Archive for the ‘foot pain’ Category

Another 4-day-in-a-row comeback

Thursday, June 30th, 2016

Once again I find myself completing another four runs in four days comeback. Looking at my running records it appears that I took 3 months off, thought that seem awfully long and I may have not recorded a few runs in between. My Garmin watch, as much as I love it, has been giving me trouble again and not recording things properly. My first two runs I did without the watch at all as it was out of juice for the first one and froze on the second after my janky watchband repair fell apart and it smacked the concrete. The third run (actually the second in a row) was a little better and simply took 1.6 miles to record the first mile, so I felt ripped off! But the new Garmin online software allows me to edit my runs, so today I was able to get my numbers where they should have been! The last two runs have been accurate as far as I can tell, so maybe the watch needed to wake up from its slumber too?

I usually start these reboots slowly by running less miles at the start. But this time I jumped right in and ran 6+ miles my first day back. It felt great though my legs were a tad rubbery afterwards. I added two performances to that as well as shoveling and moving bark dust and I was bushed. But after the two performance days I got right back into it and ran my four in a row for a total of nearly 20 miles. The first day of the 4 in a row was super hot and I struggled to finish, but finish I did, well with a few walking breaks. For the last two runs I cut out the extra walking breaks and only walked the hills. I feel pretty good about that. The only real issue I am having is the start of a blister on my left ankle, I’ll live. Bandaids will get me through the next one.

My feet were quite sore for the first couple of runs pretty much throughout. But in the words of my friend Kraig I powered through. I tried to concentrate on having pillows for feet and through meditating on that I was able to deal with the pain. The last couple of days the soreness has lessened quite a bit. Maybe I just need to get them used to the pounding a bit. I am sure they will never be all that happy with the running, but it is good to know I can get myself to deal with the pain and I am really glad to see it lessening.

Today I cut my miles back and ran the canyon, a 3.7 mile run. My time always slows running the meandering path, I often wonder if the trees are the issue. Perhaps some other weird reed vortex is causing problems. Or perhaps I just ran 3.7. Whatever, it was a nice run and good to see the canyon again.

A run

Wednesday, March 23rd, 2016

Well my editor skills are suffering today as I could not for the life of me figure out a post title for this post. Should it have been something witty? Maybe a bad “spring” pun? Ugh, just don’t have it in me today. A day where I don’t have a bad pun in me? I may need to call the doctor.

Today was the second run in a row for me after yet again allowing for another somewhat lengthy running break. For the first part of my break I was recovering from a pulled back muscle, well that’s not really it, more of a pinched nerve? When this happens to me it really puts me down and my entire back seems to get stressed out and painfully tight. My doc has given me a prescription for what I had hoped were muscle relaxers, but really were more a heavy duty anti-inflammatory. They worked pretty well but seem to have lost their potency, the pills are probably four years old or so so I guess it is not surprising. Then I was housebound for a week while my wife was in AZ (don’t ask it is how we roll, one vacation at a time). I could have gone for a run then, but I used my isolationism and house guarding as my excuse. The flip side of that was that while I was home that week I go quite a bit of yardwork done, so that was very cool.

So yesterday I decided to go for a run even though I had a rehearsal that night. I figured it would be a part of my exhaustion experimentation that I have been doing. I thought I’ll just go for a short run. Good plan, but it didn’t last and I went for nearly five miles. It was just so good to be running again! We are going through a tough allergy season in the NW and my breathing was really labored. But I slogged through it and just enjoyed myself. After I felt great, but as rehearsal approached I started to get really tired. I laid down for a little bit and that seemed to help somewhat. During rehearsal I was a little spacey but I found myself able to concentrate, at least enough to play my normal bari parts. Overall it was a good practice and I am really glad I didn’t use it as an excuse to not run. And that makes today’s run two in a row!

