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2019 Camino Guides

Starting a Camino with mild plantar fasciitis - crazy or not?

Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2016), Le Puy Route (planning LePuy-Conques 2018)
#1
I have plans to hike a portion of the Le Puy route (Le Puy to Conques) in a few weeks. Problem is, I suddenly developed a mild case of plantar fasciitis in one foot 3 months ago. I’ve tried so many things - resting it for a couple of months, stretches, new inserts, changing shoes, night boot, ice, heat, seeing a podiatrist, etc. It’s not getting any better but it’s not getting any worse either.

Since resting seemed to make no difference, I’ve been experimenting with long training hikes every day over the last week to see what happens. So far my mild case of PF pain hasn’t worsened at all. I’m wondering if I can still attempt my hike, keeping my daily mileage reasonable (I have 11 days available to do the approximately 200 km), my pack weight light, and continuing to stretch, ice etc. My question is - has anyone here ever started a Camino with a mild case of PF and managed to keep it under control? Or am I nuts for even considering this? My podiatrist was noncommittal when I asked this question, so I’d love to hear from fellow pilgrims. Thanks for your help with this!
 

ksam

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Portuguese '08, Frances '11, del Norte '14, Invierno '16, Ingles '17, Primitivo October 2018
#2
Ok. Ouch from my left foot to your affiliated appendage !! Your not nuts. But I do notice you haven't mentioned cortisone shots. They're creepy and I wind up doing lotsa Lamaze style breathing every time, BUT, they do help. A lot. I've had PF on and off again for years and years. The current bout is actually on of the worst. In fact heading off to PT on Monday. So ask you Dr. about shots. And keep doing all the stretches and massages and exercises. :) Wishing you the best. Karin
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances...
Sept. 2017: SJPdP to Burgos
Sept./Oct. 2018: SJPdP to Santiago de Compostela
#3
It sounds like you have done well in covering your bases, bay hills hiker. I doubt if what I post will uncover new information, but just in case....

-----------------------------------
Here is a copy of what I have previously written and posted for those concerned with Plantars Fasciitis:

Top Exercises to Help Avoid Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis is a common type of chronic heel pain. It seems to affect young male athletes and middle-aged obese women more than any other group, but that does not mean other groups are immune to it. The inflamed tissue around the heel seems to cause a stabbing-like sensation, which is worse in the morning. This condition may be prevented, and the following exercises will help you do that.

Arch Stretching
Stretching your arch muscles is not too difficult, but the exercise is a little peculiar. The first thing you need to do is take off your shoes and get barefoot, and then place a towel on the floor. Now, simply place your foot on the towel, and curl your toes to clench the towel. Pull the towel toward you, and that is it. Place the towel in front of you again, and repeat. Be sure to do the same for your other foot.

This exercise is typically suggested by professionals for those who actually have plantar fasciitis already, but it can definitely be helpful to everyone. You should try and do this several times a week, but make sure to not overstretch your feet while you’re doing it.

Calf Strengthening
The calf and the tendons surrounding your heel need to be strengthened. A simple exercise that may help you do this is calf raises. What you want to do is stand straight on level ground. You should be barefooted for best traction, but it is not absolutely necessary. Now, all you have to do is lift your heels off the ground so that you are standing on your toes. Stay in this position as long as you can before returning your heels to the ground, and just repeat this at least nine more times.

Another way to do this exercise that works great is to stand at the edge of a stair or curb. You want your toes to be what keeps you on the stair or curb. Then, raise your heels up so that you are on your “tippy toes” and then back down again, but allow your heels to go lower than your toes past the edge of the stair or curb. This exercise allows for a fuller stretch.

Alleviate Pronation
Pronation is a natural part of your foot’s movement. This refers to how the foot rolls and applies pressure when the heel finally hits the ground. Pronation may be normal, but that does not mean the constant shock it receives when you walk or run does not have an effect on it. One way you can alleviate the pressure is to try doming. To do this, just place your foot flat on the ground, and then press your toes on the ground while keeping your heels firmly on the floor. This should create a dome between your heel and toes. Maintain this position for 10 seconds, straighten your foot, and then just start again.

