First, sorry I’ve been MIA for the last 3 weeks. Truthfully, I’ve been unmotivated to post lately. But I thought I’d share my recent experience with the new foot doctor I saw last week and also just ramble a little about what’s been on my mind today.

I was walking Duncan earlier and my mind was all over the place. I was trying to solve a million things and feeling frustrated that I was getting nowhere with every single thing. I was so annoyed and found myself being hard on myself for not coming up with solutions. And then it dawned on me that I can really be my own worst enemy.

My process is my process. I don’t always think linear and I sometimes take a while to process things before I can work it out. I don’t know why I struggle accepting it and just let it be. 

I know I’m a worrier, over thinker and over feeler…but I find myself constantly criticizing myself and being so hard on myself for being those things. Really! If I just accept that that’s my process I bet I could save myself a lot of angst. 

I think it’d be so cool if I could just “own it”. You know? Like  “Yeah, I’m going to get a bit whiny and emotional about this and hem and haw a bit but don’t worry….it’s just my process….and i’ll come through in the end.”

So that’s that.

Anyhoo. I’ll update you a bit about my #toewoes

My last run was over 2 months ago at the Big Chill 5k. I wanted to see if rest would help. Well actually I’m sort of lying. I ran for 3 whole minutes last week.

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I was walking around the neighborhood just enjoying a warmish day and the break in my workload and just felt this urge to run. But after 3 minutes I chickened out for fear that my foot would really hurt. The original toe injury really barely bothers me these days…..but it’s the toe on my other foot that has now become the main pain and driving me insane! #intentionalrhyming 🙂 My feet have actually started to slightly improve over the last 2 months but I decided to find a new foot doctor to go to anyway.

Last Thursday I had my first appointment with the new doc and wow….he spent 45 minutes with me! He did a thorough exam and was able to determine a few things that might be causing me the toe/forefoot pain. I have high arches to start. I also have this thing called Equinus, which is a fancy word for tight calves and limited ankle dorsiflextion. This can cause extra pressure to the ball of the foot. Probably caused by a decade of running without stretching very much. I have neuromas on both feet which could be contributing to the pain as well. And lastly after doing x-rays he noticed that my metatarsal heads aren’t aligned well. Apparently they should sort of fan out and I have a few that are the same length and parallel which also puts too much pressure on my toe joints. The doc didn’t say this but i’m probably about 10 pounds heavier these days thanks to such a huge decrease in calorie burn and huge increase in making poor food choices and I know that means my feet have to support that extra weight which can’t be helpful. 🙁

He taped my feet up to support my arches and added metatarsal pads too to see if wearing that for a week would help.

I feel like a Geisha

I feel like a Geisha

Metatarsal pads

Metatarsal pads

Unfortunately after 4 days I couldn’t take it anymore and removed all the tape and pads. It wasn’t working. It actually made my feet feel worse. He also told me to start stretching my calves religiously 3 times a day, every single day. I’ve been doing that and I think it’s actually helped me some. I know it could take up to 12 weeks of this to really lengthen the calf muscles so probably too soon to tell. But wow! Go Google Equinus and read about all the things tight calves can exacerbate….it’s wild!

We talked about next steps and I have a follow-up appointment this Thursday. We might try orthotics to go along with the calf stretching and just see if that helps. He mentioned alcohol sclerosing injections or cortisone shots for the neuromas but I’m not ready for that as I don’t think the neuromas are my source of pain. It feels more like joint pain rather than nerve pain. Lastly he wants me to get some bloodwork to detect for possible arthritis.

It has been so long that I’ve woken up to yet another day of foot pain. Do you know the discomfort when you’re shoes are a few sizes too tight or your socks are so thick your feet hurt in the shoe or they’re too narrow? Yeah, that’s the discomfort I’ve felt in some capacity pretty much daily for 10 months.

Emotionally this has been quite a challenge. I spent the Spring and Summer doing yoga, swimming and riding my bike—trying to convince myself I was staying physically fit and emotionally fit too. But yoga started to irritate my feet (those downward dogs and planks!) and then the winter arrived and I stopped swimming and biking. I’m not getting any high-impact cardio at this point. I have managed to at least 2 night hikes a month though.

I love how the sky looks reddish.

I love how the sky looks reddish.

These Altra Lone Peak trail shoes have been amazing! They are the most comfortable things ever.

These Altra Lone Peak trail shoes have been amazing! They are the most comfortable things ever.

I’m missing my double digit long runs. Just yesterday I pulled up my iTunes playlists and there at the top was one titled “10 mile music”. I started to cry. I told you I’m an over feeler!

In the meantime I’ve been finding other outlets that aren’t exercise related. There’s been red wine and coloring book therapy.

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And I set up a SnapChat account just so I can play around with the filters. Apparently fake eyelashes and a bow do wonders for me 🙂

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Oh and carbs…lots of carbs.

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Mr. SOTSS and I tried to politely share a tub of popcorn at the movies but we kept bumping in to each other. Now that I think about it maybe he was trying to deter me by grabbing my hand. LOL!

