Calf Strains From Running – Causes, Treatment & Prevention

Wondering how to manage a pulled calf muscle from running? Then you have come to the right place.

Calf pulls in runners are no joke. They can be agonizingly painful and, if left untreated, cause all sorts of issues going forward. But they also respond well to treatment, and there are many measures you can take to reduce your risk of re-injury.

In today’s post, I’ll share a few practical tips to help guide you through the treatment and prevention of calf injury while running.

Although it’s not an in-depth piece about the science of calf pain and rehab, it should give you a clear idea of how to proceed, especially during the early stages of managing a calf tear.

What’s The Calf Muscle?

The calf muscles are a runner’s body’s most important yet neglected areas.

The calf muscles are found in the lower leg behind the shin bone, stretching from the thigh down to the heel. They extend from the knee to the ankle, turning into the Achilles tendon in the lower part of the leg.

The calf muscles comprise two major muscles: the gastrocnemius muscle and the soleus muscle. The gastrocnemius is the largest muscle, forming the visible shape beneath the skin. It’s the more superficial muscle with the soleus, a smaller, flat muscle, sitting beneath it.

There are other muscles found beneath the main calf muscles. These include;

  • Flexor digitorum tongue
  • Tibialis posterior
  • Popltius
  • Flexor hallicus longus

The Functions

Your calf muscles help you point—or what’s known as plantar flexion—your foot downward and help you push off while propelling yourself forward.

Your calf muscles perform quick and large contractions during a run.

Generally, your calf muscle lifts your heels roughly 1400 times every mile, and your shins raise the toes and absorb impact, supporting the arches.

As you pound the pavement, your calf muscles stretch further than when performing other exercises, and the strain and impact on the muscle caused by additional movement can result in a tear.

For this reason, a wide range of issues and conditions, from mild soreness to serious pain and strains, can emerge and hinder performance, especially at the onset of a new training season.

One of the most common injuries that strike the region is ankle pulls.

Calf Strains In Runners Defined

Also known as a calf pull or tear, calf strain occurs when one of the calf muscles is stretched beyond the tissues’ limits, breaking off from the Achilles tendon.

Most calf strains in runners strike in one of the two major muscles of the calf structure—the gastrocnemius or soleus muscles. These two key muscles are from the superficial group of the calf complex.

When a strain happens, muscle fibers are torn to some degree. You might feel or hear a pop in your calf muscle.  Stretching excessively, lack of warm-ups, doing too much hill work, or overtraining in general, can lead to calf pulls.

Pulling a calf muscle while running can cause serious pain and prevent you from logging the miles and doing other exercises. In addition, a severe calf muscle pull can cause partial or complete tears. Surgery is required for treating a torn calf muscle.

Is A Strain The Same Thing As a Sprain

No. Strains affect the muscles, tendons, or tissues that attach muscle to bones.

Conversely, a sprain afflicts the ligaments, the tissues that connect bones or cartilage and keep a joint together.

 Can I Run with A Calf Strain?

I wish I had a universal answer, but I don’t. Running with a calf strain will depend on various variables such as injury severity, pain tolerance, training intensity, and running experience.

Early on, you might have a lot of swelling pain, and you should avoid putting any extra load on the injured limb, especially in mild and severe strains.

During this initial phase, you’re likely to experience more pain, forcing you to stop running.

And the truth, overusing a calf strain can only cause more damage, bleeding, and pain to the muscle. And you don’t want that.

In other words, you’re risking re-injury and longer recovery time than you don’t want at all.

But the good news is that you should be able to return to training sooner or later, even though some reside in pain. Your recovery period depends on many factors, such as the strain’s severity, age, injury history, and overall health.

The Symptoms Of Calf Strains While Running

Telling signs of a calf strain depend on the severity of the injury.

  • First degree—the strain may not manifest symptoms until after running has ceased. You may only feel mild discomfort and tightness when you stretch or contract your muscles.
  • Second degree—you experience immediate pain at a more serious level than grade one. You feel mild discomfort with walking and limited ability to run or jump. You may also have bruising and swelling around the injured area.
  • Third degree—the most serious type. A severe calf strain can leave you feeling excruciating pain whenever you stand on the affected leg. Complete inability to bear weight on the injured limb is the telling sign.

A doctor will use an imaging tool like an ultrasound to determine the severity of the damage. By doing this, they can have a full picture of the soft tissue and examine the extent of the injury.  This, in turn, helps the physician make the right decisions regarding treatment and future prevention.

How To Treat Calf Strains From Running

Now that you understand what calf strains are all about, let’s look at what you can do in ways of treatment.

Proper calf pull treatment usually mirrors that of any muscle strain.

What follows are the steps you need to take to ensure a quick return to running.

The Resting

Your first step is to reduce stress and allow healing.

How long it will take you to bounce back from the injury depends on the severity of the injury.

Take two weeks off running for grade one calf strains, three to six weeks for grade two, and as long as possible for grade three.

That said, let pain guide your level of activity.

Stop running altogether if running causes the symptoms to worsen.

Do not resume running until you’re symptoms- and pain-free when bearing weight on the injured limb.

Apply Ice

Ice the injured limb in the acute phase—usually 48 hours after injury and after exercise.

Cold therapy helps calm the inflammatory response and increases blood flow to the area, which is good if you ask me.


Wrap cold presses in soft clothes and place them on your injured calf for 10 to 15 minutes.

Just don’t fall asleep with the cold wraps on your leg.


Propping your leg up to your heart level is another tactic to help decrease swelling and relieve pain.

Aim to rest your affected foot in an elevated position with ice applied for 15 to 20 minutes every three to four hours, if possible.

Take Medication

Is the pain too much to handle?

Then consider taking over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medication.

Unless your doctor instructs you otherwise, you can take either ibuprofen or acetaminophen for pain relief.

These strong nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs help relieve symptoms and calm inflammation, especially during early onset.

Reduce The Load

The best way to reduce the load on your calf is to reduce or stop running altogether.

Instead, feel free to cross-train, opting for exercises that put minimal to no weight on your calves.

If you decide to keep running anyway, then, at the very least, avoid interval workouts, steep hills, and shoes with an aggressive heel-to-toe drop.

When Should You See A Doctor For A Calf Strain

Although most cases of calf strain don’t require immediate medical attention, you should have your injury examined by a doctor if:

  • You heard a pop to the back of the heel
  • You have serious swelling, bruising, and pain
  • You have needles and pins or tingling in the lower limb following the injury
  • Your pain interferes with your sleep
  • Your injury isn’t getting better despite taking home treatment
  • Your affected leg is red, swelling, throbbing, or hot to touch
  • Your injury is getting worse

 When To Start Running After a Calf Strain

Although I’d love a straight answer for this one, I don’t. It depends on the severity and type of your calf strain and weekly load.

This way, I recommend you consult a medical professional when dealing with calf inky. They’ll assess your case and help you understand your condition’s severity so you can run as fast as possible.

Going back to running after a calf fear can be tricky.

But, when it comes down to it, it can be as simple as just going for a few short runs at an easy pace. But, of course, you should also do dynamic and mobility drills before any intense training.

You can only resume training at the previous level when you no longer feel muscle cramps or pain. Instead of trying to run the same distances/intensities before the injury, break in slowly by running shorter distances at a much slower pace.

Staying active in some form is key for a fast reconvert, whether it’s a light walk around the park or an aqua jogging program to keep you moving strong.

Your doctor can examine the severity of your injury to determine your recovery rate.

  • Grade 1 – Requires one to two weeks to resume some running
  • Grade 2 – Requires two weeks or more to resume some running
  • Grade 3 – Requires three to six weeks to resume some running
  • Grade 4 – Requires two months or longer to resume some running.

Only your physician can determine the severity of your strain. Don’t try to make uninformed decisions—that’s how you risk re-injuring yourself, and you don’t want that.

How to Prevent Calf Strains in Runners

Once you have strained your calf muscle, you stand a great risk of getting another one in the future.

But it’s not all doom and gloom. There are many things you can do right now to reduce your risk.

Here are a few:

Stretch Your Calves

Once you can put weight on the affected limb pain-free, start with gentle stretching of the calf muscles.

Stretching not only helps you release any build-up tension in the muscle but can also improve stability and mobility in your ankle and knee joints—key for preventing all sorts of lower-body injuries.

As a rule, keep your stretching low to mild intensity; it should never be painful.

Here are a few good stretches for your calf muscles:

Calf Chair stretch

Floor stretch

Wall stretch

Standing Stretch

Warm Up Every time

Another powerful measure is to always start your runs with a proper warm-up.

A proper warm-up increases blood flow to your muscles, making them more elastic and less likely to strain

So what’s the best type of warm-up?

I’d recommend a dynamic warm-up.

Start your run by jogging for 5 minutes and then gradually pick up the pace as your core temperature increases and your muscles warm up.

If you’re gearing up for an interval workout, perform a few dynamic stretches to fire up your muscles before starting the work.

Here’s my favorite routine.

Strength Train

By now, you should know that strength training is a key part of any injury rehab program—calf strains are no exception.

Strengthening your calf is another measure of preventing calf pulls and strains. Building calf strength will improve your muscles’ ability to absorb mechanical stress, making them more resistant to pulls and tears.

Strength also helps move with more efficiency and control, reducing the risk of bad technique, which can lead to injury.

Here are a few exercises for your calf muscles:

Standing Calf Raise

Calf Press

Seated calf raise

Don’t Overtrain

This should go without saying, but I’d like to add it anyway.

You want to improve your running performance, whether losing weight, running a sub-20-minute 5K, or whatever, but that’s no excuse for overdoing it.

Overdoing it leads to many injuries, not just calf strains, period.

Work your way up to more intense training gradually and slowly.

Pay attention to your body when running so you can still train but not overstrain.

Once you want to take your runs to the next level, do your research, consult a coach, and then do so slowly and gradually.

Don’t let your ego stand in the way of your success.

Improve Your Running Form

Another thing you can do is to improve your running technique.

Instead of moving forward, focus on bringing your feet under your center of gravity, and your knees are slightly bent. This is the essence of the midfoot strike. Imagine you’re landing on the rear part of the ball of your foot instead of the toes.

Check the following YouTube Tutorial to help you achieve the optimal foot strike.

What’s more?

Try increasing your cadence by around 4 to 8 steps per minute. By upping your stride turnover per minute, you’ll have to move your legs faster, which cuts the times for excessive knee bend.

This, overall, should reduce the load on your calf muscle. That’s a good thing if you ask me.

Calf Pulls From Running  – The Conclusion

There you have it!

If you’re looking for the best ways to manage calf pulls from running, then today’s post has you covered. The rest is just details.

Please feel free to leave your comments and questions in the section below.

Heel Pain From Running – Causes, Treatment & Prevention

heel pain from running

Would you like to learn how to swiftly manage and stop heel pain from running?

Then you’ve come to the right place.

Heel pain is one of the most common complaints among runners of different fitness levels and backgrounds. These injuries are usually the result of overuse, especially when a sudden change in load level or a biomechanical overload occurs.

Heel pain from running can be annoying, nagging, and troublesome thanks to the complex structure of muscles, tendons, ligaments, and nerves surrounding the area.

This is especially true if you don’t know what’s causing it.

What’s more?

Running through heel pain can lead to further damage and injury, so it’s key to recognize and determine the underlying causes of the aping before resuming training.

