The pain snuck into my heel quietly and slowly, but after a few days there was no denying that it felt all too familiar. In the fall and winter of 2010 I had to deal with my first serious long term injury since I started running long distance in 1987. Back then I really had no idea how to handle what was happening to the bottom of my right foot and just kept on running, until I could not run any longer. Needless to say the healing process was long and tedious and kept me out of my running shoes for almost four months. In the words of a runner: it was torture!
When the dreaded pain struck a couple of weeks ago, in my left heel this time around, I took note immediately. I still ran for a couple of days just to make sure (don’t ask, the running is an addiction after all) but quickly realized I had to get off my feet. And off my feet and back into the bike saddle I got. And this time I am trying to embrace the fact that I am lucky enough to be able to still ride my bike every morning and go to Spinning and strength classes whenever I feel like it. And I feel like it a lot!
It’s been getting hot here but there is something magical about getting out right after the sun comes up and enjoying a tempo ride on empty, quiet roads with the sun just starting to warm the day. I am loving it! For now! Which is a good thing as I really do not want to deal with this for months again, especially as we are finalizing travel plans for the summer and there is no way I cannot not run while away. So for the next few weeks it is all about healing the heel, icing the foot, bracing the arch, and staying off the pavement. Good times!
Today’s Running Tip: Cross training can make you happy!
For a runner there is nothing worse than having to admit that injury is sidelining you for an indefinite amount of time. This “downtime” however is a great way to explore different exercise routines that do not stress and aggravate the injury more. Low impact sports, swimming, biking, pool jogging, are ideal and ensure that you keep your fitness level up!