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Jogging & Running/return to running - heel pain, plantar fasciatis


Dr Tsatsos,
Thank you for your work on this site!  

Here is my question.  I am a 50 year old male.  I have been a runner for much of my adult life.  I got knocked out of running about 2 1/2 years ago by persistent heel pain, diagnosed by a relative who was nearing a degree in PT, as plantar fasciatis.  I did various variations of stretching, ice, rest.  My case was not that severe, but it was pesky and wouldn't let go.  I eventually just stopped running.  I have gotten into cycling since then and really enjoy that, but I miss running and want to try to get back into it.

I still get minor, intermittent heel pain from walking or hiking, etc. but nothing I can't deal with.  Although I have run a couple of marathons and quite a few half marathons, at this point I just would like to be able to do 3-5 miles a few times a week.

I have suspected that I probably could successfully get back into running, but perhaps need to see a podiatrist or get orthotics.  I have avoided pursuing it in part due to financial constraints.  Finances have improved lately, so I could pursue treatment, if necessary. I know at the very least, I need new running shoes.  

How would you suggest I return to running?  Go buy some shoes and hit the street?  See a podiatrist prior to running?  Get orthotics first?  See a PT?

I don't want to be sidelined again after just a few runs, so I would appreciate your advice on a wise course of action.

Thank you!


Dear Greg,

This Orthopedic Chicago Podiatrist located in West Loop 60661,Roscoe Village 60618, Elmhurst 60126 & Bartlett 60103 says...
Download stretching exercises from the internet for plantar fasciitis & tight calves. Do these exercises daily for at least 3 weeks. Then go to a running shoe with a little bit of a heel. Continue these stretches before & after a run. If the pain recurs-then see your local sports podiatrist. Skip the over the counter orthotics or inserts-even if the running store recommends them.
Hope this helps & Good Luck!

The Chicago Podiatrists of are specialists in orthopedics and sports medicine.
We are located in Chicago & Elmhurst

Dr George Tsatsos,Svetlana Zats & Dr Mariano Rivera
Podiatrist Chicago 60618 & Elmhurst 60126 Podiatrists
Board Certified in Foot and Ankle Surgery & Orthopedics
New South Loop Location-Chicago 60661

This information is offered as free advice and as general information. It may not be applicable to the specific questioner and his/her problem.  It is not based on actual knowledge of the podquestioner or his/her medical history and it cannot and should not be relied upon as definitive medical opinion or advice.  Reliable medical opinion and advice can only be obtained through hands-on physical contact and exam of the patient to establish an accurate diagnosis and treatment plan.  No doctor/patient relationship is created or established here and may not be inferred through answers on this site.  The questioner and other readers must consult his/her own doctor before proceeding or implementing any suggestions contained within this document and answers on this site.  The questioner is only to act upon his/her own doctor’s orders and recommendations. By reading this posting which follows, the reader fully understands and confirms that he/she holds harmless this writer. If this is not fully agreeable to you, the reader, and/or you have not attained the age of 18 years, you hereby are advised to read no further.

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