Running Insights 3

Posted on August 16, 2009


The more I write these, the more I realize what I’ve learned. That said, this insight post is about pain, and dealing with it. I am not a doctor.

  1. See a doctor: Before starting any exercise program. If you’ve already started, see your doctor as soon as you can.
  2. See a doctor: For any unusual or persistent discomfort, period.
  3. See a doctor: If advice from me, your friends, or sources on the web doesn’t work, see a doctor as soon as you can.
  4. Ice is for joints: If your knees or other joints hurt, apply ice packs or ice towels. 10 minutes per hour, 3 times a day.
  5. Painkillers are for muscles: If you have sore muscles, take OTC painkillers according to directions.
  6. Physical Therapy: The program works, but you have to work the program. There are all kinds of exercises you can try if you identify a problem area.

Like many people my age, my knees are a problem area for me as a runner. I read magazines and web articles, and try different exercises. Right now, 30 seconds of wall squats before and after my runs do wonders for my comfort level.


  • For back pain, I recommend a combination of heat, ice, and painkillers. Alternate the heat pack and the cold pack – and see a doctor as soon as you can sit in your vehicle!
  • As I mentioned in a previous column, if pain persists beyond 24-36 hours, or if it becomes more severe, see a doctor as soon as you can.
  • If a painful area is sensitive to the touch, make sure to give that a rest during your next workout.

Remember: Run like a child!