Work the Interossei
The Interossei muscles help support your arch muscles thus preventing this issue. All you have to do is place a large rubber band around your toes for resistance. Then, stretch your toes and hold for 10 seconds. Squeeze your toes for another 10 seconds, and repeat these steps about five to 10 times.

What to Do When Your Feet Are Hurting?
Whether or not you’re at risk of getting Plantar Fasciitis, you’re going to come across a time where you’re feet are going to hurt. Maybe you were standing all day at work, ran a marathon, or whatever. If your feet are hurting, take a break and rest, stretch, and recover. Get off your feet for a little bit and either ice or heat your feet. If you notice any swelling or severe pain, then ice it. If it’s just sore, then apply heat with a hot bath. Then, make sure to rub out the tension and to do some basic exercises. You can try the ones above or do some other types. One popular one is to roll a tennis ball underneath the feet. This helps to preserve the arch and massage it at the same time
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francés from St Jean Pied de Port (2017)
Camino Primitivo (2018)
Camino Portugués (plan 2019)
#4
I developed plantar fasciitis on day 1 of the Camino Francés, walking from SJPdP. I'd never heard of it before, and at first, I just thought my feet hurt a lot because I hadn't walked long distances in a while. But the pain kept getting worse, and after a bit of research, I realized I had plantar fasciitis.

I struggled through and still managed to finish in Santiago, but I was in a lot of pain most of the way. The thing that finally worked for me was Crocs. I bought a pair in León and walked the last 330 kilometers in them. They were a game changer!

I still have the plantar fasciitis, but I only feel it if I walk very long distances. I walked the Camino Primitivo this year and managed reasonably well. With your time frame, you're looking at about 18km per day, which for me would be doable, but everyone is different.
 
Camino(s) past & future
First one planned for May 2019: Camino Francés
#5
I've had PF on my left foot years ago too, nothing really helped, till my orthopedist told me to get a stimulating X-ray therapy. Twice a week, for about 5 seconds my foot was treated and I never had problems again. I don't know where your're from, but maybe that's a possibility of treatment in your country too.
 
Camino(s) past & future
First one begins August 13 2017!
#6
I also developed PF last year a couple of months ahead of walking the Camino. I still did it with much determination and lots of anti inflammatories. Every days end I spent much time doing an icing and stretching regime which helped.
Some days I walked less. I listened to her (I named her and we had great conversations ). Buen Camino!
 
Camino(s) past & future
2013 Camino Frances SJPP / 2014 Camino Portugues / 2015 Camino Ingles / 2015 Hospitalero Training
2016 (fall) Camino Sanabre / Hospitalero?
#7
I have plans to hike a portion of the Le Puy route (Le Puy to Conques) in a few weeks. Problem is, I suddenly developed a mild case of plantar fasciitis in one foot 3 months ago. I’ve tried so many things - resting it for a couple of months, stretches, new inserts, changing shoes, night boot, ice, heat, seeing a podiatrist, etc. It’s not getting any better but it’s not getting any worse either.

Since resting seemed to make no difference, I’ve been experimenting with long training hikes every day over the last week to see what happens. So far my mild case of PF pain hasn’t worsened at all. I’m wondering if I can still attempt my hike, keeping my daily mileage reasonable (I have 11 days available to do the approximately 200 km), my pack weight light, and continuing to stretch, ice etc. My question is - has anyone here ever started a Camino with a mild case of PF and managed to keep it under control? Or am I nuts for even considering this? My podiatrist was noncommittal when I asked this question, so I’d love to hear from fellow pilgrims. Thanks for your help with this!
All my friends assumed I was crazy each time I return to walk. Ultreya
 

robertt

Active Member
#8
I once cured a persistent case by accident when I walked (and clambered) the Great Northern route from Sydney to Newcastle. Don't know if it was the irregular movement with fairly stiff-soled boots in the rough country of the southern section, but the problem was gone and hasn't been back in 25 years. Certainly, no amount of jogging or walking in light shoes on regular surfaces had helped, so putting two and two together...

Bon chemin in any case. That walk from Le Puy to Conques is a gem.

Rob
 

wildrover

thewildrover
Camino(s) past & future
2015 april c/f. vdlp feb 2016. Norte / primitivo Sep 2016. C/f 12/16. Vdlp 12/17.
#9
I have plans to hike a portion of the Le Puy route (Le Puy to Conques) in a few weeks. Problem is, I suddenly developed a mild case of plantar fasciitis in one foot 3 months ago. I’ve tried so many things - resting it for a couple of months, stretches, new inserts, changing shoes, night boot, ice, heat, seeing a podiatrist, etc. It’s not getting any better but it’s not getting any worse either.