In this article, I’ll break down the most likely causes of heel pain from running and provide some treatment and prevention tips for fixing it.

That’s where today’s post comes in handy.

  • What is heel pain from running
  • What causes heel pain after running
  • How to treat heel pain in runners
  • How to prevent heel pain from running
  • And so much more.

By the end of this post, we will understand what heel pain in runners is all about and what to do when treating and preventing it.

What is Heel Pain in Runners

If you’re suffering from heel pain while running, know that there are many measures you can take soothe what’s ailing you.

All runners are prone to heel pain, but some elements make you more likely to experience heel pain after running. Heel pain from running can manifest as a sharp pain in the back of the heel or within the arch of the foot.

Overall, most cases of heel pain in runners are blamed for plantar fasciitis, but their also other conditions that could cause said pain which I’ll look at below.

The Anatomy 

Running takes a toll on your feet, especially your heels, as they are a huge burnt of that force.

Time for anatomy 101.

Here’s the truth.

The human foot is incredibly complex and houses around 25 percent of the bones in the body. In addition, it contains over 30 joints and 100s of ligaments, tendons, and muscles.

The heel bone originates in the Achilles tendon, which attaches your calf to your heel. The anatomy of your fete determines the arches of the feet.

The foot also has three large bones—navicular, cuboid, and cuneiform—found at the balls of the feet.

As you can tell, the toes are also a key anatomical feature of the feet. The toes are made of metatarsals and phalanges. Your muscles, tendons, and ligaments connect these bones to support your body and optimize movement.

As one unit, the arch of the foot and the heel distributes the stresses place dup your foot while walking, run, jump, etc.

Why Does My Heel Hurt When I Run?

There are more than a few reasons your heel might hurt during or after running. You may suffer heel pain if you overuse or damage these structures. It can range from minor pain to a debilitating injury.

The stress placed upon your foot while logging the miles is around 3 to 5 times your body weight. This impact, over the miles, can damage one (or many of) the structure(s) of the foot and lead to pain.

Some cases of heel pain can be so severe that home treatment won’t ease your pain; therefore, you’ll need a doctor to diagnose your case and prescribe treatment options.

Can You Run With Heel Pain?

The answer is it depends. In cases where you don’t have serious pain, nor does running make it worse, you can continue to run.

It’s usually not a good idea to run with severe heel pain. Pushing through can aggravate your symptoms and result in additional injury. In addition, heel pain can become a nagging issue if you’re carless early on.

If you still want to stay active, cross-train by doing low-impact exercises like strength training and swimming.

Once your pain has faded, you can slowly resume your training—as long as you do it slowly and incrementally.

Begin with shorter distances and slowly increase your mileage/intensity over time. This will grant your body enough time to adapt and limit re-injury risk, which is key for optimal training and health.

Causes of Heel Pain From Running

Heel pain from running can be blamed on a few conditions, such as muscular or structural imbalances, plantar fasciitis, improper gait pattern, or even ill-fitting footwear. So yes, you must consider all of this for a thorough diagnosis.

To get an accurate diagnosis, I’d recommend consulting a doctor. They can perform an exhaustive examination to determine the exact cause of your running-induced heel pain. They’ll go through your running experience and history, injury history, range of motion in your lower limbs, running gait analysis, and imaging techniques, such as ultrasound or X-ray imaging.

It’s often the case that a few variables combine to cause discomfort, pain, and other symptoms. For example, you might be more prone to heel pain from running if you’re overweight or have an injury history that impacts your movement and alignment patterns.

Let’s briefly discuss a few of the causes and injuries can affect your heel and cause pain

Plantar Fasciitis

The plantar fascia is a thick and flat band of tissue that stretches along the base of the foot, connecting the heel bone to the toes.

Inflammation of this band of connective tissues on the bottom of the foot is what’s known as plantar fasciitis.

By far, the most common cause of heel pain in runners. This injury is so common in running that it is often referred to as “runner’s heel.”

Achilles Tendonitis

Another common overuse injury that causes heel pain in runners is Achilles Tendonitis.

The Achilles tendon is a fibrous cord that connects the back of the calf muscles to the heel bone.

When dealing with Achilles Tendonitis, this fibrous cord gets damaged and inflamed, especially where the tendon connects to the back of the heel.

Heel Spurs

Heel spurs refer to abnormal bony enlargement that develops around the heel bone where the tendon joins it.

Also known as osteophytes or calcaneal spurs, a heel spur is a bony outgrowth of the heel bone. Although rarely painful, heel spurs can result in some discomfort roughly 5 percent of the time.

This causes damage to the tendon and results in pain when rubbing against shoes.

Occasionally, heel spurs are caused by excessive strain on the foot muscles and ligaments from walking, running, and jumping. In addition, wearing ill-fitted shoes can also lead to heel spurs.

The hallmark of a heel spur is heel swelling and pain at the front of the heel.

Though the condition may not cause pain by itself, it can result in inflammation of the surrounding tissues, causing pain.

Remember that heel spurs have symptoms similar to plantar fasciitis, so they’re often misdiagnosed.


If you feel pain in the center or the back of your heel where the the Achilles tendon inserts into the heel bone, you might be dealing with bursitis.

Bursitis, as the name implies, is an inflammation of the bursae, fluid-filled sacs between your heel bone and Achilles tendon. The bursa protect your bones form sliding or rubbing against muscles, tendons, or skin. They typically act as a lubricant and cushion between your muscles or tendons sliding over the bone.

This condition can impact your ability to move your ankle or foot. The pain is often worse in the center of the back of the heel at the insertion point of the Achilles tendon into the heel.

The overuse of the bursa can cause inflammation, which usually cause shooting or sharp pain, redness or swelling in the affected area.

Heel Fat Pad Syndrome

The heel fat pad is found on the underside of the heel bone, which functions as a cushion for the calcaneus. Excessive pressure on this fat pad while running can result in swelling and pain in the heel. This causes a “thinning” of the fat pad on the heel, leading to heel fat pad syndrome.

You’ll experience most of the pain in the central aspect of the plantar surface of the heel bone. A serious heel fat pad can make walking, running, or performing any weight-bearing movement extremely painful. This condition is also called heel fat pad atrophy or plantar fat pad syndrome.

Structural Problems

Anatomical deficiencies in the foot, especially when combined with improper footwear, bad technique, or overuse, can cause heel pain during and/or after running.

These imbalances can cause—or contribute—to muscle imbalances that strain one or more tendons, leading to irritation and pain over the long run.

For example, if you have high arches, most of the running’s impact might be on the top of the arch.

This can cause excess strain on the plantar fascia.

Additional Resource – Here’s your guide to Anterior Tibial Tendonitis 

Other Causes of Heel Pain In Runners

As far as I can tell, runners’ most common heel pain causes are Plantar fasciitis and Achilles Tendinitis.

Here are more factors that contribute to the onset of heel pain:

  • Being overweight or obese
  • Poor gait mechanics
  • Tight calf muscles that limit the proper range of motion in the ankle joint
  • Stress fractures
  • Nerve irritation
  • Arthritis

Additional resource – Common cause of lower leg pain while running

Heel Pain Risk Factors in Runners

You’re prone to running-induced heel pain if you:

  • Have super tight calves
  • Run on a hard surface
  • Running in ill-fitting or worn-out shoes
  • Increase your training load too fast
  • Are obese
  • Have high arches or flat feet

How To Treat Heel Pain From Running

Home treatment works best if you address the symptoms early, so start managing your pain as soon as you feel ankle pain during or after running.

Here are the steps you need to take to reduce pain, stress, and inflammation.

Stop Running

Your first step should be to stop training and give the affected limb enough rest.

As a rule, rest from running and other weight-bearing movements that cause pain.

Resume training only when your symptoms fade.

To soothe pain and improve your flexibility, perform gentle foot stretches three times daily for at least five minutes each session.

You can turn a temporary annoyance into a chronic condition by skipping rest. Conversely, scaling back on training or stopping altogether can help soothe your pain, inflammation, and stress.

heel pain while running

Ice Therapy

Cold therapy is a convenient and easy way to relieve heel pain by limiting inflammation in the affected area.


Put a sports water bottle in the freezer, then roll your arch over it for 15 to 20 minutes every morning.

Try Out Inserts

If shelling money on a new pair of shoes isn’t within reach,  try protecting your feet from additional damage by wearing a set of orthotic inserts.

Also known as insoles or orthotics, inserts can provide extra support and cushion to help soothe your pain and prevent further damage.

Insoles fit inside your running shoes and function as a shock absorber between the base of the feet and the shoe’s base. These inserts may help improve your stability, correct muscle imbalances, and prevent your foot from moving excessively or incorrectly.

You can get over-the-counter (OTC) inserts or have them specifically made for you.

It all depends on your needs and your budget.

Night Splints

If plantar fasciitis is the cause of your heel pain from running. Then try a night splint. This should help keep the foot flexed, which stops the plantar fascia from shortening (the reason for pain on that first step in the morning).


If pain refuses to fade despite the home treatment, an injection into the bottom of your foot can help to soothe inflammation and pain.

What’s more?

Research has suggested that Botox injection for heel pain, for example, plantar fasciitis, might be even more effective than corticosteroid injections but consult your doctor first about your options.

Additional resource – Knee brace for runners

Always Have Your Shoes On

Avoid going barefoot to prevent further irritation and stress to your heel, especially when recovering from heel pain.

Most experts recommend wearing cushioning footwear for up to 6 weeks.

This is how long it can take for soft tissue injuries to heal.

Have Some Drugs

In cases of stubborn pain, consider taking nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as naproxen and ibuprofen.

Feel free to experiment with natural pain relievers such as turmeric, cloves, and fish oil supplements.

Additional Resource – Your guide to runners itch

Try Shock Wave Therapy

If your heel pain refuses to fade, I urge you to consult a doctor about trying shock wave therapy.

This non-invasive procedure involves a probe that emits a burst of high-energy sound waves into the affected tissues. This tells the brain to start repairing the affected tissues. This, in turn, can sooth pain almost immediately.

Again don’t take my word for it.

This research has found that a single session of shock wave therapy helped with plantar fasciitis treatment and has helped with soothing pain over the long term.


Your doctor or podiatrist will prescribe the most appropriate stretches for you to perform as a part of your treatment plan.

You can stretch your calf a few times throughout the day.

I’d recommend using a towel or belt to stretch your calf muscles. Do this first thing in the morning before you get out of bed for 45 to 60 seconds.

Standing Calf Stretch

Rolling Stretch

Foot Flexes

Marble Pickups

Just be careful. Aggressive stretching may further irritate or damage injured tissues, so it’s always best to get your doctor’s green light before stretching.

Additional Resource – How To Prevent Ankle Pain For Runners

Stay Active

Consistent physical activity is the ideal natural anti-inflammatory measure you can take, so keep moving even if you find yourself injured.

All in all, choose exercises that cause no to minimum pain in the affected limb.

You’re doing it right as long as it’s a workout routine you love, and it’s not making your symptoms worse.

You have many options, such as pool running, elliptical machines, yoga, cycling, and other low-impact exercises.

It’s really up to you.

Patience is the most important thing to remember when recovering from heel pain.

The rest is just details, as the saying goes.

Additional Resource – Here’s your guide to calf pain while running

When To See a Doctor For Heel Pain

Mild heel pain from running can be treated with home treatments and preventive measures.

Initially, when you have heel pain from running, your first reaction is to wait and see if it improves. But if the pain lingers or worsens, it’s time to consult a doctor.

