Ok, so, weekend: failed at workouts, but succeeded at life! Yay? Friday I skipped my workout for the sake of my foot (it wasn’t too bad, but feeling iffy, and I don’t want to push it over the edge). Saturday was a planned rest day, and Sunday I ended up cleaning ALL THE THINGS!!! It was crazy, and also awesome. Somehow I ended up in spring cleaning mode, and I dug into things that haven’t been touched in ages. I cleaned out my closet! I have bags of goodwill stuff! I deep-cleaned my closet, people. This is serious. Actually, I just remembered how I started into this: I need to put Christmas stuff away, and I had a lot of clutter and post-holiday mayhem going on that needed cleaned up before I could get to that. And now…all my Christmas stuff is still out. But it’s out in a clean space! It’s progress, right?
Oh, I also went and saw Zero Dark Thirty on Friday, and…well…wow. Just go see it. I haven’t seen an audience that wrapped up in a story in a long time, and I was right there with them. I was completely tensed up, practically held my breath through the whole raid scene, even though it’s not like it’s a surprise ending. It’s an intense movie, and I thought it was a really well told story, with a minimum of political commentary. The story speaks for itself in terms of moral controversy, etc.
Last important note from the weekend: My evil, evil roommate came home from Trader Joe’s on Saturday with an evil, evil thing. You know how they make ‘butter’ out of everything? Almond butter, apple butter, that kind of thing? There’s a version of that made out of cookies. That’s right, cookie butter (product of the Netherlands!). And if you put that on the cookies that he also brought home, you will DIE. Of happiness. And sugar overload and possibly a heart attack. It’s like creamy peanut butter, if peanut butter tasted like spreadable teddy grahams, and clearly it was meant to be spread on sugar cookies that are already topped with chocolate. Yes, we did that, and I am not even sorry. And this is why I hate my roommate. If you want your family to hate you, too, then you should bring them some. It’s not even expensive. And I really hope this is the only time he buys it for at least six months, because we’ve already taken out most of the jar.
Or, do. Far be it from be to dictate the contents of your vocabulary. Call it a Prussian revolution, if you wish. I don’t judge.
I hesitate to call it anything, frankly. I got so sick of writing about being injured that I quit (obviously). I think I may be beginning to start to show signs of getting better. Maybe. Possibly. But I’m not jumping to conclusions because I may be wrong. Please excuse me while I knock on everything within my reach that is made of wood.
The cost of a year.
It’s not the greatest photo ever, but it gets the general point across. Everything in the picture is something I bought specifically because of my foot injury. Shoes, shoe inserts, a night splint, a metal plate insert, ice packs, wraps, athletic tape, Kinesio tape, even a cheap rowing machine. Not pictured are dozens more rolls of tape, several more ice packs, bottles of ibuprofen, three doctors, two physical therapists, two orthopedic specialists, two x-rays, an MRI, a chiropractor, and a couple other shoe inserts and one more metal plate that I can’t find. It’s been a long effin’ year.
The final verdict (hopefully).
So what exactly is wrong with my foot? Here, let me illustrate with this helpful and informative diagram that I made just for you:
Not that I’m a doctor, mind you. But what the doctors think, when you add it all up (as far as I can tell), is that it’s a combination of tendonitis in the flexor digitorum longus (the tendon that runs from the bottom of your big toe all the way to your calf), plantar fasciitis (the ever-popular source of heel pain in the masses), and sesamoiditis (that little half-circle of bone that’s circled is a sesamoid. When it gets inflamed, it causes pain in the ball of the foot). The biggest problem is that the treatment for plantar fasciitis and the treatment for sesamoiditis are almost mutually exclusive. If I treat one, I am likely to aggravate the other, and that seems to be part of why it was so hard to diagnose – my pain didn’t present like any one diagnosis, and no treatment made much headway on my pain, it just moved it around.
All of the various injuries are overuse injuries, probably aggravated by the fact that I was working my foot out hard in kickboxing after taking a few months off, and because the after-school tkd program I was teaching was in a gym with a hard tile floor. I was doing everything barefoot, and the combination and intensity pushed my foot over the edge. That’s my best guess anyway.
At least now that I feel like I know what’s wrong, and the treatments are actually working in the expected way, I am starting to have both progress and hope, although healing not a fast process by any means. I still need to be on my foot to function, and staying off of it completely would actually make things worse, not better. So I still have to try to find a balance between enough moving around to keep things from locking up, and not doing so much that I cause more inflammation. The see-saw between the ball of the foot problem and the heel of the foot problem is the hardest.
I am able to work out a very little bit now, although by ‘work out’ I mostly mean ‘stand on my foot and move around a little for about an hour.’ But it’s more that nothing, and a lot more than I’ve been able to do in a long time. It makes a difference in my mood and motivation if nothing else.
Let me sum up: vacation. Day 1: walked, walked some more, lots of stairs. Day 2: sore legs, walked even more, and by the end of the day was in excruciating pain and spent all my concentration trying to make the 10 blocks back home without dying. Day 3: didn’t do squat. Day 4: walked a teeny bit. And there were monuments and stuff in there somewhere, I think. And a good supply of ice packs, heat packs, and athletic tape.
Seriously though, had a good vacation, and I saw most of the things I wanted to see…although the reflecting pool is somewhat less scenic as a giant construction zone. DC is a walking city, though, and I wasn’t really up to the challenge – not as much as I would have liked, anyway – but at the end of it I survived and my foot has bounced back well. God bless athletic tape.
Since then I haven’t done much: I celebrated my return from vacation by getting a cold and sleeping a lot. But that may have been just as well. My foot is slowly but surely getting better, and at this point I’m beginning to have hope that I might recover before I go batty. er.
So, not to get to personal, but my butt hurts. I’ve been meaning to get a new bike seat, adjust it, get bike shorts, all that good stuff, but what fun is that? It was almost 70 degrees today for pete’s sake! In FEBRUARY. So I went out for a ride, and it was glorious.
I headed to a different trail than I’ve ridden the last two times – requires a little more highway riding to get there, but it’s flatter and a change of scenery. And it was gorgeous today – so gorgeous. The whole time I was riding out I had this nagging voice in the back of my head: “the wind is at your back. You have to ride back. Into the wind. You know you have to ride back, right? You have to ride back into the wind.” Needless to say, I did not listen to this voice, the pain in my butt, or anything but how amazing it was to be out in a t-shirt.
So then, I had to ride back…That part was less fun. I made it, but there were a few rest breaks, and a lot of wind to compete with, and of course the only hill on the whole ride is a block and a half away from my house. So I was a little wobbly when I got back, and I’m a bit sore, but you know what? Totally worth it.
…side note: I mapped my first rides the other day, and they came out to about 2ish miles. Peanuts, I know, but it’s the first time I’ve ridden in years. Today’s ride? 7 miles. Note that I do not map these rides BEFORE I go on them, like a normal sane person. What fun would that be? So I inadvertantly almost tripled my mileage.
Tomorrow I’m not sure what I’ll do, it’s legs and back day but I think my plan of staying off my foot is a good one and I should stick with it. But I’m not sure if I can go crazy with the biking or not…walking the dog, anyone? Or maybe legs and back without all the moves that hurt my foot, which is only, you know, practically half of it. Maybe half of legs and back AND walking the dog will count?