Tag Archives: plantar fasciitis

I’m Still Here

18 Apr

Oh, hey!  I’m still here and still salty to not be running.  Here’s what’s going on (in no particular order):

-I’m still hitting up Flywheel as routinely as possible, though no longer the 6 AM class.  After I got really sick I realized I wasn’t taking very good care of myself and thus have tried to make fewer weekday evening plans and make time for Flywheel in the evenings and on weekends rather than at the buttcrack of dawn during the week.

-My foot felt better.  I got excited!  Then it hurt again.  I then became extremely enraged inconsolably bereft really sad and disappointed and frustrated.  Then it felt better again.  Repeat excitement.  Then it hurt again… and the roller coaster continues…

-I am extremely hesitant to say more about the foot because I’ve gotten so nuts that I half-believe if I say it’s better it will respond by hurting again.  (This injury has messed with me mentally, I swear.)  HOWEVER.  I am planning to run for the first time since January 12th this coming Sunday.  I’m signed up for a 4-miler in the park on Sunday and I am going to do it ’cause (1) I’m sick and tired of not running AND not running races I’ve paid for and (2) it’s only 4 effing miles.  Fingers crossed BIG TIME.

-Boston happened and I teared up a few times already reading recaps!  I love marathons.  Check out my buddy Kristy‘s recap and congratulate her! 🙂  Oh yeah and Boston was so horribly hot this year that they offered the option of deferment until next year, which was really nice of them for sure, but also kind of sucks for me since it means fewer spots for next year and thus, a smaller chance that I will get in.  Yeah, also, I realize I have to actually run a qualifying time to get in, but details! 😉

-And on that note, T and I signed up for my hometown marathon.  It’s in a little under 5 months.  Talk about wishful thinking!  It will be his first, and my 12th.  Here’s hoping I can start training for it soon…

-I FINALLY gave in and joined Twitter.  I still don’t really get it, but why don’cha go ahead and follow me or tweet me or whatever?  I’m @katiesweatylife. (one “s”)

And now, some pictures!

Kinesio tape looks so weird, but for some reason I like how it feels on the sole of my foot.

I was not expecting my PT to do this. Had I expected it, I probably would have worn knee-high boots or pants to work that day. I got a lot of strange looks on the street...

Saturday afternoon at the Queens Kickshaw. Don't mind if I do!

Both the Porter and the coffee were AMAZING. Like, seriously amazing. Get thee to the Queens Kickshaw. It's not that far for you Manhattanites, I swear! Also, T and I split the most delicious grilled cheese sandwich there. No pic, 'cause we ate it so fast! 😉

Also, Sunday morning, I discovered this text in my sent items:

“I want to run forever and be fast as the wind.”

Apparently, wine + beer = very emo and poetic(?) Katie.  The sentiment is definitely true, I’m just not sure I would state it that way unless very overserved.  You’re welcome for that little tidbit, Cookie.  You’re welcome.

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I Would Punch a Baby in the Face To Go For a Run Right Now*

20 Mar

Listen, I love babies.  My niece and nephew (OK, they are 2.5 and 5, respectively– not babies) are the loves of my life.  (I still call them babies.)  Tons of my besties have babies that I adore, including my dear friend Jen, who I am going to visit this weekend.  I’ll be meeting little Molly for the first time, just before her 1st birthday!

This is from Jen's bridal shower-- that's me with Jen (the other blonde) and Cookie (far left) who is also coming to visit Jen with me. That's Emmy on the far right. She isn't coming, because she is a 2nd year medical resident and hardly ever gets to do fun stuff any more. 😦

Anyhow, I’m kidding.  Jen, please do not forbid me from coming.  I promise I would never even think of punching Molly.

But it’s really difficult for me to express how badly I want to run.  It’s been 10 LONG WEEKS since my last run.  It’s been practically 4 months now since my PF diagnosis when I cut back on my mileage.  I feel like a broken record because I KNOW I’ve repeated this information again and again.

Yeah, I’m appealing for sympathy.

Actually, I’m appealing for good wishes for Friday.  Friday is when the PRP is happening.

