Wednesday, July 28, 2010

My new best friend: compression socks!

So as I've talked about before on here, I've had numerous ankle sprains on my left ankle throughout the past ten years. I've spent numerous hours at the ER, on crutches, and in air casts. It really sucks and I never did any kind of physical therapy for it, so naturally when I run, my left ankle gets incredibly cranky.

I run in these Asics which provide incredible ankle support. Still, I get this horrible pain when I run that starts in my ankle and goes up my leg, stopping below the knee. It feels like really, really bad cramping. It usually only lasts the first few miles and then eases up after that. Still, those are a painful few miles!

So in my search of a pain remedy, I decided to try these Craft compression socks . I was skeptical at first, of course. They were only about $34 at Runner's Alley in Nashua, N.H., my favorite local running store. They had way more expensive ones but since I was so skeptical about them helping, I went for the cheaper versions.

I couldn't wait to try them out yesterday so I put them on and headed to the Chelmsford High School track to run.

Let me tell you - they looked fly.

I know, I have fat calves. The fattest's pretty devastating that I can't wear boots that go past my ankles.

Here's a close up:

So as you can probably guess, these socks are SUPER tight around my calves. Again I was pretty skeptical but I headed out for a run. As I was running, I noticed I felt like my ankle/leg WAS getting sore and it was going to start hurting, but it never actually did. I loved the support the socks provided, because they were so tight. It felt like they really eased the pain of the pounding on my legs by controlling the muscle.

I quit after about 2 miles because I didn't want to overdo it - I'd still like to get a few miles in tonight - but I have to say, I was really impressed with these socks! They are actually meant to be really helpful during and after long runs because the heat increases blood circulation and warmth, aiding in healing after the run. The package said to keep the socks on about 45 minutes after running to aid in healing. Even though I didn't run too far, I did keep the socks on, and let me tell you - I felt a HUGE difference when I took the socks off! My legs felt like jell-o! I noticed my calves felt jiggly so the socks definitely do what they're intended to do.

The only thing I didn't like - which is not the sock's fault, obviously - was that running in the heat is brutal with them on. They're not itchy or anything, just hot. However, in the winter, I'm sure I will be so excited to wear these socks.

I also want to try athletic tape to see if I can curb the pain even more. Whatever works, right?

Running 3 miles tonight and taking tomorrow off due to thunderstorms. It's been in the 90s all week but Friday is supposed to cool off. I can't wait!

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