Most runners may dislike consulting with a physician every time something happens. After all, pain and injury are unavoidable if you run often and hard. However, pain is your body’s way of telling you something is wrong.

Here’s the truth

If your heel pain from runners worsens despite resting and applying home treatment, book an appointment with a doctor.

You might have injured one of the structures within your foot and ankle that need immediate medical attention.

Red flags that it might be time to see a physician include:

  • Weakness
  • Bruising
  • Heel pain even while resting
  • Fever
  • Inability to wear bear
  • Tingling
  • Limited range of motion in the affected limb
  • Numbness
  • Intolerable pain
  • Severe swelling
  • Heel pain accompanied by numbness or fever

Standard Treatments

To treat your heel pain, your doctor will assess your lower limb and check your medical history. They might also perform X-rays and other imaging modalities. This should help them tell which type of heel pain you suffer.

In some cases, especially if the pain didn’t fade with home treatments, your heel pain might be blamed on underlying medical conditions such as arthritis or diabetes.

Depending on what’s ailing, your doctor may offer different treatment options, including:

  • Physical therapy
  • Orthopedic shoes
  • Athletic wrap
  • Injections such as cortisone
  • Wound care
  • Shockwave therapy

Heel pain from running – The Conclusion

There you have it!

The above tips cover some of the best guidelines for treating and preventing heel pain from running.

Please feel free to leave your comments and questions in the section below.

In the meantime, thank you for dropping by.

Keep Running Strong

David D.

Intermittent Fasting for Runners – The Complete Guide

intermittent fasting and running

Running and intermittent fasting can mesh well if you do it right.

Today, I will share with you all you need to know about this practice, along with a few practical diet and training tips to help you proceed with this method without fail.

In this article, I’ll dive into the following:

  • What is intermittent fasting
  • The benefits of intermittent fasting for runners
  • The dangers and limits of intermittent fasting for runners
  • Can you run while intermittent fasting
  • And so much more

Let’s get in.

Intermittent Fasting – The Definition

Intermittent fasting consists of fasting and eating over a defined period.  It’s an eating method that cycles between fasting—calorie restriction—and normal eating during a specific period.

Intermittent fasting limits how much food eats for a given period, followed by an interval of normal eating known as the feeding window.

You’ll be fasting –not eating—for a period ranging from 16, 20, to even 36 hours, depending on your chosen IF method.

Intermittent fasting is not new. It has been practiced for millennia and used by many religions—mainly Judaism and Islam— for healing and spiritual enlightenment.

These belief doctrines regard fasting as a powerful healing method that allows the human body to take time out from the food toxins present in our bodies and as a means for reaching higher spiritual existence.

Intermittent Fasting and Running  – How To get Started

Now that you know a thing or two about intermittent fasting and how it can help (or hurt) your running performance, let’s dive into how to make the most out of it.

Sounds great

Let’s get started.

Don’t Eat Crap

Just because you are fasting doesn’t mean you can eat whatever you want during the feeding window.

That’s a common mistake.

People who fast are much more likely to binge and reach for high-calorie foods when they eat again.

There are many various ways to start intermittent fasting.

The method may differ in the number of fast times and calorie allowances.

People have different needs; therefore, different styles will suit them and help them get the most out of practice.

There are many ways to start intermittent fasting.

Just like any other health program, how you get started hinges on your fitness goals, workout routine, physiology, genes, and lifestyle—to name a few.

Break The Fast Right

Once it’s time to break the fast, go for a meal with plenty of complex carbs and proteins.

In other words, stick to healthy food choices.

Or it’s a no-deal.

Low Intensity

If this is your first time doing intermittent fasting, keep your runs at an easy pace, around 3 to 5 out of 10. When you stick to this pace, you’re mainly burning off fat as energy instead of glycogen will be depleted in a fasted state.

I’d recommend the Maffetone method (which also works great if you’re in the base building phase of a training cycle).

You might risk hitting the wall if you try to push the pace. You should never try your run your hardest while starving your body of energy. You won’t get that far.

Run Short

Another thing you can do is limit your training duration. For example, you don’t want to run for over 90 minutes in a fasted state.

As a rule, increase your running duration as you get more comfortable training in a fasted state. This, believe me, doesn’t happen overnight.

Feeling weak or dizzy in the middle of a run? Then either slow down or refuel with carbs and protein to give your body the energy boost it needs. A snack should help.

Choose The Right Time

I’d also recommend that you schedule your runs and workouts while fueling.

Running first thing in the morning in a fasted state? Then refuel the moment you’re done running. Refueling immediately helps you avoid muscle waste and speeds up recovery. That’s a good thing if you ask me.

Supplement Just In Case

During intense training days—if you have any speedwork or long run scheduled—take a supplement, such as BCAA.

Here are a few recommended dosages:

5 g of BCAAs before your run

5 to 10 g of BCAAs during long running sessions, and

10 to 15 of BCAAs immediately following a hard run.

Fasting Protocols For Runners

There are many ways to approach intermittent fasting.

Your chosen method depends mostly on your fitness goals, workout schedule, physiology, personal preference, lifestyle conditions, and other factors.

Here are the main protocols.

  1. The Periodic Fast

If you’ve never tried fasting before, then the periodic fast should be your trial fast—Your opportunity to take IF for a test drive before committing to anything serious or long-term.

Also, if it’s your first time doing it, write down your thoughts and notes, then use them as a reference for future practice.

The How

This method entails a fast for 24 hours, starting at any time of the day, preferably on a Sunday.

You can start at a specific time, on Saturday at 11 pm, for instance, drink plenty of water, then break your fast on Sunday night.

For the most part, you should not do this method more than once or twice a week.

  1. The Warrior Diet

The Warrior Diet consists of 20 hours of fasting, then a four-hour feeding period, and consuming one healthy meal daily.

This method can help you boost energy levels, shed weight, increase muscle mass, and save money.

The How

During the feeding window, usually, during dinner time, go for one large meal, aiming for roughly 2000 calories (or more, depending on your needs) in one sitting.

For the best results, put the feeding window at the end of the day, as it’s more suitable for family dinners and post-run sessions.

If you have a run or workout on the schedule,  plan it at the end of the fast.

  1. Leangains

The Leangains method was made famous by author Martin Berkham, consisting of a 16-hour fast (from 10 p.m. to 2 p.m. the next day, for instance), followed by an 8-hour eating window.

This method is great to increase muscle gains while shedding fat.

To make the most out of Leangains, skip breakfast daily, then break your fast roughly eight hours after waking up.

During the leangains approach, ensure the bulk of your calories during the post-run window, following a diet high in protein, complex carbohydrates, and some healthy fats, like olive oil and avocados.

The How

For example, on this plan, you’d fast from 9 pm Monday until 1 pm Tuesday.

If you were planning to run, you’d do it on Tuesday afternoon.

  1. Alternate-Day Fasting

This is similar to the last method but involves eating within a 24-hour window followed by 24 hours of true fasting every two-day cycle.

In other words, you simply eat every other day with this method.

According to research by the University of Illinois at Chicago, the Alternate-Day Fasting approach promotes weight loss and decreases the risks of coronary artery diseases.

During the feeding period, you can eat what you want and aim for a broad range of healthy food choices—especially if the 24-hour fast is too much.

The How

This is simple.

All you have to do here is fast one day and eat healthy the next day.

Listen to your body

Ultimately, you are the boss and can decide which approach works best for you.

With that said, to do that, you need to keep in mind that it’s of paramount importance to listen to your body’s signals of pain and discomfort—mainly your hunger signals.

Intermittent Fasting For Runners  – The Conclusion

There you have it! If you ever wanted to try intermittent fasting while running, then today’s post should get you started on the right foot. The rest is just details.

Please feel free to leave your comments and questions in the section below.

In the meantime thank you for dropping by.

Keep training strong.

David D.

How to Save Money With Buying a Treadmill?

buy used treadmills

Everyone loves finding a great deal – and when it comes to buying a treadmill, that’s no different! While you don’t want to sacrifice quality for the sake of saving money, there are still surefire ways to get your hands on brand-name treadmills at discounted prices.

From using coupon codes online or during sales events in-store, all the way down through taking advantage of reward programs from manufacturers and modern fitness trends by investing in used models – these tried methods offer potential shoppers like yourself more bang for their buck without sacrificing stability or comfort.

So if you’re looking for high performance with wallet-friendly savings attached; look no further than discount shopping strategies made convenient just for gym buffs searching out an unbeatable bargain!

#1 Prefer online shopping

Whether you’re looking to tone up, gain endurance or just stay in shape from the comfort of your home, there’s never been a better time to buy a brand-name treadmill. Many online fitness stores now offer big savings – often hundreds of retail prices plus free shipping and tax exemption on some orders. This can result in substantial cost reductions for savvy shoppers! Just be sure that any store you purchase from is reputable with secure ordering systems and an industry-standard money-back guarantee so your investment remains safe no matter what happens.

#2 Opt out of extended warranty

When shopping for a treadmill, don’t be taken in by the marketing ploys of companies offering extended warranties – their original warranty offer is generally enough. Choose one that comes with excellent coverage on frame, parts, and labor/service provided it lasts long enough – no extensions required!

#3 Buy a used treadmill

If you’re looking to save a few extra bucks, purchasing a used treadmill may be an option. Make sure that the make and model of your potential investment is well-researched, as there’s no warranty to protect it from any malfunctions down the road. Additionally, use store prices for reference when bargaining so you don’t overpay! Keep in mind what kind of workout plan best fits your lifestyle before making such an important decision – this way you’ll get maximum value out of every step on your new (or should we say pre-used?) treadmill.

Replacing A Treadmill Belt

#4 Search abroad

If you need a cheap treadmill, then you can try to order a treadmill from a neighboring region. Quite often in a neighboring country, there is equipment at more affordable prices. All you have to do is install VPN and buy a treadmill from a local Chinese store, for example. Before using it you should know what does a VPN hide to know how to save your money. Even though the shipping cost is high, it can be an order of magnitude cheaper than buying from a local store. Just install VeePN and you can save a lot of money on many products using this shopping scheme.

#5 Reduce workout programs

Looking to save some cash on your next treadmill purchase? Consider a model with only one or two preset workout programs – enough for most people. Not only is it more cost-effective, but you won’t be overpaying for extra features that you don’t need!

#6 Buy directly from the manufacturer

Get a great deal on your treadmill when you purchase directly from its manufacturer! You’ll save not only on markups but also shipping costs, and can even avail of tax exemptions. Plus, make sure to pick one that offers secure ordering plus an unbeatable 30-60 day money-back guarantee – so buying direct will be well worth the investment.

#7 Smaller running belt

Did you know that the size and thickness of your treadmill’s running belt have a huge impact on its performance? Larger, thicker belts require more power from the motor to keep it going as well as generate excess heat. While this won’t be an issue for most hardcore runners, if your primary use is leisurely strolling around then opt for something more comfortable: a standard 20″x 60″. Not only will you get all the benefits of extra comfort but also save those valuable bucks!

#8 Rejection of heart rate straps

Did you know that the size and thickness of your treadmill’s running belt have a huge impact on its performance? Larger, thicker belts require more power from the motor to keep it going as well as generate excess heat. While this won’t be an issue for most hardcore runners, if your primary use is leisurely strolling around then opt for something more comfortable: a standard 20″x 60″. Not only will you get all the benefits of extra comfort but also save those valuable bucks!

