Thursday, October 31, 2013

the human foot

broken bones (also called fractures) in the foot are very common. in fact, about 1 out of every 10 broken bones occurs in the foot. here's why.
  • the human foot has 26 bones.
  • divide the foot into 3 parts: the hindfoot, the midfoot, and the forefoot.
    • there are 2 bones in the hindfoot. these are the talus, which is where the foot attaches to the leg, and the calcaneus, which forms the heel.
    • five smaller bones called the navicular, cuboid, and 3 cuneiforms make up the midfoot.
    • the long part of the foot is called the forefoot and contains 19 bones. there is a metatarsal for each of the 5 toes, the big toe is made up of 2 phalanges, and the other toes each have 3 phalanges.
    • in addition, the foot sometimes has some small pebble-like bones called sesamoid bones. These bones do not perform any necessary function and are often called accessory bones.
  • none of these has anything to do with my injury.
went to see the orthopedic specialist after work today.  the nurse who took me back and chittered to me about the injury kept referencing my heel and ankle.  i explained that neither my heel nor my ankle hurt… more than once.

when the doctor came in she did THE SAME THING!  asked me about my heel pain.  i re-explained that there was nothing wrong with my heel.  then she asked me about my ankle pain.  i re-explained that there was nothing wrong with my ankle.  i explained to her that the pain was in the topside of my foot on the left side.  she looked surprised.

she then asked me about my running and i explained to her when i injured my foot, how i injured my foot, as well as how i continued to use the offending appendage after hurting it.

she asked me again about my ankle.  *sigh*

we went around and around in a rendition of "who's on first"  (click the link so you understand… especially if you're under 30).  

once we got everything squared away she determined that it was not the fracture in my heel (yes you read that correctly. i have a fracture in my heel that doesn't hurt and i didn't know was there) causing me pain but overuse of the tendons. the peroneus brevis or the peroneus  longus.  otherwise it could also be the extensor hallucis brevis tendon because where that red box is… well, that's where the dummy dum dum pain is.  clearly no one really knows so i'm just going to forgo running for 4-6 weeks and hope that everything will be healed by the time december 8th and the santa hustle rolls around. what a pain in my ass.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

being broken really blows but homemade pizza is the bomb!

i got the call from my doctor on the way home from work today.  i was actually walking into walmart to purchase dinner supplies but i'll get to that later.  so he tells me that i have fractured my foot.  haha!  well not actually all that funny but funny because i've been using said foot pretty close to normally since it happened over a month ago!  almost 2 months ago now… bummer.

so let's just get this straight… i ran 89.96 miles between the 10th (when the actual injury occurred - i was wrong about it being the 12th) and the 28th of september when i ran the brewers half.  after the 1/2 my ankle was feeling sore so i decided to not run the whole week between the 1/2 and the colorama.  it was still feeling pretty awful on the 5th (which is when the colorama was) but i taped it and decided to run anyway.  if you recall THAT went well.

so last week thursday everything was feeling really good.  no pain anywhere so i decided to do a short 6 miles just to feel things out and see how everything was.  i decided to do this because of the race i have coming up on saturday and i really didn't think that i should not have any training runs between the two… again, bad idea.

which brings us to my phone call from my doctor today.  he said the x-ray showed a fracture near my heel as well as some "muddling" in the heel area.  he is sending me to the ortho tomorrow and was saying that because the injury is so old a boot might not be worth doing anymore.  he didn't say i couldn't run on saturday but he strongly indicated that i would be extending my healing time (possibly considerably) by running on a fractured foot.  today it still hurts from the run last week.  not a lot but enough to cause me pause about running in the race on saturday.

i'm really awful at inactivity.  i've been sleeping so poorly and i'm going nuts just sitting around eating bon bons all day!  jokes… i don't eat bon bons all day… i do eat a lot more candy when i'm not running and i do eat that all day.  bummer for me.

i've put on 5 lbs since i had to stop running.  this really doesn't matter in any way at this point except in that if i keep that up it absolutely will matter!  i NEED to run!

in other news i made the BEST pizza today!  there's a restaurant in downtown milwaukee that i love love love called transfer pizzeria/cafe this is notable because this afternoon i decided i wanted to know what was in the white garlic pizza sauce.  i googled it and an article appeared which showed me EXACTLY how to make it.  in said recipe the author talks about transfer pizza!  it was meant to be!

so i printed out the recipe and decided to make the pizza.  it turned out amazing!  i will definitely be making it again.  the only thing that wasn't homemade was the crust because i simply didn't have THAT much energy!  i think the next time i make it i will make the dough too…

tomorrow i find out whatever there is to know about my foot.  thank goodness i have yoga!  i think i would go absolutely nuts just doing NOTHING!  

