Thursday, September 20, 2012

Now it's the other foot's turn

I think there may be one or two blog followers still reading back from the olden days when I happily angrily wrote about my foot from hell injury for two solid years.  I don't blame y'all for leaving...who on this planet wants to read incessant posts titled "My foot injury part 3,492", "My foot injury part 3,493".....  when you can read countless happy posts of PRs, BQs and Pikes Peak summits!

But for the three of you who have missed my old foot injury rants, today is your lucky day!

I may have mentioned a few months ago that I fell and twisted my inner ankle.  Bad.  It didn't happen while accomplishing something noble like scaling Mosquito Pass during the Leadville Heavy Half or honorably running in front of a moving vehicle to save the life of a wandering child...

Oh no.  My misfortune happened while I was carrying a load of laundry to my neighbor's house when my dryer died, didn't see a step coming out of my house (you know, that same step I'm stepped down 5 trillion times since I've lived in my house since 1996) and down I went.  No one was home at the time to help me up; I sat immobilized on my front porch in excruciating pain for about 20 minutes....with my laundry spewed everywhere.  Nice!

Fast forward 3 months.... my ankle, and the arch of my foot, are a mess.  Apparently, when I fell, not only did I twist my inner ankle (very hard to do, btw - 95 of all ankle sprains are in the outside because our foot naturally turns that way) but I got the bonus injury of tearing some ligaments on the bottom of my arch near my heel.


Yep, that's right, heel pain round 2!

The good news is, I only have two heels so once this is all fixed, I can successfully check off "Heel Pain" injuries.  The bad news is I suspect I could potentially twist another ankle in my lifetime - or gasp something worse.  But I'm just going to pretend I didn't just write that last sentence.

More of the bad new stuff is this little annoyance has made running rather painful since the awesome incident.  The REALLY bad news is that I have a marathon in just about 2 weeks and I'm back in that familiar spot this year of being ill-prepared for an upcoming marathon.  I've been able to run in chucks of a few miles at a time and did lots of 2-a-days just to get in some miles, but the furthest I've been able to run for a "long run" has been about 10 miles.  I've run 2 half marathons this month, both of which  I ended up walking a lot (the first one I made it to an impressive 5 miles!  The second I made it to mile 10 - progress!).

Yesterday, I finally caved and made a return visit to my old friend, Mr. Physical Therapist.  PT-man and I became pretty chummy last year when my foot fiasco turn from an initial "4-8 visit fix" to a "let's just not put a number on this recovery, Jill" - which was well over an impressive 75 visits (and for which, at the time, I had no insurance.  Talk about ouch!).

Lots of squats and bends and twists and turns and pulls and yanks and pokes and even a few dry needles later, I am stoked to say: Nothing is severely - or permanently - damaged!  The short diagnosis is that when I fell and tore the ligaments, those buggers solidified thickly, as wounds tend to do, so when I run that thick amount of build-up is a little extremely unhappy.  The pain manifests in my heel, the source of the band, and my upper inner ankle, the point of injury.

Long time readers (all 3 of you :)) may recall my first race back to running last year - the Bear Chase Trail Half Marathon (well, technically it was the first "running" race...I did do Pikes Peak Ascent a month earlier, but I can't say I actually "ran" more than a mile, tops, of that race :)).  I picked that race because it was autumn in the Rockies and the aspen trees were glowing their vibrant yellows...

and it was a trail race (so I wouldn't hyperventilate about how slow my time would be) and I just thought it would be a fun event welcoming me back to the beloved racing world I dearly missed.  I told my PT about the race, which happened to practically be in his backyard, so he told me he'd give the race a go also.  I though was pretty cool,... at the time.  I signed up for the half marathon.  PT-man chose the 50k.  5 0 K!!! PT-man is not a runner....his "training" for the race consisted of 2 weeks of maxed 7-mile runs.  He finished - remarkably well, actually - and of course I was secretly envious. I stopped going to my physical therapist about 3 weeks after this race, when my PF and AT were finally turned a corner.

So it shouldn't have been any surprise to me when yesterday, the man who does not train and can still knock out incredible races, told me that I still could run "do" Chicago; I would not cause any further damage to my injury.  In fact, running on it would actually help stretch some of the thick band. (He's probably counting on some other ill-prepared injury for which I'll spend another year in his office in tears - ha!).

I still walk with a slight limp so I'm a little concerned, but I plan to just take the race really, really, REALLY slow and enjoy every second with a GRATEFUL heart.