#9 Folding feature

If clearing up extra space in your room is not a top priority, going for the non-foldable option could help lower the cost of your treadmill. Folding models do come with a higher price tag, but offer convenience and storage advantages if you need them – so make sure to weigh out which features are most important before making that purchase!


In summary, buying a treadmill doesn’t have to be difficult or expensive. You can find quality models within your budget that provide top-of-the-line features and capabilities. Just remember to take into consideration factors like running space, incline, durability, size, and price before you purchase.

With the right tips, anyone can save money on their investment by shopping around and considering various options so they can get what they need without breaking the bank. And while it may not be fun having to go through all of these steps, with some patience and research it’s certainly possible to find a great treadmill that fits within your budget and gets you back to fitness for less.

Say Goodbye to Black Toenails: The Runner’s Guide to Prevention and Care

black toenail from running

Ever had that dreaded moment when you peel off your socks after a run and discover a black toenail lurking beneath? Yeah, we’ve all been there.

I recently had a 12-mile run that left me with a painful blister on my big toe because I forgot to clip my toenails the night before. Ouch! But hey, you can learn from my mistake.

In today’s article, I’m here to spill the beans on black toenails from running—what they are, why they happen, and how to deal with them. I’ll cover everything from prevention to treatment and when it’s time to call in the experts.

So, if you’re tired of those pesky black toenails, lace up your shoes, and let’s dive in!

Black Toenails From Running Explained

A black toenail, often referred to as a runner’s toenail, is essentially a bruise or blood blister that forms beneath the toenail. This condition occurs when the soft tissues surrounding and beneath the toenail become discolored, typically turning blue or black. This discoloration is the result of various factors, including trauma, repetitive stress, or injury to the toe, which commonly happens during running.

The root cause of this discoloration is a small bleed underneath the toenail, medically termed a subungual hematoma. While running with a black toenail can be uncomfortable and unsightly, it can also lead to more serious issues if left untreated.

Neglected black toenails have the potential to become infected. This risk arises from the warm, moist environment inside running shoes, which creates an ideal breeding ground for bacteria. Consequently, it’s crucial to address black toenails promptly to prevent pain, infection, and complications.

The Injury Process

The occurrence of black toenails in runners is linked to continuous trauma, which can lead to blistering, bruising, or bleeding beneath the toenail. This trauma typically arises from either the toe being cramped inside the shoe’s front end or the top of the toe repeatedly striking the nail.

Initially, you may notice your toes turning blue or black due to this trauma. Over time, if the condition worsens or is left unattended, the affected toenail may eventually fall off. It’s important to address this issue early to prevent further complications.

In addition to trauma, runners may develop blood blisters beneath the toenail, causing it to lift. In some cases, the nail may even detach, which is a common running injury, especially among long-distance runners. Neglecting the pain and ignoring a bruised toenail can result in the blood blister becoming infected, leading to increased discomfort and pain.

This is a situation you’ll want to avoid.

The Main Culprit – Tight Running Shoes

If you’ve experienced the distress of losing a toenail due to running, the culprit might very well be your running shoes. Specifically, tight or ill-fitting shoes are often to blame for this issue.

When your shoes are too narrow, or the toe box (the front part of the shoe) doesn’t align with the shape of your foot, problems arise. In this scenario, the top of your toenail repeatedly collides with the end of the shoe, creating a constant impact. The absence of sufficient space between the shoe’s top and your toes is a key factor in this repetitive trauma.

The Symptoms of Black Toenails While Running

When dealing with black toenails from running, you might notice several symptoms:

  • Discoloration: Initially, your toenail may take on a dark green or black hue. This discoloration is typically caused by the presence of blood due to bruised or broken blood vessels beneath the nail.
  • Pain: Applying pressure to the affected toenail can be painful. The sensitivity is often a result of the trauma and blood accumulation beneath the nail.

Likely Risk Factors for Runners:

Several factors can increase a runner’s risk of developing black toenails:

  • Ill-fitting or Worn-out Running Shoes: Shoes that are too tight or no longer provide adequate support can contribute to toenail issues.
  • High Weekly Mileage: Running long distances, particularly over 40 miles per week, can increase the risk of toenail problems.
  • Running on Hard Surfaces: Frequent running on unforgiving surfaces can lead to more foot and toenail stress.
  • Age: Older runners may be more susceptible to toenail issues.
  • A History of Running Injury: If you’ve previously experienced running-related injuries, you may be at a higher risk of developing black toenails.

What’s the outlook For Runners With Black Toenails?

For runners dealing with black toenails, the outlook is generally positive, and most individuals don’t experience chronic complications. Recovery is possible if you take appropriate measures.

Here’s what you can do:

  • Change Your Running Shoes: Ensure your running shoes fit properly and provide enough space in the toe box to prevent further trauma to your toenails.
  • Decrease Weekly Mileage: Reducing your weekly running mileage can help alleviate stress on your toenails, allowing them to heal.
  • Improve Your Running Form: Focusing on your running form can reduce the likelihood of toenail trauma. Ensuring your feet strike the ground correctly and that your shoes fit well is crucial.
  • Use the Right Socks: Proper running socks can help reduce friction and moisture, which can contribute to toenail issues.

How to Treat Runners Toe

In mild cases of a black toenail, medical treatment is usually not necessary, as it depends on the underlying cause.

Here’s how to approach it:

  • Mild Cases: If you have a mild case of a black toenail, there’s often no need to visit a doctor. You can manage it at home. Rest the affected toe(s) for a few days and keep them clean and dry.
  • Pain Management: If the pain becomes too uncomfortable, consider visiting a podiatrist. They can perform a procedure called nail trephination, which involves puncturing the affected toenail to drain excess fluid and relieve pressure.
  • Watch for Infection: Keep a close eye on your toenail. If you notice any signs of infection, such as redness or increased pain, it’s essential to seek medical attention promptly.

Home Treatment for Black Toenails

If you’re experiencing significant pain from a black toenail and are unable to see a doctor immediately, you can consider releasing the pressure yourself, although it’s essential to exercise caution. Please note that it’s always safer to have a certified physician perform this procedure.

Here’s how it can be done:

  • Gather Supplies: Get a sterilized paper clip or needle. You can sterilize it by holding it over a flame from a match or a lighter until it becomes red hot. Make sure it cools down slightly before proceeding.
  • Pierce the Blister: Carefully and gently pierce the blister on the black toenail with the sterilized paper clip or needle. Aim to puncture it at the edge of the toenail, where the contact foot pressure can push out any additional fluid.
  • Clean and Dress the Wound: After puncturing the blister, clean the area with an antiseptic solution to minimize the risk of infection. Apply a sterile dressing or bandage to protect the area.


Black Toenails From Running – The Conclusion

There you have it.

See, preventing runners toe is no rocket science.

All you have to do is pay a little attention to your feet and running shoes.

Do that, and you should be able to easily steer clear of most of these painful nuisances.

Now it’s your turn.

Do you have any time-tested black toenail prevention tips?

I’d love to hear from you in the comments section below.

In the meantime, thank you for reading my post.

Keep Running Strong

David D.

Runners Diarrhea – Symptoms, Causes, Treatment & Prevention

runners stomach

Runners diarrhea.

Nature’s gift you didn’t ask for.

Few things can ruin a good run, like the fear of pooping your pants during a run.

To shed some light on this crappy situation (pun intended), I will share the full guide on runners’ diarrhea in today’s post.

By the end, you’ll learn more about:

  • What is Runner’s Diarrhea
  • The process behind Runner’s Diarrhea
  • The causes of Runners Diarrhea
  • Foods to avoid when you have runners trots
  • Is your clothing makes you want to poop your pants?
  • What kind of medication works for the runner’s diarrhea?
  • Imodium for runners’ diarrhea? Does it work?
  • And so much more.

Feel excited?

Let’s get started.

Runners’ Diarrhea Explained

Also known as runners colitis or runners trots, runners’ diarrhea refers to gastrointestinal issues during or following a run. The condition includes a wide range of symptoms: from bloating and nausea to painful cramping, flatulence, and actual loose stools.

For some runners, the urge to defecate might come about mid-run, and for others, it could happen immediately after running as the body is still experiencing the effects of the workout.

Surveys show that over a third of runners experience this.

This condition is also more common among endurance runners and tends to strike women more than men. If you run long distances, you can experience many symptoms during training. Unfortunately, the more miles you log in, the worse these symptoms could become.

Older runners are less likely to get than younger ones.

Some of the warning signs include:

  • Belly cramps
  • Heartburn
  • Bloating
  • Diarrhea
  • Urge to poop
  • Chest pain
  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Bloody stool
  • Not being able to control bowel movements—or fecal incontinence

How Long Do Runners Trots Last?

Typical symptoms of runners’ diarrhea often kick off during your run and may persist in the hours post-run.

As a rule, the bout of diarrhea shouldn’t linger for more than 24 hours.

If you have diarrhea in the middle or cannot control your bowel movements, it might indicate another medical condition (more on later).

You’re Not Alone

Research reports that about y 60 percent of long-distance runners (those who log in 5 miles or more at a given time)  had to take a break during a run for a bowel movement.

Another study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine claimed that about 30 percent of marathon runners suffer stomach issues during or after a race.

Infamous Incidents

If you’ve ever had to stop mid-run to answer nature’s call, know you’re not alone. Even world-class runners go through it. No one is immune.

Here’re a few infamous examples:

  • During the 2008 Göteborgsvarvethalf marathon, elite runner Mikael McKernan crossed the finish line in 21st place even though his lower body was covered with last night’s dinner.
  • Winner of the 1998 London Marathon, Catherina McKiernan, experienced chronic diarrhea during the race.
  • During the 2016 Summer Olympics, Yohann Diniz led the Men’s 50K walk race, but he fainted a few times due to stomach issues. But he kept going and finished in 8th place, only six minutes behind the winner, Matej Tóth.
  • The 2019 Perm internal Marathon winner, Alexander Novikov, completed the whole race suffering from a bad episode of diarrhea, which stained him with his own excrement.

Symptoms of Runners Diarrhea

Here are the telling signs of runners’ trots.

These can be experienced during or immediately after a run.

  • Nausea
  • Acid reflux
  • Flatulence
  • Cramping
  • Gas
  • Sudden urge to poop

The Causes of Running-Induced Diarrhea

So what’s causing you to poop during a run?

The answer remains unclear as it’s likely multi-factorial.

However, there are several theories about what triggers the runner’s diarrhea.

Let’s explain a few.

The Up & Down Motion

Running’s impact stirs the bowels and jostles the intestines.

This speeds up the flow of food, gas, and stool along the digestive tract, causing a sudden need for a bowel movement.

By the way, this is one of the reasons many doctors recommend regular exercise, especially the one focusing on abdominal work, to chronically constipated patients.

Limited Blood Flow

Often, running-induced diarrhea is caused by limited intestinal blood flow.

This blood gets diverted from the intestines and focuses on the legs and other body parts.

Our GI tract is sensitive. Once the blood flow is limited, the intestinal absorption of nutrients and water reabsorption in the colon will turn bad, causing loose stools.

Of course, don’t take my word for it.

Research reports that intense exercise may limit blood circulation to the colon and small bowels by as much as 80 percent.

Bad Food Choices Pre-Run

Diet is often cited as a leading trigger of runners’ diarrhea, especially when consuming high-fat or high-protein meals before a run.


