I've been reading posts from ya'll and have been relating to a lot of what I am reading. I am having an issue that is getting worse. Pain. I have been diabetic for the past 27 years. Shortly after being diagnosed, I started to walk, seriously, like 3-5 miles daily. All I did was walk all the time. I got into the best shape of my life and my blood sugars will excellent, not requiring much insulin at all. Then, a couple of years of this, the shin splints started. This was back in the last 80s and I was only in my late 20s. Didn't really know the first thing to do about it, but I made sure I had quality shoes and tried to struggle through. It's one of those things that do not go away and pretty soon, I could walk much more than 15 minutes without severe pain.

Fast forward to 40 years old, teenage kids and trying to get into a walking routine again. Went to a physical therapist who taught me how to stretch really good and it helped, yet not permanently. I have extremely tight calves and shins and everything in my lower legs. It has made it so I can't really get any aerobic exercise because the pain gets so bad and I have gained over 80 pounds in the last 10 years. Last year, I worked the holiday season in retail and had to stand on my feet for 10 hours straight for days on end. I was in agony with my feet and the pain would not go away. Several months later, not working on my feet all the time anymore, the pain is excrutiating, especially getting up in the morning and I can hardly walk at all. Went to podiatrist and was diagnosed with plantar fascitis. Yet another ailment limiting the amount of walking I can do. I had heel injections and it did absolutely nothing. I do stretching, wear heel supports and NEVER go barefoot.

I now have pain in my legs and feet, pain in my shoulders and elbows, feels like tendonitis. I have the same sort of pain in my hands. I basically am in pain all day. I guess some of it could be arthritis, but some of the pain isn't in my joints. I have never been a wimpy, whiney person when it comes to pain, I can handle a lot, but getting very tired of the pain because it is bad. Wondering if it's just part of my diabetes or maybe just part of getting old. No fun!

No, 40 years old is not old enough to cause all that pain, and it's been going on for a long time. I would get a full workup, though I'm not sure what specialist to go to, but you can start with your PCP and see what he/see says. Thinking of things like fibromyalgia, rheumatoid arthritis, etc. Whatever it is something is wrong and hopefully it is something that can be treated and give you back some of your quality of life.

Oh, I guess I didn't mention that I just turned 50 this year. 40 is when the pain started getting bad in my legs. So, I don't know, maybe I am old! I am going to try to keep on walking and exercising.

Nope, not old!! Happy birthday! I will celebrate 65 in November and don't consider that old, though I know my students

Seriously I don't think it sounds like normal aging aches and pains. I know your instinct is to ignore and and "soldier on" with the things you love to do, but I would worry about doing more harm that way and really, wouldn't it be great if you found out a solution to treat the situation?

I would definitely get looked at for RA. When I first got RA I told my endo felt awful all over. I had for 10 years an wham before I knew it I was talking to a rheumatologist about RA. I had no idea how bad I felt. It was a shocker to me and the endo. So no your not crazy and not old. I was 43 and I was close to the end. Finding the rheumatologist made all the difference and I got my life back.

I would think that fibromyalgia and/ or RA would be counterindicated since the problem is in one area?

My mom and dad had plantar issues and found these MBT shoes that are sort of rolly helped them. I think there might be a Reebok equivalent that might match up ok for that as the MBTs are pricey I think. I am a running shoe *nut* and find that going to a specialty running store can help with this. We have 3 stores in town that will all assist with fit, see how you walk, etc.