Since resting seemed to make no difference, I’ve been experimenting with long training hikes every day over the last week to see what happens. So far my mild case of PF pain hasn’t worsened at all. I’m wondering if I can still attempt my hike, keeping my daily mileage reasonable (I have 11 days available to do the approximately 200 km), my pack weight light, and continuing to stretch, ice etc. My question is - has anyone here ever started a Camino with a mild case of PF and managed to keep it under control? Or am I nuts for even considering this? My podiatrist was noncommittal when I asked this question, so I’d love to hear from fellow pilgrims. Thanks for your help with this!
Hi mate, PF is a bit of a mystery. No real cause or cure. You’ll hear all the advice, regarding Treatments . It affects the young, old, active, inactive. Some... swear by certain treatments. It was the bane of my life for 7 months. my GP informed me, that during his 40 yrs of practice, he knew of no effective treatment. He said let nature take its course. I thought, this was nonsense and pursued all the treatments mentioned by others. Nothing worked! I walked the Norte/primitivo and after a few week it disappeared, over night. I believe, this was only coincidental. It was indeed for me,personally...nature taking it’s course! Incidentally, my 76yr old mother had it, at the same time as me. Hers also disappeared completely, with no treatments whatsoever. Hope this helps. All the best. Jackie
 

Marbe2

Active member
Camino(s) past & future
2015 SJPD to Burgos
2017 Leon to Santiago
Pamplona to Santiago Mar. 2018
Burgos - SCDC (Oct 18)
#10
It is likely too late for a cortisone shot! Usually the orthopedic surgeon would recommend not heavy walking for a couple of weeks after the shot!

I worked through a 300 km Camino with a mild case. My doctor actually encouraged me to do. I sent my bag ahead that time. Carrying no extra weight on your back would help.
 

falcon269

no commercial interests
Camino(s) past & future
yes
#11
I’m wondering if I can still attempt my hike, keeping my daily mileage reasonable
If I waited until I felt good, I would never go!! Arthritis. Morton's neuroma. Parkinson's Disease. High blood pressure. Rotator cuff surgery. Knee scoped. Other knee clicks. Extreme pronation. etc.

If you need an excuse, there always is something physical, but the physical is rarely a good excuse.:)
 

padre eric

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
(2016)
#12
Bay Hills, I developed PF late in 2015 - 10 months prior to my camino - it took my months to seek help. It started in one foot, then both feet. I had been training for a half marathon and running up to 10 miles every other day (and getting my 5-6 mile walks in each day). Here’s what I learned. My developed from wearing flexible shoes during my running, walking, and leisure time (I would wear crocks when relaxing). My foot experts took my shoes and twisted them, showing me how little support they gave my foot and therefore how much my foot, muscles and tendons had to stress and flex to support my weight and continual pounding. They put me into ankle high Keen (Taghees) AND insisted I still needed a Birkenstock cork insert (the green one) in each shoe. In addition I was told to NEVER walk barefooted or sock footed, but always to support my feet. I started the camino with fear and trembling not knowing what I could do because winter stopped all efforts at distance walking (Green Bay) until only a month prior to my departure. I began the Camino, and used a golf ball ever evening to roll under my foot. By the time I got past Pamplona my PF was basically non existent. The Camino walked the PF right out of my foot. I still wear Keens, with inserts, and ensure my feet remain supported at all times. Good Luck with whatever decision you make!! Padre Eric
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2016), Le Puy Route (planning LePuy-Conques 2018)
#13
Ok. Ouch from my left foot to your affiliated appendage !! Your not nuts. But I do notice you haven't mentioned cortisone shots. They're creepy and I wind up doing lotsa Lamaze style breathing every time, BUT, they do help. A lot. I've had PF on and off again for years and years. The current bout is actually on of the worst. In fact heading off to PT on Monday. So ask you Dr. about shots. And keep doing all the stretches and massages and exercises. :) Wishing you the best. Karin
Thanks Karin! My doctor did mention that as an option to consider if other methods don't work. It's helpful to hear from you that they do work. I hope your left foot starts feeling better soon!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2016), Le Puy Route (planning LePuy-Conques 2018)
#14
It sounds like you have done well in covering your bases, bay hills hiker. I doubt if what I post will uncover new information, but just in case....

