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  1. #1
    Yen
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    Is anyone a walker?

    I know this is a bike forum but it's also for 50+ folks who exercise so I hope you don't mind if I ask this here.

    Walking is my primary daily exercise. I added a lot more walking to my routine after we bought a treadmill last month. This enables me to walk rain or shine, heat or cold, daylight or wee hours of the dark morning. Anyway I am noticing that since I have beefed up my walking, my ankles are very painful when I start my walks. They feel as if they are wearing a pair of tight-fitting handcuffs. I stretch my ankles before I walk but only after I stop the treadmill, get off, stretch again, and resume my work-out does it finally go away. This morning it was so painful I almost quit, but I persisted until it finally went away and then I continued on, pain-free, for a great workout totalling 1 hour.

    Anyway I am wondering if this is familiar to anyone here, and how to remedy it. I have high arches and wear custom orthotics in very good, supportive running shoes. I warm-up before my work-out and flex my ankles before I begin, but it seems to no avail until I stop during my work-out to stretch again... that's the one that helps.

    I wonder if it is time to see my foot doctor again. I have another 20 lbs. to lose and my legs don't feel strong yet. Perhaps that's all it is.

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  2. #2
    Senior Member
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    I was focused on biking for a few years and neglected hiking. (Hiking to me is a fast walk for a longer distance)
    My minimum distance is 6 miles on a paved park trail. I do it at 4 MPH. I had ankle pain as you are describing. It was bad. I limped to my car. I decided that it was a matter of different joints and muscles as used biking. I also bought the most cushioned shoes I could get.
    I now hike 12 miles frequently alternating to biking. I believe that is better than just biking or just walking.

    You may have another condition than I had. So please be careful and watch your symptoms. Pain is an indication that something is wrong. In my case it was conditioning.

  3. #3
    His Brain is Gone! Tom Bombadil's Avatar
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    I very much enjoy hiking, but my knees hate long walks on concrete or asphalt. Ache, ache, ache. I see people in parks walking on paved trails and wonder why they don't walk on the grass.

    I've never had a condition like you describe with your ankles. I have a couple of muscle-related problems in one foot and sometimes with a toe, but after walking 2-5 minutes, they fade away. I sometimes have to watch it when I get out of bed, because my foot doesn't want to take my full weight on the first couple of steps.
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  4. #4
    Cycle Year Round CB HI's Avatar
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    I don’t particularly like walking (except backpacking), but I am doing more of it since my body is not able to handle the amount of running I use to do. Just getting old. My achilleas tendon gets very tight and can be a little painful until stretched.

    Must have been about 15 years ago, some medical research determined that it is better to stretch after you get the blood flowing and muscles warmed up some from brisk walk or running a little first. Fewer injuries and better results for the stretching.

    So you might be better off just skipping the initial stretch and keeping the stretch after the initial bit of walking.

  5. #5
    Yen
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    Thank you. If this weren't the 50+ forum, I'd guess we should belong to one.

    I Googled and found an ankle-pain flowchart of questions with yes/no answers that led straight to osteoarthritis. It wouldn't surprise me - I know I have osteoarthritis in the big toe joint of both feet, and my ankles often "pop" loudly when I bend them while at rest.... so much so that it has startled Hubby when he hears it.

    I am going to pay a lot more attention to how often my ankles hurt and where the pain seems to present itself in the ankle. When I bought my new running shoes at the local running store, I was given business cards for three different podiatrists in my area. One of them is for a foot and ankle specialist. I will not give up walking and I will not take anti-inflammatory medication for more than a couple of weeks, so it will be interesting to see what my other options are.
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  6. #6
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    Walking is fine but a couple of miles of it and I have knee problems. I go to the gym and use the treadmill for fast walking at 6mph for 10 minutes at a time. Can't run due to that knee problem. A fast walk on a hill programme will stretch and condition the calf muscles and I have even pulled calf muscles on the treadmill. Ankles have hurt at the start of a "Lets get fit "again session, but this has worn off by the next week.
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    Banned. DnvrFox's Avatar
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    What surface do you walk on?

    Please NOT concrete. It is a killer.

    I walk 2-3 miles daily, except when I get a decent ride in. I have routes and places I walk where the surface is either dirt or asphalt. It is amazing how much easier it is on my entire body to walk on dirt, with the various angles your feet have to accommodate in foot placements, as opposed to either asphalt or concrete. BUt asphalt has a giving irregular surface, and is much better than concrete.

