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The Going Forward Running Plan, such as it is

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Today was a PT appointment. The regular physical therapist was off, but the other PT from the practice is also very good. We talked about how my feet are doing, and how the run/walk intervals went.

The guidelines for getting back to running are fuzzy.

PT: I can't tell you for sure how much to do, because you live with your feet and I don't.
Me: You mean I have to find out how much is too much by making mistakes.
PT: That's about right.
Me: I'm getting pretty tired of that.

Whining aside, I got some qualitative discussion that edges me toward the next thing to try. It might not be 1 minute intervals, it might be too many of them. 10 cycles of run 1, walk 3 was clearly too much. Maybe 9 cycles was also too much, or maybe running again on one day's rest was too soon.

Should I try again this noon? The PT asked how my feet were after the workout at the appointment, which ended with single leg calf raises. Standing still, they felt neutral. Walking, I could feel a very small pain on the top of my left foot. Verdict: Wait a day or two.

So, that's the plan. No running today, because I worked the arches hard enough in PT. No running tomorrow, because it won't fit in my schedule very well. Saturday, check to see how the feet feel and what the weather forecast is like, then make a decision between trying intervals Saturday or Sunday.

And when I go back, strictly limit the first time to 6 cycles of run 1, walk 3. See how the feet react to that, and modify the followup if needed.

Next PT appointment is Tuesday. I should have one and only one session of run/walk intervals before then. At that appointment, I need to talk to the regular PT about how things went and what the go-forward plan is.

Also today, I got an email ad for a 5K on October 19. It's affordable. It's a Saturday, so I don't have to skip church. It's run by the same people who run the Thanksgiving Day 10K I really like. It's really, really attractive. And it's an opportunity for me to be patient. I should not register before I know I can run 5K without ill effects the next day, because there's no way I'm going to slack off in an organized race.

Patience. Maybe I'll be able to run 5K by the end of September, and register for this 5K before the price goes up for later decisions. And maybe I'll need to skip this one. There will be other races.

Patience, Kevin. Getting all the way better is more important that going back quickly.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    I can see why you'd be frustrated with the PT's piece of advice...Trial and error- really? What are you paying the PT for then? You can figure out trial and error by yourself. You went to a professional because you wanted something more concrete than "figure it out by making mistakes". On the upside, at least they are giving you strengthening exercises which will hopefully help in the long run. I've heard those exercises really do work so keep at it and you'll be running 5Ks again before you know it.
    1606 days ago
    Hang in will run again!
    1608 days ago
    Hang in there! You will run again.
    1608 days ago
    Good luck!. You can make it work!
    1608 days ago
    Definitely time to practice patience in order to get back to normal.
    1608 days ago
    It's tough to be patient. But: I wish I had been more patient and was still able to run.

    The kind of personality that really enjoys running may be the kind of personality that's not good at coping with injury: what I suspect about myself anyhow.
    1609 days ago
    Sending "encouragement karma". I am not patient with recovery, so I feel your frustration. I know after the triathlon in September, I'll be in the same boat as you with limited running while my foot heals.
    1609 days ago
    Peanut gallery here.

    It might be a good idea to factor in about 10 to 15% more rest and recovery. Instead of seeing how much you can do until you re-injure yourself, why not see how you can recover without the re-injuries?

    How about a little walking in place, better yet, 100-ups. They might help modify your running form to prevent future injuries.
    1609 days ago
    I think PAULOBRY's comment is on target.
    1609 days ago
    I liked what Paul said below... moderating pace may be another way to "ease back in". Yep, patience. Hard one for folks like you (and me, sometimes).
    1609 days ago
    The conversation with your PT sounded an awful lot like the call with the nurse at my Orthopaedic Dr's office. I believe the term she used (as did the Dr when I was there a few weeks ago) was "exercise modification", which is a fancy way of saying "walk before you run"! Of course, with the boot, all I can do is walk!

    Seriously, there is a series of 6 exercises that he provided, and what the nurse said was to do the first one, see how the tendon feels, then move forward. I'm guessing that means one day at a time.

    I had a pretty vigorous swim today, 2nd time this week, and I had no pain after Tuesday and we'll see how I feel tomorrow after today's swim. If all feels well, then I'm going to start with the exercises, with the goal of being able to them all by 9/10, which is when I go back for my follow-up.

    OK, now that I have hogged your blog, best of luck with your "going forward" plan -- I hope we both can start exchanging running times and 5K race results very soon!

    1609 days ago
    Did your review include intensity beyond the run/walk cycles? You motor along at a good clip. I would think during recovery maybe add x minutes per mile to your pace.

    You didn't ask for advice from the peanut gallery, but I think you are taking a risk to enter a race so soon. From my limited perspective, you're a racehorse and will go all out in race conditions.

    1609 days ago

    Comment edited on: 8/23/2013 7:32:32 AM
    it is so very hard to stop when we really know that we had enough, but it is important, and in the long run, you will benefit from it.
    1609 days ago
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