-----------------------------------
Here is a copy of what I have previously written and posted for those concerned with Plantars Fasciitis:

Top Exercises to Help Avoid Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis is a common type of chronic heel pain. It seems to affect young male athletes and middle-aged obese women more than any other group, but that does not mean other groups are immune to it. The inflamed tissue around the heel seems to cause a stabbing-like sensation, which is worse in the morning. This condition may be prevented, and the following exercises will help you do that.

Arch Stretching
Stretching your arch muscles is not too difficult, but the exercise is a little peculiar. The first thing you need to do is take off your shoes and get barefoot, and then place a towel on the floor. Now, simply place your foot on the towel, and curl your toes to clench the towel. Pull the towel toward you, and that is it. Place the towel in front of you again, and repeat. Be sure to do the same for your other foot.

This exercise is typically suggested by professionals for those who actually have plantar fasciitis already, but it can definitely be helpful to everyone. You should try and do this several times a week, but make sure to not overstretch your feet while you’re doing it.

Calf Strengthening
The calf and the tendons surrounding your heel need to be strengthened. A simple exercise that may help you do this is calf raises. What you want to do is stand straight on level ground. You should be barefooted for best traction, but it is not absolutely necessary. Now, all you have to do is lift your heels off the ground so that you are standing on your toes. Stay in this position as long as you can before returning your heels to the ground, and just repeat this at least nine more times.

Another way to do this exercise that works great is to stand at the edge of a stair or curb. You want your toes to be what keeps you on the stair or curb. Then, raise your heels up so that you are on your “tippy toes” and then back down again, but allow your heels to go lower than your toes past the edge of the stair or curb. This exercise allows for a fuller stretch.

Alleviate Pronation
Pronation is a natural part of your foot’s movement. This refers to how the foot rolls and applies pressure when the heel finally hits the ground. Pronation may be normal, but that does not mean the constant shock it receives when you walk or run does not have an effect on it. One way you can alleviate the pressure is to try doming. To do this, just place your foot flat on the ground, and then press your toes on the ground while keeping your heels firmly on the floor. This should create a dome between your heel and toes. Maintain this position for 10 seconds, straighten your foot, and then just start again.

Work the Interossei
The Interossei muscles help support your arch muscles thus preventing this issue. All you have to do is place a large rubber band around your toes for resistance. Then, stretch your toes and hold for 10 seconds. Squeeze your toes for another 10 seconds, and repeat these steps about five to 10 times.

What to Do When Your Feet Are Hurting?
Whether or not you’re at risk of getting Plantar Fasciitis, you’re going to come across a time where you’re feet are going to hurt. Maybe you were standing all day at work, ran a marathon, or whatever. If your feet are hurting, take a break and rest, stretch, and recover. Get off your feet for a little bit and either ice or heat your feet. If you notice any swelling or severe pain, then ice it. If it’s just sore, then apply heat with a hot bath. Then, make sure to rub out the tension and to do some basic exercises. You can try the ones above or do some other types. One popular one is to roll a tennis ball underneath the feet. This helps to preserve the arch and massage it at the same time
Thanks Dave - this is a hugely helpful post you have written, for me and anyone else dealing with PF! In fact, I came across it before I posted and was happy to see it - totally consistent with what my podiatrist was telling me too.
 
Last edited:
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2016), Le Puy Route (planning LePuy-Conques 2018)
#15
I developed plantar fasciitis on day 1 of the Camino Francés, walking from SJPdP. I'd never heard of it before, and at first, I just thought my feet hurt a lot because I hadn't walked long distances in a while. But the pain kept getting worse, and after a bit of research, I realized I had plantar fasciitis.

I struggled through and still managed to finish in Santiago, but I was in a lot of pain most of the way. The thing that finally worked for me was Crocs. I bought a pair in León and walked the last 330 kilometers in them. They were a game changer!