Whenever I think too much about it, I actually start to feel a bit weak and woozy.  I am trying not to freak out about it because that is not helping at all.  And my doc is making it sound like it’s no big deal.

I’ve consulted some friends, family, and acquaintances who are doctors and Meggie even put me in touch with a doctor who is pretty serious runner and also had PRP for her PF!  (Meggie, you win awesome blog buddy of the year!)  This has all made me feel better about going forward with the procedure.

My dear friend Elizabeth, who is getting her PhD in bioethics, sent me a long and informative email with her thoughts on PRP.  She detailed a myriad of excellent points, including this one, which had not occurred to me but is very valid:

“…because PRP is not a drug, it is not being marketed by pharmaceutical companies out to
make money. Yes, the treatment itself does obviously cost something and someone is making money off of it, but it doesn’t have the likes of Pfizer or other big pharma companies with huge PR and marketing departments
advertising the treatment to the masses.”

*Eliz, I hope you don’t mind me quoting you, but you’re just so darn eloquent.

The overwhelming consensus from my due diligence is that while it may not work, (PLEASEOHPLEASEOHPLEASEOHPLEASE LET IT WORK) it is not harmful.

But OH PLEASE LET IT WORK.

I have experienced a lot of strife from this little foot injury– some of which I’ve detailed on the blog, but a lot of which I have not.  I know it sounds dramatic.  But yeah, not running has been really difficult for me.  Especially since I have been doing just what I’m supposed to.  Plantar fasciitis is the most frustrating injury because it just seems there is never an end in sight, and I have gotten so many instructions that confuse me.

“Try barefoot running!”

“Never EVER go barefoot!”

“Don’t wear flat shoes!  They have no arch support!”

“Don’t wear heels!  They tighten up your calves!”

Etc etc.  People swear by all kinds of remedies, but the most popular ones (the night splint and no running and PT) have obviously not worked for me.  Time to pull out the big guns, er needles.  WAH.

On a lighter note, I watched the NYC Half on Sunday, which was a lot of fun!  Lori PRed and did awesome!  Celia and Josie nailed it, too!  I was waiting eagerly for Lori to pass at 47th and 7th and snapped a bunch of random photos in the meantime.

I don't know these people, but lookin' good, runners!

I was so excited when I finally saw Lori that I completely forgot to take a pic!  Luckily, she sent over this one, in which she looks amahhhhhzing.

Rockstar!

So this weekend, I have to get this little pesky injection out of the way, then it’s off to Charlotte for a girls’ weekend.  And next weekend… well, next weekend I will go spectate another race (one I am signed up for, sigh) and I will do it with a smile and — I hope– feeling as though I’m on the brink of running again myself.  I hope.  I hope.  I hope.  I hope……

*just to further clarify, I would never actually punch a baby**!  Look at this face (my nephew, when he actually WAS a baby.)  LOVE

**the only baby I would actually punch is that f**king Stewie from Family Guy.  I hate that baby.

Another Doc, A New Idea

15 Mar

Hi!

So, my new routine goes a little something like this:  wake up at 5, leave house by 5:20, get on train at 5:30, get to Flywheel for 6 AM class, take said class, walk to work, do 15 minutes on TM (that involves 2 minutes of running followed by 1 minute of walking, for 15 minutes total) shower, and be at my desk by around 8:15.  This is neither convenient nor particularly fun, but I’ve gotten sort of used to it.

However, getting up routinely at 5 AM may just be killing me.  I am so tired.  So very tired.  All the livelong day.  A lot of my friends have been popping out babies lately and I simply cannot fathom that brand of tired.  I try and think of them when I am feeling very sorry for myself and wanting to nap under my desk a la George Costanza around 2 PM.

I'd rather not divulge how many times a day I consider following his lead....

Anyhow… I’ve had a few days this week where my foot pain was nil (which was exciting!) or very low.  However, just when I think the pain is gone, I get a little gnawing reminder of it.  It’s not incapacitating and never has been, actually, but at this point, I just want it to go away completely so I can feel 100% confident about running and not having the PF rear its ugly head and end my running days for good.  I’m trying very hard to be smart and cautious and I’m hoping it will pay off in the long run.  (“long run”– so punny.)  I’ve read some horror stories about runners who persisted in running while they had PF and I do not want that.