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

september 10th you are, decidedly, not my friend

welp... left work an hour early yesterday to go see my amazing doctor. the visit went as i expected... he probed the areas along the tendon on the outside of my foot to determine where exactly the pain was localized.  i explained what i've done (as opposed to not done) from the 10th of september until yesterday and he set me up to go have an x-ray just to make sure nothing was fractured or broken.  seeing dr. thomas really took a very short time and we talk A LOT!  then i drove over to CDI in waukesha.  it's really just a hop, skip, and a jump from the doc's office and on my way home so i thought i'd be done pretty quickly... WRONG!

i was in the waiting room for the x-ray for 45 minutes and then there was some confusion about what exactly my doctor wanted an x-ray of.  so it took a bit of time.  once the tech did the x-ray tho'... then i was out of there in a flash.  now i'm just waiting to find out what the results are.

i have the bergkonig mountain king run in lapham peak on saturday (just the 5K) and i intend to run it.  my doc and i discussed possibly taping the offending area of the foot which i will likely do but i don't know how much help it will be.  since i ran that 4 miles last week in around an 8:25min mile i think i'm good for a 5K.  i'm just hoping to cut myself some slack on my time.  i don't expect that i can run uphill in lapham at a 9min pace but that is my goal.  last year the winner in my age group did it in 27:22 so my goal is to meet or beat that time.  lofty i know... such is the bane of my over-achieving and competitive existence.  *sigh*

the overall fastest finishing time was 21:28 which there's no way i can even come close to that.  i fear that all my laurels resting for october has greatly hindered my endurance even if it was essential for the health of my ankle.  thankfully my ankle no longer hurts its just this damn foot! 

i have one more race this season after the one on saturday... another 5K on december 8th with one of my favorite people in the world... AND its on her birthday no less!  fantastic!

so... wish me luck on saturday.  i'll let you know how it shakes out.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

not just yet

while that run the other day was amazing and glorious and inspiring… it also hurt.  

i'm not sure what the problem is with my foot.  it is truly disheartening that i cannot run whenever i feel like running (and i feel like running often).  i am not a patient woman.  

i am incredibly impatient.  

i need to see a doctor, chiropractor, and or a physical therapist.  i don't want to be sidelined for long.  i feel like i've been slacking so much by not running for the past several weeks.  logically i know that i need to rest my foot… but i am completely uninterested in being static.  the only time stillness isn't death is in yoga.  thank god for yoga.

Friday, October 25, 2013

finally! i run!

on wednesday i went for a hike in lapham peak with my family.  at the start (while i waited for my garmin to locate the satelite) my family took off ahead without me.  i ran to catch up (more of an acutal jog i suppose) but there was absolutely NO PAIN in my ankle!  i cannot even tell you how exuberating it felt to run!  even if it was only for less than a minute.

i decided right then and there that i would go on a short run the following day.

that brings me to yesterday.  i decided to just do a short run in my neighborhood since there's rarely traffic and lots of hills.  for the first mile or so my body felt perfect.  no pain anywhere... but then.

then my foot began hurting.  this is a lingering issue from when i hurt it running in lapham back on september 10th.  it hurts in a weird way tho'... sort of like a bone in my foot is out of place and if i could only "crack" it chiropractor style... it would feel perfectly fine.  the other weird part is that it doesn't hurt when i push on it with my hand.  it doesn't hurt ANYWHERE!  but when i place my body weight on it... that's when the pain exists.

i'm not sure if i should go to a physical therapist, a chiropractor, or my doctor.  i'm not sure who to call first because it is painful enough that i want to limp but i refuse to do so.

at this rate i won't be running consistently for some time.  such a bummer.

i had a smile on my face for the whole 4+ miles i ran yesterday!  it is my church afterall... the time where i can be alone and reflect on my life and set my worries free.  i need this time to be sane.

good thing i have yoga tomorrow morning. 

Thursday, October 17, 2013


today i want to talk about michael arnstein.

i happened upon a youtube lecture from 2011 and i was smitten.  his view on running... on ultra running... really just makes perfect sense.  i am incredibly interested in finding out as much as i can about what he has to say regarding running and food consumption.  what i find most inspiring about him is his passion.  the passion he has for what he is saying is infectious.  i'm not sure i can get on board with the fruitarianism but... i can absolutely appreciate the passion he has for it.

speaking of this passion... the way he speaks about running touches me deeply.  i find that running for me is absolutely spiritual.  it is calming in a way i've never experienced while doing anything else in my life.  i totally get his take on this.

it is truly motivating and inspiring to read and watch anything i can on other people's experiences with running.  i feel a kinship with runners that i've never felt with any other group of people.  if you get a chance... watch the videos below.  i hope you are inspired too!

