Brace Yourself…

If you will recall, back in August, prior to running the Kauai Marathon, the top of my foot started to bother me. Turned out to be a tweaked tendon, probably from running on the treadmill.  My podiatrist taped me up…and told me to enjoy my race.  For quite awhile after that race, the tendon was still a problem…but it was explained to me that this sort of thing takes time to heal.  Keep icing, keep taping, keep using that Biofreeze…and give it time.  Running on it wasn’t going to hurt it further…so…I pressed on.  As our weather yo-yo’d from hot to cold to warm to freezing to hot…my body was confused.

But…I realized a few weeks ago that the pain in the top of my foot had gone away.

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The problem now…was that my foot now hurt along the arch.  I deduced, all on my own, that it was my plantar flaring up.  After all…I had torn this plantar back in 2012…and the weather has been…indecisive…

So, I started doing the Low Dye taping technique to it and pressing on.  Most of the time, after my stretches and dynamic warm up, the foot would stop hurting.  However…in the past week, it started to flare back up around Mile 2 or so on my runs.  I would stop, shake it off and proceed to finish up my assigned mileage.  It hurt…but it wasn’t crippling.  However, now that the pain was returning after I was warmed up and already running, I decided not to play around and called my podiatrist’s office on Wednesday afternoon.  They had a spot open on Thursday at 8:30 am…otherwise I couldn’t be fit in until December 15.

Needless to say…I took the opening yesterday morning.  DUH!

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Well, once at the office, I was going over all the information with the tech and I said, “It feels like my plantar is flaring up or something.”  She agreed, but they took X-Rays anyway.  When my podiatrist came in and pulled up the X-rays, he said there were no stress fractures (never even crossed my mind), but my plantar was very inflamed.

Um…yeah…just as I suspected.  Do I know my body or do I know my body?!

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What I wasn’t aware of, until he told me, was just how inflamed my plantar fascia was.  He said that a normal plantar was about 2-4 mm.  Mine…was 9.5 mm.  No joke.  My plantar was not just inflamed…it was angry.

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That being said, he asked me if I had any races coming up.  I told him nothing was on the books until January. So he said that he was going to give me a Cortisone shot.  Now, mind you, my podiatrist hates to give runners Cortisone shots, as he says that it is suicide for a runner.  So, I knew he wasn’t messing around.  I have to say, he was impressed that I didn’t even flinch when he injected it in the bottom of my foot.  He said that the shot is no joke.  But, let’s face it…I’ve dealt with pain a lot worse than that.

He also wanted me to make use of The Equinus Brace.

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Not going to lie.  The first time they strapped these on me at the office, my thoughts immediately went to Forrest Gump.

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This is why I have named these little hindrances…Forrest and Gump.

This brace supposedly positions your foot and ankle and extends above the knee to provide an optimal stretch, way better than any of those night splits for plantar fasciitis.  I also had to get 2 braces…one for each leg, because if I only treated one leg, the other would become weaker.  So, for an hour a day, I’m down for the count, wearing these braces and hoping they are doing their job.

That being said, I’ve been running pretty well, despite the unhappy plantar, so I hope when I get back out there in a couple days, I run even better.  Last Cortisone shot I had (in my hip before the Boston Marathon), didn’t really take…so we’ll see how this goes.

Cross your fingers…now, if you’ll excuse me…my couch is waiting for me to sit on it for an hour…in these braces.

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Listen to your body, friends!!  You know it best.  I’m glad I did!

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