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Cramps, shin splints, and chest pain: what to do when running hurts

Updated: Aug 3, 2023

BRUNNING CAN BE A FUN, REWARDING AND PEACEFUL EXPERINCE. BUT IT CAN ALSO BE PAINFU. ESPECIALLY FOR BEGINNERS. IT TAKES TIME FOR THE BODY TO ADAPT TO THE IMPACT OF RUNNING. BUT YOUR GAINS CAN COME WITH LESS PAIN IF YOU TAKE THE RIGHT PRECAUTIONS. WHETHER YOU''RE SEASONED OR JUST STARTING OUT., THESE FIVE FIXES WILL KEEP YOUR RUNS A LITTLE MORE PLEASURABLE.


  1. RAMP UP YOUR RUN MIALEAGE SLOWLY. AND BACK OFF IF YOUR BODY ACHES. INCLUDE A STRENGTH SESSION ONCE OR TWICE A WEEK THAT INCLUDES EXERCISES LIKE SQUATS, PLANKS, BIRD DOGS AND DEAD LIFTS.

  2. IF YOU'RE JUST STARTING OUT, BEGIN WITH RUN/WALK INTERVALS. WHERE YOU RUN FOR A MINUTE OR TWO AND THEN WALK FOR A MINUTE OR TWO AND GRADUALLY INCREASE YOUR TIME SPENT RUNNING.

  3. YOU WANT TO GO INTO A RUN PROPERLY FUELED - BUT IT'S EASY TO OVERDO IT. WHEN FOOD IS STILL DIGESTING IN THE GUT, THE OXYGEM REQUIRED TO DIGEST THE FUEL IS BEING DIVERTED TO SUPPORT RUNNING MUSCLES. MAKING YOU FEEL LESS THAN YOUR BEST. WHICH CAUSES MUSCLE FATIGUE OR CRAMPS. ALLOW ONE HOUR DIGESTIVE TIME FOR EVERY 200 TO 300 CALORIES CONSUMED.

  4. ADD POST RUN STRETCHING AFTER A LONG RUN TO PREVENT NEXT DAY STIFFNESS AND SORENESS.

  5. FOR A 30 MINUTE RUN, ALL YOU NEED IS WATER. FOR LONGER RUNS, A SNACK COMPRISING PROTEIN AND CARBS IN ADDITION TO FLUIDS. RESEARCH HAS SHOWN THAT CHOCOLATE MILK IS A GREAT RECOVERY DRINK AS IT CHECKS ALL OF THESE BOXES. AIM TO HAVE A GLASS WITHIN 30 MINUTES POSET-RUN.






























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