Does anyone else have problems with their achilles tendon as a result of running?

I'm on Week 4 (have been for a couple of weeks now, as I still can't quite finish the last 5 minute run), and have started to get some tenderness in my achilles tendons. I've read that the only real fix is to stop doing whatever is causing it, so I will stop the running, but I want to know what might have caused it in the first place, so when they are no longer sore and I get back to C25K, it won't happen again.

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  • From what I've read, it's quite likely related to how you land on your feet - maybe landing more on the heel than midfoot? Taking shorter steps, so your feet are under your centre of gravity when you land, rather than out in front of you, might help. Try googling Chi Running, barefoot running, Born to Run - lots of information out there. Or it might be something completely different.

    Good luck.

  • I had a twinge at around week 4/5, and had to rest for a week, but thankfully it hasn't returned so far. Keep in mind that you are putting your body through a lot of unfamiliar extra work, it is bound to complain from time to time.

  • After your rest week, did you go back straight to where you were when you stopped? or did you start again? or go back a week or 2?

  • I think I repeated the last run I had done, and then moved on to the next week but its a personal thing.

  • I started the programme on 12th August last year and developed severe pain in my right achilles at the end of week four. It was so bad that I had to abandon the plan and it took me three and a half months to recover. I'm due for wk 3 run 3 today, but this morning the dreaded stiffness has returned and I don't know wether to risk it or not. I've consulted physios at work ( I work in the NHS ) and they all recommended stretching exercises, but they haven't really helped. May work for you though - you can find them with a simple internet search.

  • I had some problems with my Achilles post graduation mostly caused I think by over enthusiastic pounding up hills. I found this stretch really helpful.

    Probably better to stop running for a little bit though rather than make things worse. I had to stop for 2 weeks but since finding this stretch have had no more than little niggles. Good luck :-)

  • Should I stop everything, including power walking, until my achilles is no longer sore? And when should I do the stretch - now whilst it is sore, or wait until it is better? And then continue doing it as long as I'm running?

    I really want to complete this program!

  • I've had niggling achilles pain for a few weeks now. I feel ok while running but feel sore and stiff in the mornings and after running. I've been trying to do the exercise above regularly but I've also bought a wobble board (actually a bit like a whoopee cushion!) for balancing exercises. Single leg squats should be good as well - I haven't tried those yet though. I'm not sure I'm doing the right thing by persevering but it doesn't seem to be getting worse. I do recommend regular icing though. I've also been advised to put heel cushions in my ordinary shoes to take a bit of tension off the achilles when I'm not running. If my calves and achilles feel sore while running, I tend to take a walk break and concentrate on really stretching the calf and tendon as I walk, before starting to run again.

    I would ice, then gently stretch - not to the point of pain though, just to mild discomfort.

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