Dehydration impacts not only your performance but your digestive function too.

Most people assume drinking too much water could contribute to diarrhea, but it’s not the case. Dehydration is a common cause of loose stools because lower blood volume can limit blood flow to the intestine. This, in turn, triggers a diarrhea episode.

In other words, when dehydrated, your intestine’s ability to absorb content dwindles. So they’re left with the only option: flush out the stomach content.

Other Causes

Many factors may contribute to the onset of diarrhea during or after a workout that could be unrelated to running.

These include:

  • Performance-enhancing drugs,
  • Some prescription medications,
  • Anxiety and stress.
  • Bowel issues like irritable bowel syndrome (IBS),
  • Hormonal changes,

What Should I do When I get runner’s Diarrhea?

When you start suffering from runner trots symptoms, your next step should be to locate the nearest restroom and head there as fast as possible. Slowing down may help you manage the urge sensation.

runners trots

How To Prevent Runner’s Trots

Now that you understand runners’ diarrhea, here are some tips for keeping running-induced diarrhea at bay.

You might not like it, but running-induced diarrhea is normal and often not a cause for concern.

Here’s more good news.

You can do many things right now to manage your symptoms and prevent runners’ trots in the future.

Eat The Right Things

The easiest way to manage runners’ trots is to consider your pre-run eating choice. I hate to state the obvious, but some food may trigger gas, nausea, and diarrhea during a run.

Analyze what you mostly eat before heading out, and always steer clear of trigger foods. As a rule, try to avoid anything that could upset your stomach in the hours before a run.

You may be left with nothing but a banana or a whole-wheat toast, but remember that you’re eating for performance, not pleasure. So have your meal once you’re done running.

Caffeine may work as a diuretic for some people, so test it out and see if it’s worth keeping. You should also cut on alcohol, artificial sweeteners, and sugars in the evening before a long morning run.

Be careful with energy gels and supplements that are “designed”’ to provide fast and portable fuel during training.

Unfortunately, most of these are loaded with artificial sweeteners and preservatives that could worsen your symptoms. And you don’t want that.

And most importantly, drink your water. It’s good for you.

So what should you eat?

Food that gets digested fast and doesn’t stress the GI track are ideal choices for what to eat before running. As long as you keep them simple—which means less waste is left over during digestion—the better off you’ll be.

Don’t Eat and Run

Timing is also important, though there’s no one-size-fits-all rule for it.

Generally, avoid eating an hour or two before a run. Space out your runs and meals longer if you’re prone to runners’ trots.

Having a meal two to three hours before a run?

Choose simple carbs and check back the list above.

Stay Well Hydrated

As I explained earlier, dehydration can contribute to loose stools while running.

As a general guideline, Stay well hydrated by drinking enough water. Shoot for at least 16 ounces of liquid roughly 60 to 90 minutes before you run and around 8 ounces of water every 20 to 30 minutes during your run.

During long runs, drink eight ounces of water every 15 to 20 minutes.

Just make sure to avoid warm liquids, as these may speed up the flow of food through the digestive tract.

What’s more?

Remember to keep track of your hydration levels.

Your pee should be a very light yellow.

If It’s dark, drink up.

Poop Before You Run

In an ideal world, you’d want to run just after caring for the nature business.

That way, you’ll ensure you’re running with an empty GI tract.

If you’re running first thing in the morning, give yourself at least 30 minutes to  “clear the pipes” before heading out.

Or simply plan your route the night before.

Use online maps or an app and choose the route with plenty of rest areas or public toilets.

For most runners, that’s 10 to 15 minutes into a run or about a mile.

You should also be prepared for emergencies.

Carry some spare toilet paper or wet wipes in a Ziplock baggie or your pocket, just in case.

Keep Track

Use a diet journal.

Inside it, keep tabs on everything you eat or drink and when it is ingested.

Then look for patterns that may contribute to the onset of the diarrhea episode mid-run, and assess what you did on the day your stomach misbehaved.

This will help you learn more about your unique food sensitivities and also help you find the most efficient ways of fueling your body.

You should also keep track of your bowel movements to schedule your runs immediately after your bowel movements.

Visit The Bathroom

If possible, empty your bowels immediately before a run or race. Consider taking a mild laxative a few hours before if you can.

Planning to race? Then at the very least, make it to the race venue early, so you don’t get stuck behind long lines.

Don’t worry. I’ve written a guide on making yourself poop before a run.

Wait on The Drugs

Avoid taking over-the-counter non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like Aleve, Motrin, and Advice in the 24 hours before a run.

The International Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences and Research reported that these drugs might cause side effects such as bloating, upset stomach, constipation, gas, and diarrhea.

In other words, if you’re already prone to runners trots, OTC drugs can only make your symptoms worse.

Wear Loose Clothing

Excessively tight clothing around the waist can constrict blood flow to the intestines, worsening diarrhea.

Everything from tight running shorts, compression garments, and running belts can be problematic, especially if you got a lot of content sloshing around your stomach.

This can make you feel you need a bowel movement or even cause diarrhea (and other stomach issues such as heartburn).

See a Doctor

It’s often the case that runners’ trots are a temporary annoyance that fades in a few days. But if you’re prone to it, you’ll want to consult your doctor to determine the cause, especially if you experience any of the following:

  • Suffering from diarrhea even when not running
  • Bloody stools
  • Sudden diarrhea onset
  • Fever
  • severe heart palpitations
  • Abdominal pain
  • acute headache that comes on suddenly
  • persistent diarrhea even after the exercise is over
  • Chronic nausea and ongoing abdominal pain.
  • Appetite change
  • diarrhea that lasts for 24 hours or more
  • fainting or loss of consciousness

If you experience a few of these symptoms, you could be dealing with a serious underlying condition that requires medical attention. Consulting with your doctor can help you better understand your unique situation. Sometimes, you may need medical help flushing out parasites or bacteria from your body.

They might recommend taking diarrhea pills or even undergoing a special examination on you, such endoscopy if the case seems worst. GI problems can recover well with early treatment.

You can also suffer from an underlying medical condition causing your workout trots. These include:

  • Ulcerative colitis
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Microscopic colitis
  • Celiac disease
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Proctitis

Runners Diarrhea – The Conclusion

Runner’s diarrhea is not a welcome guest, whether before, after, or, worst of all, during a run.

Hopefully, with a little experimentation and a lot of paying attention to your body, you can manage your runner’s diarrhea on your own.

Conquer Runner’s Stomach: Expert Tips to Avoid Mid-Run GI Distress

runners stomach

Ever experienced a “Code Brown” situation mid-run?

You know, when your stomach stages a revolt against your running routine? Whether you call it “runner’s trots,” “the runs,” or “workout stomach,” we’ve all been there.

Runner’s stomach can be quite the unpleasant companion on your runs. But fear not! I’m here to share the ultimate guide to help you conquer those GI distress troubles.

In this article, we’re diving deep into the belly of the beast (pun intended), covering everything you need to know:

  • What exactly is a runner’s stomach?
  • How running can turn your tummy into a ticking time bomb.
  • The mechanical culprits behind runners’ diarrhea.
  • Tips and tricks to keep your stomach in check while you chase your running goals.

So, if you’re tired of making unexpected pit stops during your runs, keep reading. We’re about to drop some knowledge bombs to help you stay on course without unwanted detours.

Sounds great?

Let’s get started.

GI Distress When Running Is A Very Common Problem

If you’ve ever experienced the discomfort of GI distress during or after a run, rest assured that it’s a common problem among runners. Research has shown that many of us have faced this issue to varying degrees.

In fact, a study published in the academic journal Current Opinions in Clinical Nutrition and Metabolic Care found that approximately 50 percent of runners encounter GI distress problems during hard runs, especially during long, grueling ones.

And here’s an interesting tidbit: runners are twice as likely to experience GI issues compared to athletes in other endurance sports like swimming or cycling.

If you’re aiming for elite status, beware that GI distress seems to be even more common among top-tier athletes, with its frequency being 1.5 to 3 times higher than recreational runners, according to research published in a journal from Lippincott William and Wilkins

What is GI Distress

GI distress is like a grab bag of stomach-related issues that can strike runners at the most inconvenient times.

Most runners experience symptoms like abdominal cramping, excessive gas, belching, irritable bowel syndrome, indigestion or dyspepsia, vomiting, heartburn, constipation, nausea, diarrhea, and, in extreme cases, even gastrointestinal bleeding.

In other wrods, it’s a smorgasbord of digestive discomfort.

Research has shown that GI distress is one of the top reasons runners drop out or underperform in long-distance races, especially during the grueling half-marathons and marathons.

Why My Stomach Gets Upset From Running?

Running might be a fantastic way to keep your body in shape, but it can be a real troublemaker for your stomach.

The truth is, running is a high-impact sport that doesn’t just challenge your muscles and joints—it also takes a toll on your digestive system. This mechanical pressure can accelerate the movement of food and waste through your GI tract while diverting blood away from your intestines to fuel your hardworking muscles.

So, what does this mean for runners? Well, it makes practically all of us vulnerable to stomach issues. But here’s the silver lining: it’s not a life sentence! There are plenty of things you can do to ease or even avoid a runner’s stomach altogether, from managing your hydration and diet to controlling your running intensity and even calming those pre-run jitters.

Don’t think you’re immune, though—whether you’re male or female, a runner’s stomach doesn’t discriminate. The longer you run, the more likely you are to cross paths with this unwanted companion.

While the exact cause of these stomach woes isn’t fully understood, several factors can increase your risk. It’s crucial to keep an eye on these variables if you’re prone to stomach issues, including eating a meal within two to three hours of running, downing sugary fruit juices before hitting the road, and letting dehydration sneak up on you.

Can you treat or prevent Runners’ Stomachs while running?

Runner’s stomach might not be the most severe running-related issue, but it can certainly make your runs feel miserable. For some runners, chronic gastrointestinal distress can even lead to a reduction in training intensity or cause them to give up running altogether.

Before we dive into how to prevent this condition, it’s crucial to understand just how troublesome high GI (gastrointestinal) issues can be for runners.

How Does GI Distress Happen When Running

When you hit the pavement for a run, your body shifts its focus towards supplying maximum oxygenated blood to your working muscles. In doing so, it diverts blood away from your stomach and intestines, essentially putting digestion on the back burner while your body prioritizes delivering oxygen and nutrients to your muscles.

But that’s not all. The mechanical bouncing associated with running could also play a role in the relatively high occurrence of GI distress among runners, especially when compared to lower-impact sports like swimming or cycling. This theory suggests that the bouncing motion of running can jostle your digestive tract, irritating the GI tract and potentially leading to gastric distress issues..

Causes of GI Distress During A Run

Gastrointestinal (GI) distress during a run can be attributed to a variety of causes and conditions, often stemming from a combination of internal and external factors. These factors can set the stage for GI discomfort. Here’s a breakdown of common external and internal causes:

External Causes:

Consuming a heavy meal too close to your run or eating something that doesn’t agree with your stomach.

Insufficient hydration before or during your run can contribute to GI distress.

Internal Causes:

During exercise, blood flow is redirected away from the digestive tract to supply working muscles, which can hinder digestion.

The physical jostling and bouncing associated with running may irritate the GI tract.

Stress, anxiety, or pre-race nerves can affect digestion.

Pre-existing gastrointestinal issues such as viruses, stomach bugs, ulcers, or other ailments can exacerbate GI distress.

