Monday, May 28, 2012


I'm here.  I'm here.  I did disappear a bit and I do appreciate you guys checking on me.  I'd like to say I was just busy, which I was, but really I could have made time. I was just a bit discouraged about my stupid foot and didn't feel like talking about it.

But alas -- there's been some good news so I'm here to share.

Catching up -- we last left off where I thought I was back in the game.  A bit premature but there's my optimism for you.  I thought I was being very smart and careful but I still managed to overdo and then couldn't hardly even walk on my foot for about 4 days.  Silly me.  About that time (just a couple weeks ago), my body decided to stop sleeping again (I'd been doing fairly well) so I wasn't coping and took the week off of everything and just felt sorry for myself. Not particularly productive but there you go.  And actually, I did start back at the running bit towards the end of the week.  

So, back to the foot.  In the midst of not running (much) nor sleeping and feeling sorry for myself, I had several people suggest I go to a chiropractor and I finally agreed if only because when I was able to even go out for a small run, my lower back started killing me within about a half a mile.  I knew I was compensating and could even hear how uneven my gait was but couldn't correct it.  Also, I wasn't and still am not convinced my continuing foot pain is all a result of the stress fracture because of where some of the pain located.  And finally, I had already considered looking into a chiropractor (or PT or someone) because I was having lower back trouble after most run back in the winter.

I've learned a ton:

1.  Metatarsal stress fractures, especially the ones on the 5th metatarsal can take a long time to heal.  Apparently circulation plays a key role in healing these types of injuries and the foot typically has less circulation.

2.  The fracture site can be laser-ed to speed circulation and healing.

3.  A chiropractor can do this.

4.  Wow.

It gets better (or more enlightening anyway).

I have scoliosis.

Which I knew.  I've known since I was in 6th grade and they did that bend over test and then I'm told fairly regularly by different doctors.  I assumed it didn't matter -- but this guy was shocked I knew.  Does it matter?  Apparently.

And of course it matters, right?  I think I'm mostly fairly intelligent but sometimes I even surprise myself by how unaware of my body I can be.  I never ever ever even looked up scoliosis online and read about it nor even considered how it would impact running.  Honestly I don't think there was any impact at the 20 to 25 miles per week range but definitely when I started increasing the miles, the irregular curve in my spine started causing trouble.  I've now done some reading online and well DUH. So many of my minor aches and pains are caused by this condition.

All this is really actually quite good news.

The doc (are chiropractors doctors?) proved to me a bunch of different ways how uneven I am -- and how my right side is much weaker than my left.  He even made me get on the floor, with my legs bent perpendicular and resting on my elbow and had me lift my hip -- I can hardly do it on my right side but on my left it is easy (so I have a new exercise to do daily).  He also did some adjusting which I immediately noticed later that day when I went running completely back pain free!   And finally, he did some laser therapy on my foot.

I go back on Wednesday and he tells me he's going to have an entire write up of my condition and a plan.  His approach is to give his clients the tools to manage themselves and then be there for support or when things go wrong.  I suspect I'll have a bunch of exercises I can do to strengthen my right side and then a few visits with him to get this foot thing under control.

All in all quite positive.  I have to think now that this might have been the underlying cause of the stress fracture so I'm pleased to have figured it out now before it happened again with another miles ramp up.  Feeling a little silly I never had considered that scoliosis might matter but I'll get over that part.

In actual running news, I did 15 miles this week in 5, 3 mile runs.  I've dubbed myself the Queen of the Three Mile run and am going to go with that for awhile.  It seems to be a good balance and I can do it every day without any additional foot pain.  This and one spin will be the routine for at least another couple of weeks.

There we have it!  Happy Memorial Day!



XLMIC said...

That is so awesome. Running 5 days a week for any distance is pretty cool in my book! Here's hoping that things just keep on improving :)

Paul said...

This is great news actually. It's really good to keep on top of all these little things that screw up your body. I learned so much from my PT.

They'll only get worse if you don't stay on top of 'em!

Glad you are back on the road!

Anne said...

I had a similar revelation about my back at the physical therapist. A little knowledge can go a long way. And, since you've got a new job, it's maybe good that the forced rest happened now. Right?

Terzah said...

I totally understand how you can forget about things (in my case, um, pregnancy) that could be the real cause of what looks like a new problem. I'm glad you've had this good news! Seeing a new therapist, doctor, chiropractor--whomever it takes--can be just what is needed.

Caroline said...

there you are!
5 days of running is pretty great
I think
improvement is good!!1

ajh said...

I have had very good luck with my chiropractor with running injuries. I wish you the same!

Nelly said...

Good to hear that you are starting to figure out your problems! Your chiro that you went to sounds like a good one. Your plan of doing short runs is likely a good one, the rehab plan that I'm following has a rest day in between every run day - not sure if that is something to think about.

Running around the lake at Chabot does seem like a good spot, the trail is wide enough to be a good place. Though if you venture up the trails from the lake, the trail gets thin in some spots. I don't like paying attention to my feet all the time when I run (lots of small rocks there), so I would only stick to the lake path if I was running there.

I did a 34 minute run at LG Creek trail on Thursday, it actually went surprisingly well I thought. No right ankle brace, and my left knee didn't give me any problems either. Finally felt like a normal runner for once! A weird feeling after doing so much rehab over the past year. My plan still calls for runs about 20 min to 40 min, in 2-3 weeks it is supposed to ramp up to 60 min runs. We'll see how it goes! I wouldn't say I'm completely pain free, but for once I'm not really noticing much when I run, which I guess is the point.

SF Road Warrior said...

It's always good to figure out a reason behind a pain or injury!

Late last summer, I started seeing a chiropractor every couple of months, and I learned that chiropractors are indeed Doctors of Chiropractic. (I'm not sure how that compares to being an MD, but still.) I think I've really benefited from mine, and it sounds like you've found a really good one too!

It sounds like things are headed in a good direction - good luck!!