My PT has me working on strengthening my hips, ankles, and core.  My right ankle is a big part of the problem, as its range of motion is very low (but has gotten much better!)  My calves are and always have “the tightest calves ever.”  (quote from PT.)  I’m working to loosen them up.  I’m seeing some results (slowly.)  But the foot issue persists.  And I know that despite how little pain I am in currently, it would come raging back if I chose to do a run longer than 20 minutes or so.  I can just tell.

Since I’ve been going to PT so much and reading so much about PF, I’ve formed an opinion that the issue (at least in my case) is not so much with my FOOT,  as it is with my running mechanics– the aforementioned ankle weakness, calf tightness, etc.  By the way, I think my PT is awesome and if anyone is looking for a recommendation, please hit me up.  I like that he takes a holistic approach to it and wants to fix the mechanics issues, rather than just focusing on my foot.  Anyhow, this belief is why I have balked at the notion of expensive orthotics (which obviously focus on the foot) and cortisone injections (which, more times than not, it seems to me, ease the pain, but not the issue.)  I am not interested in easing any pain, since, as I’ve said before, it’s more than bearable right now.  I am interested in getting rid of the PF completely and never seeing it return.

Now that I’ve given this long and rambling introduction… I saw a new doctor yesterday.  I really liked him, as he sat down and asked me a bunch of questions, listened to me, and took a long look at my feet.  He acknowledged that I had been very good about doing pretty much everything they consider to be a conservative treatment– not running, PT, sleeping in the splint, etc.  He then explained that he was fairly certain I had progressed from plantar fasciitis to plantar fasciosis.  That basically means, from what I understand, that my plantar fascia have progressed (or regressed, I guess?) from a point of inflammation to one of degeneration.  No one wants to hear that something is “degenerating” on one’s body and he acknowledged that it sounded scary, but it was very common– especially in runners.  He then did an ultrasound where he confirmed that I was indeed dealing with a case of fasciosis.  He showed me where the tendons had started to degenerate.  Then he told me how he likes to deal with this problem…

He suggested giving me a PRP injection.  PRP stands for Platelet Rich Plasma.  Basically, he would draw blood from my arm, spin it in a centrifuge to isolate the platelets, then inject the blood into my foot.  OK, I’m not a scientist, I don’t really get it.  Also, when I hear that he is going to be DRAWING BLOOD (eeeeek needles) and then INJECTING ME (eeeeeek more needles) I don’t really hear anything else.  Even though T and I love Intervention, I can no longer watch the ones about heroin because seeing needles gives me the willies.  One of my loved ones has to have blood drawn regularly and our family has come to refer to it as a “sparkle test” because too much talk of blood being drawn makes me ill.  (BTW, my code for anything icky or uncomfortable is sparkles and unicorns– picturing those things makes me happy ’cause I’m a girl and stuff.)

Oh hey! Look at that! It's a unicorn! This image has basically nothing to do with the subject matter, but I was getting a bit uncomfortable with all the blood talk, plus I've got a hella huge block of text going on here.

Anyhow, the doc said he had seen some really good results from this.  He said he saw me having a long running life ahead of me.  I asked him what his thoughts were on shockwave therapy and he said, “That’s a really good question.”  He seemed pretty impressed in general with my knowledge of PF and its treatment options and I kind of wanted to say, “Bro, I am OBSESSED with fixing this ish!”  Anyhow, he told me that shockwave therapy was the same idea as PRP in that it also re-injured the area in order to re-inflame it, (again, I’m paraphrasing and have basically no clue what I’m talking about) but that shockwave therapy was done in a series of sessions, where PRP is one injection, maybe two (nooooo), maybe three, (hail noooooo) and in the case of one runner he had done, four.  (For the love of G-d.)  Anyhow, he encouraged me to see another doc and look into it if that was something I was interested in, and I really appreciated his candor.

