I’ve been training for 9 months, 5 and 6 days a week, coming from 2 months of zero running and nearly killing myself to get here (which, to be fair, is how I like to train), I’m 10 weeks off my target marathon and I’ve landed a pretty major injury.
For a week or so I’d been moaning to Wendy about sore heels. I thought it might be the new slogging trainers I bought, they are made to be everyday trainers so very durable. The first run in them felt like running in boots. Stiff boots. Possibly boots with wooden insoles. (They don’t feel so bad now.) Then I switched back to the Advanced Marathoning training plan, which takes no prisoners. I did a 15 mile run at “marathon pace +10%” which is 7.30m/m for me. I went to work and every time I got out of my truck it was taking me a few minutes of limping around, shuffling little steps, until my feet started working again. That is definitely not right. I had a look and Doctor Google said it’s clear cut Plantar Fasciitis. It some sort of nerve or tendon or something that runs along the sole of the foot. It gets inflamed and can be pretty damned uncomfortable. The treatments are all about rest and stretching. The first one I read said it can take from 2 months to a year but it should clear up completely. Obviously that’s no good for me.
I gave it 3 days rest and had a catastrophic failure of mojo. I was ready for throwing in the towel. Not just on my sub 3 challenge, but running altogether. It was weird. I just felt utterly beaten down and sad. Happily that passed.
The causes seem to be; worn down trainers not providing enough shock absorption (they say change trainers are 400 -600 miles, I’m on 573 for my old everyday pair. They have been sacked off.), being obese (nope), over training (well duh!), and not warming up before training (guilty).
So today I went out for a test run. I wore soft trainers, did plantar massage and stretches, warmed up, kept the pace to the slower end of the ‘marathon pace +10-20%’, and did as much of the run off tarmac as I could. Basically everything I could do to try and manage the damage. I did 18 miles at 7.54 m/m. And it’s very tolerable. You don’t feel it while you are moving. It’s when you stop and it sets. Then you start to move and you really feel it. However, it was a test, and if it’s no worse than this, I can live with it for 10 weeks. Then I can rest up.
I was gutted when I thought I was going to have to quit, then nearly depressed with a blue funk, so this is great. It’s sore, but it’s not what you’d call painful. I need to see how it feels tomorrow when I’ve slept on it, and after work, but so far there is still hope. I’m going to carry on with the Advanced Marathoning plan, which is a 6 day a week plan, but two of the days are just ‘5 miles, recovery’. I’m going to set my turbo trainer up in the shed and just do an hour’s pushbike workout on those days. That will keep my fitness going but mean I’m only running (hammering my hoofs) 4 days a week. This could still work.