Foot, that is. Or to be more specific, feet.
Long time no post, I know. It turns out that my tendencies towards laziness and procrastination also extend to the internet. I hope I haven't left you all completely on the edge of your seats, just dying to know what's going on in my oh-so-exciting life. ;)
First I can say that I think I picked the best winter ever for marathon training. The weather has been absolutely perfect and has made running a breeze in that sense! What hasn't been so perfect is the state of my prettttttty little feet. I've had what I assumed was plantar fasciitis for months now. Eh, not so fun, but the worst pain has been after running and my running itself hasn't been all that terribly affected. When I was going to the chiropractor for my back, though, he said I should start wearing some insoles to help that and he ordered them for me. They weren't so bad at first, but on longer runs my toes started bothering me to the point I'd have to take off my shoes and rub my feet, so I stopped wearing them.
Soon after I stopped wearing them (almost 3 weeks ago now) I started getting even worse pains in my feet on long runs- specifically the balls of my feet and my toes- to the point that I would be limping even when I walked. The first time it happened really badly I had overdone it the day before so I chalked it up to that but since then it's become a pattern. I've tried multiple different shoes and superfeet insoles and nothing was helping so finally yesterday I went to the podatrist, who took x-rays and performed an ultrasound.
Turns out I was right about the plantar fasciitis- my plantar fascia at it's widest point is swollen to about twice the size of it's normal width- but I have also developed neuromas in both of my feet as well. When he showed me the x-rays he said that I was born with a deformity in my feet (an extra bone in each) that's causing them to collapse and has led to the repeated problems I've had. I don't know if this extra bone is something that's really common and just what causes people to over-pronate, though, or not. Anyway, he prescribed prescription anti-inflammatories and took casts for custom orthotics. I'm skeptical about the orthotics, particularly because I feel like this latest problem only happened after the insoles from the chiropractor, but the doctor seemed to think because of my biomechanics and that extra bone- and the fact that my arch has started collapse- that they're essential. At this point I assume they're worth a try, although they won't be ready for 4 weeks.
The good thing is that the doctor is also a runner and didn't say anything like, "maybe you're just not meant to run." He seemed to understand how important it was to me and also saw no problems with distance running once these problems are fixed (oh, fingers crossed).
What does this mean for the marathon in March? Honestly, at this point I'm not sure. I've done a lot of reading online about neuroma and people have had varying levels of success with "band-aids" in the short-term. From what I understand, running on it isn't going to make it worse, but if I can't figure out a way to manage the pain then it's really not feasible. I have some ideas to try for tomorrow's long run but if those don't work, I've kind of exhausted all the possibilities. My attitude/mood about the matter veers from really, really sad (I just typed "devastated" and then realized just how self-absorbed that sounded ;)) to realistic to cautiously optimistic when I think I've found some solution to angry and pouty to sad again. Probably pretty fun to live with, huh? Yes, I do know there are much, much worse things but as Heather wisely pointed out right now, this feels pretty disappointing right now.
So anyway, there's my whine-fest and vent for tonight. It actually felt pretty good to type it all out. That's probably why people get private diaries, right? Maybe I should look into that... ;)