Today’s run felt a lot better, especially in the breathing department. Beforehand I was feeling a little bit of tightness and pain in my hips. As the run went on the tightness still nagged at me. So I attempted to straighten my posture and get my hips aligned with my steps and that seemed to help quite a bit. So I think I will focus more on that in the days and runs to come. Also when I got back I made an extra effort to be more precise on my hip stretches that I do after every run. Everything feels pretty good at the moment, so I think I may be on to something. Now I just wish I could solve my foot pain issues. I am not convinced that I don’t just need a little toughening up and that if I keep at the regular running that it will lessen. I am also considering using my hepi-pad inserts instead of the ones that came with my new shoes (this is only the third or so run on my replacement Altras, so I am somewhat skeptical that I need to replace them. I actually think I will give it some time first before switching.) BTW, I ran a sub 10 min mile pace today, made me happy.

Tomorrow I go to the urologist for a cystometrogram that is used to measure the pressure in the bladder to give the urologist some insight into what is happening with my plumbing. He is confused by my symptoms as I seem to be all over the place. I was hoping that my neurologist would send me to someone who has some experience with ms, but he (aptly named Dr. Richard which cracks me up to no end) apparently doesn’t and was even a bit irritated with me. I am not looking forward to the test, but it should be over somewhat quickly. And hopefully he will have a better idea of what I can do to get my bladder issues taken care of (frequent urges, difficulty passing urine, rushing to the toilet but not all the time). Very annoying.

Summer runs ending?

Wednesday, August 26th, 2015

With as hot as our summer has been I actually expect to get 6-8 more weeks of warm(ish) running in. I am starting to feel ready for fall, but I am still liking running in light gear. The rain is supposed to hit us this weekend, it has been a super long time since I have run in the rain and I am looking forward to it. Last week I only managed a couple of runs for just over 10 miles, just seemed to have too much going on. This week is starting to look the same even though I have already matched my totals from last week. But tomorrow may be the last chance for a run this week as I have shows Friday and Saturday night so running is out for both days. I haev a meeting tomorrow with a new client but I think I’ll brave the exhaustion and run anyway.

Pain in my feet continue to be an issue, especially after four miles or so. I am considering talking to the neurologist about it during my yearly check-in, but then again I can probably live with it at this point rather than taking another medication. I think a better approach might be acupuncture, something I have been considering starting again, especially once my new insurance plan kicks in next year.

My shoulder has been really bugging me after that fall the other week. Feels very similar to the pain I experienced after I was hit by a car ten (?) years ago. It’s time to make Dr. Szeto’s magic shoulder stretches a consistent part of my routines.

I keep running, if not blogging

Tuesday, August 4th, 2015

It has been awhile since I last blogged here. The last post I said something about it being hot. Well its still hot, so it can’t have been that long ago. Today when I ran this morning it was actually really nice out. I got a good sweat on, but I didn’t manage to wreck myself. Sunday, however, was a different story in terms of wreckage. I added an extra mile to my normal (these days 5+ miles) route and felt terrible afterwards. I also didn’t really have enough to eat to support any kind of run, so i am sure that had a lot to do with it. Ok, I also did some yardwork before and after I ran. Oh yeah, and I didn’t sleep well that night. And… Ok that’s enough. The run sucked and that was that. But I made the best on it on Monday and went out again and even pushed away the initial thought of doing a short run to accommodate the previous day’s exhaustion. I am really glad I hit the streets and left that crappy run in the dust where it belonged. I even managed a sub 10 min mile pace (which didn’t happen on Sunday!)

Today was the third run in a row and it felt really good. No signs of the pains of Sunday and I even brushed up against my goal pace of 9:30 (9:31, dang it! Five seconds off!) I was in a really good mood too after have several positive transit experiences (unusual due to my usual curmudgeony running bias!) I had done 30 minutes of qi gong before I ran and then several times I have done that before running I have noticed an improved running experience, both mood-wise and physically speaking. And to top it off I am actually blogging about it!