Additional resource –  Prevent Sunburn in runners

Physiological Changes From Running

During exercise, specially intense or prolonged running,  your gut hormone levels are impacted. These changes may affect digestion and lead to symptoms like nausea or changes in appetite.

Running diverts blood flow away from the digestive system and redirects it to the working muscles. This can slow down digestion and affect the absorption of nutrients.

What’s more?

Intense exercise, such as running, can reduce the rate of gut absorption. This can lead to feelings of fullness, bloating, or discomfort.

Lower Esophageal Sphincter Tone:

The lower esophageal sphincter (LES) is a muscular ring that separates the esophagus from the stomach. Running can sometimes weaken the tone of the LES, increasing the risk of gastric reflux or heartburn.

Running can slow down the movement of food from the stomach to the intestines. This delay in gastric emptying can cause feelings of fullness and discomfort.

It’s important to note that these physiological changes are part of the body’s response to intense physical activity, and they can vary from person to person. Some runners may experience minimal GI distress, while others may be more susceptible.

The Impact of Food On Runners Stomach

Consuming foods that are high in fiber, fat, or protein too close to a run can slow down digestion and increase the risk of GI symptoms. Foods that are spicy or contain a lot of spices can also be problematic for some runners.

Drugs & the Digestive Tract

NSAIDs, including ibuprofen, are commonly used to relieve pain and reduce inflammation. However, they can irritate the stomach lining and increase the risk of gastrointestinal issues, such as gastritis or stomach ulcers. Running while taking NSAIDs, especially on an empty stomach, can further exacerbate these risks.

How to Prevent Runner Trots When Running

Proper hydration is your first line of defense against stomach discomfort and unwanted pit stops during your runs. We all recognize the importance of staying hydrated for optimal running performance, but it’s equally crucial for preventing GI distress while running.

A study found that roughly 80 percent of runners who experienced fluid losses of 4 percent or more of their body weight reported suffering from GI distress issues. This suggests a strong link between dehydration and stomach problems in runners.

Several factors contribute to this connection. Dehydration can slow down gastric emptying, making it harder for your stomach to process food and fluids efficiently. Additionally, exposure to heat, especially during the summer, can exacerbate GI distress issues. When it’s hot, your body redirects more blood to the skin to cool down, which can further stress your digestive system.

Here are some hydration tips to help you combat GI distress:

  • Stay hydrated throughout the day, not just before your run. Consistently drinking water ensures you start your run well-hydrated.
  • Don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink. By the time you feel thirsty, you may already be somewhat dehydrated.
  • Hydrate when you wake up in the morning, especially if you’re running in the early hours. After a night’s sleep, your body can be dehydrated even if you don’t feel thirsty.
  • If your run lasts longer than 45 minutes, consider bringing a water bottle and practicing the “one gulp every mile” strategy, even if you don’t feel an immediate need for fluids..

Additional resource – Prevent Acid Reflux In Runners

Go Easy With the Mileage

Running long and hard training sessions can increase the likelihood of experiencing GI problems, and this is due to several factors, including dehydration, elevated body temperature, increased blood flow to working muscles, and the mechanical impact of running. Essentially, the nature of running, with its repetitive and high-impact movements, makes runners more prone to GI distress.

The good news is that, similar to how your muscles and cardiovascular system adapt to training, your gastrointestinal system can also become more accustomed to the demands of running. Here’s how you can “train” your stomach to handle food more effectively:

  • Experiment with different foods and drinks during your training sessions. Pay attention to how your stomach reacts to various options. This experimentation allows you to find what works best for you.
  • Keep a food journal to track the foods and drinks you consume and their impact on your GI tract. This record will help you identify patterns and pinpoint which items may trigger discomfort.
  • Try different eating plans to see how they affect your stomach. With time and experimentation, you’ll likely discover a winning formula that minimizes GI distress during your runs.

Give It Time

Be Patient with Your Belly

Your stomach deserves some respect, so don’t rush it! Give it the time it needs to process your food, especially after a big meal. Here’s the lowdown:

Therefore, try to schedule your main meal a comfy two to three hours before your run. This gives your stomach the chance to work its magic without feeling rushed.

Need a Quick Fix?

If patience isn’t your strong suit, consider a light pre-run snack about an hour before your workout. Keep it easy on the tummy, though, so you don’t feel like you’ve swallowed a brick.

Everyone’s digestive system dances to its unique beat. So, get curious and experiment! Try different meal timings and foods to discover what your belly loves best. In the end, it’s all about finding your digestive groove for the long haul.

Keep your Diet Simple

Eating a meal loaded with fiber, fat, protein, or sugar bombs right before a run is like inviting GI distress to the party. No thanks!

Especially on those tough training days, opt for a straightforward diet. Look for these winning traits in your pre-run meal: not too huge, low on fiber, low-fat, a touch of protein, and not drowning in sugar.

If you’re gearing up for a marathon or a lengthy endurance mission, sports drinks can be your best bud. They give you the fuel to keep going. But, a word of caution: avoid those with over 10% carb concentration to dodge tummy troubles. Aim for 5% or less to play it safe.

Acidic foods and drinks can stir up trouble for your tummy. Before your run, dodge stuff like alcohol, super strong coffee, milk, eggs, gluten-heavy grains, nuts, and tomatoes. Instead, roll with low-acid champs like bananas, leafy greens, soy, lentils, and more.

Avoid Caffeine

Caffeine is like rocket fuel for your performance. It revs things up and can make you feel unstoppable on the track.

But caffeine is also a stimulant that can kickstart peristalsis—the fancy term for those gut muscles that push food through your digestive system.

If caffeine isn’t your gut’s best friend, swap it for water. Hydration is always a good idea, and it won’t send your stomach on a rollercoaster ride.

Craving that cup of joe?  Have it well before your run. Give your system some time to cozy up with caffeine, so it won’t interrupt your workout.

Additional resource – How to manage heart murmurs

Run Around Bathrooms

For those of us who are a tad more prone to GI distress during runs, planning our routes strategically can be a game-changer. Look for routes that have bathrooms along the way. Knowing you have a safe haven for emergency pit stops can provide tremendous peace of mind.

But, sometimes, emergencies strike when you least expect them. That’s where a little pocket-sized preparation comes in handy. Carry wet wipes or toilet paper with you during your runs, just in case a disaster decides to pay a visit.

And here’s a pro tip for extreme cases: consider having an over-the-counter anti-diarrhea medication like Imodium on hand. It’s like your emergency kit for those unexpected GI issues. But remember, don’t make it a habit without your doctor’s approval.

Manage Stress

According to a study, stress, anxiety, and other mental problems can take a toll on your stomach.

Research has linked these psychological problems with your GI tract’s ability to function optimally and adequately.

So it’s not just what you eat and drink before and during a run. What you think matters as well.

Consider incorporating practices like meditation and yoga into your routine. These activities can help you manage your physical, emotional, and intellectual energies, creating a harmonious balance.

Now, let’s talk about race day stress. Competitions can be nerve-wracking, especially if you’re putting immense pressure on yourself. If you’re racing in a new city, try arriving a few days earlier to acclimate to the unfamiliar surroundings.

Listen to Your Body

Ultimately, your body is the best judge of what works for you. But there’s a catch – you need to be ready to listen. Ignoring your body’s signals won’t get you anywhere.

Let’s face it: what you put into your body matters, affecting both your performance and your stomach’s well-being. So, it’s crucial to cultivate body awareness.

Pay attention to how your body feels before, during, and after a run concerning the foods and beverages you’ve consumed.

Maintain a diary to track your experiences. Note the symptoms and document what you ate or drank on days when GI issues reared their ugly head. This way, you can gradually decode your body’s unique language.

When to Consult A Doctor For Runners Stomach

Experiencing gastrointestinal distress as a runner is a common issue, but it’s crucial to recognize that if you frequently encounter a runner’s stomach, it may not be exclusively related to running. Conditions such as celiac disease and irritable bowel syndrome share similar symptoms with a runner’s stomach and can have diverse underlying causes.

In such cases, it’s advisable to seek guidance from a medical professional. They will conduct an assessment of your symptoms to determine whether they are primarily associated with running or if there might be an alternative diagnosis. Additionally, your doctor may recommend procedures like a colonoscopy to rule out any potential underlying issues.

It’s essential to be vigilant and attentive to certain warning signs that could indicate a more severe ailment, including:

  • Sustained diarrhea lasting more than 24 hours.
  • Sudden and severe headaches with no apparent cause.
  • Pronounced heart palpitations.
  • Presence of mucus or blood in your stool.
  • Persistent and intractable vomiting or nausea.
  • Feeling full more rapidly than usual.
  • Unexplained weight loss.
  • Experiencing loss of consciousness or fainting episodes.

If you experience any of these symptoms, it is crucial to promptly seek medical evaluation to ensure your health and well-being

GI Distress in Runners  – The Conclusion

In conclusion, mitigating the risk of experiencing runners’ stomach requires a proactive approach to your diet, hydration, and training habits. To minimize the likelihood of gastrointestinal distress during your runs, consider the following recommendations:

  • Be mindful of the foods you consume before running and the day prior, avoiding high-fat and high-fiber foods whenever possible
  • Allow ample time for digestion by refraining from running immediately after a meal, akin to swimming.
  • Maintain proper hydration throughout the day, ensuring you carry a water bottle during extended runs, particularly in hot weather conditions.
  • Engage in experimentation with various foods and beverages, maintaining a training journal to monitor their impact on your stomach.
  • Provide your body sufficient time to adapt to increased training intensity and volume.
  • Seek professional guidance from a physician if you have concerns or persistent issues related to gastrointestinal distress during your runs.

By implementing these strategies and staying attuned to your body’s signals, you can work towards a more comfortable and enjoyable running experience, minimizing the risk to runners’ stomach.

The Benefits of Running and Physical Exercise for Poker Players

**This is a sponsored post**

As in other professions and other habits such as sports, poker is a discipline that requires a great deal of preparation to reach an optimal level as a professional player. The stars of this mental sport are aware that they need to maintain a healthy life in which both mind and body are in a comfort zone. Only in this way can good results be achieved.

How to take care of mind and body when you are a poker player?

Imagine you are playing at an online video poker on a reputable Australian casino, Joe Fortune. The game goes on longer than you would like, and with the fast-paced dynamic of the game, fatigue and demotivation start to set in. Your back and legs start to ache from the time you’ve been sitting down, even though the graphics are immersive, and the gameplay is straightforward and hassle-free. Sometimes, despite the motivation to keep playing, your body and mind revolt, as you find it hard to concentrate on the task.

Finally, it’s time for the river, and at that moment, the dealer turns over that card that can change the course of the game. Your brain is racing, your shoulders tense up, and adrenaline is pumping.

It is at that moment that you must understand the need to take care of yourself and avoid overloading your mind and body when playing poker so as not to damage your mood.

Here are ways to take care of your mind and body:

Good nutrition

Nutrition is a must if you want to be healthy. Poker players need to motivate their bodies to endure the long sessions of tournaments; for that, the diet is fundamental. Too much will be a problem, and too little will be also a problem.

Fruits, vegetables, and nuts are recommended since they will give the organism energy and mental agility that seems fundamental. But to abuse it is not good either; Players must vary their diet.

Why Physical Activity is Important for Poker Players

Of course, absorbing nutrients will not be the only thing we will consider in poker.