In the meantime, I have 5 stretching exercises to do multiple times/day for the foot....and I need to start cleaning my house - because, folks, it's Denver Rock and Roll weekend and big-time blogger Marcia is coming into town and spending a few days with me for some quality girl-time (while I slog through yet another slow half marathon).  Can't wait....love that girl and always have a blast hanging out with her!
Myself, Tara and Marcia: enjoying some post-Carlsbad Marathon Slurpees in January
So that's the scoop and why I've been a little gun-shy getting ready for Chicago (well, the main reason) and running so incredibly sub-par this summer.  Maybe once this thing heals for good, I can get my act together and start running decently again.

I miss it.
Running well.
Feeling good.
A lot!
I've had some pretty dark, depressing days...
But ... I know it will be good again.

Until next time...

Run Strong, my friends!

46 comments:

Matthew Smith said...

Not more heal pain! That sucks! I have it pretty often from Achilles Tendonitis, but stretching seems to help me a lot. I hope it's nothing big and doesn't slow you down in Chicago!

CautiouslyAudacious said...

Wow! Sounds like your patience is being tried... Hope you are able to get well soon! I know you will listen to your body and do what it takes to fully recover. But boooo to you not being able to train to your full potential.

BabyWeightMyFatAss said...

Oy. I'll see you in Chicago in a few weeks. We'll be hobbling along together somewhere on that course!

ShutUpandRun said...

Ugh. Damn foot. Damn laundry. It's the laundry's fault. So sorry you're going through this (again...)

Have fun this weekend, say "HI" to Marcia for me!!

One Crazy Penguin said...

Stupid freaking laundry....I mean, foot. I'm sorry to hear that the other one in now giving you issues, but yay that it's not permanent or surgical :)

Sending you all my positive vibes :)

Liz said...

Oh dear, you have been so unlucky to get an injury that way. All the best wth your recovery, and good luck with that marathon!

Terzah said...

Your blog is NOT boring--injuries are part of this whole process (as I've sadly learned) and it helps other runners probably more than reading another BQ or Leadville story to know that perseverance is the runner's most necessary quality. I hope you have FUN with Marcia in that half on Saturday. Ditto for Chicago, where I know you'll be smart. Can't wait to see you soon!

Kate said...

Ugh! Now the other heel? What a pain! Literally!

I am also dealing with some PF issues. The golf ball is my BFF.

Mike said...

Just ease into your marathon and have fun. 26.2 miles is still 26.2 if you walk,run,skip or all of the above.

Emz said...

Jill. Sooooooo not happy to read this. :( damn feet. C'mon.

I'm hoping you have a great weekend. Sounds like fun w/Marcia.

You. Are. Awesome.

slow ernie said...

Actually, I'm one of those weird people who stopped reading after the foot got better. Not that I'd wish this sort of thing on anybody.

Kathy said...

Damn, damn injuries ... states the lady recovered from bronchitis, working on plantar's fasciatis, and recovering from rotovirus. Yes, ma'am, I hear you loud and clear.
I suppose if we were able to run on marshmallow paths wrapped in bubble wrap we would discover some marshmallow/bubble wrap stress injury. Therefore, keep moving, my friend, injury is all part of the game.
So excited to see you guys tomorrow and Saturday! WOOT! Remember, we'll be at mile 8!!

Andrea Halnon said...

No fun and not fair! Glad you can run but take care. And have a blast with Marcia!

pensive pumpkin said...

When I was a kid (and even more strange than I am now) if I injured one half of my body like scraping a knee, I'd attempt to injure the opposite to even it out.

Are you taking plays from my crazy book now?

Sending good vibes your way. You rock. So does my plan, BTW. : )

Molly said...

Oi! That SUCKS! I can't believe you have to deal with this again. Grrr. Thank you for that website, I've been reading it for an hour now! Believe me I completely get the dark days, it might take a little while, but you're on your way towards it being lighter. : )

brg said...

yowza! sorry about your foot. but it looks like you are in for a fun weekend with good friends. You'll get back to where you were and better...no doubt!!!

Mike said...

UGH! At least nothing is severely or permanently damaged. Good for you running for fun too even though your speed isn't where you want it to be.

Hope you heal up quickly.

Paul said...

Well could be worse.

1) You didn't do it to yourself really...just one of those things. Even the elites probably behave like goobers some of the time 8)

2) No perm damage done...

3) you can do Chicago! Go insanely slow and have a good time! Toni wants me to do Chicago...I'm waiting to see if it starts behaving itself with the HEAT.

Char said...

I'd just like to quietly say that I hate your PT. Who does a 50k race without training properly for it? It's so not fair!!

Thanks for the heads up about my blog issues. I think they're sorted now - without the help of any of my sons.

petraruns said...

Oh babes this is so cruddy! Who needs this! But your PT is a find - lord knows you did your work going around the therapists last year so at least you know who to go to now - and it sounds like no major harm done. So wish I was doing Chicago with you but girlfriend - I promise you - just go out there and enjoy it. Love ya!

