When Should I Run Through Pain?

By Christine LuffAbout.com


Question: When Should I Run Through Pain?

It's very common for runners to experience some aches and pains, especially if you're training for a long-distance event. So when can you run through pain and when should you stop?

Answer: After a hard workout or a long run, you're most likely going to feel some overall muscle soreness. But when you feel pain in one particular spot, it could be a sign that something's wrong. Here are the different types of pain, with recommendations on how to handle them.

Mild Pain: You feel this type of pain when you start to exercise but it usually goes away as you start to warm up and continue running. The pain may be inconsistent and moves around the body, or you feel it bilaterally (in both knees, for example). On a pain scale of 10, it ranges from 1 to 3. Mild pain or discomfort is common and considered safe to run through.

Moderate pain: This type of pain appears as you start exercising, but stays at a tolerable intensity throughout your run. On a pain scale of 10, it ranges from 4 to 6. It rarely passes your pain threshold and it doesn't cause you to limp or alter your running stride. For the most part, it's safe to continue running when you experience a moderate level of pain. However, you may want to take a few days off from running and apply R.I.C.E treatment, allowing your body to heal.

Severe Pain: Ranging from 7 to 10 on the pain scale, this pain is severe in nature and you can feel it before, during and after exercise. The pain increases as you continue running and will typically cause you to limp. You should never continue running when you feel this type of pain. Consult your doctor and follow his or her recommendations.

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