I still have the plantar fasciitis, but I only feel it if I walk very long distances. I walked the Camino Primitivo this year and managed reasonably well. With your time frame, you're looking at about 18km per day, which for me would be doable, but everyone is different.
Thanks Wendy, this is really encouraging and helpful. Glad to hear you were able to figure out something that worked! Amazing how sometimes one change makes a world of difference, isn't it?
 
Camino(s) past & future
CF SJPdP to SdC
(May 2015)
CF Sarria to SdC
(May 2016)
CF SJPDP-SdC
(Apr/May 2018)
VdlP (2020)
#16
I have plans to hike a portion of the Le Puy route (Le Puy to Conques) in a few weeks. Problem is, I suddenly developed a mild case of plantar fasciitis in one foot 3 months ago. I’ve tried so many things - resting it for a couple of months, stretches, new inserts, changing shoes, night boot, ice, heat, seeing a podiatrist, etc. It’s not getting any better but it’s not getting any worse either.

Since resting seemed to make no difference, I’ve been experimenting with long training hikes every day over the last week to see what happens. So far my mild case of PF pain hasn’t worsened at all. I’m wondering if I can still attempt my hike, keeping my daily mileage reasonable (I have 11 days available to do the approximately 200 km), my pack weight light, and continuing to stretch, ice etc. My question is - has anyone here ever started a Camino with a mild case of PF and managed to keep it under control? Or am I nuts for even considering this? My podiatrist was noncommittal when I asked this question, so I’d love to hear from fellow pilgrims. Thanks for your help with this!
My wife Pat walked with PF from St Jean to SDC a couple of months ago.
She got cortisone shots a week before we left.
Kept distance down to about 20-22 kms.
Used anti inflamatories and pain killers as required....

You just need to find a regime that works for you.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2016), Le Puy Route (planning LePuy-Conques 2018)
#17
Bay Hills, I developed PF late in 2015 - 10 months prior to my camino - it took my months to seek help. It started in one foot, then both feet. I had been training for a half marathon and running up to 10 miles every other day (and getting my 5-6 mile walks in each day). Here’s what I learned. My developed from wearing flexible shoes during my running, walking, and leisure time (I would wear crocks when relaxing). My foot experts took my shoes and twisted them, showing me how little support they gave my foot and therefore how much my foot, muscles and tendons had to stress and flex to support my weight and continual pounding. They put me into ankle high Keen (Taghees) AND insisted I still needed a Birkenstock cork insert (the green one) in each shoe. In addition I was told to NEVER walk barefooted or sock footed, but always to support my feet. I started the camino with fear and trembling not knowing what I could do because winter stopped all efforts at distance walking (Green Bay) until only a month prior to my departure. I began the Camino, and used a golf ball ever evening to roll under my foot. By the time I got past Pamplona my PF was basically non existent. The Camino walked the PF right out of my foot. I still wear Keens, with inserts, and ensure my feet remain supported at all times. Good Luck with whatever decision you make!! Padre Eric
This is really helpful and encouraging, thanks Padre Eric! I've been hiking and running in lightweight Altra trail runners for a few years - worked great for me when I walked the Camino Frances - but I just switched over to a more supportive Merrill shoe at my podiatrist's advice. Fingers crossed that I have the good result you did. Thanks!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2016), Le Puy Route (planning LePuy-Conques 2018)
#18
I've had PF on my left foot years ago too, nothing really helped, till my orthopedist told me to get a stimulating X-ray therapy. Twice a week, for about 5 seconds my foot was treated and I never had problems again. I don't know where your're from, but maybe that's a possibility of treatment in your country too.
Thanks Sugargypsy - I've never heard of this treatment, I will look into it!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2016), Le Puy Route (planning LePuy-Conques 2018)
#19
Hi mate, PF is a bit of a mystery. No real cause or cure. You’ll hear all the advice, regarding Treatments . It affects the young, old, active, inactive. Some... swear by certain treatments. It was the bane of my life for 7 months. my GP informed me, that during his 40 yrs of practice, he knew of no effective treatment. He said let nature take its course. I thought, this was nonsense and pursued all the treatments mentioned by others. Nothing worked! I walked the Norte/primitivo and after a few week it disappeared, over night. I believe, this was only coincidental. It was indeed for me,personally...nature taking it’s course! Incidentally, my 76yr old mother had it, at the same time as me. Hers also disappeared completely, with no treatments whatsoever. Hope this helps. All the best. Jackie
How interesting Jackie - almost makes me wonder if the walking you and your mother did actually helped speed up your recovery. Thanks for sharing this, it's encouraging.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (1989 and 2016), Portugues - central from Porto (2018 - planned)
#20
I had the same just before I started my Camino in 2016 and went anyways. It continued to bother me for the first week or so but not after that. I guess the knee issues and then the chronic urticaria distracted me from it while it was going away. It was a pain in the morning when we were just getting started and after I rested a while but once I hit my stride it wasn't too much of a problem. I wouldn't let it deter you.
 

