Jogging & Running/morning soreness


QUESTION: Hi Nick - What does it mean if my feet/ankles and hip is sore when I wake in the morning? They loosen up once I am awake and moving. They feel better during a run. is that simply age or arthritis?

ANSWER: Good question Len. I obviously can't diagnosis arthritis without seeing you, but a classic sign of arthritis is being stiff after resting and it loosens up as you move more. I always ask patients how the first few steps are in the morning.

That said, joint mobilizations performed by physical therapists are great for arthritis. I like to call it joint pain instead of arthritis. Arthritis sounds scary, but joint pain doesn't. I get great results with patients that are stiff in the morning often about 50% or more within 4-5 sessions. It might be something to consider looking into up there.

Don't hesitate to let me know when you have any more questions.

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QUESTION: How many days off of running is the minimum you think to allow your legs and hips and feet to feel energized again? Is 5 off enough?

ANSWER: Five should definitely be enough. Are you wondering if you should take 5 days between every run?

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: No. Not between every run. I have been feeling lingering aches and pains that I never used to. Could certainly be natural aging and arthritis. But it could also be over training. It has now been 9 days since my last run. weather has been very stormy and I chose to skip doing treadmill or nordic trak. I have been stretching the whole time. to be honest hip and feet do not feel any different. Maybe my legs feel a little fresher.

thanks again.

It definitely could be arthritis/aging. Even then you may want to see a physical therapist to see if they can help. You should also consider seeing a Registered Dietitian in the area. I've seen a small dietary change help lingering soreness symptoms.

Let me know if I can be of further help.

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Nick Rainey


I can answer questions about pain and training program. If there is a question about running that I don't know then I'll do some research and make sure I provide you with an answer.


I'm a Doctor of Physical Therapy. I'm a track and cross country coach. I train clients throughout the year. I've helped prepare athletes for their NFL Pro Days. I've written articles on running. Finally, those that I work with have less pain and run faster.

American Physical Therapy Association- Sports Section

The 6 Week Workout Program- I'm the author of this book Research Made Simple for Physical Therapists- I'm the author of this Kindle book

Board Certified Clinical Specialist in Orthopaedic Physical Therapy Doctor of Physical Therapy BS in Exercise Science NSCA- CSCS and CPT USA Weightlifting Level I NPI- Certified Posture Specialist Total Motion Release Level II Certified Dry Needling

Awards and Honors
National Posture Institute's International Perfect Posture of the Year Award 2011 Clinical Excellence Award- Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions Aegis Therapies Scholarship recipient

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