If you run frequently, you need to keep your feet and ankles in good shape. An injury could keep you on the sidelines for weeks or months. If you have any pain or other problems, you may even need to work with a podiatrist so you heal quickly and can start running again as soon as possible. Here are a few ways to take good care of your feet and ankles.
Correct Any Gait Problems
An abnormal gait may not bother you in daily life, but when you're running and repetitively hit the pavement, you might develop pain or be at a higher risk of injury if you don't bear your weight properly on your feet. A gait condition that causes your feet to roll to the inside or outside puts a strain on your ankles.
A podiatrist might be able to help by suggesting shoe inserts or by making custom orthotics for you to wear when you run. The inserts might support the arches in your feet or stabilize your heels to reduce rolling.
Throw Out Worn Down Shoes
If you run frequently, you'll probably go through shoes fairly fast. When shoes show signs of wear, throw them out and buy a new pair, even for practice running. You may need to buy shoes a couple of times a year, but it's worth it so your feet and ankles have the support they need to avoid injuries while you're running.
If you have problems finding shoes that fit well because of an unusual foot shape or size, then talk to your podiatrist about your options. Your podiatrist can measure your feet precisely and make custom shoes if necessary. However, just knowing the right size, width, and style you should wear for running could be a big help.
Once you find a brand and size that fit you perfectly, you never have to worry about shoes that cause your feet to hurt or that interfere with your ability to run your best.
Get Treatment For Injuries
When you twist an ankle or develop a symptom like tendonitis, don't ignore the problem and force yourself to keep practicing or competing. Talk to a podiatrist first. Even if all you need is rest, it's better to stay off your feet if you're instructed to do so or your injury might get worse and that might cause you to miss a marathon.
A foot and ankle specialist might offer treatments that help you heal faster and that helps you run safely. When competing in a marathon is important, work with your podiatrist to figure out a way to do it safely and without causing harm to your ankles or feet.
Don't underestimate the importance of proper foot and ankle care as a runner, even if you just like to run for fun because an injury could force you to give up running for a long time or even cause permanent damage.
Contact a podiatrist center, such as Elmhurst Podiatry Center Ltd, for more information.