Friday, June 4, 2010

Runner, interrupted

I was really hoping that by this point in my blogging evolution I would be past the injury discussion, and rambling on about how my training was proceeding and how life was shaping up in the warm-weather months.  However, the lower right portion of my body seems to have different plans.

Although my knee still likes to remind me of its presence every once in a while, and although I'm still doing my PT streching daily - mostly out of paranoia, I think I'm past the worst of my IT Band issues.  Unfortunately I started getting some pain on the outside of my right heel about 3 weeks ago, and this week the pain has gotten progressively worse.  Based on the absurd amount of web trolling I've done around heel pain, everything presents itself as plantar fasciitis.  I've been icing it, and stretching it, not going barefoot, elevating, rolling tennis balls under my feet while working, etc., and yet every day it's a little bit more sore.  I tried doing my new yoga routine last night, but had to shut that down after about 25 minutes when the calf stretching was giving me heel pain.

Sadly this morning I decided to skip my run and shut down the running for a bit to see if I can get this under control.  Looked back through my training log, and what this means is I've had a total of 2 runs in 2010 where I wasn't dealing with an injury.  Hurt my calf on January 6, then worked through IT Band issues, and now dealing with my foot.  Extremely frustrated to say the least.  Trying to stay positive, but starting to wonder if my body is trying to tell me something and I'm just refusing to listen.  Hopefully a few days off will do a body good.


  1. Stop the stretching on it for 7-10 days. You could be aggravating it further with them right now. I would do nothing on it for that period of time. Than try to do some light gradual stretches for a day or two. Then build up to toe raises. If you still have pain after doing this - go to your Doc. Platter of Fajitas (my name for it) is not my friend and sucks. You really don't want to make it worse by trying to run on it right now. I have had three different bouts with it. Each costing me precious running time ( 1-2 months each). The best remedy for me - when I notice a flare up - even slight - Stop running for a week. Rest it, ice it. I start gradual stretches after a period of rest and ice.

    Also think about tossing the shoes and buy new ones. REthink the shoes you have. You might need just a neutral well cushioned one than a motion control one. I made that change 18 months ago - I have not had a plate of fajitas since.

    I am not a Doc so anything from the above is just my own experiences. Call one if it keeps bugging though! Good luck!

  2. I dealt with PF and just about every overtraining injury ever invented, I feel your pain.

    #1 for me was losing some weight.
    #2 well, 3 weeks rest, if you can afford it, seems to cure all
    #3 my friend's dad was given a choice to fix it: cortisone shot or a little exercise 3 times per day - take off your shoes and flex your toes out, then curl your toes like you're making a fist, repeat 20 times
    #4 never walk barefoot or wear sandals
    #5 good old trusty and $$$ orthotics, preferably covered by insurance

  3. I'm glad to hear you are going to give your foot some rest. Sometimes - as hard as it is for us runners to admit this - that really is the best medicine.

  4. Here's a tip... get a foot sized or larger bucket and fill it with half ice, half water... then submerge your foot for about 15-20 minutes... the cold hurts like no other but it also works! I did this for a month after every run while dealing with an achilles issue and it totally allowed me to train through it.

  5. Good luck with this. I've been lucky with no injuries for more than two years now. Rest and take it easy. Build u gradually again.

  6. Hope you're feeling better after some time off, injuries are so frustrating!

  7. Plantar fasciitis, been there. I got it just from power-walking 3 days a week, but that was a long time ago (10 years). I haven't had it back since I started running 2 years ago, & I run 3 days a week April thru October.

    I won't give treatment advice (sounds like there's plenty of good advice online & in these runner networks), other than to not give up hope & keep trying different things until you find what works for you. When I did have it, it took a long time to get it under control, but I waited too long to find out what it was & start treating it. Good for you to get right on it! I tried thinking it would just go away. Didn't work, duh.

  8. Thanks all for the well-wishes and the suggestions. At this point I've completely shut down running, and anything else that might aggravate it (tennis, walking the dog, etc.). I'm icing my foot 3-4 times daily, have stopped with any stretching for now in case that is aggravating it, taking a 1-week course of ibuprofen, wearing running shoes all the time, trying to elevate it a couple times a day, light massaging a couple times a day to get the blood flowing, and for at least a week my only exercise is continuing with my regular every-other-day strength training (upper body), and every-other-day lap swimming in the morning.

    No miraculous big change yet, not that I really expected any, but hopefully there is some healing going on. Per suggestions from above I'm going to continue this routine until I hit 14 days, then try and start working some stretching back in, and hopefully start some light running again around 21 days. Hate to lose my running base, but need to get this sorted out before my marathon training kicks in mid-July.

  9. I feel ya, I've had an injured filled year so far as well :( Hope the break helps!