So, I found out that the injection is not covered by insurance.  And it is, um, expensive.  Not prohibitively expensive, but “Ouch, that’s more than I’d like to spend anywhere but Bloomingdales” expensive.  But I set up an appointment for next week.

Then I obsessively began reading about PRP.  I’m still obsessively reading about PRP.  If you’re curious, this is a good article about it.  It definitely clearly states the pros and cons and the research.  But it’s a year old, so I’m still looking for more research…

But I think I’m gonna do it.  I woke up Sunday morning and it was beautiful outside– warm and sunny and perfect.  I had the entire day stretching ahead of me and I was beside my sweetie.  Life was good.

And I cried.

Because ALL I WANTED TO DO in the entire world was run.  I knew it was ridiculous.  I laughed through my tears.  But I just felt so frustrated and tired of doing everything I’m supposed to do and not seeing results.

I woke up this morning, removed my Strassburg Sock (much easier to sleep in than the boot) and my foot didn’t hurt.  I felt encouraged and thought, “Maybe I won’t do this wack needle thing after all.”  But as the day progressed, the usual dull and irritating pain developed in my foot.  Same as usual.  The difference is that instead of immense, overpowering frustration, now I almost feel like there is a light at the end of the tunnel with this option of PRP.

So I think I’m going to do it.

Thoughts and opinions are very welcome, and congratulations if you’ve made it through this ridiculously long and dry post.

*Oh and in case I don’t get another post in before–  I’m watching Lori and Cheryl run the NYC Half on Sunday and hoping I catch a glimpse of Josie, too!  Good luck to them, and everyone else running!  And GOOD LUCK to my buddy Sara, who is running her first half this weekend– the National Half in DC!!! :)*

Schadenfreude is alive and well in Katie-land…

8 Mar

Check out this little tidbit from Runners World.

…OK, so it’s not quite that extreme.  I wouldn’t say I am actually taking PLEASURE in his misfortune.  I just really like the word (and the concept of) “schadenfreude.”

Reading this made me feel all, “OK, this happens to even the BEST runners.”  Until I got the part where he said he hasn’t missed one run because of it.  Then I went back to feeling angry and surly.

The Cherry Blossom 10-miler is in about 3.5 weeks and since I’m currently at the level of “2 minutes of running, followed by one of walking, for 15 minutes total, on the treadmill” and my foot still does not feel normal, I’m gonna say it’s not looking too promising.

%*#&%^@!!!!!!!!!

On a lighter note, I had a great time in California.  I never thought I would love LA as much as I did.  Laguna Beach is aite, too. 😉

The view from our hotel in Laguna wasn't horrible...

This is a set on the Paramount lot. NYC in LA!

This is the "Toast Coffee" at Toast Cafe in Los Angeles. It contains: steamed milk, espresso, chocolate, and whipped cream. Very delicious and very low-cal, too! 😉

The rest of my brunch was delicious (and photogenic), as well!

That’s all for now.  Despite it being a beautiful day outside back here in NYC, I am in a slightly-better-than-lousy mood, due to the fact that this gorgeous weather feels like a slap in my non-running face.  I don’t care that that makes no sense.  Peace!

Rawr

15 Feb

Yep, having another one of those days today.  My foot hurts.  WHY???  WHYYYYYYY?  Is it because I ran for the train today?  Yes, I ran from my apartment to the train (~5 blocks) because I was about to miss the 5:30 one I need to catch in order to make it to the 6 AM Flywheel class.  I was winded after said run.  Really encouraging.  (Sarcasm.)  Anyway, that was the most running I’ve done in forevah and my foot is rebelling now, I guess?  WILL I EVER BE ABLE TO RUN MARATHONS AGAINNNNNNN???

AHHHHHHHH!

So,  yep, foul mood today.  Also, I am in the “farting is hilarious” camp UNLESS it is when you’re in an enclosed hot room full of others who are toiling away on bikes and breathing heavily.

SSSSSSIIIICK.

Seriously, so rude and disgusting!  I obviously do not know who the culprit was, but consider this my own personal PSA:  farting in a spinning class is really nasty.  Just do your best to hold it in, man.  (Or woman.)

