Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Tendinitis Physical Therapy

Today marks the start of of my fifth week of physical therapy for tendinitis (also tendonitis) in the posterior tibial tendon in my right foot. My physical therapists have used massage, electromagnetic stimulation, and ultrasound to help reduce the inflammation. I've also learned light exercises to strengthen the surrounding muscles. I got a little discouraged the third week of therapy because I wasn't feeling an improvement. I even called to cancel my remaining appointments. One of the therapists called me backed and convinced me to finish out my doctor's script of six weeks. Today, I still have some localized tenderness in the arch of my foot. And the uncomfortable sensation of pulling under my ankle bone when I push off. We use a scale of 1-10 each session to rate my level of pain. If my pain was at a level 10 the day after the half marathon, today it is between a 1 and 2. I worked a trade show in Philadelphia this weekend and spent most of the time on my feet.
I didn't do a lot of sight seeing, but walked the convention center floor a lot and walked across the way to the Reading Terminal Market quite a few times to gorge myself on philly cheese steaks and cupcakes.
I even got a chance to use the elliptical in my hotel gym for a half hour session. Each night I massaged and iced my foot. After all that activity, I expected to have an increase in pain, but it has remained around a level 1, which is an improvement I guess. I think I'm just tired of having pain period. I'd like to get back to my regular running routine, but I have accepted that I may only prolong the inflammation if I do more activity than my tendon is ready for. At today's session, in addition to my regular massage, stretching, and strengthening activities, I walked on the treadmill on an incline for the the first time without pain. I followed up with a compress with my trusty ice pack and hope to be at a level 1 or better tomorrow.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Lung Run 2011

Welcome Margaux Online! This Saturday I attended the Astellas Oncology Chicago Lung Run in Montrose Harbor. I was worried about not being able to participate in this race due to my tendinitis. When I woke up the morning of the race, my foot was a bit sore from the physical therapy session I had a couple of days prior. I decided to try to walk the course. It would be the longest distance I had attempted to run/walk in over four weeks. My sister, her friend and myself arrived early to to race to pick up our packets. The first 500 participants were to receive a tech racing shirt, all registrants after 500 were to receive a cotton shirt. What did I discover in my packet? A cotton shirt. Not cool. I couldn't believe I wasn't one of the first 500. At the gear check, the volunteer made a comment about my race bib number 211, and being an early registrant. She confirmed bib numbers coincide with what number registrant you are. So I decided to inquire at the registration table able being the 211th registrant and receiving a cotton shirt! Thankfully, they gladly exchanged my cotton shirt (which I would have never worn) for a tech shirt that I can use for working out! At the start line, I decided to walk the race and when I started to feel pain, to stop and cut my race short. It's a small race, so there are no start corrals, I started at the back of the pack with the baby strollers so I wouldn't get in the way. I started to feel a little sore around the halfway point, and kind of wanted to stop, but then I figured I would have to walk a mile and a half back, so I might as well finish the course. I finished in a little over an hour. I didn't attempt to run at all. I felt good about going the distance, but terrible about not being able to run! Not less than 15 minutes after I crossed the finish, they started picking up the timimg mats. Yikes. This is my third year participating in The Lung Run. It's a small race, but the one I enjoy the most because most of its participants have been affected by lung cancer or disease. My mother passed from lung cancer in 2007. The race is a wonderful way to remember loves ones lost and celebrates survivors. My sister was the number five fundraiser!

That was pretty cool. They had a personalized sign for my Mom on the race course.
I iced my foot a ton the rest of the day and today it actually feels fine, not any worse than what is was before : ) I'm glad I was able to participate in the run, even if I walked it.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Returning to Running

My first physical therapy session was last Wednesday. The therapist assessed the severity of my injury and showed me a few exercises to practice before our next session. He's confident I will not need six weeks of therapy. Rest combined with therapy, he thinks I may only need 2-3 weeks of therapy. We agreed to follow my doc's suggestion to rest three weeks total and to slowly transition back into running during my the time I'm doing PT. This way, if any pain reoccurs, we can address it during my sessions. Wednesday marks my triumphant return to running! I'm starting out with a whole mile! It will be more like a run walk since I'll have the dogster with me. The weather is cooling off and I feel like I've missed a whole season of running, although its only been three weeks. I have a 5K planned in two weeks. I'm o.k. with doing a run/walk, or walking the whole thing if need be. My foot feels 99% better. I can walk on it without pain. I think it's definitely time to take it for a run and see how it feels afterwards. I plan to ice immediately after my grueling mile long run, to be on the safe side. This is my training plan for the next two weeks. I'm starting off at about 40% of my regular weekly mileage post injury, as suggested in the book I read cover to cover last week, Running Strong & Injury-Free. The author, an RRCA certified coach, suggests resuming training at 40% after returning from an injury after two weeks, and 30% at more than four weeks. If I'm feeling good, I'll continue to build and start training for my next half marathon in December (12 weeks).

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