Poker is often associated with unhealthy behaviors: smoky environments, hard liquor in industrial quantities, and unhealthy food. However, with the advent of iGaming platforms, where anyone can open a poker platform and start playing it, there has been a realization that to play at one’s best, it is essential to be clear-headed to know how to self-control.

In competitive tournaments, for example, concentration must be through the roof; one wrong or risky move can lead to elimination in a flash.

As a sport on its right-included in the table by the International Olympic Committee-poker thus needs not only proper eating behaviors but also good mental and physical preparation.

Finally, poker involves many hours sitting in front of a monitor or at a table beside opponents. This makes it essential to do sports to leave behind toxins and elements the body does not need.

The Benefits of Running

Running, in particular, is something many poker players will enjoy. The phenomenon of the ‘runner’s high’ truly replicates the thrill of playing the classic card game – as you run for a long time, a sudden feeling of relaxation steeps in, which will imbue your body with a burst of happiness hormones.

To achieve the effect, you should get more sleep and strive to run longer – a run of two hours tends to produce the euphoric feeling. So, try to pursue lengthy exercises in order to lower your anxiety and reach the limits of your endurance. Besides, experts recommend that you keep the running pace a bit slower than the 10-K race pace, often referred to as tempo pace.

Elimination of vices

Another element is directly connected to both mental and physical health work: vices. Alcohol, tobacco, or added sugars are best left aside. The organism will suffer if we tolerate these things in addition to the efforts involved in playing poker and dedicating oneself professionally to it. Everyone needs to indulge, but with caution and without the indulgence becoming routine.

Try to disconnect

But not only the body needs to lead a good life in poker, but also the head. Disconnecting is a fundamental activity. Many poker players who have their work at home do not manage to have moments in which they do not think about it. That exhausts one’s brain and does not perform at 100% as needed. That’s why it is so important to combine poker with other activities.

Exercise the mind

And since we are focusing on the brain, it is good to perform mental exercises that put it to the test regularly. Specifically, it can be something on the margin that helps the memory, decision-making capacity, and how to support the pressure.

Research demonstrates a strong link between aerobic exercise like running and the enhancement of cognitive functions. This applies to basic tasks like problem-solving and active, short-term memory. Therefore, strive to prioritize running or other endurance-intensive activities to ensure that your mind operates on the maximum level.

Be consistent

Combine mental exercises with constant and daily training because no one is born learned in the process of learning to play poker, and we can always try something new that we were not aware of.

Manage your money properly

Even those who can already win good picks of money must consider the management of their stack, not only in poker as such but also in everyday life.

Define a good strategy

If you will participate in some tournaments, apply a personal strategy according to your goals. The way to be happy with yourself is to set realistic achievements and be able to reach them.


Poker is a mental sport, so most players need to pay more attention to the physical aspect. The truth is that taking care of your body makes a difference in controlling your mood, concentration, energy, and motivation in that tense moment of the game.

Remember that perseverance and hard work are the keys to poker. So, with discernment, calm, and good physical condition, you will be a few steps ahead of others.

Can Running Help Cure Your Hangover?

Can Running Help Cure Your Hangover?

Have you ever had more drinks than you should the night before a long run?

Maybe one post-run beer turned into three shots and four cocktails, and before you know it, you’re already drunk and calling for a taxi to get you home.

You know what will happen next—the dreaded hangover in the morning.

So should you run with a hangover? Or simply run another day? That’s what we’re going to tackle in today’s article.

Here’s the truth. Running with a hangover is as fun as scrapping your nails down a chalkboard. Not. Really. Enjoyable. At. All.

In today’s article, I’ll explain whether you should run with a hangover. By the end of the post, you’ll know enough to make a very informed decision.

The Impact Of Alcohol On The Body

Let’s first take a look at the impact of alcohol on your body.

Alcohol is a toxin that your body has to get rid of. Around 10 percent of booze is eliminated through breath, urine, and sweat. The liver does the rest, making it the primary organ in charge of detoxifying alcohol.

Once alcohol reaches your liver, the latter releases enzymes that break it down into ketones at a pace of roughly 0.015 /100mL per hour. This means the liver can process up to one ounce of booze, your standard drink, in one hour.

As you can tell, this process takes time, and the longer the toxin stays in your body, the worse your hangover symptoms will be.

Take in more, and you will overwhelm your system, forcing the extra alcohol to accumulate in the blood and body tissues until it can be processed. This is why having too many drinks can cause a spike in blood alcohol concentration that lasts for several hours.

So Can Running Cure a Hangover?

Again, we need some context. So first things first, what’s a hangover?

A hangover consists of a group of nasty symptoms that can develop after consuming alcohol at a faster rate than your body’s ability to metabolize it. That is not the whole story. Hangovers are also linked to mediocre performance, work conflict, and other troubles.

The rule of thumb is the more booze you consume, the higher the chances of experiencing a hangover the next day.

That said, no universal rule tells us exactly how much alcohol we can safely consume and still avoid a hangover. Everyone is different and processes liquor at a different rate. No suit fits all and all that.

When it comes down to it, the impact of a hangover depends on how your body metabolizes the alcohol (explained before).

When you drink alcohol, the intake triggers various bodily reactions that can worsen a hangover. These include :

  • Dehydration
  • Frequent urination
  • A drop in blood sugar
  • Irritation of the digestive tract
  • Expansion of blood vessels
  • And so much more

Depending on the amount and type of alcohol you consume, your hangover symptoms may include the following;

  • Headache
  • Diarrhea
  • Trembling or shaking
  • Fatigue and weakness
  • Nausea, vomiting, or stomach pain
  • Dizziness, vertigo, or a sense of the room spinning
  • Shakiness
  • Extreme thirst
  • Muscle aches
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Increased blood pressure
  • Dry mouth and eyes
  • Mediocre concentration
  • increased sensitivity to sound and light
  • Irritability and other mood disturbances
  • Bad sleep or insomnia

These symptoms, and some more, are triggered by the booze itself and the toxins produced while breaking down the alcohol.

Can Running Help Get Rid of Hangover?

If you’re a runner and have engaged in any form of drinking, you must have already heard exercise might help you “sweat out” a hangover.

But is there any truth to this? Or just another urban myth that keeps popping up everywhere?

The Answer

You cannot sweat out a hangover.

You make it worse by attempting to do so, leading to more detrimental symptoms.

That’s why you should avoid high-intensity exercise when recovering from a hangover.

Let’s explain some of the reasons.

Alcohol and Dehydration

Alcohol is a diuretic. The stuff stimulates your kidneys to expel more urine than it takes in, which causes dehydration. This is to blame for hangover symptoms such as headaches, dry mouth, and nausea.

Once dehydrated, your body will lack the key minerals and electrolytes needed to function optimally.

In a severe hangover, running may worsen your symptoms, especially if you had ingested more than you should the night before and haven’t started rehydrating and refueling yet with plain water and real food.

What’s more?

Running makes you work up a sweat which will make your dehydration even worse.

If you restore your body fluids in time, you may be able to exercise later in the day, but don’t use it as a cure. Being dehydrated will only make you feel worse.

Muscle Strain

Alcohol impacts your physiology, increasing levels of lactate and creatine kinase in your blood—both of which can negatively impact your muscles and other organs. This increases your risk of all types of soreness.

And you don’t want that.

Now that you have the answer for whether you should run or not following a night of drinking let’s look at a few measures to help avoid getting dehydrated or sick while drinking so you can maximize your training program.

Pay Attention

When dealing with hangovers, the best way to prevent them is not to have one in the first place.

Any form of excessive drinking will result in hangovers in most people.

Either avoid drinking or drink moderately. If you decide to drink, choose clear alcohols, such as white wine or vodka, which have fewer contaminants but don’t do to excess.

Don’t Run If You’re Dizzy

This should go without saying, but if you’re still feeling drunk or even a bit tipsy, do not run. When it’s the case, your body might not have finished metabolizing the alcohol.

Instead, drink plenty of water, have a full meal, and wait (or nap). Make it a rule to only exercise when you’re not drunk.

Red flags to pay attention to include:

  • Increased heart rate
  • Dizziness or disorientation
  • Throbbing headache
  • Hypersensitivity to light

Drink Water

Our body requires a lot of fluids when we run to regulate body temperature and maintain key metabolic processes.

Your cardiovascular and muscular systems also rely on essential electrolytes and minerals to function optimally.

So before you lace up your running shoes, hydrate—otherwise, you’re asking for trouble. Exercising without replacing the fluid and electrolytes drained by alcohol will make you feel worse.

Are you feeling lethargic? Have a sports drink or coconut water to give your body an even bigger dose of minerals and electrolytes, such as sodium and potassium.

What’s more?

Keep track of your hydration levels. If your urine is clear or light yellow, you’re well hydrated. When it’s not the case, it is time to drink more.

Eat Right To Cure The Hangover

Your diet also helps with your hangover.

To soothe the effects of a hangover, eat something rich in carbs, sodium, and potassium.

Some of the best choices include:

  • Bananas
  • Whole grain bread with peanut butter
  • Oatmeal and fruit

And for the record, the theory that greasy foods cure a hangover is nothing but a myth. So save the bacon and eggs for your post-run meal/breakfast.

Train Light

Running more miles than you should—or too hard—when hungover can worsen your symptoms.

Going for a long run or performing a series of intense 400-meter intervals while hungover is probably not a good idea. If you’re still feeling tipsy, intensity can make you feel worse.

Instead, shoot for something light and easy, and short.

20 to 30 minutes is enough to help you get things going and, hopefully, relieve some hangover symptoms, such as fatigue and brain fog.

If you had a quality workout on the schedule, such as intervals or hill work, move it to another day when you feel fresh and ready.

Can Running Help Cure Your Hangover? – Conclusion

The answer to whether to run or not on a hangover hinges on you and the severity of your hangover.

All in all, I’d recommend that you avoid exercising following a night of drinking—or at the very least, keep the intensity very low and pay attention to your body.

But it’s really up to you. I’m only offering suggestions. You call the shots (no pun intended).

Foot Pain From Running – Causes, Treatment & Prevention

foot pain from running

Looking to prevent and relieve foot pain from running?

Then know that taking care of your running feet is the right thing to do.

Your feet are a key running ally. They endure forces up to three to five times your body weight while running. They also propel you forward. For these reasons—and some more—it’s unsurprising that foot pain plagues many a runner.

That’s not the whole story. The human foot is a complex structure of bones, muscles, joints, ligaments, and fascia. As you can tell, this makes it tricky to figure out the exact culprit behind foot pain. And in some cases, there are more than one culprit.

In today’s post, I’ll share the full guide to treating and preventing foot pain from running.

More specifically, I’ll look into the following;

  • The common causes of foot pain in runners
  • The factors that impact foot pain in runners
  • Why does my foot hurt after I run
  • Risk factors for foot pain runners
  • Treating foot pain from running
  • Preventing foot pain after running
  • And so much more.

The Foot Anatomy

Your foot is one of the most intricate structures in your body. It is a complex arrangement of 26 bones, 33 joints, and more than a hundred muscles, ligaments, and tends that work in tandem to support your weight, absorbs shock forces, and propel your body forward while walking and running.

And foot injuries can range from the most annoying issues, such as bruised toenails and blisters, to more serious foot conditions in runners, such as stress fractures and Achilles tendonitis. This, as you can tell, can make diagnosing foot pain in runners a bit tricky, given the variety of likely causes.