    The very best is a dirt trail where I have to adjust my foot angle almost every step. It builds better muscle, and exercises different parts of my body with each step.

    Anyway, that is my advice - don't walk on concrete, if you are.
    Last edited by DnvrFox; 04-22-07 at 07:09 AM.

  8. #8
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    Walk 3-3.5 miles daily with dogs on dirt trails. We see antelope and the occasional jackrabbit or coyote. No ankle problems like yours. When I increase mileage too fast the ball of my foot hurts at times. My lab walks slower or starts sitting when she's too tired. Hope it gets better.

  9. #9
    Yen
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    Thanks for the advice about the trails. I walk before work, at 5:00 AM. I don't want to go out on a dirt trail alone at 5:00 in the morning, the closest one is miles away, and we don't have a dog to walk. I mostly walk on the treadmill but also, for practical reasons, on concrete. If I resort only to the treadmill or dirt trails, then I will never walk at all during the day or evening. I don't run. The pain seemed to begin suddenly around the time my big toe joints began to hurt. I may try some glucosamine and condroitine and see if it helps.
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  10. #10
    Small Member maddmaxx's Avatar
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    I walk sometimes, uphill while biking. Not as much lately. Thats the good part.

  11. #11
    Yen
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    As I walk around the house this morning, I'm noticing that my ankles hurt with every step, but not nearly as bad as during the walk yesterday. I suspect they hurt all the time, to some degree, but I have gotten used to it. Yesterday's pain almost ended my workout. When I think about it, they almost always are stiff and painful to some degree, and pop a lot when I bend them while at rest. However, they are not swollen. I didn't know I have high arches until a few years ago when I went to a foot doctor about the pain in my big toe joint, that's when I learned that joint has osteoarthritis, and that high arches are the least supportive, most problematic arch type.
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  12. #12
    Senior Member wrafl's Avatar
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    I was a walker before I seriously switched to cycling last year. I was required to walk by doctors to slow down my osteoarthritis. I had pain on my ankles when I wake up in the morning but stretching every limb before you get out of bed helps to activate our sleeping muscles and thus reduce the pain. Since I started walking, I lost the constant knee pain over time and managed to walk the farthest distance on record of 12.4 miles. At 9.0 miles, my problem was skin rubbing against the material of my walking short. I would like to walk more than the 12.4 miles I recorded but have to give up due to skin chaffing. I walked on paved surface. Cycling has been my primary excercise since last year. I hope to do a distance of 50 miles one of these days and maybe a century. One way to treat our aging body is to keep active ths reducing risk of illness of some kind. You may have to see a doctor to rule out any thing serious with your ankle in my opinion.

    I also suffer from gout but that is now under control with medications. Arhtirtis and gout are no strangers to each other. When gout attack, it's the worst of any aches and pain you've ever had.

  13. #13
    Senior Member late's Avatar
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    You said you used running shoes. Try walking sneakers or light hikers.
    I have been using New Balance 811. I can literally walk all day in those,
    in anything else I would be begging to be put out of my misery.

  14. #14
    Yen
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    Quote Originally Posted by late
    You said you used running shoes. Try walking sneakers or light hikers.
    I have been using New Balance 811. I can literally walk all day in those,
    in anything else I would be begging to be put out of my misery.
    Shoe fit and comfort is as unique as a bike, but I will look for the NB 811 when I go shopping for a white walking-around type of shoe. I like the look and description of them. My running shoes are extremely comfortable and give my foot great support along with my custom orthotics. I wonder if there is a shoe that would eliminate ankle pain.

    I am considering having the bone spurs removed from the top of my arches because they hurt while I walk any ol' time, and while I am there I will mention my ankles and see what they say. My feet are a mess. Every health anomoly I have is bone-related. I also still have some baby teeth in my mouth. My mom has osteoporosis and breaks a bone every time she falls (she has a bone graft and screws in her left knee)... my brother has two artificial hips.... my dad has an artificial knee... and I have the prosthetic carpal in my wrist. Other than that, we are all very healthy and I'm thankful there's nothing more (health-wise) to complain about.
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  15. #15
    I need more cowbell. Digital Gee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by late
    You said you used running shoes. Try walking sneakers or light hikers.
    I have been using New Balance 811. I can literally walk all day in those,
    in anything else I would be begging to be put out of my misery.
    I can second this. Picked up a pair of New Balance walking shoes and I can walk in 'em for hours, like walking on pillows or something.

    Not sure the specific model, but mine says DMX MAX on one side, and RB 603 PYE on an inside label, right next to where it says, "God you have BIG feet!"