Kate said...

No no no....I can't believe that stupid ankle is still bothering you. :-( And here I was just wondering what's been going on with you bc you've been so quiet. Fast healing, my friend!

And have a wonderful time! So many of my favorite bloggers getting together... Some day that'll be me there too!

Teamarcia said...

I think this means you mean a well-muscled laundry boy. I bet you'll still be faster than I. They won't let me carry on an oxygen tank. See you soon and don't you dare clean 'my room'!

Kandi said...

I actually started reading during your heel injury and was excited to see you back at it! This foot/ankle thing sounds yucky and I'm impressed that you've been running on it at all. It all sounds very painful. I hope it heals quickly and you are back to your old self again soon.

Johann said...

Not what I wanted to read on your blog. Hang in there, you are right, it will pass soon. Have a great weekend Jill! Monday is a public holiday here in SA, big yay!

Marlene said...

I hope Chicago doesn't turn out to be too painful for you! You have had your fair share of pain, I think. You will have fun anyway!

In the mean time, I hope it cooperates this weekend. Have fun with Marcia!

Tasha @Healthy Diva said...

How annoying- spraining your ankle carrying your laundry. That sounds like something I would do. I am such a klutz. I am glad that it isn't anything too serious and glad that you have clearance to run Chicago.

Jamoosh said...

OK, I am signing you up for bionic feet.

Glenn Jones said...

This time at least there's light at the end of the tunnel.

mighty termitey said...

OUCH! damn it. i'm gonna have to come over there and bitch slap that foot into shape! *>..<*

oh and, i love your blog seesta. xo

bobbi said...

I hate that you are dealing with MORE injuries! But I love that you are coming to CHicago anyway - can't wait to meet you!

Happy Feet 26.2 said...

and like doing laundry isn't annoying enough....laundry causing a foot injury - crap!

at least you have a fun weekend ahead with Marcia. Have FUN!

2 Slow 4 Boston said...

Sounds like you're just allergic to doing laundry. Sorry about the heel. I probably can't count myself as one of your original 3, but I did come into your life while you were rehabbing it for awhile. Ah, brings back memories.

I digress. Sounds like you have your work cut out for you. At least you know what it takes to come back. I feel I'm almost in the same boat. I got to spend about 1 month getting over my stress reaction and now it's time to taper for my marathon.

Caroline said...

not liking this post....
so sorry Jill...
I hope you get better SOON
laundry sucks...

you have fun with Marcia!

Brian Walls said...

Oh NO!! Sorry to hear about your ankle...hope this one heals A LOT quicker than the other one!!

Black Knight said...

I am very sorry, I hope you get well soon.
I understand your feeling, this is my 3rd month off.
Have fun with Marcia.

XLMIC said...

Someone probably already said this, but I think this is reason enough to never do laundry again.

I really hope it doesn't give you pain in Chicago!

lindsay said...

uh. oh. ...

i hope no neighbors drove by and saw your granny panties strewn about!

good job tearing some hard-to-reach tendons and stuff. that deserve a prize of sorts, doesn't it?

super bummed about heel round 2 in all seriousness though :(

Robin said...

Sorry about the heel pain! It's a bugger for sure. Hopefully you can have a great time in Chicago. Hang in there!

Anne said...

Wow, you really can't catch a break these days (years, even). I always wonder what this is really telling us who've run for so long.

Jenny @ The Little J-Bird said...

I'm sorry you're dealing with this foot issue but I am glad you're still doing Chicago!
Hope you had a great weekend with Marcia! :)

funderson said...

Bah! This is total crap! I'm so sorry...why must things not just work like they should?

Stacey Pomerleau said...

Get well soon!

misszippy said...

Well, I'm going to count myself in the long-term reader camp b/c I certainly remember all that you went through with heel number one. I am SO sorry that you are dealing with something like this again! But I guess there's some comfort in the fact that this was an acute injury and not overuse, no? And that the prognosis is pretty good, too. Anytime you can run is better than not at all. Keeping my fingers crossed for FAST progress! Be careful, my friend!

Amanda@runninghood said...

So sorry to hear this Jill. :( I've been thinking of you a lot as I deal with foot pain. No fun at all.

Raina said...

Sorry to read about your foot Jill. I would be in tears ..and I know you must have been pretty concerned to go to the PT over it. Hope that it all mends quickly for you and that you and Marcia had a good time together- girl time can heal lots of stuff. :)

Suz and Allan said...

Oh no, I hate to hear about the heal pain. My mother in law is recovering from a stress fracture on the top of her foot that she got dropping her blow dryer on her foot. She's been running and I think she wishes she could tell people that was what it was from!