I’m an addict, I admit it! Before you run off and call Betty Ford let me clarify, my obsession is of the healthy variety – I’m addicted to running.
Up until a month ago I was happily training for my first full marathon. A friend and I planned to travel to Victoria for Fitness Good Life marathon. Hotel reservations were made at the glorious Empress Hotel and airline tickets were purchased. That’s when it happened, every runner’s worst nightmare an injury.
It started off as a slightly achy ankle and progressed to the point that walking was difficult. Initially I hoped that taking a week off would suffice and I would be back pounding the pavement. Unfortunately this was not the case. Two weeks had gone by and while I could now walk without pain running was impossible. At this point not only was I going stir crazy from the inability to run but I was really worried. Dr. Google suggested that I might have a stress fracture (small cracks in the bone) so I promptly booked a doctor’s appointment and got a referral to see a physiotherapist.
The diagnosis – shin splints. Shin splints is the common term for the medical condition called medial tibial stress syndrome (MTSS). A common symptom includes shin pain, which is slow-healing (due to a low blood flow in areas where the muscle meets the bone) and painful.
I had always thought of shin splints as a beginning runners problem but apparently they can also be a result of overpronation or the excessive inward rolling of the foot after landing, so that the foot continues to roll when it should be pushing off.
So far it has been 5 weeks. I have been religiously doing my rehab exercises, massaging the affected area to improve blood circulation which in turn promotes healing and icing. I have also purchased insoles which should help while I wait to get fitted for orthodics.
Last Monday my physiotherapist finally gave me the nod to start running again but with the caution to start very slowly! I had no shin pain but my ankle remain slightly achy. I happily started on Tuesday with 6 minutes, Wednesday with 12, Thursday with 26. This morning I took the plunge and tried 5km. Despite the mild stiffness I can’t tell you how happy it made me to be back at it, I finally felt like me again!
I have a little under three months to prepare for Victoria. I am a little concerned that I may not have enough time but at this stage I am not willing to give up. Worst case scenario I’ll run the half and enjoy the beauty of Victoria!
“Let us also lay aside every encumbrance […] and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us.”
Happy Sunday Everyone!