    Anyway, I love 'em. My kids can't wait until I get them dirty -- they're so bright you can see me coming for miles.
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  16. #16
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Digital Gee
    Anyway, I love 'em. My kids can't wait until I get them dirty -- they're so bright you can see me coming for miles.
    No Pics?

    I have to agree about a proper shoe for the job. Never been into trainers but I have 3 pairs of real leather Reebok trainers. Initially bought for the gym but these are comfortable for walking in. From my ride today- I can also vouch for socks aswell. I have a pair of sealskinz water proof socks and these have been used all winter on the bikes. I also have 3 pairs of cycling specific socks. Today However- it was not wet so didn't wear the sealskinz- I was in a rush so did not hunt out the cycling socks and just wore a pair of sports socks. Halfway through the ride and my feet hurt.

    I used to find this when I was running aswell. In the dark ages when I was doing that foolish sport- there were no special types of trainers or socks but I always wore pure wool socks. Only once used the "New" synthetic material and that hurt. Blisters and sore bits all over the feet.
    How long was I in the army? Five foot seven.


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  17. #17
    Coyote!
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    Hey YEN.

    I'm no doctor so I can't advise other than seeing one. That said, I alternate biking, hiking, and running with LOADS of stretching with each. . .sometimes whole walks devoted to stoppin' n' stretchin'. Running and walking do a number on my Achilles but so far I haven't talked to the doc about it. . .next time I'm in I'll bring it up. I earnestly believe it's the alternating and strestcing that keeps it both strong and the problem 'containable'. . .I mean geeez, I hate to run to get medical advice with ever little twitch and grimace knowing full well that there's not a whole lot to be done in my advanced years.

  18. #18
    feros ferio John E's Avatar
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    I racewalk or jog 4 miles every weekday morning, enroute to work, plus an average of one mile on the way home. Shoes must fit properly and must provide the right compromise between cushioning and motion control; since I pronate somewhat, I have started to buy New Balance 767s, which offer moderate support.

    I have been fighting intermittent Achilles' tendinitis, which seems to be aggravated by my ASICS GEL-1110shoes, even though ASICs was my brand of choice for 15 years.
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  19. #19
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    Eating healthy fruits & vegs can really help with inflammation. Cherries, fresh or dried, any berries, citrus, leafy greens can help with pain in some cases. I had a friend with gout that had to take meds. After a painful episode he began eating better and eats dried cherries to help. Hasn't had the gout since. Shoes make a big difference too. People with high arches and flexible feet need extra cushioning plus check the curvature of the soles of your shoes. If they look like this: ( ) that is better for curved feet. I can't wear shoes with soles like this:
    l l or my feet start hurting. Check your feet by wetting them then standing on a piece of paper. Trace around them to check if you have straight feet or curved.

  20. #20
    just over the next hill cruzMOKS's Avatar
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    I like to walk in the woods on dirt trails, sometimes deer trails, and sometimes no trail. I don't walk for time or distance. I walk with my dog and like to take photos of nature. If I get tired I sit down and watch for birds. Where I walk there are steep hills and gullies. I sometimes have to pull myself up by grabbing hold of roots. A couple of times I had to lay over the edge of a steep draw and pull my dog up.

    New Ballance running shoe. I have worn those for at least 7 years. I am on my third pair.

    Edit: They are called Cross Training
    Last edited by cruzMOKS; 04-22-07 at 08:14 PM.
    Enjoy the ride.
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  21. #21
    Senior Member Cadfael's Avatar
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    It may be better to consider hiking boots over walking shoes, there are some really good lighweight canvas and suade boots to be had these days. Boots will give more support to your ankles... but look for boots with a sloped back on the ankles. Something you can lace up tight to give reall support to your ankle. Something similar to these...

    http://www.regatta.com/ProductDetail.asp?309

    On the high end boots the insole can be easily pulled out and replaced with one specifically made for your feet. Brasher is an expensive brand, but they are by far the best as regard removablel insoles... you may even find one of their replacable insoles help. Most hiking shops will let you try the boot with different insoles. Another feature to look out for is the VIBRAM system.... this is used by a few boot manufacturers. It is a outsole system that reduces shock and yet still gives good grip.

    I am a regular walker, and very often to between 10-15 miles in a day on my days off work... good boots are an absolute must with these distances. I have never yet come across a shoe that is as comfortable as a boot.

    Now, I am not to sure if this what you have...

    http://healthlink.mcw.edu/article/987116429.html

    But pain in the heals and ankles is one of the symptoms

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