Monday, April 4, 2011

A setback and hope

I was such a good girl all week long and stuck to water jogging and biking and lifting. Even though the weather was GORGEOUS toward the end of the week and I really wanted to be out there running in it. I was a good girl and tortured myself in the pool. I had Heather for company on Wednesday and it made for not so boring of a time. And it was fun to catch up with her like we used to do on our runs. I could really complain about our pool and their policies, but I'm trying to stay positive, so I won't. I won't tell you that I had to beg to be in the deep end and that they were really annoyed with me. I won't tell you that their hours suck and our city needs to get on the ball and build a community center. And I definitely won't tell you that they use so much chorine that my quality Athleta swimming suit is already affected.
So after I had been a good girl all week my foot really was feeling so much better. In fact by Thursday the only thing that still hurt was my big toe. And it felt like it was just in the joint. It almost felt like it needed to be popped. Like it was stiff. I was very excited. Friday I took my feet for a little test run of 3.5 miles with just that slight pain in the toe. It never got worse and by the end of the day still felt the same. I did go hiking Friday night, which may have been a mistake, but it was with my hubby on our date and we did get to watch the sun set which was so beautiful.
I had decided that if it was o.k. Friday then I would attempt my long run on Saturday and call my husband to come get me if it started hurting. Saturday was a beautiful day. I was up early enough to see the sun rise and enjoy the quiet of the morning. I did a 4 mile loop to make sure it was o.k. And it was.


I then headed up the canyon with my friend Jodi to run down it. It was windy but very warm and my jacket didn't stay on for very long. There is a really long never ending uphill that I've never been able to run up all the way without a walking break. Well even with the wind, I relaxed everything and didn't fight the hill or the wind and just cruised up that hill. I was pretty dang excited when we reached the top and I didn't have to stop! We ran downhill the rest of the way to my little city and ran over to her inlaws house where I filled up my water bottle to make my way home. By that time my second toe was aching, but my big toe and the rest of my foot was good. I wound my way home to finish 18.5 miles. Once home I stretched out that toe the best I could and then iced my whole foot.


It was a busy day. My 3rd child, Caroline had her 10th birthday, we listened to Conference, went to Diary of a Wimpy Kid 2, and had a little party at night. By the end of the day, the top of my foot was in pain again. The toes were fine, the pain just moved up. And thus began my weekend of self pity and ice. I know I just need to rest more. And I found this article that I think describes the root of my problem. Tight calves. I had assumed that since I'd gotten over the initial shock to my calves and hadn't been sore for months, that my calves had gotten used to the stress that barefoot and minimalist running puts on them. As I think about how tight my calves feel in spin class while standing with high resistance or how tight they are at the beginning of a run, I have concluded that they might be a more used to it, but that they are chronically tight. I have GOT to be more diligent on stretching them and rolling them. I think this is the root of my foot problem.
I am hopeful today. Sunday I was listening to Conference again and this talk spoke to me. He talked about tribulations and trials in our lives and as I sat there feeling sorry for myself with ice on my foot, everything he said related to running to me. I know it probably shouldn't have, but it did. He talked about how we often see marvelous blessings on the heels of great tribulations. He talked about having to put in the effort to see results. I truly believe that. As marathons have come and gone and I've been disappointed, I have KNOWN deep down that they were just stepping stones. Someday I am going to feel accomplished and satisfied with my result. And it will be because I didn't quit. I kept going even though at times it seemed like a waste of time. I really believe that this is just a small setback in learning how to run right. I have some tweaking to do. And I am encouraged as it feels so much better today than yesterday. And I have a plan for getting completely better. It includes a lot of cross training and a lot of stretching.


Monday: full body weights, 70 minutes pool running
Tuesday: abs, 60 minute spin class
Wednesday: 70 minutes pool running
Thursday: 60 minute spin class
Friday: 3.5 mile run outside in gorilla feet, full body weights
Saturday: 18.5 mile run outside in gorilla feet

22 comments:

trisha*n said...

i LOVE your optimism! And that talk was great at conference. Thanks for sharing :) Keep your head up!

Julie said...

Did you guys like Diary of a Wimpy Kid? We went last weekend and we were rolling on the floor with laughter. Jack relates to the wimpy kid :-) Mai relates to Rodrick ;-)

Tara said...

Have you tried rolling your foot over a tennis ball? It usually helps me when I've got foot problems.

Heavily chlorinated pools are the worst. I grew up swimming and play water polo and it was always miserable to be in pools like that!

Emz said...

I'm with Tara - use the tennis ball!!

