pay for a fancy name for your injury).

Luckily, my injuries have never been too serious (touch wood) but my advice to you is, if you’re in pain, stop running and rest until you’re better – you can always cross-train by doing some form of low-impact exercise such as swimming, rowing or using the elliptical trainer.

If the pain persists or gets worse, then seek help either from your GP, a walk-in centre/minor injuries unit or a specialist such as ML Chiropractic. Just remember though, if you want a fancy name, you’re going to have to pay for it.

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