I’m so creative with my titles, huh?
So, I ended up with an immediate appointment on Monday morning after I called the orthopedist doctor. I was relieved (and impressed!) that I would hopefully have some answers a few hours later.
At the appointment, I first gave a background of when I noticed the pain, descriptions of the type of pain, and so on and so forth. Pretty much everything I laid out here. I was sent to have some X-Rays done and then the doctor came in to review them and examine my foot a bit more closely.
He had me stand on it. Walk on my heels. Walk on my tiptoes. He pressed along the different toes and bones of my foot. Twisted and pulled my foot in different directions. All while noting my pain along the way.
Wouldn’t you know it – NO pain while at the doctor. Does that happen to anyone else? I could feel some discomfort where he pressed along two of the metatarsals but nothing bad at all. The X-Ray didn’t show a stress fracture, but he said it doesn’t always rule one out. However, since my pain was so minimal he determined I don’t have a stress fracture but a “stress reaction”.
So, what does that even mean? Basically, the area around my 3rd and 4th metatarsals seems inflamed and irritated. If I had pushed through the pain, over time, I would have most likely ended up with a stress fracture. By listening to my body and coming in early, I have hopefully avoided the worst of it and will just have to deal with some soft tissue damage that is affecting the area around my bones right now. And keep it from becoming a more serious bone problem.
The Plan of Attack
I have to take two weeks off running. It stinks, but I’m happy to have it be just 2 weeks and not 2 months, so I’ll take it! Praying that the two weeks is all I need.
Over the course of the two weeks, I will also be wearing my sexy new shoe.
That will help minimize movement in the foot to help it heal up quicker. I also received a topical anti-inflammatory to spread around on my foot and some fun foot and ankle strengthening exercises to do regularly. I get to look like Frankenstein walking around on my heels! Yay!
I can continue with cardio and weights as long as the activities are non-weight bearing for my lower body. That means no elliptical, no squats, no walking…but I can do the bike and some weight lifting (any upper body and lower body modifications). I plan to spend the same amount of time I would have comparable to my runs on the bike to maintain as much cardiovascular fitness as possible. So, yesterday I did an hour on the bike and a short chest, shoulders, and triceps workout with some hip abductions and leg extensions in the mix.
I actually ended up sweatier than I expected and the movement felt GREAT!
Now, for the even bigger questions of where it puts me for running and my marathon goal.
After two weeks, I can gradually return to running as long as it is pain free. The first week, starting at 50% of my previous mileage is recommended. Then, the 2nd week I can move to 75%. After that, I should be able to move back into training.
The Cleveland Marathon is seven and a half weeks away. I’m trying to figure out how to fit in the training to be prepared enough and not risk pushing too much too soon to get back from the injury. After my two weeks off, I will have 6 weeks until the marathon. The first two I have to do the reduced mileage. Then, I need two weeks minimum of a taper.
Here’s what I’m thinking my long runs would look like for the remaining weeks:
- 3/31: Biking Only
- 4/7: Biking Only
- 4/14: 10 miles
- 4/21: 15 miles
- 4/28: 18-20 miles
- 5/4: 20 miles (date is for Friday instead of Saturday to fit travel schedule)
- 5/12: taper week
- 5/20: marathon
I would also include 2-3 other short to mid-distance runs (gradually building up) those weeks and make sure I run ALL miles at a slower than normal pace. No speed work or tempo action. Just getting in the miles to prepare for the marathon. Of course, this all depends on how I feel starting back and if these two weeks were just what my body needed to get back to feeling 100%.
The plan seems reasonable enough, but I’m no expert by any means. And, when it all comes down to it, I would rather not race this race and heal completely than push things and end up hurt again or hurt worse. I don’t want to jump back into training and cram in the prep just to hurt myself again. I would rather build a gradual and strong, healthy base to take me into prep for Chicago in a few months than race this race if it meant not healing properly now.
I’m mentally preparing myself that I won’t be able to do this race, but I’m still going to try. I’m going to be a good little girl and follow doctors orders, then hope and pray the 2 weeks has me fully recovered and able to ease back into running just fine. The race does have a half marathon I could change to, but I don’t know about traveling that far for a half. I guess things are pretty up in the air. I can only see where things lead and take it as it comes. And try to stay positive in the meantime. Like by laughing at this oh-so-fitting infographic:
Also, someone stole my phone at the gym. At the moment, I’m more upset about that than my foot. The thought of replacing it makes me (and my wallet) say OUCH more than my foot does! I guess at least that’s a good distraction????
Runners – would love your thoughts about any of the above?
Everyone – ever had something stolen from you in a public place?