Also, I am going very broke from Flywheel, but at least it is keeping me sane.  (More sarcasm.)

In en effort to make this not a totally angry hater post, here is one picture of 4 things I love.

Bam! Sunshine. Racing. Beer. T.

Mmmkay, sorry for the salty post.  I’ll do better next time.  Now, tell me somethin’ good!

Tattoo You

7 Feb

It’s the name of an album by my favorite band.  It’s also somewhat relevant to a portion of this post.

So, I had a fun weekend in DC with T during which I got zero runs in (which is sad, especially since DC is such a fun city to run in.)

And I got a hell of a lot of these in:

Oh Bell's Two Hearted, I heart you so much. But sometimes you don't heart me back...

And that rendered me pretty miserable on Sunday.  Oops.

But one good thing that we DID do on Sunday was hit up this fun little running store we stumbled upon!  It’s called Metro Run & Walk and it’s in Springfield, Virginia.  We may or may not have found ourselves in the neighborhood because we went out of our way to find a certain restaurant to soothe our hungovered-ness in shame style.  That restaurant may or may not rhyme with “slob heavens.”  Ahem.  Anyhow…

Methinks our pilgrimage to good ole Bobby’s was meant to be, since this little store was so awesome!  It’s small and family-owned and chock-full of great stuff and they were really friendly and helpful in there.  I urge anyone who finds oneself in the DC area to check it out!  T was in the market for some running shoes and the shoe expert there gave him lots of attention and helped him pick out a pair of Saucony Mirages.

I, meantime, was enthralled with the entire WALL of OTC orthotics for my barkin’ dog.  Over the course of the past 65 days, (but who’s counting???) I’ve ordered a ton of inserts and orthotics online, and everything I’ve tried was on this wall, (by the biggies– Spenco and Powerfeet) and then some!  I bought an orthotic by Powerstep and wore it in my little ballet flats to work yesterday.  And they felt good!  They look like this:

OK, it depresses me just a bit that I am now so well-versed on this crap, but I like to think that someday when I’m all recovered and running again, all of this will provide a useful reference for other runners who will no doubt experience this b*tch of an injury  (Not that I wish it upon ANYONE!)

Anyhow, I also bought one of these

I’m not sure if it’s helping all that much, but I’ve been rolling the hell out out of my foot and it kind of gives me that “hurts so good” feeling, akin to that of a foam roller.

Finally, on a much more positive and much less depressing note, I got one of these!  A PACE TAT:

YEAH BABY!

A few things to be noted here.  First of all, THEY MAKE PACE TATTOOS?!?!?!  How did I never know this?  This is the coolest thing ever!  When I ran Columbus this past fall (the only marathon I’ve run with a pace band) I had the thing taped to my cell phone and it looked ridic and was kind of cumbersome.  And it was pretty shredded by mile 21.

Secondly, yes if you’re real good at reading backward, you will see that this is a 3:30 pace tattoo.  I’ve said before and I’ll say again that I definitely want to a run a 3:30 marathon this year (or at least a sub-3:35, but the closer to 3:30, the better, to ensure entry to Boston.)  As I’ve acknowledged before, this is a lofty goal for me, but one I think I can achieve… at least with a proper amount of training.  And that is where it is sadly out of my hands.  Because there is only so much I can do for this PF and I’m pretty sure I’m doing it all.  Have I mentioned that I have plantar fasciitis and it sucks?  Just checking.

Anyhow, so my foot is hurting today.  BOOOOO.  But I have PT this evening, so that should make me feel better.  Also, I got up at 5 AM this morning for a 6 AM Flywheel class on the UES and I think I deserve some props for that.  This is an extremely poor-quality and blurry picture I took with my Blackberry when I was leaving my apartment to grab the train this morning.   The glowing orb furthest to the left in the pic is the MOON.

I also want you to take note, past UES running buddies, that I can and will gladly get out of bed early in the morning and make the trip to the UES for fitness purposes.  Please remember this when I am recovered and running again.

Which I hope is soon.

W’sup with you?  Ever had Bell’s Two-Hearted?  What’s your favorite beer?  Ever seen or used a pace tattoo?  When will my PF GOOO AWAYYY?  (I realize no one knows the answer to the last one, but I’m posing the question anyway since it’s always on my mind.)