One interesting/different thing that is going on with me right now is that I have taken a break from medical cannabis. Partly to keep a clearer head while by wife recovers form a minor surgery she just had, but also it has been something I have been thinking about doing. It has been a week now which may not seem like a lot of time, but for someone who had gotten used to enjoying his meds every night it makes a difference. Positives I have noticed: waking up is a bit easier (though not as much as I would have thought), I go to bed earlier (though the cannabis seemed to help me sleep better), I wake up earlier (see go to bed earlier), I read more as opposed to watching tv. Negatives I have noticed: foot pain, cramping and discomforting sensations appear to have increased, bad TV seems really bad, slight rise in general irritation with people (very slight, people often already irritate me!). Overall it has been pretty easy to deal with not having the habit, and I enjoy not having to look forward to medicating (oh, let’s call a spade a spade: getting high. I really hate the concept that it is just “medicating”). Oh another positive raises it head, I can be justified in my disdain for potheads (a big reason I do it by myself and don’t really like socializing)! The lessening foot sensations issue has been a major benefit for me with cannabis and I think it is going to win out, the benefits are too high (ummm, pun intended?) I’ll finish out the week with a clear head (and lungs) and then decide if I want to continue. I am leaning to no.

Chilly sub-10

Saturday, January 31st, 2015

Funny thing about today’s run was that I have become so focussed on running faster than 10 minute miles that when I felt a bit lethargic this morning the fear of not being able to run under 10s almost kept me home. How freakin’ ridiculous is that? Add on 32 degrees and I am very surprised to be writing in the blog today. But I managed to get myself out the door. Mostly it was a recognition that if I didn’t go now that I might not later in the day despite the promised 20-25 degree increase in temp. If I had sat around I would have eaten lunch and more than likely that would have been it. So in many ways I had no choice but to try for another sub 10 run. Actually I told myself that it really didn’t matter and that I could look past the stats and take the good I would get from a run at any pace. My first mile seemed really slow. I just felt like I was plodding along. But in reality I was right on track and managed a 9:50 or so. Once I realized that the rest of the run fell into place. I had forgotten to take a half an aspirin before the run and I was feeling a little tight in the chest (all in the head I believe) and my lungs were feeling somewhat congesty. But all went well. The run felt like it was a tough one that required a pretty substantial amount of effort and I feel it.

The bottoms of my feet have been feeling angry at me for starting running regularly again. Today I was thinking maybe I should change out my insert especially since they gave me two sets with the shoes, but I don’t think it has been that long since I got the new shoes. I just don’t think the new models of Altras are as comfy as the last ones I had. Story of my life, new and improved is usually anything but.

Fast running

Wednesday, March 26th, 2014

My last two runs have been pretty fast for me, both sub 10 min mile paces. Today was almost an end to that. I was feeling really good at the start, my first mile felt great and really quick. I was about to hit the mile mark when I looked at my watch to see 9:15. I was really psyched! Then I noticed that the distance showing was .85 miles. Something must have happened (again, it appears that my watch has developed a mind of its’ own and I disapprove!) The miles after that seemed to be accurate, all coming in under 10. So even with that oddity (er, short-changing) on the first mile I still managed to come in under 50 mins for five miles. Boom! Even with the glitch I was still running less than 10 min miles. I am not trying to run faster necessarily. Actually quite the opposite. I have become way less concerned with PRs and much more concerned about the wear and tear on my body. My feet have still been protesting quite loudly, but my hope is to keep that discomfort down to a minimum.

The last week or so has been somewhat disappointing running wise. I had a stiff neck after working out too hard the other week. So I decided to take a little break and let the stiffness and pain subside. Couple that with a busy music week and I haven’t gotten nearly the miles in that I wanted to. The soul band kicked off our kickstarter campaign to raise money for a new full-length record. Just what I need, more music to keep me from running! It’s all about the balance…

I am feeling a bit of tightness in my upper thigh on the left side, hopefully it will go away with a bit more stretching later. Maybe I will even ice it a bit after a band meeting tonight (at least I am not rehearsing). I am sure pushing the speed this morning has a lot to do with that, but I really wanted to go fast!

This week’s long run

Saturday, January 19th, 2013

This week’s long run got pushed further out in the week, I keep getting further and further away from a consistent Monday LSD run. Overall I am going to say that is ok as I have been getting them in and I keep making them longer. However Monday is the perfect day of the week for them so hopefully I can get back on track especially considering that today’s run was the second quality run I did this week (actually second run in a row too). Though to do another long run in three dyas seems excessive.

I feel like I am really building on my base, the long runs seem much easier or should I say less painful! Today’s run was 12 miles exactly and interestingly I almost kept it under a 10 min mile pace (ended at 10:04). I was under 10 through nine miles, but the final three were more or less uphill as I climbed up from the waterfront to my neighborhood. And I can’t really say the entire three miles was all up-hill either, but there are some tough patches!

