For the most part, my biggest problems have been my knees (my right knee back in college, and in recent years my left knee). My left IT band syndrome has joyously rippled its effects into surrounding areas, most notably my left hip flexor. I've also been working to overcome some muscle imbalances, which have lead to weak hips and glutes.
I have had some minor bouts of heel pain (aka plantar fasciitis) in the past, but usually nothing to sneeze at. Until this past Monday.
I woke up on Monday morning. As per my usual practice, I gallantly sprang out of bed with a HUGE smile on my face!
OK, OK, maybe not so much.
In any event, upon getting out of bed, I experienced a stinging pain in my left heel. Wow. Never in my life had it been so painful to walk.
Thankfully I had a PT appointment first thing Monday morning. The timing couldn't have been better. My PT helped me stretch, gave me an ultrasound on my heel, and instructed me to use a tennis ball or foam roller on my heel.
My heel was still painful for the rest of the day. It made me contemplate even the simplest things, like getting up to go to the printer or the bathroom. On the way home from the office, I was crossing the street and had to speed up to get through the intersection. Yowza!!!
When I got home on Monday evening, I took off my shoes. I was surprised to find out that when walking around barefoot, the pain nearly disappeared altogether. It made me think about the stories I'd heard about people's running injuries fading once they run barefoot or wear minimalist running shoes. Maybe there really is something to be said about natural foot mechanics after all?
I went ahead and did a yoga video, then dutifully pulled out a golf ball. (You may recall that I've had my awkward moments with golf ball therapy in the past, so this time I did this in the privacy of my own living room.) I rolled my heel for a good 15 minutes, applying as much pressure as I could bear. Not fun, but all in the name of healing.
When I went to bed, I remembered seeing all these pictures of these splints that you can wear on your feet overnight to help with your plantar fasciitis.
|Sexy fashion accessory|
Not having one of those splints on hand, I did my best to imitate the foot position as I was falling asleep. Not easy to do!
Yesterday morning when I woke up, I braced myself as I got out of bed, anticipating more stinging pain. But... nothing. Barely a twitch.
All throughout the day, I walked around very gingerly, just in case. No issue. I even put on heels when I got to the office. Then I gradually began bringing my walking motion back to normal, so as not to favor my left foot. Still almost nothing.
Last night I repeated the routine - more yoga, and more rolling my heel with a golf ball. This morning again, no relapses of pain.
I don't know what the heck happened in the last 48 hours. If this was a "ghost" injury, it was certainly the most painful one I've ever experienced. But thank God for miraculous physical therapy and for golf balls!!!
|For now, at least.|
On a closing note, I haven't worn my Sauconys (my minimalist running shoes) in quite some time. But given my experience with natural foot motion immediately alleviating my heel pain, I think it may be good to start wearing the minimalist running shoes again at least once a week. I am becoming a believer!
Whew! Thank goodness that went away! As far as p.f. goes, I have done the tennis ball golf ball thing with much success. Also, I switched running shoes which helped even more.ReplyDelete
Thank goodness, indeed! Glad to hear that the tennis/golf ball therapy has worked wonders for you, too! When you switched running shoes, was it just to a new pair and/or did you switch running shoe type?Delete
I switched from Adidas to Mizuno. At Fleet Feet I spent a half hour running on their treadmill with all sorts of running shoes. On the treadmill, I really focused how they made my shins and feet feel. The Mizunos felt the best and I have not had any major issues since (knock on wood). Oh yeah, I also bought them 1.5 sizes too big, which helped my toes tremendously.Delete
I have a pair of Mizunos that I had to get them a half-size bigger than my normal size, as well. They still feel a bit snug with some running socks, though. Maybe I'll give them a go with an even bigger size next time, per your success!!!Delete
It wouldn't be taper time without injury freakouts!! :D Glad it was a false alarmReplyDelete
Ah yes, and this was literally Day 1 of taper time! I am sure there will be plenty more freakouts in the next three weeks, too. Funny how taper time is such a good thing but can also be so nervewracking, eh?Delete
How is your leg feeling now? Hopefully some improvement from this past Sunday?
Im glad youre better! You got me all scared at the beginning of this post. Hoping this is just one of the phantom type injury crap things we go through when we let our bodies have a break during taper.ReplyDelete
Thanks, Xaar! Sorry to scare you! I am truly understanding now the meaning of taper madness (and it's been less than a week!) One would think that the body would react well to taper, as opposed to producing (hopefully) phantom injuries. It boggles my mind!Delete
Exactly! Welcome to the taper tantrums. HahaDelete
Currently I'm in one big taper and feel like an overstuffed sloth. I haven't worked out since Sundays race and am starting to get stir crazy. Stupid ankle injury!
I hope you're 100% for the big day! Sending you good vibes.
How is your ankle feeling now?!?!Delete
I'm sending you good vibes, too, for a great Chicago Marathon!!! You must be really excited to run a marathon without having to think about time goals. =D
I swear you are my blogger soulmate :) We are so similar (must be that Illini orange and blue blood in us). It's crazy but I don't remember the last time I ran completely injury-free as well. How sad! Running should be relaxing and not worrisome about every ache and pain (kind of how it is now).ReplyDelete
I'm so glad someone is starting to believe in the whole "barefoot" phenomenon! That was the main reason I stopped wearing my orthotics and bought the Brooks PureCadence. I'm planning on purchasing more minimalist shoes (likely either the Saucony or Brooks PureConnect) and seeing if they make a difference. You should start experimenting after the marathon...take time to get to know your running legs again and find what really works best for them!
We are blogger soulmates, indeed!!! It is the Illini orange and blue blood for sure, as well as a host of other things (the love for travel, pets, family, chocolate, the list goes on and on. =) ) I've been struggling with letting loose and truly "enjoying" running - it seems that whenever I'm following some kind of training plan, it takes some of the fun out of it. Do you know what I mean?Delete
So great to hear that the Brooks PureCadence continue to work so well for you! I will definitely have to check those out in the future, based on your high recommendations! It'll be fun to experiment! If you do get the Saucony Kinveras at some point, I'd love to know what you think of them! (They come in some fabulous colors, too! Always a great selling point for me. =D )
I am happy it went away! I have had PF in both feet... and in my left foot for over a year now! Wearing shoes actually helps it feel a lot better around the house. And the night boot too ;) I hope you never have to get one!ReplyDelete
Thanks, Kim! PF in BOTH feet!?!?!? Yikes. That must have been so frustrating to deal with. I haven't heard you say much about it recently so it sounds like it's under control? And it sounds like you've experienced the joys of the night boot, too, yes? (YAY!)Delete
I have had some minor bouts of heel pain (aka plantar fasciitis) in the past, but usually nothing to sneeze at.I like this.ReplyDelete
Thank you for sharing.
Glad your heel pain has never been anything to sneeze at! Cheers to it staying that way!!!Delete
I've got had some small fits regarding heel discomfort (aka plantar fasciitis) in the past, nevertheless commonly nothing to sneeze with. I like that.ReplyDelete
Thank you with regard to discussing.
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