But as soon as you figure out the culprit behind your foot pain, you can start treating the pain and preventing further damage.

Why Does My Foot Hurt After I Run?

Foot pain is also quite common among runners.

Running and overuse injuries, unfortunately, go hand in hand. Most surveys report that around 40 to 80 percent of runners incur an injury over the cause of one year of training.

Research that looked into the rate of musculoskeletal injuries in runners reported that around 6 to 40 percent of runners experience foot pain from running.

What’s more?

The more experience you have as a runner, the more likely you will come down with foot pain and injury. Studies have suggested that foot injuries often plague more veteran runners than beginner runners, who are often plagued with overuse injuries such as Achilles tendonitis and shin splints.

Get this.

On every foot strike while running, you’re putting three to five of your body weight on your feet, and research reports that runners take around 1,400 steps per mile at an 8-minute mile pace.

That’s a lot of load in one go, so, obviously, foot issues are nagging among runners.

Is It Normal For The Feet To Hurt After Running?

Yes absolutely. Foot pain is a common complaint among both beginner and veteran runners. It’s, in fact, so common that runners may incur foot injuries every year. Most runners would report feeling foot pain during or after going for a run. The pain is often in the arch, heel, side of the foot, bottom, and toes.

Causes of Foot Pain in Runners

Without further ado, here are the most common causes of foot pain in runners.

Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis is one of the most common overuse injuries. This condition refers to inflammation and damage to the plantar fascia, which is the fibrous connective tissues that stretch along the foot from the heel bone to the base of the toes.

Plantar fasciitis manifests as pain within the bottom of the foot, anywhere from the arch to the heel. You’re likely feel the pain at its worstin the mornign or just after running.


Plantar fasciitis strikes when the plantar fascia wears out under stress while running.

Common causes of plantar fasciitis include

  • Obesity
  • Poor footwear
  • Straining caused by overextension or overuse
  • Too much running
  • Arthritis

Plantar fasciitis symptoms include

  • Heel pain
  • Arch pain
  • Tightness in the foot following long periods of standing or sitting
  • A stabbing sensation in the arch of the foot


Metatarsalgia, as the name implies, refers to the irritation of the muscles or tissues surrounding any of the five long bones of the foot—known as metatarsals. This area can become inflamed and irritated after running.

This overuse condition feels like a burning or stabbing pain under the toes or in the ball of the foot. Some runners may also feel tingling or numbness in the toes.


Common culprits that contribute to metatarsalgia include:

  • Too much running
  • Ill-fitting shoes
  • Weak or tight foot muscles
  • Foot anatomy limitations

Fat Pad Syndrome

Although the condition is often mistaken for plantar fasciitis, fat pad syndrome manifests as pain that centers exclusively around the middle of the heel. The fat pad functions as a cushion to the heel and helps absorb some of the impacts of walking, running, and jumping.

This condition can develop from overuse or strain while running. Common culprits behind fat pad syndrome include:

  • Inflammation of the fat pad
  • Bad running gait and form
  • Running often on hard surfaces
  • Plantar fasciitis


Common symptoms of fat pads include

  • Pain in the ball of the foot
  • Stinging pain in the arch of the foot
  • Tingling or numbness in the toes
  • Pain when flexing the foot
  • Difficulty weight bearing after running long distances

Posterior Compartment

Posterior compartment syndrome is when pressure builds within the muscle compartments. This, in turn,  hinders blood flow to the muscles and stops oxygen from reaching the cells and nerves, which can cause damage.


The pressure from these conditions can be blamed on swelling or bleeding, which can lead to nerve and cell damage if not left ignored. This injury can be either acute or chronic.

Acute posterior compartment syndrome is a serious injury that usually occurs after a severe injury. Seek medical help immediately if you suspect you have acute posterior compartment syndrome.

On the other hand, chronic posterior compartment syndrome doesn’t require immediate medical attention. But it’s usually caused by overuse during running.

Warning signs of posterior compartment syndrome include:

  • Pain in the tibia (just like shin splints)
  • Pain in the calf
  • Bumps or lumps inside the shin
  • Feeling of pressure or tightness in the calf
  • Numbness in the foot while running
  • Tenderness within the shin.

Tibialis Posterior Tendinopathy

If you feel pain most around your instep or inner heel and arch, you might be dealing with tibialis posterior tendinopathy. The tibialis posterior is a crucial muscle that supports the arch and prevents the foot from rolling and collapsing while running.

You might also feel pain along your inner ankle.


Common culprits that contribute to the injury include;

  • Worn-out running shoes
  • Excessive downhill running
  • Overpronation
  • Weak or imbalanced lower leg muscles

Stress Fractures

Stress fractures are some of the most serious running-related overuse injuries. The condition refers to small cracks within a bone or deep bruising of a bone.

More specifically, the most common stress fractures that plague the feet are metatarsal stress fractures. This serious condition causes serious pain in the top of the foot.

Stress fractures occur when the muscles in the foot become fatigued because of overuse or overload, which puts stress on the bone and, eventually, causes a small crack or bruise within the bone.

Though runners are prone to metatarsal stress fractures in any five long bones, the second, third, and fourth metatarsals are the most prone.

The main symptoms of a metatarsal stress fracture are tenderness and pain along the top of the foot that starts as mild nagging pain. This is often only felt during training to excruciating pain that long the top of the foot that refuses to fade away.

You might notice visible swelling and likely discoloration or bruise in the affected area.

Other culprits behind stress fractures include

  • Overuse
  • Sudden increases in mileage
  • Low vitamin D
  • Insufficient bone density and strength
  • Bad running technique

foot pain while running

How To Prevent & Soothe Foot Pain From Running

Now that you know a little more about the cause of foot pain in runners, let’s dive into how to prevent it.

Run in the Right Shoes

The first step toward happy and healthy runners’ feet is to run in the proper pair of shoes.

Improper shoes can also result in serious injuries like calluses, ankle sprain, knee injuries, and other serious troubles.

In fact, according to research, an improper running shoe is one of the leading causes of running injuries among runners of all levels and training backgrounds.

So get the right shoes, or it’s no deal.

When looking for a new pair, seek the help of a podiatrist.

A few running stores have these shoe-fitting experts on duty, so use them to your advantage.

Just keep in mind that every runner is different.

Some require more support, and others offer less cushioning, so you must find the right pair.

Opt For the Right Socks

Picking the right shoes is just the beginning of the story.

You will also need to run in the proper socks.

An ill-fitting and/or indecent pair of socks is one of the leading root causes of foot pain from running, such as blisters.

The best socks for running are lightweight and made from water-resistant materials that wick away moisture and are breathable so you can prevent the undue friction that usually leads to blisters.

The good news is that socks are cheaper than shoes. This makes trying out various sock brands and sizes possible until you find the ideal pair. Remember that you will have to test out the socks with your running shoes.

I think Wright socks are some of the best brands today.

Soften your Skin

The skin on our feet tends to be thick, bumpy, and dry. In runners, the dry skin can lead to heel fissures, where the dry skin cracks and bleeds, which is baaaad!!

What’s more?

The repetitive impact of running can exacerbate the cracks, making them more prone to infection. To avoid this issue, make sure to soften your skin regularly.

Rub the moisturizer into the skin until your feet start feeling supple and soft.

Furthermore, these creams and anti-chaffing sticks can help you prevent blisters—especially during summertime when the feet get sweatier for longer periods.

So if you suffer from blisters regularly, you MUST apply a moisturizer daily.

Do not only apply the cream on the skin but also outside your socks to reduce unnecessary friction—which is the primary cause of blisters.

There are hundreds of lubricants and moisturizers in the market that you can use.

But I recommend using a silicon-based lubricant for the feet as this also helps fend off moisture which is vital for keeping your footsies blister-free and healthy.

Body Glide and Everstride are some of the best brands out there.

I love them, and the foot cream is now something I’m using consistently.

Additional resource – Running shoes for overpronators

Use Ice

Your feet tend to overheat and swell after each run.

One thing you can do to reduce the swelling is to put cold therapy to your advantage.

Therefore, immerse your feet—as long as you don’t have vascular troubles—in a bucket with water and ice for at least 15 minutes after a hard run.

If you can’t tolerate the cold, run cold water from a hose over your feet.

Plus, you can raise your legs and use an ice pack to ease the inflammation.

Apply ice on your feet for no more than 15 to 20 minutes, or you will risk frostbite.

Stop the Fungus

Known as athlete’s foot, this painful infection causes itchy pain, redness, and blisters on the toes and soles of the feet.

And it’s painful.

Here is what to do to keep fungus at bay:

Keep your feet fresh and dry as often as possible.

Why? Fungus finds fertile ground in murky, and by keeping your feet clean, you’re reducing your risks.

But this is easier said than done.

We have about 125,000 sweat glands on each foot (more than anywhere else in the body), and each foot produces about four ounces of sweat daily (roughly an eggcup of moisture).  Increase your chance of beating this condition by regularly changing your socks and using antiperspirants on your feet.

Plus, keep your toenails short and clean.

This will not only prevent the fungus but will also lengthen the lifespan of your socks.

If it’s too late and you have athlete’s foot, then treat it with an over-the-counter fungicide, and take as much rest as needed.

Nail and Foot Care

Long nails can get caught in socks and tear the perfect set you bought.

Also, untrimmed nails lead to the sort of strain that can create blood pooling under the nail, and a long untrimmed toe can cut the neighboring toes, leading to pain.

Keep a keen eye on your nails and trim them regularly. Cut the toenails straight across, and then use a file to smooth out the edges of the nails.

Work your Toes

The foot region is, like your glutescore, and chest muscles, another “muscle group” that needs strength training.

A lot of running injuries can be linked to weak feet. Weakness in the muscles of the feet results in the limited ability of the foot to move into its correct running position. This, over time, contributes to foot pain during and after running.

In other words, you will have less stability in your running gait, which can hinder performance and lead to injury.

Kick your foot strength up a notch by doing these five excellent exercises. Aim for at least 20 repetitions of each exercise, repeating the exercises for two to three sets a couple of times a week.

Toe Raises

Towel Pulls

Walking on the toes

Foot Circles and Points with Therabands (or a resistance band)

Stretching the Toe Flexors

Massage Your Foot Pain

Massaging your feet provides instant relief and may also prevent pain down the road.

So how do you go about it?

Simple. Do a bit of self-massage with a tennis ball.

A tennis or a racquetball are some of the best self-massage tools to stretch out those muscles and release any built-up tension and discomfort in your feet, especially in the soles.

This simple massage can reduce the risks of developing running injuries like Plantar Fasciitis, and what the hell; it does feel good to release the discomfort—especially after a long hard run.

Here is how.

While standing or sitting, put the ball under the arch of your foot, then roll it along your arch and apply pressure to any part of your foot, calling for more attention.

Find the hot spot—where it hurts the most—and slowly roll the discomfort away.

It’s that simple.


When To See A Doctor

You should consult a doctor immediately if the pain is too much to manage.  This is especially the case if you have severe swelling.

You should also make an emergency visit if you notice any evidence of infection, including redness. The inability to bear weight on foot is another red flag.

How to Relieve Foot pain From Running  – The Conclusion

There you have it. If you’re looking for a practical guide on how to treat and prevent foot pain in runners, then today’s post has you covered. The rest is just details.

Please feel free to leave your comments and questions in the section below.

In the meantime thank you for dropping by.

Keep running strong.

David D.