Have you ever or are you currently dealing with ankle pain with running? If so, welcome to RunDreamAchieve. I am glad you have made it here. I have dealt with ankle pain over the years too as a runner. In addition, have experienced rolling my ankle twice. It is most certainly not a pleasurable experience and I thought I fractured my ankle bone when I did it too. There are various reasons why our ankles become weak when running. A lot of times we jump into training too fast and are running too much too soon.
Of course, other reasons for this is we simply have weak ankles and need to strength the ligaments and joints around it. We are highly driven and motivated individuals as middle to long distance runners. The problem is we sometimes can move too fast too soon and neglect the areas of training that matters most. You cannot build a house without laying the foundation first or that home will quickly fall the first breeze or storm that passes by. Ankle pain with running is a common ailment that many runners face. There are other athletes who experience little to no pain but also do things correctly to ensure injuries to not occur.
How Do I Stop My Ankles from Hurting When I Run?
There are many areas of prevention you can focus on to heal heal ankle pain with running. I am a big believer in pool running. The reason being is there is little to no impact on the ankle ligaments. I have trained heavily over the years by getting in the deep end of the swimming pool. This type of workout is perfect for athletes who are dealing with ankle pain and still want to get in a great workout. You can wear a floatation device making pool running much easier. In addition, you can run for hours focusing on your form and running motion in the pool. Of course, you can choose to not wear a flotation device and make the workout much more difficult.
That being said, there is no impact on your ankles or musculature which is why I highly recommend pool running if injured. Rest, of course, is still the number one remedy when dealing with any type of injury. You may also want to consider investing in an ankle brace to help stabilize the ankle while you are running as well.
Reasons We Deal with Ankle Pain with Running
There are numerous ankle-related injuries that we as runners deal with. I am going to cover a few and discuss some remedies to help overcome them below. I hope this will be of assistance. Strains or sprains occur when we overstretched and this can easily occur from not paying attention on a run or workout. I have dealt with these injuries over the years and most often times occurred from simply not paying attention. In addition, I have rolled my ankle twice in my career and it is most certainly not a pleasant experience. In fact, I thought I had broken my ankle bone it hurt so bad.
Have you ever experienced this yourself? Always pay attention to your terrain when running especially if you are on a trail. It is much more difficult to cause an injury like this on a flat, paved surface in comparison to an uneven surface like a trail. That being said, this type of injury can still occur on a flat surface too if not paying attention.
Should I Stop Running if My Ankle Hurts?
I would not recommend continuing to run on an ankle that is extremely painful. Again, everyone is different and will be able to withstand various amounts of pain. That being said, it is much wiser to take complete rest in the place of trying to continue to run through an injury. As mentioned above, get in the deep end of the pool and pool run if you still want to workout. I have found this to be the best workout option you have aside from complete rest if injured. You don't want to continue to stress the ligaments and sinews around the ankle bone and foot. I fully understand this process is not easy.
We as middle to long distance runners are already highly motivated and driven individuals. So, it is not easy for us to back off, relax and take some time off in order to heal. The second type of ankle pain with running that occurs is an ankle stress fracture. A stress fracture will certainly remind you of its presence. Athletes who try running on this will quickly be reminded to take time off. Do not try to continue to run on this type of injury. It is much wiser to take a month or two off than to be sidelined for a year if you need to have a surgery on account of it.
How Do I Stop my Ankles from Hurting when I Run?
Remember the RICE principle. Rest. Nothing can take the place of this and is the best option of them all to heal ankle pain with running. Ice. If you do have ankle pain make sure to ice after each of your runs. Epsom salt baths are also great for recovery and healing. Compression. Use a compressive sleeve to help stabilize your ankle. Compression sleeves can assist fresh oxygen-rich, blood to the area of your ankle that is causing pain. Elevate. If and when possible, keep your ankle elevated to help with pain as well.
I would recommend getting X-rays and see a Physician if the pain continues. You never want ankle pain with running to move from being pain to a stress fracture. You may be out for far longer than you had planned unless you discipline yourself to back off and rest. Remember, there is no rushing this process. The body will always heal on its own time. I fully understand where you are coming from if dealing with any of these types of ankle-related injuries. I have dealt with them too.
What is the Fastest Way to Relieve Ankle Pain?
The best option is using RICE or pool running. The reason pool running is great is there is zero impact on your joints and ligaments around the ankle. In addition, the resistance from the water makes pool running very close to land running. Of course, complete rest is the best option of them all. You may be experiencing tendon tendonitis around the ankle as well. I dealt with achilles tendonitis over the years. The only option I had was icing and using the methods mentioned in this post. Tendonitis occurs when inflammation is present and creates swelling or a tear.
Again, a very uncomfortable and frustrating injury that seems to take forever to heal up. The key is to stay as positive as you can and allow time for complete healing to occur. Tendonitis usually occurs from training too quickly, too soon. In addition, increasing your mileage too fast when the body is simply not prepared to handle the stress you are placing on the ligaments and joints. Focus on your nutrition and keep your immune system in tact as well. These are small areas of your training that can pay back huge returns on your investment.
Is it OK to Run with Ankle Pain?
It is fine if you can tolerate it and you don't see continued progression of pain occurring. This is where experience and professionalism comes into play. Again, it is unwise and a waste of your time to push through an injury if you only make it worse. You could also be dealing with ankle arthritis. The effects of ankle arthritis are tightening around the ankle, lack of mobility around the ankle or stiffness. Again, if the injury around your ankle continues to worsen take some time off and allow for complete rest. I know it is hard but is the best healing option of all mentioned in this article.
I always stress using leverage rather than working harder in your preparation on the RunDreamAchieve YouTube channel. One of the best methods to use leverage is do the opposite of what most people are doing. The majority of athletes simply will not allow themselves to slow down until it is too late. You do not need to have surgery on account of an ankle-related injury. What you must use is that discipline and focus you have to train hard and utilize the same focus to rest when you have to.