• I’m Back!

    Yesterday, for the first time in nearly 2 months, I ran!  It was glorious.  And awful.


    Three weeks ago, I finally got a second appointment with the podiatrist. After a false start (I showed up and the office was closed; apparently they will only warn you of such things on your home phone, even if you gave them your cell and said “don’t use the home phone, I’m out a lot.”), there I was, ready for the orthotics I’d gone in to get in the first place.  Of course, it’s never that easy.  We had to wait to ask permission from my health plan, so he still wouldn’t fit me for the damned things, but I got a consolation prize.  Cortisone!


    I’d been warned that cortisone could be a problem, reducing the mass of my tendon, and making it more susceptible to future injury, but the podiatrist assured me that that was only a danger if cortisone was over-used, and that if necessary, I could get such treatments as many as three times a year, without worrying about it.  So he drove what felt like a large steel railroad spike right into the very center of the horrible pain in my foot.  It was unpleasant.


    He told me I could expect it to take full effect within two weeks.  After my previous “tried too soon” debacle, I set my self the goal that I would wait for seven days without any significant pain, before I’d try running again.  In the meantime, I went out and bought the biggest, baddest, non-prescription arch-supports you can find, and wore them religiously.  Friday, I finally completed my seven pain-free days, and I ran!


    I added a brisk quarter-mile walk to the beginning of my usual course, as an extra warm-up after my usual warmup.  I felt a couple of twinges during this, and nearly panicked, but I stayed with it, and by the time I was done, they had subsided.  The run itself was incredibly difficult and painful for every part of me except my heel.  Two months of substituting an Air-Walk machine for the real thing apparently did not maintain my aerobic fitness levels or endurance.  For the first time since last summer, I had to stop running and walk during my run, just to catch my breath. I must have looked like a fool, but I made it back, only managing two miles in 24:45, which is nearly three minutes longer than it would have been, before the injury.


    I got back shaking and feeling light-headed, but I got back without any pain in my heel!  I pushed myself through stretching by sheer force of will, and collapsed on my front lawn to breathe a while.  Of course, I promptly fell asleep, a fact I became aware of when a neighbor came up (apparently about 30 minutes later) to check on me, because she thought maybe I’d had a heart-attack while doing yard-work!


    Twenty-four hours later, I still have no pain in my heel.  On the other hand, my thighs, calves, hips, and butt are on fire!  I don’t even care.  I’m desperately fighting an itch to go do it again right now.  I’m going to have a lot of catching up to do, but I think I’m a runner again…



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