ksam

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Portuguese '08, Frances '11, del Norte '14, Invierno '16, Ingles '17, Primitivo October 2018
#21
Hola Bay Hills Hiker ... Ok, so started PT yesterday and have to say that the heavy massage she did was amazing. The foot feels SO much better today. Perfect no but lightyears better than it did yesterday or on Sunday. Perhaps your Dr. could be persuaded to give you a scrip for a month of PT? That's what mine did last week and we began yesterday. IF Im seeing this much improvement in one day (now granted I've been doing all the stretches etc on my own too) I'm thinking mid October I'll be more than ready to have a go at the Primitivo!

Hope to hear that your doing better, Buen Camino, Karin
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2016), Le Puy Route (planning LePuy-Conques 2018)
#22
Hola Bay Hills Hiker ... Ok, so started PT yesterday and have to say that the heavy massage she did was amazing. The foot feels SO much better today. Perfect no but lightyears better than it did yesterday or on Sunday. Perhaps your Dr. could be persuaded to give you a scrip for a month of PT? That's what mine did last week and we began yesterday. IF Im seeing this much improvement in one day (now granted I've been doing all the stretches etc on my own too) I'm thinking mid October I'll be more than ready to have a go at the Primitivo!

Hope to hear that your doing better, Buen Camino, Karin
That's a great suggestion Karin - thank you - and I'm so happy to hear you got some relief. My foot seems to be doing slightly better this week - I think switching into a stiffer soled shoe and increasing the amount of PT I'm doing on my own is finally starting to help. I also stopped icing and instead have started just using heat - wrapping a heating pad around my foot for 20 minutes a few times a day feels really good and seems to help me more than icing did. After reading all of the helpful responses from fellow pilgrims, and given the fact that my training hikes aren't making things worse, I've decided to stick with my plans to head to Le Puy. I'm very excited! I hope you continue to improve and are able to reach the same decision about taking on the Primitivo in October! Thanks again for the help and Buen Camino!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Santiago (June 2019)
#23
I have plans to hike a portion of the Le Puy route (Le Puy to Conques) in a few weeks. Problem is, I suddenly developed a mild case of plantar fasciitis in one foot 3 months ago. I’ve tried so many things - resting it for a couple of months, stretches, new inserts, changing shoes, night boot, ice, heat, seeing a podiatrist, etc. It’s not getting any better but it’s not getting any worse either.

Since resting seemed to make no difference, I’ve been experimenting with long training hikes every day over the last week to see what happens. So far my mild case of PF pain hasn’t worsened at all. I’m wondering if I can still attempt my hike, keeping my daily mileage reasonable (I have 11 days available to do the approximately 200 km), my pack weight light, and continuing to stretch, ice etc. My question is - has anyone here ever started a Camino with a mild case of PF and managed to keep it under control? Or am I nuts for even considering this? My podiatrist was noncommittal when I asked this question, so I’d love to hear from fellow pilgrims. Thanks for your help with this!
I have had PF off and on and what cured it before was a combination of night splints, foot sleeves all the time when walking, and stretching. It took a while but it will help.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francis September/October 2015
#24
I have pf in my right foot and on a lark tried Voltaren Gel which is also known as Diclofenac which my doctor prescribed for arthritis which is an inflammatory medication. within about four days the swelling reduced to a small nub and the pain went away. There is no medical recommendation for this gel to work for pf but it worked for me and I told my doctor about it. It is expensive in the US but not in Spain. I was over my deductible so I was able to stock up on it.
 
