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Trying to put my best foot forward after being Sparkless

Thursday, December 02, 2010

It's been a LONG time since I've visited this site and I feel extremely guilty and disappointed. Of course I've gained back some weight (but not all thankfully), but worse than that I lost my motivation to exercise. So this is what happened...

I can't blame it all on this incident but it was the final blow. Although I wasn't eating perfectly, I was doing well because my Spark friends had introduced me to running. I completed the C25K and ran my first ever 5K last year. I ran 3 more after that and really enjoyed the comraderie of the races. Surprisingly it was REALLY fun! I was extremely slow but I did it. Well last summer I seriously injured my big toe while on vacation in the Keys. The top of my toe had already been bothering me, but this was really bad. My foot was swollen so badly I couldn't wear shoes much less my snorkling fins (which I needed to get the lobster). We stayed in Marathon and my plan to run the 7 mile bridge was absolutely out of the question because I was struggling to walk much less run. It was tremendously disappointing.

After I returned, I waited several weeks and finally went to a podiatrist. After my xrays, I learned I chipped a bone in my big toe, one bone is slighly under the other from being jammed and I have osteoarthritis in the big toe joint so the bones are rubbing. The top of my toe looks like a shark fin and that's what rubs on the top of my sneaker. I got a cortisone shot and was told to stay off it for 4 weeks (no running or walking). So now it's been 2 months since running.

Four weeks later during my follow up, the podiatrist told me I shouldn't run and should take up cycling or something with less impact OR do a surgery where they reconstruct my joint. For the next several months I didn't exercise because I was frustrated and, frankly, ticked off. I finally found an exercise I enjoyed and I'm told not to do it anymore. Finally during the week before Thankgiving, I put on shoes with a big toe box and tried running again. Afterwards I iced my toe and took an aspirin, but overall it wasn't too bad. I am considering starting slowly and see what happens. I might even restart the C25K again (maybe start with Week 5 or 6) though. Of course that encouraged me to restart Spark.

Instead of dwelling on my huge gap in time, Spark enabled me to literally "restart" by changing my start date and goals. That really helps me to not feel like a total loser, so that's great news! I have no idea what I am going to do about my toe long term. I'm hoping if I lose some weight, my toe won't hurt so badly. The doc offered another cortisone shot, but I'm going to wait and see what happens.

Are there any runners out there who have toe problems? Any tips on what I can do to keep running without further injurying myself? The podiatrist was anti-running and said runners feet are a mess.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Welcome back!! Sorry you haven't been able to exercise, but it sounds like you were doing what was needed so that the problem wouldn't get worse. I haven't had any toe problems so I am no help. The best I can say is what you already know. Gradually rebuild to your previous levels and if at anytime something just is not working go to the doctor and/or try something different. Maybe your doctor can refer you to someone who specializes in sports medicine who would know techniques you can use that might help. I'm sitting here picturing an itty bitty toe sized weight to help strengthen a toe-lol!! But maybe a certain shoe or taping your toe a certain way or something. Good luck and happy running, hopefully pain free!
    2730 days ago
    I'm sorry your toe is giving you so much trouble. It is very disappointing to not be able to exercise since it's such as important aspect of the healthy lifestyle. I'm not a runner so I don't have an suggestions to help you but remember we Sparkers are here for you. Have a good day and good luck. emoticon
    2731 days ago
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