Friday, December 26, 2008

Getting over it

There's nothing to dispel the anguish of failing at something huge like adopting a puppy! Meet Levi. Life is good again.

I am still recovering from my injuries (mainly the knee) and won't be running again for a while. In the meantime, I'm happy walking the dog.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Joy and disappointment

I'm not going to lie, last week was emotional and I'm still coming to terms with not having run the marathon. Any doubts I had about my decision were silenced this weekend when my foot started killing me after walking less than 2 miles around the city. Even still, I'm upset that life isn't fair and I'm uncertain about wanting to try again.

Disappointment aside, Raj and I had a - dare I say it, magical weekend in Philadelphia, filled with delicious food, wine, and friends. We loved everything about Philly: the amazing history and architecture, friendly people, BYOB policy at all restaurants, Amada tapas, the art museum, and yes, even watching the marathon. Once again, I am thankful for everything I have and everything I am and look forward to 2009 and moving on to my next big adventure. Link

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

What people are saying about Peroneal Tendinitis

Ran across an interesting thread on Runner's World:

I know in my heart that running the marathon will put me at extreme risk of tearing my Peroneal tendon. While I know the "right" thing to do is to postpone the marathon, I just can't let go of something I've worked so hard for, obsessed over, thought about, talked about, dreamt about, for months. But I know no matter what, nothing is worth putting my health at risk. I'm reading too many horror stories of runners needing surgery or taking months or years to recover from this injury. It's just not worth it.

More physical therapy in the morning....

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

It's down to the wire, folks

Today I paid an expensive visit to my friend Jeff, the physical therapist. I told him I was planning to run a marathon on Sunday and he laughed. This is what my ankle looks like wrapped up in an agonizingly cold compression ice pack. What you can't see from the picture is me screaming in pain.

So here's the deal - I don't think it's gonna happen. I'm on day two of the Methylprednlsolone and we'll see how that affects the swelling. You can't heal tendinitis in 5 days. Sure, I'm fine milling around the office and running an errand at Costco and whatnot, but this is 26.2 miles, people! I am so conflicted! If I do start to see improvement by Friday, do I chance it and just run the damn thing? What happens if I can't finish? Not only do I not get the medal (I'm picking up the t-shirt at the Expo, but I wouldn't feel right wearing it), but I get a big fat DNF next to my name on the race results. Not to mention the extended damage I'll be doing to my tendon. This is the worst feeling in the world, coming so close, the goal just within reach - and then failing to reach it.

Aaaarrrggghhhh!!!! I don't know what to do!!!!!

Monday, November 17, 2008

"Dude, where's my ankle?!"

I was on the phone at 7:30 am trying to book a same-day appointment with a podiatrist this morning. Luckily, Virginia Mason Sports Medicine clinic was able to fit me in. The wrong address was listed on the Aetna insurance website, so I spent about 10 minutes running around First Hill trying to find Lindeman Pavilion. By the time I arrived for my appointment, my ankle was on fire.

So, good news first. I don't have a stress fracture and I don't have Cuboid Syndrome. I have Peroneal Tendinitis which subsequently caused IT Band Syndrome (I had no idea I had this in my right leg). The Peroneal tendon starts in the foot and wraps behind the ankle and up through the calf, meeting up with more tendons in the knee which extend upward through the thigh. So an inflamed tendon in the foot can also affect the calf and the thigh.

The doctor believes running on a canted, or slightly angled, surface caused the problem. I tend to stay to the right of the trails I run on, mainly to accommodate bicyclists. He said next time run in the middle of the lane and let the cyclists go around me. It's not worth it.

He's not sure if I'll be able to run the marathon. He prescribed me a six-day superdose cycle of steroids to knock out the swelling, along with 2-3 sessions of deep muscle tissue PT and ultrasound therapy, and NO RUNNING. He's not sure if this mix will do the trick, but said it's my only shot. I've already made an appointment at Real Rehab just around the corner from my place, and unfortunately my shitty insurance makes me satisfy my deductible before coverage kicks in for PT, so I am looking at $125/session :( I guess it's a small price to pay for a slim shot at completing something I've worked so hard for these past months. One thing's for sure, no more running after the marathon!

(Famous last words.)

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Six days to go...

I ran my last long run yesterday and ended up having to walk the last 1.5 miles due to increasing pain in my right foot. I felt the pain for the first time starting at around mile 15 of my 20 mile run two Saturdays ago, and it's been appearing around mile 4 on my shorter runs. It's continued to get worse.

I've been researching the problem online and am almost certain I have Cuboid Syndrome, if not a full-fledged stress fracture. My ankle is also swollen, like the beginnings of a sprained ankle. I am calling my doctor first thing tomorrow to get some x-rays done immediately and possibly get in to see a podiatrist. From what I've gathered from the research, if it is Cuboid Syndrome and not a stress fracture, a podiatrist should be able to manipulate the bone back in to place.

Let's hope. I can't run a marathon on this foot.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

2 weeks to marathon

T-minus two weeks to marathon day. My body is slowly breaking down into little pieces, now still not fully recovered after last Saturday's 20-miler. I remember reading somewhere that it takes 26 days to recover from a marathon, which probably means it takes a good three weeks to recover from 20. A quick rundown of my physical state:
  • Knee problem is not getting any better. Now I am frequently waking up during the night if I roll over and move my leg.
  • I didn't blog about this, but I went to see my doctor two weeks ago about a bad pain in my neck. Turns out I somehow pulled my trapezius muscle (the large muscle that connects the head to the shoulders down the back). He put me on muscle relaxers which actually gave me worse headaches, so I've only been taking them intermittently. I'm not sure what caused this (could be ergonomics at work), but I'm sure my tense running form has made it worse. I wake up everyday with a headache and am taking between 2-4 Advil per day.
  • I have a new problem with the outside of my right foot. I have absolutely no idea what's going on. Maybe bruising of the muscle tissue? I was freaked at first that it might be a stress fracture, but nothing hurts when I massage my foot, so I doubt that's the problem. The pain sets in at the 4-5 mile mark and generally hurts for a day or so following my run.
I took it easy this week, only running once on Wednesday (5 miles) and 10 miles today (in the pouring rain, unfortunate). I'm a little sore but I feel ok. I think another week of light running and some rest will do me good. I'm definitely recognizing the necessity of a full three-week taper (I had considered doing only two) to give my legs the rest they need. I'm not sure what's going to happen on marathon day, but I'm sure I'll cross the finish line, even if I have to crawl.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

3 days of rest

Saturday's 20-mile run completely ruined me, so I've taken the last 3 days off to recover (plus, there was absolutely no way I was going for a run on election night :) The outstep of my right foot was in pain Saturday, Sunday, and most of Monday, which threw me into a slight panic (stress fracture???), but started feeling better yesterday and today is practically good as new. I'm pretty certain that a) running on a slanted trail screwed up my foot and b) I just ran A LOT and it's hard on my body.

Tonight I'm back out on the Burke Gilman for a 5 mile run. I can't believe the marathon is in two and a half weeks!!!

Saturday, November 1, 2008

20 miles

Fu@%*ng A.

Garmin report here.