I went to see the physio tonight. That in itself was a tale of derring-do. The weather forecast a few days ago was of 20% chance of rain for my appointment at 17.00. By today they’d changed to to 95%. It was awful. Rain, standing water, spray, and horrendous traffic. I ended up running late so I was forced to fly through the traffic even in less than ideal braking conditions. Also much reduced visibility as my glasses were misting up. It was a bracing ride.
Anyway, made it, if five minutes late. I sent Wendy a text (“Alive”), as she was sure I was going to die on the way.
The Physio, Adrian, then asked me a bunch of questions, then mauled me for an hour and 20 minutes. It turns out my left calf is 1½cm smaller than my right, I have some numbness on my left foot, and he isolated the pain by twisting my foot then raising my leg. Twisted, fine. Twisted and raised, sore.
He thinks it’s a trapped or damaged nerve. Either in my knee, bum, or lower back. Most likely it’s my knee as it started just after that time the back end of my motorbike slid round in the wet and I slammed sideways into a van. He said the direct impact could have damaged the nerve. It seems the smaller calf could be due to less signal or blood flow (or something. It was a symptom of nerve issues and it made sense at the time, but now I’ve forgotten.) As is the numbness and the fact that the pain only kicks in when the nerve is stretched.
He has given my 3 easy exercises to try to loosen up the nerve. If that fails I have to try and get a conductivity test at the hospital. Just like testing an electrical circuit. Jab needles in each end of the nerve and pass a current through each stretch, where a circuit loses current you’ve found the problem. That sounds like a whole heap of fun.
The good news is there is no structural damage to my foot. The foot pain is a symptom, not the cause.
I don’t know if a trapped nerve/nerve damage is better or worse, in terms of healing. But at least it seems to be the right answer. He said the pushbiking inflaming it could just be overextending my foot in the stroke. I’ll try and adjust my bike position. He said that pushbiking should actually be good for me. I had got my eye on a rev and rip scooter for riding to work. Automatic gears so just twist the throttle, completely rest my hoof.
Look at it!
113cc of pure adrenaline! 55mph with a tailwind! 130mpg! The latter is genuinely impressive in anyone’s book. Ah well.
After all that I went to pay him. Wendy’s mate has a physio and he charges £80 per hour. I was thinking at least that, but if it sorts it once and for all it’s well worth it. He said “I usually charge £20, is that alright?”
I said “Is that it? You’re undercharging!”
He said “I hear that a lot, but I also hear people glad they can afford a private physio.”
What an outstandingly good egg!
I am contractually obliged to point out he had Christian fish symbols.
I got all excited this morning thinking about a future in which I could run again. I read one article that said that for a sub 3 hour marathon you should be looking at 60 miles per week running.
Camille Herron, a running legend I follow on twitter, has just broke her own American Women’s 100 miles track record. Running around a race track at 8.01 m/m. For 100 miles! She’s 39 years old and ran 100 miles in 13.21:51
Most ultra runners run/walk/run/walk. She straight up ran for 100 miles. Astounding.
Anyway, my point was going to be, I looked up her training regime, she’s run 100 mile every week for the last 12 years. That’ll get you fit, right enough.
I got to thinking. I could, just, fit in a 60 mile week. Even around some 12 hour shifts. It is a matter of, as one motivational book asked, “how badly do you want it?”
I managed a 3 hours 30 marathon on random training, just going for it. If I could heal, be structured and consistent in my training, I could easily batter a sub 3.
If (and it more of an *IF!*) I can heal my hoof I’m going to commit. One goal. I’ll sack off the Leeds 24 hour race for this year and not enter any triathlons. Just running. I’ll ask the agency to try and get me short shifts (no longer than 10 hours) and try to train 6 days a week. Everything else will have to play second fiddle.
The physio was quite impressed with me other than my injury. He said bend over and touch your toes, so I put my hands flat down. He asked if I was double jointed, as that causes a bunch of problems, said no, I used to do martial arts, kept up with the stretching. He was well chuffed with me. He said so many people come to him from sitting behind a desk and he has to sort out their flexibility before their issues.
The other bit of good news is I bought a blood pressure reader to see if I had low blood pressure. I’ve tested it a bunch of times and it says I’m “ideal”. Not in the “average” range, “ideal”. Go my blood pressure! So my other issues aren’t down to that.
Right, that’s it. Just wanted to vent my motorcycle-y trauma and rant about a possible return to running.
One other thing, Adrian asked me what the qualifying Good For Age (GFA) time is for the London marathon. I said I thought it was 3.05. I’ve just looked, now I’ve turned 55 it’s 3.20.
I ran the Chester marathon in 3.30 even though I blew up with a knee injury and lost loads of time at the end. If I can get injury free and get my fitness up I can do that even if I stop for a fag break!
Definitely that’s it.