I had some other issues I went to a podiatrist for and he was like "go to the New Balance Store" and wrote and RX but I didn't bother mentioning I have not found that brand to ever quite win shoe contests on the treadmill for me. Fit really varies from shoe to shoe. Most brands have all types (neutral/ stability/ performance/ minimalist) but it really depends on your foot and two different "neutral plus" shoes might have bumps or rolls that can make a big difference in how the shoes and your feet work together. I've had pretty severe calf cramps for a couple of years off and on, mostly on long runs but not regularly, which is *extremely* frustrating. I tried the Newton Energy recently and have found it interesting. I don't like other Newtons for walking or running if I have to turn a lot (seriously!) but the Energys are amazing! They are designed to put you more onto your forefoot which might perhaps stretch things differently. Another shoe that I've found interesting, albeit not as supportive, is the Brooks PureCadence, the interior of which is contoured like Birkenstocks that provide a nice ride that might hit your feet differently. The stores I've gotten shoes at have treadmills so you can run or walk on them and try different shoes on each foot to comapare them and pick a "winner."

I always see non-runners taking advantage of the higher level of service at these places. The day after the 2011 Chicago Marathon, my parents took me to lunch and were kvetching about their feet/ shoes and I suggested we try it out. They were skeptical but it turned out great. My dad has had problems with his feet for years, very wide, very hard to fit. He tried some shoes on with "his" size and none worked. Based on his feedback, the store person said "why don't we go up 1/2 size" and, amazingly, the shoes were great and he's been wearing them since, pretty much every time I see him and I was very happy to keep him mobile as possible for long as possible! If it doesn't work out, you don't have to buy. The stores here are also *very* liberal about returns. I've tried a few pairs and run in them and brought them back. The Adidas Boost have some new cellular styrofoam in the sole that is really responisive but it made my feet tingle > 3 miles so back they went. They ask questions ("what was wrong with them") but were totally understanding about my "this may sound nuts but..." explanation.

She said it started in just legs, but now is legs and feet, shoulders, elbows and hands!

But since it sounds like running is important to her as it is to you, those are great suggestions for the leg/feet issue!

duh, you're right as usual! oops, I'd better fix that or I will look extra dumb! oops, too late. Oh well, thanks for steering me straight!

No problem, AR, it's easy to miss a detail, I just didn't want people to not make suggestions based on the whole picture.

I have discussion topics for my students in my online classes. Sometimes one student goes on a bit of a detour or misses a crucial point then everyone else follows him off the cliff with me at my computer tearing my hair out, going, "go back! go back!"

Dana, I know this is a sensitive subject, and you probably know already, but just in case... The extra weight -- 80 lbs is quite a bit -- plays an enormous role in this.

If, while you were in your 20's and fit, had loaded a backpack with 80lbs of bricks and hauled that around every day for 3-5 miles, you very likely would have developed shin splints and other compression stresses.

How about a stationary bike? Or better, an outdoor bike? Really fun, enjoyable way to burn calories that doesn't stress your legs the way pounding the pavement does. Swimming also is a good alternative.

I'd suggest you think about one of these other means to work out, at least temporarily until you can get some of the weight off, before walking/running as exercise.

I have sort of similar problems ... I am 31. Concerning for sure.

In late high school I started to get shin splints and my feet hurt, but I didn't do anything about it. Then in around 2007 I could literally barely walk a block without excruciating pain, so went and got custom orthotics and physical therapy. I was told I had flat feet so bad that I should wear orthotics (or at least supportive shoes) even indoors at all times and not walk barefoot if possible. The guy who did the orthtoics said he was surprised I could walk at all and wasn't in more pain than I described. I was also told I had extremely tight calve muscles and given some stretches.

Both of these helped a bit, but didn't solve my problems completely. Last year I went to my GP as my toes were killing me, and he did x-rays and diagnosed arthritis in my feet. Over the past year I have also had problems with pain in my ankles, knees and hips, although I'm not sure if these are stemming from my feet problems. I've also developed problems in my hands/wrist including my fingers aching like my toes (wondering about arthritis there) and also steadily increasing symptoms of carpel tunnel syndrome. I plan on bringing both issues up with my GP when I see him next.

