Last year for the first time, I decided that I needed to use something like compression socks to keep me injury free.
Though many people are skeptical about compression socks, I am beginning to come around to ‘the sweaty side of the force’. I used them while training and racing last year and here is what I found.
The compression socks are tight and though I can get them on, I have to be patient taking them off. They are tight for a reason. Hence the name ‘compression socks’. They keep everything tight and in one small compressed space, so I feel secure running with them.
With that said, my ankles ‘thank’ me! The socks keep my ankles from doing their swelling thing. At times my ankles do swell, but most of the time they can just be very painful due to the long distances that I like to run. I feel that the combination of compression and the sleek material of the sock (I hate bulky socks) make it wonderful to run in.
The compression socks are somewhat colorful and can be very beautiful to run in. I love the various colors and patterns that they come in. Hopefully in the future, they will be a regular fixture and fashion statement like my cute running socks. (it’s all about the cute!)
There is controversy in the science behind these socks. Medical compression socks work by bringing circulation back to areas of the legs where they may be lacking. Most running socks are said to help with recover by helping with circulation, and lactic acid abatement. Also, they are used to combat muscle fatigue. I feel that they can help with swelling feet and ankles like and ice can, but it may not be a substitute in many situations. I think both are needed for recovery. RICE, (rest, ice, compression and elevation) is the best method to recovery. It has helped me in many marathon training session.
In my experience, I felt less tired after a long (over 8 miles) run, it seemed to contain my swelling ankles. As for any other results, who knows. It may have contributed to a smoother run, but I need more time with them to make draw a definite conclusion on this.
What I do love is that they do make me feel like I have some control over my recovery and healing process. And that is what counts.
After all, I am a control freak. Go out and run!
Want to learn more:
Compression Socks For Runners – Fad Or Fabulous?, by Nathan Freeburg
5 Reasons to Wear Compression Sleeves and Socks, By Kim Bogin,
Compression socks for marathon training: The CEP Running O2 Compression Socks, BY KIMBERLY BOGIN, http://www.examiner.com/article/compression-socks-for-marathon-training-the-cep-running-o2-compression-socks