Surf City, Here We (Don’t) Come!

1 Feb

So, I felt a stab of sadness when this email arrived in my inbox yesterday.

Yeah, I’m still signed up for this race, since I already canceled my entry and deferred LAST YEAR (due to, as mentioned in previous posts, a family member’s hospitalization.)  Surf City was awesome to let me defer for one year, but I didn’t want to push my luck a second year.  So if anyone is interested in running in my place, it’s all paid for and stuff.  You even get a sweet medal, for those of you who are into that sort of thing. 😉  (Check out this post from one of my favorite blogs if you want to read about the argument for and against medals.  I never even knew such an argument existed!)

The medal that, for the second year in a row, eludes me. Sniff Sniff.

Anyhow… yesterday, I got straight up pi$$ed.  Like, so pi$$ed, I had to go into the bathroom at work and calm myself down because I really wanted to throw things and punch things.  For those of you who don’t know me, this is not normal Katie behavior.  I am generally pretty chill.  But my foot was hurting and I could not, for the life of me, figure out WHYYYYYY.  I haven’t run in nearly 3 weeks.  I hadn’t even done any exercise at all since I ellipticalled it up on Friday evening.  I was wearing comfy, low-heeled boots with arch-supporting inserts.  I WAS DOING MY EXERCISES.  SLEEPING IN MY BOOT.  All that nonsense.

I informed my PT about my aching foot and my general frustration yesterday evening.  (I used the word “frustrated,” because “straight up pi$$ed and wanting to punch things” makes me sound slightly psychotic– but then again, I’m posting it here on the Internet for all the world to see, so I’m not sure why I bothered editing myself.)  Anyhow, he said that sometimes the stretching and stuff can activate the issue and thus, cause a flare-up.  And that the road to recovery isn’t a smooth, continual upswing, but more of a bumpy road.  This was a relief to hear.  I also asked him if he had seen other runners with this issue fully recover and go back to running like they did before.  He said that he had, and that the runners who have an issue recovering are the ones that refuse to stop running.  To which I replied I thought I should get lots of points for actually stopping running, when it was the last thing I wanted to do!

So… that’s the latest on the foot.  I have a date in my head that I’d like to be running by:  March 13.  That is the day that the spring session of the NYRR class that I took for a year and a half straight begins.  I had to drop out in the middle of the fall session (which wrapped up in mid-Dec) and bow out of the winter session that is currently going on.  And I have really missed that Tuesday night class.  I’m a bit of a sucker for routines and I feel a bit adrift not having the class to attend each week.  Anyhow, March 13th will also be MORE THAN 3 MONTHS since I got the PF diagnosis and for Pete’s sake, that’s a long-a$$ time!!!!!!!!!!!!

Last night after PT, I did something new:  I went to Flywheel!  My very good friend Cookie has been going for a while and talked me into attending a class with her.  Prior to last night, my only experience with spinning had been at my un-fancy gym.  So I never really understood why people raved about what a great and intense workout spinning was.  The runner-snob in me kind of internally snubbed my nose at them, thinking, “What.Ever.  Spinning is not a workout like running is a workout.”

But WOW.  That is not the case at ALL at Flywheel!  The hour-long class was tough and intense and I was dripping sweat by the time it ended.  I LOVED IT.  I mean, my first love will always be running, but while running is breaking my heart, spinning is an OK second choice!  I was a bit intimidated by Flywheel, since it’s fancy and kinda expensive, ($30/session) but everyone was super nice and helpful.  I’m definitely going to lose a lot of money on this, but at least it will be money well spent!  Last night, T commented that he hadn’t seen me so upbeat in, well, a very long time.

What’s up with you guys?  What are thoughts on spinning?  Ever tried Flywheel?  Or Soulcycle?  What are other good studios?  I have a Groupon for 3 classes at The Studio that I’ve been putting off using been hoarding away had for a while, and now I’m kinda looking forward to giving this place a “spin.”  (Har har har.)

Have a fantastic Wednesday!