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

what's that they say? no pain no gain?

i am not limping anymore today... yesterday i tried diligently to stop all that nonsense.  today... it is much better.  what's funny is that as soon as i got up yesterday morning and realized that i wasn't limping like someone with a club foot i told myself that i could probably run the 10K race i've got coming up on saturday.

um... no.

a little later yesterday i realized that there is truly no way i will be able to run that race... another DNS for me!  weeeee!

so i'm going to yoga instead.  i've falling off the yoga bandwagon and really... i love yoga so there's no reason i shouldn't be going except that i love running more and i'd just rather spend my time running than anything else.  but alas... THAT'S not happening anytime this week so yoga it is! 

i am well aware that cross training is essential to making the body stronger i simply didn't care... i love running and i'd rather run than do anything else.  this fall/winter i'm going to incorporate yoga back into my weekly routine.  it will be good for my brain as well as my body and that is worth it indeed!

so tomorrow i go back to yoga... i'm looking forward to it because i've become quite tight over the summer since i stopped going.  i've also let my package expire effectively losing somewhere around $50 bucks!  i'm a dummy.

sadly... saturday will be a DNS... my SECOND one this year!  i'm pretty bummed about that but considering i really only started running just over a year ago this is probably not such a big deal... just a big deal to me.

Friday, October 11, 2013

the "can't" conversation

today will be my 6th consecutive day without running.  i cannot tell you how truly challenging and awful that is.  letting my body heal is essential to future growth but that doesn't make the time off any easier to bear.  yesterday i tried bending my ankle (you know, in the natural way that one walks) and there was simply too much pain to actually go through with the movement.  *sigh*

i'm pretty sure i'm looking at AT THE VERY LEAST another week of minimal use.  i suppose its a good thing i have a desk job because then i'm forced to be off of my foot most of the day.  i did 15 min on and 45 min off icing all last saturday and sunday while being off my feet the majority of the day and i think that helped a lot. 

i have full range of motion with just a bit of discomfort while not  putting any weight on my foot but as soon as i try to bend it while standing or attempting walking... that's a whole different story altogether.

running is essential to my mood stabilization.  i have always struggled with my mental health and when i began running that CHANGED EVERYTHING!  it has made me a generally happier, nicer, kinder, more thoughtful, and more appreciative person.  i look at the world differently because of running.  i feel included in the world and i feel fortunate to live in and be a full and present participant in the life that has been afforded to me. 

don't get me wrong... i have "problems" but running has changed my perspective on those "problems" to where i don't really say i have "problems" but CHALLENGES.  i mean, problems can be solved but saying that word - problems - indicates something very negative but calling one's problems CHALLENGES implies strength, control, and something that can be overcome with great victory!  i also try not to say that i "can't" do something because that implies a lack of control as well.  i want to be in charge of my life.  i want to own my life.  i want the challenges in my life to be something i work towards changing and not something that overcomes me.  when a person says that they "can't" change something about their life... "can't" get faster, "can't" run hills, "can't" win a race... all of those are misnomers. 

anyone CAN do anything... a person just chooses not to take the steps to attain that goal. 

now that doesn't mean that you have complete control over all aspects of your life or the situation at hand.  your CHOICE comes in with how you CHOOSE to deal with the things which you have no control over.

a very good friend of mine had that "can't" conversation with me a few years back and (at the time) i simply couldn't wrap my head around it.  how is it possible to change one's "can't" to something that one CAN control?  there are a lot of things that are out of our control so i was unable to work out how it would be at all possible for me to STOP saying "can't".  it's not 100% possible but it is possible enough that now i can control most of the way i look at my life.

ok... off the "can't" soapbox now... have a great weekend and i'll do the same (while trying not to be bummed on my BUM ankle).

now, discuss...

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Lapham Peak Colorama 5K

welp... that was a bad idea.

Lapham Peak Colorama (5K) - October 5, 2013
time = 26:51:4 (26:49 official results)
pace = 9:21 (8:38 official results)
placed 3rd in my age group (40-44) out of 17
placed 13th in women out of 121
placed 51st overall out of 229

i got up this morning feeling really great.  my ankle was sore and stiff but it has been every morning since i hurt it so i didn't really give it too much thought.  i did a few stretches to loosen it up and started to prepare for the race.  i have to say that i think the reason i'm not nervous about races is because i generally plan for beating my last time at whatever distance the current race is and focus on that but not on the "racing" part.  in relation to other people.  i am really competitive and of course, who doesn't want to win... but really i just want to be faster than my last time.  so i felt pretty good.

once everyone was fed and ready we drove over to lapham peak.  man i love that place!  the fog was so thick today that the road was only visible for a couple of yards in front of the car.  lapham was no different.  it was super thick, overcast, yet the temperature was pretty even... maybe high 50's or low 60's.  seemingly perfect!  it's supposed to rain today and in fact is thundering as i type this so a storm is certainly on the way!

