Running injuries are apparently very common with over half of all runners coming down with at least one injury a year. Most are related to ramping up too fast, though some, like whatever I apparently did to my foot, can’t be tracked down to a specific event.
After running for a year, I considered myself lucky and assumed that I, unlike others, would not get injured. I had deal with my share of soreness and cramps, but nothing debilitating. I had a muscle pull in my hip last fall, but after two days of break, it went back to manageable levels.
Two weeks ago I rant the Fred Lebow half marathon in Central Park. I trained fairly well for it and hadn’t ramped up distance or intensity. Still, something about the never ending hills of the park must have affected me. I finished the run in a good time, within two minutes of my PR from last year, and felt fine all day.
The day after, my foot began to feel a little sore, but no more so than after a long run. I had developed a horrible blister with a run a week before, but it had largely healed. I thought this might just be it coming back. I woke up the following day and fell on the floor when getting out of bed due to the unexpected pain. Luckily this was a snowy day so I was home from work, and kept it elevated and on ice all day. By the afternoon, it was still sore, but manageable. I had to limp around the house, but it wasn’t excruciating. I made the foolish mistake of wrapping it in an ace bandage overnight. I had thought maybe it was a stress fracture after reading about their commonality in runners. I still wasn’t ready to go to the doctor after one day of pain, and planned to go into work the next day.
From swelling, the pressure on my foot from the bandage caused me to wake up screaming in the middle of the night. Taking it off only made it worse as the increased blood flow caused a searing pain. We prepared to go to the ER, but after a few minutes it went back down to a dull throb. The next day, it was largely fine and I made it through a day of limping around at work. The following day I could walk fine.
I still have no idea what happened, but took an extra week off of running just to be sure. Like most runners, I started up again, probably too soon, but I’ll deal with the repurcusions of that decision as they come.