Monday, September 17, 2012

Aggravated

For the first time in 13 weeks of half marathon training, I'm choosing to miss a run today.  Why?  Because I'm hurting.  I've been hurting for over a week now, and what started out with one thing has morphed into three issues.  They are:

Issue A - right ankle
Issue B - left arch
Issue C - top of left foot

I'm pretty sure Issues A and B are connected, because I had this flare up last November after I pushed myself by walking a 5K Turkey Trot race too quickly after ankle surgery; I gave myself tendonitis in the left foot by overcompensating for the right ankle pain.  This feels like the same kind of pain.  And yes, I'm disappointed to report that my ankle has been hurting once again - I've been trying to ignore it, but during our last 7 mile long run, I stepped on an uneven ridge of concrete, felt a jolt of pain shoot through my ankle, and it's been tender ever since.  I've been icing it and downing Motrin like no one's business, but it's still hurting more than it has been in quite a while.

Issue C, the top of my left foot, which has previously been tender, is now alive with hurt.  After Saturday's 8 miler (which went great - most of this pain cropped up once I stopped running), it was really bothering me.  Between the arch pain and the top of the foot pain, my left foot was not a happy camper...and neither was I.

Plus, to add to all of this, there is also Issue D.  My wrists have been aching quite a bit ever since last week, when I worked on (and finished) my throw...a lot of yarn weight on large needles combined with hours of knitting contributed to this.  I have a touch of arthritis in my wrists, and every once in a while certain activities will really cause them to hurt (e.g. push ups, heavy cooking days (like Thanksgiving), reading a heavy book for hours on end...).  The only thing that helps is for me to give them a rest from the offending activity.  Which, really??  No knitting?  Come ON!

So yes, I'm aggravated.  With the ongoing, underlying, always-lurking-ankle-issue, I try to keep in mind a paragraph I read in the book Duel in the Sun (I bolded the part that really hit me):
"Since he'd slipped on the ice while training a few years ago, Beardsley's right knee had been suspect.  All runners, however, had their own version of that knee, their own particular trouble.  Most aches healed, but there was always one that you carried from town to town, race to race, year to year, that you just hope and prayed and worked desperately to conceal."
Every runner has their issues.  When I see a runner, I see just that - a runner.  I don't see their pain - the knee that's bothering them, or the IT band that's hurting, or the heel that is sending up jolts of pain with each step.  But very few people can run for a long time without some injury flaring up - it's the nature of the sport.  I know it sounds insane to choose to do something that causes pain and injury; it's a hard thing to explain to non-runners.  I'm not asking for sympathy - after all, I could stop a lot of my pain if I just stopped running - so therefore, I'm in control of this mess.  But I LIKE running.  I really do.  I've followed a training plan, I've not pushed myself beyond what is recommended, and still, things are starting to go downhill. Which brings me to my aggravated state today...one in which I will not run, I will not knit, I will simply try to rest and heal.  To which I say, can't I just get a break over here?!?

17 comments:

  1. I wish I had advice---I dont.
    I do have commiseration?
    Im a misfit with runner owies (hamstring etc) who doesnt even run.

    xoxoxoxox

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  2. Damn Shelley, I didn't want to read this post. I wanted your foot troubles to be over with. I'm sorry to hear you are having problems again. Like Carla I have no real advice, I'm not a doctor, only maybe that a bit of rest and then walk a bit might help.

    And on top of that taking it easy on the knitting? Girl it's tough for you right now.

    Sending you a big virtual hug!

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  3. Oh man, I'm so sorry :(

    But yep, sometimes the only thing to do is rest and heal. Runners don't like to rest which often gets them in deep doo doo. We don't want that for you at all. The good thing is that your half training program is long enough that missing a run or two isn't going to mess you up in any way!

    Enjoy your rest day - reading a good book and staying off your feet sounds heavenly to me!

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  4. So sorry to hear about your foot - but I am glad you were able to get your long run in. I know its hard to take, but rest is seriously the best medicine - I am with Helen, read a book, maybe take in a movie? Hang in there!

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  5. Well, I guess I never ran long enough or far enough to get that runner's high. I did use to dream about 'running out the front door' even when I was at my highest weight, so I get that. And I just hate how our overcompensation for one injury will lead to another injury. And that you can't knit...that's just wrong.

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  6. It's so frustrating to be hurt and not able to run. It's when I'm forced to take a break that I realize that I actually miss doing it. I've had the IT band problems, the sore knees, and very often have a sore quad because of the way I favor my right foot that has a bunion. But like everyone else has said, rest really is the best medicine. It's better to take a little time off than to hurt yourself even more. Do you think you'd be up for riding your bike in the meantime? That's what I do when I can't run, and then I don't feel as bad about taking a break.

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  7. Dang. I hear you about all runners having their injury that they carry with them. I think some of us whine more than others (like me) and then there's my husband who doesn't complain during a whole training cycle. Then, after his marathon this weekend he reminds me that the only part of his body that doesn't hurt is his hair.

    Hang in there, be smart. Ice:)

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  8. Annoying is right! Boooo! I am glad to see you resting, though, and not trying to power through the pain.

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  9. Awww! Sending giant "heal quickly" hugs to you Shelley!

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  10. Oh man. I'm sorry. That sucks. Good news is it should be nothing permanent. injuries. Yep...TKD has taught me that owies and SUPER owies and bruises and pain and getting the hell beat outta my 40 something body is just something I have to put up with. I love it enough that I'm willing. Gotta find things to do when you need a day off. Sometimes just a short day off can do wonders though. Hope it's the same for you! Sorry the knitting is an issue for now also. Ugh.....

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  11. Ouch. I'm sorry to hear about your running (and knitting) woes. Yes, you're doing the right thing to pull back. Things will get better--and by then your weather shd be perfect. Can you bike without pain? For me, mixing it up with biking and running, helps keep me from getting injuries from one or the other. Good luck. Maybe lightweight yarn and needles . . . for your next project. Your throw is gorgeous, BTW.

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  12. Well shoot, I was hoping the ankle issue was fixed. Be smart with the healing process. Hugs to you:)

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  13. After a few days rest, maybe add swimming back into the mix?
    For the knitting, you're using circular needles for those big projects right? I find the cable really helps keep the weight off your wrists.
    Healing vibes coming your way.

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  14. Thanks for publishing this. I've been reading a while and you're a great inspiration. So much so, I decided to start my own blog on www.onefatguyslife.com. I'm hoping I can get the same success you got. Keep inspiring us...it helps a ton!

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  15. I'm a little behind on my blogs and I know you said you weren't looking for sympathy, but I'm sorry! I hope you are feeling better!

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