Choose How You Deal with Running Pain and Stop Injuries

How do you Deal with Running Pain?

We can help stop injuries from developing when we choose a different response to pain, which can also help us develop a coping strategy for all areas of our lives. How we deal with running pain is often how we deal with emotional pain in our lives.



If we experience serious pain while running, of course we should stop or else we will hurt ourselves even more. However, most pain initially felt while running is not so serious. 

Running Pain

While running we may experience side stitches, belly cramps, leg cramps, blisters, an ache in our back, neck, shoulder or one of our knees, a twinge in our hamstrings, chafing, etc. We may also experience the pain of tired legs, exertion from running fast or up a hill, or the mental strain felt when thinking about how much further we have to run. The list goes on and on but we can always choose how we react to any pain we experience.  If we can practice accepting running pain and aches without fear, we can help prevent running injuries. 

Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche, author of Running with the Mind of Meditation  suggests we take the following steps when dealing with pain:

"The first step is to acknowledge the pain. The pain is one thing, and the mind reacting to the pain is another, so the second step is not to overreact. Becoming startled by the pain only exacerbates the pain, like throwing gasoline on a fire: our reaction to the pain makes it even worse. Therefore we acknowledge the pain, but we avoid having the immediate reactionary response."

When we experience running pain, we need to accept it rather than resist it or try to ignore it. Trying to ignore pain takes great mental effort which can lead to mental and physical exhaustion. We need to stay calm, breath, and relax with the sensation. We need to allow the pain to be felt without overreacting and acknowledge it for what it is—a sensation in the body. 

Pain is mostly a mental problem and it is only difficult because our minds cannot handle the pain. Sakyong recommends that we try to feel the difference between the pain itself and our mind's inability to handle the pain. 

"...life is at least 50 percent pain. If we do not relate to pain, we are not relating to half our life...When we are able to work with pain and understand it, life becomes twice as interesting. Relating to pain makes us more fearless and happy."

-- Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche, author of Running with the Mind of Meditation

No Pain is Permanent

No pain is permanent. When we realize that nothing in life is permanent, we can much more easily accept all things we encounter in life whether this is pain while running, difficult life situations, our emotions, and even our bodies. Everything in life is temporary.

When we learn how to handle running pain, we feel confident and we no longer have a fear of pain. Pain also provides us with an opportunity to grow. As pain often arises from an imbalance in our bodies, we can learn how to correct the imbalance and move beyond it. Pain can also teach us genuine compassion towards others. As we experience pain, we can better relate to others who suffer daily from chronic pain.

Deal with Running Pain

Running and Meditation

Running and meditation are similar in numerous ways. When we do either, we come face-to-face with ourselves in silence and we must deal with whatever arises either in our minds or bodies. Sometimes we have thoughts we struggle with and sometimes we experience aches and pains. 

The aches and pains that arise while running or meditating are often sensations that we have not felt before. During meditation, we practice acknowledging our thoughts and then letting them go without forming an attachment to them. Some forms of meditation, such as Insight Meditation, also known as Vipassana Meditation, specifically focus on the sensations that are felt in the body while meditating. By bringing awareness to these sensations without fear, attachment or overreaction, we allow pain to be released from the body.  

We can choose to respond to pain felt while running in the same manner and develop an ease and comfort with all sensations. This practice can help us deal with all situations that arise in our lives in a healthier and happier way. 

How do you deal with running pain?

How do you deal with running pain? Have you tried the approach described above or another technique to help alleviate pain or the fear of pain? Please share your experiences in the comments below. 

Back to Top 

Return to Prevent Injuries

Our Running Form Template Can Help You Run More Efficiently!

Instant download!

* indicates required

I promise to keep your email address secure and use it only to send you my newsletter. You can unsubscribe at any time!


FTC Disclosure: As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying  purchases.
Learn more.



Loading Comments
#disqus_thread { min-height: 200px; }


Recent Articles

  1. Get motivated to run!

    Nov 24, 22 10:11 AM

    Motivated for running

    We all want to stay motivated for running as we know how powerful it is. Motivation is a powerful driving force that cannot be deterred and when we are truly motivated, there is no obstacle that can…

    Read More

  2. Do you need waterproof running shoes?

    Nov 13, 22 11:03 AM

    Waterproof shoes

    I want to my feet to be warm and dry when winter running but buying waterproof running shoes is not the only option. Find out what else you can do to stay dry and warm this winter while running.

    Read More

  3. End Running Pain Now!

    Nov 09, 22 08:56 AM

    Stop Pain

    End Your Running Pain NOW! Accomplish your running goals without injury. This mind-altering program is for runners who never want to suffer from another injury.

    Read More

  4. What is Runner's Knee?

    Oct 31, 22 11:52 AM

    Runners Knee

    Runner’s knee is a painful knee injury that accounts for 27 percent of all running related injuries. Find out how to speed recovery and prevent it from re-occurring.

    Read More

  5. Decide How You Will Deal With Running Pain!

    Oct 28, 22 08:03 AM

    Running Pain

    Choose how you deal with running pain and avoid injuries! We can help stop injuries from developing when we choose a different response to pain, which can also help us develop a coping strategy for a…

    Read More

  6. What is IT Band Syndrome and how do we prevent it?

    Oct 05, 22 08:15 AM

    IT Band Syndrome

    When you have this condition, you will experience pain on the outside of the knee while running. The pain is usually sporadic—appearing on some runs and not on others. Find out the causes of ITBS, wh…

    Read More

  7. Affirmations Help Runners Achieve Their Goals!

    Oct 02, 22 08:10 AM

    Affirmations Work

    Affirmations are powerful and can work for everyone but they must be done properly. When they don't work, we must find the reason and correct it.

    Read More

  8. How to Relax While Running

    Sep 14, 22 07:07 AM

    How to relax

    Relaxing your body will improve running performance. Tension promotes injuries, draws energy from our bodies, and prevents us from running our best. A relaxed body uses less effort and thus can run f…

    Read More

  9. Finally - a cure for hiccups!

    Aug 30, 22 12:40 PM

    HiccAway

    Do you or someone in your family suffer from troublesome hiccups? HiccAway is a drug free, reusable natural cure for hiccups. Works instantly with water!

    Read More

  10. 5 Reasons Runners Need to Meditate!

    Aug 30, 22 04:39 AM

    Meditate

    Meditation improves our health but it also improves running in numerous ways. Find out why runners need to meditate and how you can start your meditation practice today.

    Read More