Camino(s) past & future
September2016
#25
I have plans to hike a portion of the Le Puy route (Le Puy to Conques) in a few weeks. Problem is, I suddenly developed a mild case of plantar fasciitis in one foot 3 months ago. I’ve tried so many things - resting it for a couple of months, stretches, new inserts, changing shoes, night boot, ice, heat, seeing a podiatrist, etc. It’s not getting any better but it’s not getting any worse either.

Since resting seemed to make no difference, I’ve been experimenting with long training hikes every day over the last week to see what happens. So far my mild case of PF pain hasn’t worsened at all. I’m wondering if I can still attempt my hike, keeping my daily mileage reasonable (I have 11 days available to do the approximately 200 km), my pack weight light, and continuing to stretch, ice etc. My question is - has anyone here ever started a Camino with a mild case of PF and managed to keep it under control? Or am I nuts for even considering this? My podiatrist was noncommittal when I asked this question, so I’d love to hear from fellow pilgrims. Thanks for your help with this!
I had a serious case of Plantar frasciitis last year. I could walk 1/4 mike and not be able to walk without a limo for 3 days. It was awful. I tried several types of therapy including rolling a ball beneath my foot, massaging it with arnica, stretches, etc. What worked for me was 6 weekly treatments of Myofascial Release Therapy. MFR therapy has helped my knees and neck too.
 
Camino(s) past & future
September2016
#26
I have pf in my right foot and on a lark tried Voltaren Gel which is also known as Diclofenac which my doctor prescribed for arthritis which is an inflammatory medication. within about four days the swelling reduced to a small nub and the pain went away. There is no medical recommendation for this gel to work for pf but it worked for me and I told my doctor about it. It is expensive in the US but not in Spain. I was over my deductible so I was able to stock up on it.
I bought Voltaren in Spain and it’s not a prescription
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francis, Camino Portuguse, Camino Primitavo
#27
I have plans to hike a portion of the Le Puy route (Le Puy to Conques) in a few weeks. Problem is, I suddenly developed a mild case of plantar fasciitis in one foot 3 months ago. I’ve tried so many things - resting it for a couple of months, stretches, new inserts, changing shoes, night boot, ice, heat, seeing a podiatrist, etc. It’s not getting any better but it’s not getting any worse either.

Since resting seemed to make no difference, I’ve been experimenting with long training hikes every day over the last week to see what happens. So far my mild case of PF pain hasn’t worsened at all. I’m wondering if I can still attempt my hike, keeping my daily mileage reasonable (I have 11 days available to do the approximately 200 km), my pack weight light, and continuing to stretch, ice etc. My question is - has anyone here ever started a Camino with a mild case of PF and managed to keep it under control? Or am I nuts for even considering this? My podiatrist was noncommittal when I asked this question, so I’d love to hear from fellow pilgrims. Thanks for your help with this!
I also had /have planter fasciitis before I walked 260k of the Via de la Plata this year., actually I'm just back. Like you all the treatment that I done prior to my camino didn't really help. What I found when walking is that the initial pain would go away once I started walking but would return aftertwo hours into my walk. It would then stay fit for the remainder of the day. I know everyone is different but I would recommend that you keep your daily distance to 25K or under.Buen Camino
 
Camino(s) past & future
Plan to walk Camino del Norte (possibly) in June/July 2018 with family of four.
#28
Looks like i share a similar story as others. I walked 500km of the Norte this year after coming down with pf a few months prior. Pf was a non issue on the walk. I attribute it to the Altra trail shoes which have super Cush soles since my pf was mostly in my heels. The best thing for me was to be movin and wearing these shoes. I also had partially torn my miniscus which was a non issue as well. I would say keep your mileage below 20k a day and wear cushy shoes. The best thing for the body is to use it!
 

c2c

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
May 2017
#29
I have plans to hike a portion of the Le Puy route (Le Puy to Conques) in a few weeks. Problem is, I suddenly developed a mild case of plantar fasciitis in one foot 3 months ago. I’ve tried so many things - resting it for a couple of months, stretches, new inserts, changing shoes, night boot, ice, heat, seeing a podiatrist, etc. It’s not getting any better but it’s not getting any worse either.

