Is Foot Pain Holding You Back?
Finally! It is your time to shine. Your time to get back into the best shape of your life. You are feeling confident and motivated as you step foot into the gym for the first time in a long time.
You quickly realize that it has been a while since you have done anything, so starting out on the treadmill may be the best bet. After a long job you start to notice something. Pain. Not just the pain of your muscles burning, but a pain that doesn’t belong there.
Now you are motivated. You are not going to let a little pain hold you back. You still come back the next day, but the pain comes back. You try again with more pain. This time the pain accompanies you as you go throughout your day. You realize it is starting to hold you back.
If you are experiencing foot pain it may be holding you back from achieving the results you want. My name is Josh, my members call me Coach J, and I decided to create this article in hopes that it can help you prevent and manage plantar fasciitis.
Step 1: Pain and Inflammation
The first thing that you will want to do is deal with the pain and inflammation of the foot. This is where we treat the injury like an athlete.
The first thing you can do is try out this awesome compression sock, which helps stabilize the plantar fascia and improve circulation in the affected area.
You Can find this sock at Run on or online at
Next try some ice immersion. Simply get a big bucket of ice water and dunk your foot for a minimum of 5 minutes. This will not be pleasant but it can greatly help decrease pain and swelling.
Some natural remedies to reduce inflammation can come from:
- Bromelain- powerful enzyme that can be found in pineapple
- Turmeric- a root
- Devils claw
- White willow bark
Step 2: Smash
The next part that we want to look at with managing or even preventing foot pain is the fascia that covers all the muscles around the pain point.
Start with some self-myofascial release (SMR), which is just a fancy term for giving yourself a massage. When you do this, you get the clumpy knotted up fascia tissue to relax and give room for proper movement of your foot. This will not feel good, however you should do your best not to tense up due to the pain. If the pain is unbearable, then use a softer ball.
Here are some easy things to do at home:
-Start by rolling out the bottom of your foot with a firm ball. Really get into the knots. You can also contract and relax the foot to increase the release.
-Next take that ball and smash your peroneal muscle (located on the lateral side of the shin. Flex and point your toes as you do this.
Lastly, take the ball and work into the Calf. Find a knot, hold the ball in place, and flex and point your foot. Roll around slowly as you spend at least 30seconds on each tender spot.
Step 3: Stretch
Now that we have addressed the pain, inflammation, and fascia tissue. It is time to address flexibility. If you do not have full range of motion in your ankle/foot you are asking for injury. Without this full range of motion you will be unable to run properly, squat properly, or do pretty much any athletic movement properly.
Your foot primarily moves in Plantar Flexion or Dorisflexion. Two stretches that you can do for this are:
Downward dog w/ calf stretch
Take one heel towards the ground and then alternate.
Step 4: Look at the BIG Picture
When we are dealing with foot pain, it is easy to get caught up in the area of the pain. However, there is usually a source to the problem. The source usually resides at our knees or hips.
For example if you are squatting and your knees are caving in this can show up as pain in the foot, because the poor movement puts the foot in a very unnatural position.
I recommend that you aim to improve mobility in the hips and knees.
Here are a couple ways to do so:
- Use SMR
This is an area that often goes . From sitting (especially for females) we are known to get tight adductors. This tight muscle group can grow weak and cause your knees to cave in during a squat. Which is a big NO-NO
Tightness in this muscle can cause poor glute activation, which can destroy your ability to run or squat properly
This group of muscles is known for wreaking havoc on posterior chain activation, which can hinder your ability to run properly.
Stretch your hips out with the pigeon stretch!
The Take Away
I hope that from this you realize the importance of mobility and movement. Poor mobility can cause you to move improperly and improper movement will lead to things like foot pain. So, save yourself the pain and start working on mobility today!
You won’t regret it!