A few weeks ago I went and saw a podiatrist that my endocrinologist recommended, because I again could not walk more than about a block without really bad pain. He looked at my orthotics and basically said they were not suitable for me. They had been "custom" but they were done by a sports medicine type place and he said I had complex issues that needed a podiatrist. He also said my shoes were not as supportive as I needed them. So the next appointment with him is to pick up the orthotics and get some sources of new shoes, and we will go from there. I think, especially after a year or two, it's easy to get used to being in pain as just normal. I usually forget how bad my feet are until I walk with people who don't have problems and find myself dying and wishing we could stop while they could walk forever.

I agree with Zoe that I would get these problems checked out. If it is a problem like rheumatoid arthritis, you definitely want it treated sooner rather than later. I personally have been putting off going to my GP because I am dealing with multiple medical things and am sort of doctored out right now. But I've also been sleeping a *ridiculous* amount for the past few months (like I pretty much spend weekends sleeping), which I don't think is normal because I'm 31 and I'm not insanely busy at the moment. So, not much I can help with other than encouraging you (and myself!) to get it checked out and, if it is something, get it treated.

It's quite alright Dave. You are correct about the weight issue. My weight is actually a worse issue than the pain I'm having. For the past 11 years I have been struggling, fighting to lose weight. I only gain, I never lose, ever. Well, if I do after eating healthy, not starvation and trying to exercise as much as possible, I am lucky to only lose 3 to 4 pounds. I have no doubt that the chronic pain I am experiencing has a lot to do with my "heavy load". How can it not? I do have an encumbent stationary bike which causes a lot of pain to my lower legs. I'm glad you suggested the swimming because I think I'm going to try to find a place where I could swim every day. That is probably the only thing that would not cause all this pain and give my heart some exercise. I do LOVE to walk. We are going to Cancun in February and it's really going to suck if I have to spend the entire time in pain while everyone else is walking around. Thanks for the suggestions and words of encouragement.

Jen, I know what you mean about being doctored out. Between Endo, podiatrist, physical therapist, opthalmologist, etc. I'm feel the same. It can be downright depressing because I feel so hopeless most times. NOw that I am working a new job, I don't think my new employers would appreciate me running off to the doctors every other day. But at my age, I don't want to stay like this because it will only get worse.

I hope you see someone soon and please let me know what comes of it. Thanks for the encouragement!

I guess RA is something that should be looked at. I certainly hope it's not that because my grandma had it and it was very awful and debilitating. How do they treat it?

Hey, I get the weight loss struggle, personal experience. It is one of the most unfun, unpleasant, unrewarding (because the results are so slow) chores.

And, let's face it: No matter what anyone says, it's a process of constant punishment, for months and months, that only a true masochist could love.

I started insulin therapy beginning of June (T2). Gain 20lbs in 2 months. No change in diet. So, now I'm in the weight loss police wagon myself :-)

As for the splints and other leg pains, do you have a medical device pharmacy in your area? Here in the Santa Cruz area we have Horsnyder Pharmacy which specializes in all sorts of "stuff" -- wraps, splints, medical boots, should compressors, etc. A place like that might have something(s) you could put on around your shins and/or other areas to provide support while walking/hiking that may help.

And here's encouragement to stay on the weight loss bandwagon. Swimming is wonderful -- burns lots of calories, and is the least musculoskeletal stressful. Also, some time in a sauna after each workout might also help.

I found after working out that, after getting used to it, I absolutely loved 20-30 min in the sauna, sweating buckets, then jumping in the pool and just floating there for 5 or so. After that initial cold shock for about 30 seconds, an incredible good feeling just soaks through your body.

Also, that sauna sweat time cleans up the skin, makes it super smooth.

Has anyone considered Peripheral Vascular Disease as the problem?

Also, you might ask to have your Vitamin D level checked.

You know sometimes, I wish it was just numbness and tingling, but it's not, it's excrutiating pain!! I have told my doctors for a long time about a lot of these problems, the one I've had for awhile, and many times they just shrug their shoulders; haven't done many tests on me. My mom told me sometimes you have to tell the doctor what to do. Sigh.