Since resting seemed to make no difference, I’ve been experimenting with long training hikes every day over the last week to see what happens. So far my mild case of PF pain hasn’t worsened at all. I’m wondering if I can still attempt my hike, keeping my daily mileage reasonable (I have 11 days available to do the approximately 200 km), my pack weight light, and continuing to stretch, ice etc. My question is - has anyone here ever started a Camino with a mild case of PF and managed to keep it under control? Or am I nuts for even considering this? My podiatrist was noncommittal when I asked this question, so I’d love to hear from fellow pilgrims. Thanks for your help with this!
I had a bad case of plantar and sciatica. They actually got better with walking every day. I started with shorter distances and kept it under 30kms most days. That's my own experience but I feel that most conditions are very manageable if you don't overdo it.
 

Anna Sar

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Portuguese Central x 3, Portuguese Litoral, Finisterra, Primitivo, San Salvador, Cammino di Assisi
#30
That is my problem as well at the moment. It just came out of nowhere. It seems to be tradition for me to develop some injury just before Camino. I am walking Via Francigena this year, starting 9th of September in Siena. Still 4 weeks to go. Pain started about 3 weeks ago. After seven days of really severe pain I decided to do some researches on the subject and I believe I found very good treatment. It is called Shockwave Therapy (please google ESWT - Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy). It is only few minutes non-invasive, precise hit of high energy into your foot. It does hurt a lot (sometimes like hell :) ) but it is rather cheap (in Poland about 15$ one treatment). The morning after the first treatment was like a miracle though. Huge relief. I have a series of five treatments once a week (three already done) and additionally I have manual therapy. I believe I will be walking my Camino painlessly. Never mind, I am going anyway! I hope my information about shockwave therapy is helpfull. Buen Camino!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2016), Le Puy Route (planning LePuy-Conques 2018)
#31
That is my problem as well at the moment. It just came out of nowhere. It seems to be tradition for me to develop some injury just before Camino. I am walking Via Francigena this year, starting 9th of September in Siena. Still 4 weeks to go. Pain started about 3 weeks ago. After seven days of really severe pain I decided to do some researches on the subject and I believe I found very good treatment. It is called Shockwave Therapy (please google ESWT - Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy). It is only few minutes non-invasive, precise hit of high energy into your foot. It does hurt a lot (sometimes like hell :) ) but it is rather cheap (in Poland about 15$ one treatment). The morning after the first treatment was like a miracle though. Huge relief. I have a series of five treatments once a week (three already done) and additionally I have manual therapy. I believe I will be walking my Camino painlessly. Never mind, I am going anyway! I hope my information about shockwave therapy is helpfull. Buen Camino!
This is very helpful - thank you Anna! I hope you have a wonderful (and painless) walk on the Via Francigena next month. Buen Camino!
 
#32
Great tips and sharing of experience. I also have PF and was able to make it 100 km from SJPP last may. It was the quads ion my left leg that stopped me from walking this time, not the PF. In fact, I also experienced an improvement in the condition while on pilgrimage. And rather than worsen when I returned home, it stayed away for a couple of months. Actually, it came back, to a mild degree today. But, a few minutes stretching seems to alleviate the issue, so far.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Norte and Frances Sept 6 - Oct 11, 2016
#33
I have plans to hike a portion of the Le Puy route (Le Puy to Conques) in a few weeks. Problem is, I suddenly developed a mild case of plantar fasciitis in one foot 3 months ago. I’ve tried so many things - resting it for a couple of months, stretches, new inserts, changing shoes, night boot, ice, heat, seeing a podiatrist, etc. It’s not getting any better but it’s not getting any worse either.

Since resting seemed to make no difference, I’ve been experimenting with long training hikes every day over the last week to see what happens. So far my mild case of PF pain hasn’t worsened at all. I’m wondering if I can still attempt my hike, keeping my daily mileage reasonable (I have 11 days available to do the approximately 200 km), my pack weight light, and continuing to stretch, ice etc. My question is - has anyone here ever started a Camino with a mild case of PF and managed to keep it under control? Or am I nuts for even considering this? My podiatrist was noncommittal when I asked this question, so I’d love to hear from fellow pilgrims. Thanks for your help with this!
There is a wonderful bandage on the market that completely takes away pain for plantar faciatis and for me, osteoarthritis. Check out supportthefoot.com. It is FANTASTIC. They are expensive but one lasts me anywhere from 5-7 days including showering and swimming. They are about $10 apiece and worth every penny. Check it out Good luck Buen camino
 

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