I was frustrated by the snow and ice when all it did was slow me down. Turns out, winter had much worse intentions. After two days of running on the ice, I noticed an old, familiar pain creeping back into my legs. Returning to me after several years is the mild, persistent discomfort of shin splints.
I have a bit of a history of shin splints, and so I know just how out of hand they can get. That’s why I’ve been taking precautions against them. On lower body lifting days, I focus especially on my calves. I stretch before and after every run (sometimes holding my teammates up). I actually lost some weight this past year with the sole purpose of keeping my shins from falling apart.
And these measures have worked for a couple of years now- so why the sudden return of shin pain? I asked around and found out that several of my teammates, who had been pain-free before last week, had suddenly developed similar pain to my own. Thinking of the snow and ice we had been running across, I again decided to do some research.
It turns out, snow can form an uneven enough surface that it forces one to over- and under-pronate their feet, resulting in the shin pain many of us know all too well. By running through the snow, you force your ankles to contort in all sorts of crazy directions, which places extra stress on muscles up to the knee.
So those of you who still get out on the snow and ice for those long distance runs, be careful. Think about how your foot is falling, and how much extra work it’s doing in these conditions.Share on Facebook