Once upon a time, I was a runner. Okay, not a fast runner. But like I RAN. I even ran a marathon. SLOWLY. One time. But, I did it!
About three years ago, I developed almost debilitating pain in my feet. At the time, I was in great shape and working out regularly. I was working out a lot and not making good shoe choices and BAM it hit. It.was.awful! That summer I could barely walk around my house. I would go to the grocery store and then stay in bed the rest of the day with ice packs on my feet. As a mom to a five year old little boy, it was not ideal!
The pain finally subsided but the only way that I've really found to manage the pain is to avoid flare ups. For exercise, I opt for the elliptical over long walks or runs. I stopped doing planks, lunges or anything that might aggravate my feet. And then I've added a few different practices that have helped keep the flare ups away.
1. I stretch my feet and ankles regularly. I've tried so many different contraptions out there including the weird socks and splints. This one is super easy to use and really effective at stretching out my calves and feet. Tight calves is strongly linked to foot issues. I try and use this first thing in the morning and before I go to bed. Sole Healer Foot Massager
2. I've found that a massage stick is the best way to stretch my calves and I use it every night before I go to bed. It's hard for me to go bed without doing it now! I also have a large foam roller which feels good but the massage stick is much more effective it releasing the pressure. Massage Stick
3. I'm super vigilant about my shoes now! I have custom orthotics from a podiatrist and wear those in my favorite running shoes most of the time. I do have a few pairs of sneakers that I wear with the orthotics. Yes, I've become a total grandma about my footwear but it's better than having that terrible pain! I actually do best with a slight heel and an ankle strap for stability. I've tried so many shoes and so many brands and here are my absolute favorites.
4. When they do hurt, I ice them as much as I can. You have to calm the inflammation first! Any more time on your feet or activity will just further exacerbate the pain. I like these sock like foot packs. Cold Therapy Socks
5. I take Fish Oil daily to help with inflammation and with my ADHD.
Over the last few months, I've incorporated a few new additions to my routine and I'm finally able to walk again on a regular basis without pain! Right now, I'm keeping it around 2-3 miles a day with 15-20 minutes of weights but in the past this small amount would have led me to flare up city! So I'm thrilled to be able to walk 5-6 days/week with no pain! I love walking and am working to get back to long 4-5 mile walks at least 5 days a week. That's my happy place!
6. I've started taking a very high end collagen supplement. With so many options on the marketplace, I was a little overwhelmed. Many collagen powders aren't actually effective at helping your joints and ligaments. It MUST be hydrolyzed collagen 2 in order to provide, joint, ligament and tissue support as well as the popular benefits of improved skin, hair, and nails. This particular collagen just hit the market in April and my husband and I are both seeing big differences in how our feet feel. Premium Collagen Beauty Elixir
7. I've also made several changes to my diet. I've always eaten pretty helpful but I've eliminated all processed foods and trying to promote healing in my body as much as possible. I do think those lifestyle changes have impacted my overall inflammation. I've been taking a total body detox supplement to help with that process that I really like. Total Body Detox
I hope that you never go through Plantar Fasciitis but if you do I hope these tips help you!