Couch to 5K
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How long to recover after a sprained ankle?

I was two weeks from graduating and then last weekend I tripped and sprained my ankle, very annoyed! It's just a bit sore and bruised now, I am really keen to get back and finish the podcast, but I don't want to start back too soon and do anymore damage.

Any advice from others who have suffered the same would be much appreciated

6 Replies

Just to say I am not clinically trained but for ankles ice is probably your new best friend.....Ice it for 10-15mins every 2-3hrs and keep it elevated. This is usually done for 48-72hrs after injury to reduce swelling and bring out any remaining bruising. After 72hrs you could try the flushing technique/cold - heat treatment which is 10-15mins iced followed by 10-15mins heat.... increases blood flow to injured area and poromoted healing.

keeping it still or moving will depend on the injury and pain levels.

if it is not getting any better go see a GP.

Do not place ice directly on the skin and always put ice on to affected area not rest area on ice.... having ice on an area for too long can cause nerve damage and cold burns.

Ankle Injuries can vary in how long they take to heal from a couple of weeks to a couple of months.... just because the ankle is awkward. Ive had an ankle injury thats not healing now since January! awaiting a consultation with a surgeon to see what they can do after physio didnt work, biomechanic couldnt do anything and the usual has not helped. still do my athletics though. has Just stopped the running and bounding exercises.

more info can be found


I've sprained each of my ankles in the last couple of months, I fell out of the front door and then fell out of the back door. Very frustrating as it put my running on hold both times. I use an ankle support when it's bad and sometimes I do run with a tubigrip if I feel I need a little extra support. Both still aren't 100% right but once the initial pain went after a week or so, I've been running and they have been fine. I think the important thing is to listen to your body and don't overdo it, but giving some support during the day when you're not running really does help. Good luck and hope you're back to your running soon.


Thanks for the advice guys, I spent the first couple of days icing and elevating it which did help a lot. I am living in rural Cambodia at the moment so a visit to the GP is pretty difficult. It doesn't really hurt when I walk, but I have only being walking short distances since I fell, I think I'll give another week and try running again.


I sprained my ankle on week 6 also not whilst running. I took 4 weeks off completely then went back to week 4 with it strapped up. It took about 12 weeks before it was back to normal though and 9 months for me to graduate. Don't push it or it may get worse which I think I did :( Wishing you a speedy recovery x


I was going to suggest cross training at the gym, but I guess that's out too? You could try cycling or swimming if available. Anything low impact, I certainly wouldn't run for a couple of weeks.


Hey if this makes u feel any better I went for a run week 4 on Tuesday and fell suddenly.. My left foot is swollen and bruised and I haven't been able to walk since wed morning. Good news is that it's nit broken but bad news is I'm not sure i can run for a few weeks. I have been icing and elevating my leg... Lets hope I recover fast. You're not in this alone :)


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