This was actually the second fast run that I did. Two days ago I did eight miles at a 9:13 pace which felt really good. I was strong throughout and even considered adding some miles to make that my long run but I had a rehearsal that night and was already pushing it.

I’m not really sure what has changed to make these runs feel better. I have been eating and sleeping well, so I am sure that had something to do with it. Still it doesn’t seem like that would completely explain why I have been running so strongly as of late. Both of the last two runs have been on injection day and I have always said that I feel stronger after the rebif, so maybe that has helped as well. My weight is also down a bit and I am sure that is a factor. Whatever it is I’ll take it!

I have been curious to see how my feet reacted to the increase in miles and the consistent longer runs with the zero-drop shoes. I really feel like a convert. I don’t have nearly the fot pain that I was experiencing before with the thicker heals, in fact I wore a pair of boots the other day that made me imagine that this is what high heals must be like! Changing my stride to more of a ball landing/mid-strike (as opposed to just a mid-strike landing) is working better than I had imagined. I have always felt like more of a distance runner than a sprinter. Initially I was concerned that I wouldn’t like running more like a sprinter, but it seems to feel much better overall even though the majority of my running is mid-strike oriented. With the zero-drops I occasionally will concentrate on my feet landing on the balls of my feet and spreading out in my shoes (Altra) expansive toe box. It feels really good landing that way. Despite initially having trouble lifting my feet enough to clear cracks an other obstacles, I seem to have corrected my gate enough so that it is not an issue (even though I am not lifting my feet much higher, at least consciously).

I have been pretty good about fueling for my last couple of long runs, gels and water. They both seem to make a pretty huge difference in my running performance. Today I was starting to fade a bit around six miles. A couple slugs of Hammer gel and my energy level picked up and I was able to comfortably continue.

The long runs have been great but I am reaching that point where increasing the mileage every time is making the runs a huge commitment, both in terms of time and the mental ability to gear up for them. Two hours seems pretty doable, but I know longer runs are soon going to be getting up closer to three (an beyond). My other problem with them is having interesting places to go. I have a pretty decent 11 mile run that I can add onto so maybe I’ll use that as a base for my longer runs and then just add on. Today’s route was new(ish) to me and I could probably use that as a good base as well even though I don’t really care for all the uphill at the end (pretty much my curse living on a hill.

I am starting to think about a long race again. My pace is pretty slow even though I do feel it getting faster (or is that just the last two? Yes it probably is). Still running another marathon would be fun, maybe make it a destination run which would be super fun (then again I can’t think of a better place to sleep the night before than my own bed.) We’ll see.

Oh and did I mention it was 28 degrees when I left? Brrrrrr.

Proud and sad

Sunday, December 16th, 2012

I’m looking at my running journal for the past two weeks. My ego wins out as I have had it up for several hours and just now decided to leave it up longer. Almost 70 miles in two weeks, two straight weeks of 35 miles, well last week was just 34.1. The weeks were similar in more than just miles. I ran on the same days; Monday and Wednesday through Saturday. I had long runs on both Mondays. This weeks Monday going for 10.25 was the longest I have done in awhile. Many of the runs were extended 10k runs around 7-7.3 miles in must cases.

I feel really good in several ways. First off my feet have gotten through this really well! My discomfort (odd occasional numbing) seems to have subsided and the pain is quite a bit lessened. I suspect that much of this is the zero drop shoes. I think the gate adjustments needed to run flat have had a large part of that. I wonder if I should keep mixing it up by going back to regular running shoes. I think that idea has merit but I think I’ll keep going with the zero drops for now and wait until I have more discomfort issues.

One oddity I have noticed is that my plantar’s wart seems to have moved. Actually it seems to be another one, but the old wart I have had on the botom of my foot for years seems to be getting smaller. This I think really has a lot to do with the change in footwear.

I am feeling good about myself and my health, particularly my weight. I seem to have warded off a potential relapse into largeness. What I really need to do is stop the eating at night, that is my downfall. But I keep telling myself I want to have fat on my body to do the rebif injections. Good excuse for some extra flab.