The photos are just simply awesome!!

B.o.B. said...

Sounds like we may be in the same boat. Me with the bike and you with the injury. I'll follow your lead and stay positive. I know we can both do it! Rest up and when you get back you'll be better for it.

Sam {fitnessfoodandfaith.blogspot.com} said...

it sounds like you're getting there!! i'm so glad you were able to go for a long run...praying the pain goes away completely!

bobbi said...

So glad your feet are feeling better - I loved your description of how you felt when you cruised right on up that hill without stopping - GO YOU!

Rachelle Wardle said...

Good job with the 18.5 miles. That is awesome! I really hope your feet start feeling better. Keep up the positive attitude and I know things will work out.

I truly admire your optimism and attitude Jen. Have a great week.

Julia said...

Jen...I am always impressed by you. You are so positive and honest. I can relate when you say that you find messages in other things that then seem to relate to running. The past couple weeks I would be on a strong positive streak and the crash into the depths of some nasty self-pity. Then...just as I thought things would never get better...something would pull me out that was completely unexpected. Its so crazy how little messages like that come around when we least expect them but really need them.

I am always grateful for your comments...thanks again for the ones today. My feet still bug me but the doctor was a good peace of mind on Friday...at least I am not doing anything wrong and I am optimistic that these orthotics will help! I have been so appreciative of the support I have had the past few weeks. You have been a GREAT support to me...through your comments and sweet email message. I missed you this weekend at the meet-up. My brother got accepted to Utah State's biometerology MS program and may come in for a last minute campus visit before deciding...if he does...we should meet up for lunch or something :)

Anywayyy...hang in there. You really cannot go wrong listening to your body. You are doing ALL the right things for you and being incredibly strong while you are doing them. Hang in there. I am thinking about you :)

OH! and way to rock the 18.5 on saturday :)

Jess @ Blonde Ponytail said...

18.5 miles! That's fantastic--sounds like a tennis ball will make an effective (and cheap) tool for that foot. The pictures are gorgeous and it looks like you had some great weather to run in!!

Your attitude rocks Jen!!!

zapmamak said...

yup. I know about tight calves. I'm a chronic tight mess myself and find if I lay off stretching even for a couple days I start to tighten up again. I have to be really diligent about stretching and rolling.

Lindsay and James Cotter said...

One step at a time, one day at a time, right? Keep that positive outlook. I think positivity heals us all, really!
:)
LC

misszippy said...

I think it's mostly good news. You are so smart to dig deep and look for the root cause and then do what you need to do to take care of it.

That run looked gorgeous!!

The Hungry Runner Girl said...

COME to my pool and swim with me, we would have an amazing time together. That talk was AMAZING!!! I am worried about you but I am so glad you are finding the root of the problem in your calves so that you can fix your foot problem. I think we need to go on a date together and vent and hug each other and eat ice cream. GREAT workouts this week and you look absolutely BEAUTIFUL!!! Ogden is coming up and I am thrilled for you, you will do amazing!! Are your tummy issues still doing better? I LOVE YOU!! Thank you for all of your kind words and support, it means so much to me!

Alma said...

I'm glad your foot is getting better & that you were able to get your long run in. 18+ miles is pretty darn impressive while dealing with foot issues! Just keep stretching, icing, and ROLLING that foot and those calves.

Mamarunsbarefoot said...

Feeling sorry for yourself?? Now I'd never do that! Cough.. cough.... I'm in a constant state of WHY LORD!!!! Sigh.. Great job on your run girl!! Love your shoes!!! :)

Joanne said...

You had a good 18 1/2 in spite of the toe issues. Hope they get 100% better soon.

Stephanie said...

"He talked about how we often see marvelous blessings on the heels of great tribulations."

How true is that! If we are fortunate enough to do so that is! Positive thoughts your way!

Korin Lopez said...

I just love your blog! I love when I hear a talk from Conference that speaks directly to my heart! I just think you are awesome!

Jogging with Fiction said...

I'm with Tara, I've been using a tennis ball lately for my foot. My dog doesn't appreciate me stealing her toys, but oh well!

LAPT said...

GOOD LUCK with the stretching and the cross-training. I'm sad that your foot is bothering you, but I have a feeling that you'll overcome this issue and only get stronger!!

I'm glad you liked the music... we should do another round of USB swapping -- I have some great country music and random jazz, too!

Teamarcia said...

You have such a great attitude about all of it. I know you'll get to the root of it and rebuild. Thing 1 is turning 10 soon too. Cannot believe it. Need to think of something special to celebrate.