Thursday, May 6, 2010

The Long Road to Recovery

This has been the most awful experience of my life!  Well, that may be exaggerating, but it's a really close second.  I haven't posted in a while because there's been pretty much nothing to post about.  The injury thing leaves my life a little boring right now, and I'm generally in a depressed mood about it.  I do have some updates, though, and I might be able to better explain what's going on and how it's going to affect my summer.

I don't know exactly what is wrong with me.  I haven't seen a doctor to get a diagnosis.  I believe I have an achilles tendonitis or tendonosis or something like that.  Because I ran on this injury for over a month, long runs and all, I ended up making it a lot worse than it probably should've been.  Instead of taking a little time off to heal, I kept running and now I have been off for about 6 weeks.  I mean, I didn't even go that long during the winter without running, and I had a horrible winter of not running, lol.  So, the achilles thing turned into an ankle thing, because well all those things are connected in there and I guess all that stress on my achilles affected my ankle.  As soon as I started taking time off, the achilles pain went away, and I have just had this nagging sensation above my outer left ankle.  Dorsiflexion makes it obvious that something is wrong, and my ankle and achilles have been very stiff, particularly in the morning.

The whole time I have been off, I have been cross training.  Stationary bike and stairmaster.  Well, I decided that since I was stuck at "almost better", I was going to stop cross training all together and see if I got any better.  At the same time, I went to see a physical therapist, who is also a runner.  His name is Craig, and he is about 45 minutes away, but he offered to take a look at it for me.  He immediately told me I had really tight calves and that's not good for a healing achilles.  He sent me home with several calve stretching exercises to do twice daily and told me to ice it.  Withing 3 days, I felt 100% pain in my achilles or my ankle!  Craig is amazing and I was so happy!  I decided to go for a test run, and I stretched really well, ran 1 mile, stretched again, and ran 1 more mile.  I had absolutely no pain or sensation of an inury doing the run!  I was healed!!!

Then, I went to sleep and woke up the next day.  And what happened?  I woke up with a pain in my achilles!!  **!#$*$*#*!!!  I was so heart-broken, it's ridiculous.  On the good side, I didn't have any ankle pain.  I left a message for Craig to call me back, and when he did I broke down wining and crying, lol.  I hope he couldn't tell I was crying a little, but he probably did.  He told me not to worry and at least I didn't have any pain during my run.  He suggested that it may take a combination of doing a lot of little things to get me all better.  He recommended some Sugoi compression socks, which I should get tomorrow.  He also recommended me running 1/4 mile at a time and walking, and slowly building it, instead of running 1 or 2 entire miles at once.  He told me not to give up and to be patient.  I felt a little better.

Well, the very next day I woke up with absolutely no pain in my achilles!  I was so excited again.  At least I only hurt for one day, lol.  Then, I made a mistake.  I decided to workout, and did 30 minutes on the stationary bike and 15 minutes on the stairmaster.  As soon as I finished the stairmaster, I realized what a mistake that machine was for me to use.  Then I realized that I had been cross-training on that thing the entire time and that was probably the reason my ankle wouldn't heal!  The stress of the stairmaster motion was hurting me the entire time and I didn't realize it until I was almost all the way healed and used it again, lol.  This has been the most difficult thing to figure out!!!

So, here is where I am.  I have another physical therapy appointment tomorrow.  I am still stretching and icing.  I'm going to wait till I have absolutely no pain for 3 consecutive days, then I'm going to do another test run, of 2 quarter-mile repeats with a walk in between.  If I wake up the next day without any achilles pain, I'm going to do it again, adding on another 1/4 mile.  I planned on starting my 16 week training plan for the CDR on May 17th, but I don't think it's going to happen, and my training plan may be cut short.  Only time will tell.

1 comment:

  1. It sounds like you're figuring out what keeps making the pain flare up, which is good. Have you tried the elliptical? That's what I was told to use when I had some sort of foot related tendinitis. I hope you feel 100% soon - I know injuries are such a pain. Take it easy, Tammy!! You gotta get better for our future half marathon!!