the race started at 10am and we arrived and parked by 9:30am.  i got my bib & timing chip with no fan fair and who did i see?  an old derby teammate!  marisa!  that was cool because it's been maybe just over a year since i saw her last.  we said our hellos and then it was time for the bathroom.  thankfully there was plenty of time because the only bathrooms available were the regular ones (2 stalls for women) and then they provided 2 port-o-pottys as well.  finished that up and saw my friend jeff!  (this isn't jeff in the pictures below)

max and i BEFORE the race.

got hugs and photos with jeff and then it was almost time to begin.  there was some talking on the mic and then the 1-2-HORN! moving we were!

from the very first step i knew i was in trouble.  it was painful but not so bad... YET.

this race would have been a piece of cake for me if it weren't for my injury and i'm pretty disappointed in my performance.  as soon as i hit the first hill i realized i'd be lucky if i finished.  my ankle was throbbing already!  i made it up the hill and figured i could make up my time on the flat between that and the next one... and i was for a bit. i managed to fly for awhile but then came the next set of hills... they aren't bad but today they were excruciating!  i have been running most of this route 3-4 times a week for weeks... i simply can't believe how painful my ankle was.  i began to walk again.  jeff and i were just inches from each other for about the first 1/2 of the race but then when i needed to walk he went on ahead.  i'm really proud of his performance!  he did a great job.

i ended up walking up a lot of the hills... it was sort of embarrassing.  

by the time i made it to the 3rd mile and was almost home free i was walking quite a bit and crying.  i decided to just put it into gear and finish as strong as i could.  i'm pretty sure i was limping something fierce at that point and there were a lot of grandparents and children passing me at this point... i thought i had done awful for sure.  i was hoping to finish this run in 21:00 or around there... no dice.

i'm pretty sure there was something wrong with my garmin today too because it tracked the race at 2.87 miles and this was definitely a 5K.

when i came into the finish i was just so happy to see the big "FINISH" that i no longer cared that i was in so much pain.  as soon as i crossed the finish line the wonderful volunteers are there to take the timing chip.  i couldn't even stand on my foot it was so painful so the woman there took my timing chip off for me and someone else came to help me out of the way of the other runners.  i gimped my way over to the table with beverages and got a water.  another woman came and helped me over to my friend jeff who was running over to me.  then my husband and son showed up and everyone was clamoring to help me to a chair.  i really love the running community!  someone else found me an ice pack and as i sat there mentally kicking myself in the ass my son brought me some treats and a few other runners asked if i was ok.

later... i found out that i came in 3rd in my age group in spite of my awful performance.  i'm not sure if that says something about the other runners being slow or if it says that i'm a complete and utter bad ass!  i'm going to go with the latter because it makes me feel better to think we were all fast and i just did an awesome job on a bum ankle.  lol!

my time this time compared to last year was slower... 26:49 to 25:35.  not much slower but disappointing none the less.  i will run this again next year because its a really fun race and mostly because i want to smash both of my previous times.  

being injured is one of the most difficult things for me.  i have a hard time sitting still and i just don't want to lose all the work i've done this summer.  i want to continue to improve and get faster and more efficient.  i mean... how am i going to run a marathon and/or a 50K next year if i'm broken?

Friday, October 4, 2013

inspiration, injuries (still), and such...

i haven't run AT ALL all week.  not even a few feet.  my left ankle is really painful to the point that i've been taking ibuprofen every day for it.  i've done some icing (admittedly ONCE) but other than that i've just been trying to let the thing heal by giving it time.  my right ankle hurts a little but not enough to keep me from running.  i figured after a week of rest (which was a considerable challenge all by itself) my ankles would feel better.  it seems to me that they sometimes feel WORSE!  what's up with that?!?

today... 4 rest days AFTER my 1/2 marathon... my left ankle is really starting to worry me.  i'm pretty sure that it's only tendenitis but the hypocondriac in me thinks its something worse. 

tomorrow i'm running a tiny 5K in lapham peak... the lapham peak colorama run/walk & smokey bear fun run.  i'm worried.  i ran this last year and really just want to beat my time but i'm worried that after having taken an entire week off of running my time will be shit.  i suppose that i'll find out tomorrow.

today i read this guy's blog.  he's got 3 new entries up and man... reading other peoples' race reports and thoughts on races really inspires me.  i am really excited for my 5K tomorrow even if i bomb it.  i love love love running in lapham peak.  it is incredibly challenging and beautiful.  i find it very inspiring to run there. 

so... stay tuned for tomorrow's race report and i'll let you know if i totally land on my face or if i PR... let's hope for the PR.