So, that’s the proud. The sad we all have been feeling this week. One my run today I spied a kid on a bike stopped at the back entrance to reed looking into the air. I wondered what he was doing, he also appeared to be talking on his phone. I silently gave him props for stopping behind the white line and as I turned right into campus he said something to me. “Excuse me?” He repeated that there were bald eagles in the trees. I looked up and spied the first one, a big, huge bird! Twenty feet to the south at the top of another tree was the other one. My friend and I marveled at them as the one took off, wings spread. We both said wow and he looked at me and said “I just wanted to tell you about them.” to which I thanked him heartily and we parted ways.

Moments later I switched from a comercial to the Ducks basketball game set to start in a few minutes. The had a moment of silence for the shootings. I kept my hat off for the National Anthem which quickly followed. It was a pretty amazing and uplifting moment. I really felt like the country was untied in some sort of way. Even if it was just to be in misery, I felt an embrace of the lands and people around me in America. It felt very important.

Sadly some of this evaporated when the jerk in the white car almost hit me. But I live. MF Lives!

Two base runs in a row

Wednesday, September 19th, 2012

I shouldn’t have been running as the air quality has been awful due to firs in Sisters, OR. But I ran both runs in a light haze. Tomorrow is the start of the clear out, but more than likely still bad. But I’ll probably throw caution to the coming winds and run anyway (I hope). So the last two days have both been my 10k base runs. I ran them both slowly and my feet are feeling the recent increase in miles of late.

The foot discomfort really has been making the long mile runs a thing of the past. It seems to be mostly in the balls of my feet and feels as if my shoes are too small. Often I get a slight numbing as well. I do like the zero-drop shoes and how my feet have felt these last two weeks. I have to say that overall I like the flat approach to shoe design. and I love the extra room in the fronts of my Altra Instincts. I have been concentrating on my feet spreading out and flattening on the roads. That seems to help a little. Maybe it is just an acceptance of the discomfort.

Another short break ends with a long run

Monday, July 30th, 2012

Well not too long, but longer than I have done lately. This break comes courtesy of my schedule, too much music to keep running regularly. But I can’t blame it all on the music, my laziness has had its place in this as well.Today, I broke through the lazy barrier and slipped on my running shoes and out the door I went.

Speaking of shoes, I have always had a problem with foot sensations. My feet often feel like I am wearing shoes that are too tight. This gets pretty uncomfortable while I am running for sure. Sometimes I just focus on my feet not feeling so uncomfortable and I can trick myself into believing it. I am not too good at it, but I try. It usually works well for short stretches of time. I visualize my feet hitting the ground and how they compress with each step. I often try to feel the entire bottom of my foot hitting the ground flatly and evenly. Its almost as if each step is embracing the weight I am putting on it. This will work or short periods of time, but my brain is smart enough to know discomfort when it feels it! Still, it often gets me through the ends of my runs. Last week I was noticing how particularly tight the fronts of my feet near the ball of my foot and toes. As I was going along and ruminating on it I looked down at my feet and noticed that they look ed a little tight as well. So when I got home I loosened them up quite a bit especially towards the bottom of the laces. This seemed to help quite a bit, especially at the start. After a mile or so I had to tighten them up a bit near the top, but I left the toe area loose. As the run went on they started feeling tight again around mile 3.5. I have noticed this threshold before as well. Probably has to do with my feet swelling a bit as they get stomped on. Still I have to say this really seemed to help. Certainly didn’t stop the discomfort, but hey, us msers are all about small improvements! And I was able to run eight miles today with little issue. At one point I noticed that my breathing felt pretty solid, my legs didn’t feel tired, I didn’t feel tired and it was only my feet that were barking at me. The looser laces seemed to help me with my visualizing of comfort as I felt my feet spreading out and filling my shoes. Overall I think it was a good decision, now I just need to loosen my other pair!

It wasn’t too hot today at noon, but not cool either. I am finding myself really enjoying the hot runs. Of course I have to have water which is sort of a pain, but it isn’t too bad to deal with, especially now that I loosened my water belt a tad too to go along with my shoes! Sweating so hard really takes it out of me hydration wise and I have to really work to reestablish proper levels. Still working on it today…