I’m about to have some major life changes happening over the next few months. I’ll save it for the next post. But Duncan will have to get used to being separated from me a little more. Or maybe I should say I will have to get used to being separated from Duncan a little more.

Am I going back to being a latchkey pup again?

Am I going back to being a latchkey pup again?

inseparable

inseparable

Sigh! It’s all good though. All exciting stuff!

How are you?

Tell me some highlights of your last 3 weeks.

11 Comments

  1. I’m so sorry that you are still struggling! I just wanted to say that before my hip woes, I had foot troubles as well and have actually had surgery on both my feet to remove bilateral Morton’s neuromas. That said, the pain I experienced with the neuromas did not feel like nerve pain most of the time…It actually felt much like you described when you mentioned too tight shoes/too thick socks. Sometimes I would actually have the odd sensation that my sock was bunched up under my toes/feet, but when I’d take my shoe off to fix it, my sock would be perfectly smooth! Most of the time, however, it was more of an aching/burning pain…I never really had tingling or an electrical feeling with it, as you might think you would have with a nerve issue.
    Also, oddly enough, the pain oftentimes did feel like it was coming from my toes even though the neuromas were situated in the balls of my feet. It sounds like you have several other potential causes, but just wanted to throw this info. out there since neuromas are one possibility. I hope you and your doc. can get to the bottom of it all very soon!! Hang in there!

    • I remember you telling me about your bilateral neuroma surgery. Had you tried any other non-surgical treatment? Did you find that the pain bothered you running too? Where in your toes was the pain? I feel the most pain between where my second toe attaches to the ball of the foot and to the first toe knuckle. I find that I’m constantly wanting to massage my feet. How are your feet now? And how are you feeling since the hip surgery?

      • My neuromas were in the 3rd interspace, so they affected basically my outer 3 toes. If your “big” toe is affected, that would probably signify a 1st interspace neuroma which is pretty rare! But, the pain I felt is where you describe it – starting around the ball of my foot through the first joint of the toe. By the time they got bad enough where I could only wear a handful of shoes without pain and no longer run, I knew that I had had them forever – I can remember walking to class in college and having pain! Anyhow, they were huge and past the point of alternative treatments so surgery it was. I had great success both times and was running by 3-4 weeks post-op. The only downside is some permanent numbness in those 3 toes, and increased sensitivity to cold – all manageable compared to the pain I had before surgery.

        Re: the hip, it’s super slow-going. I picked up 2 consecutive days of substitute teaching last Thurs & Fri and ended up on a heating pad all weekend…Still struggling with a fair amount of pain but trying to stay positive! My PT thinks 12 weeks will be the magic point at which the pain eases up and I can really get back to living life again. Hoping we both finally get to log some miles in 2018!

  2. wow, other than the arthritis part I could say you are writing about my feet. for years I’ve had a neuroma on my left foot. I have one on my right foot too, but not an issue. the left foot always feels like I’m wearing tight shoes…and my foot pad ususally aches and I get lots of tight calves…
    One of the reasons I stopped wearing heels is because of the pain I would get. I wear ‘sensible’ shoes.
    I will look up Equinus… symptoms you described are similar to mine..

    I’ve been running with this darn neuroma since 1999.

    I am also a few pounds heavier…about 5.
    After North Carolina Marathon in October I was concentrating on Puerto Rico. then time went by so fast I didn’t really train for Alabama marathon Feb 11…My trip to Puerto Rico was heartbreaking..but glad my family is OK. (they got power about 2 weeks ago…YAY)

    so I started training after the new year …only gave myself a month and a half to train, my longest run was 20 miles and I did it slowly…not caring about time for Alabama, just to finish..

    Sending you hugz,
    E

    • I’m sure you’ve been putting so much energy toward your family in PR. You’re a machine and I know you’ll do fine in Alabama. I never knew you had a neuroma. What do you do to keep it from being painful?

  3. Great to see your post. Sorry about the ongoing foot issue, I really hope your new doctor can get to the root of it. I had plantar fascitis (worsened by tight calves) so I totally empathise with your frustration. Duncan as always is gorgeous. 🙂

  4. Just remind yourself and be grateful that you are relatively healthy and able to do most things in life. Some people in this world aren’t that fortunate and if you compare yourself to others that aren’t rather than to your “healthier, running self” maybe that will get you in a better mindset. Injuries are definitely rough and I think you’ve been handling it pretty good and have found other outlets to keep yourself active. Keep being positive and don’t be so hard on yourself. Enjoy this thing called life! <3

    • I know I know! I’m truly grateful that I’m not limping around anymore. And I know that what I’m dealing with is nothing compared to what so many others deal with. Thanks for the reminder. 🙂

  5. I share that same syndrome of beating myself up. Too sensitive. Lately I have been struggling with my weight. I am a runner but certainly go through painful feet too. Could just be age. I hope your feet heal very soon so you can get out running in the spring.

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