Abracadabra ⭐️⭐️⭐️ plantar fasciitis be gone!

Oh it’s been so long since I’ve written here, but I’m hoping that is going to change starting now. 

I peeked at my Facebook today (my New Years resolution is to stay off FB and check in once a month, which so far I have accomplished). But I peeked today, looking only at my “memories” which, I might add,  I haven’t liked being reminded over the past year of how many miles I used to run. Those posts have become a sad, distant memory for me. Today’s memory was just poetic- I was reminded that I had a cortisone injection 3 years ago today in my left foot for plantar fasciitis. I think that was the second of a total of three injections over the past 5 plus years for said injury. 

As I write this, I’m laying supine on my bed, my wrapped and booted left foot propped up on a super thick pillow, cat tucked in for a nap. A giant sigh escapes my body. 


Two days ago I had a procedure -a PRP injection – done on my foot. After 5 plus years of on and off chronic plantar fasciitis I decided to try something that will hopefully (and let’s all say a positive prayer for me right now) and finally end this injury. 

I researched, about a year and a half ago when I had my last flare up, shock wave therapy and found a doctor who is local (SF Bay Area) who does that procedure and does house calls, but at the time didn’t pursue him because insurance doesn’t cover the procedure and I didn’t want to spend the money when I was already paying for health insurance. I went to my regular podiatrist and that is when I received my third cortisone shot and was back in my walking boot. That worked as far as no heel pain and I only ran very short distances, 3-5 miles, closer to the 3 mile range and with walk breaks. I was terrified my PF would return if I did anything more. 

Last year I managed to run three 5K’s (2 of which I placed 1st and 2nd) and one 10K trail run (Angwin to Anguish), in the rain, where I was squeaked out of 3rd and got 4th. The 3rd place lady bamboozled me- but I won’t go there. It’s a great race btw, very scenic and hilly. 

 

The last 5K was a Turkey Chase here in Napa Valley. The whole family participated.


That was the last time I ran, and since then I’ve been mostly walking on my treadmill. After work, I’d jump on my treadmill and binge watch Netflix getting in about 20 miles of walking in a week. 

I could feel a tinge of pain in my heel coming on, but ignored it until about a month ago. The pain was coming back and I couldn’t really continue walking like I was. 

Enter depression. On top of having to put down my sweet golden retriever of 15-1/2 years in mid January, something that still makes me sad,  the pain was back and I was feeling hopeless. I would sit and think, why? Why when I finally found something that made me super happy, that made me feel like a superhero, that inspired me to push myself and encourage others, that made me feel like my life had purpose, why was this taken from me? Yes, I was feeling very sorry for myself. 

I was interested in the shock wave therapy again and decided to see if I could get that done. I called my podiatrist and asked if I could do it. Typical doctors office response “we haven’t seen you in 15 months, so you need to come in first and have the doctor exam you.” Yes, so he can tell me the same thing and charge me more. This doctor too, advised me to stop running. This is just not an option. 

Enter Doc On The Run. I emailed him all that I have been through with the laundry list of therapies I’ve done to rid myself of PF. Nothing has permanently gotten it to go away. 

Doc On The Run isn’t your ordinary podiatrist. He’s an award winning foot surgeon who is himself an athlete, runner, cyclist, ironman. Who better to consult with than someone who can relate and is an expert in the field? I’d been on his email podcast list since I researched him a year and a half ago and because I am in between jobs this week, wanted to take advantage of this time off to fix my foot once and for all! Unlike my old podiatrist who couldn’t move quickly, Dr. Segler was on it. He called me right away and we talked about my options.  We set up a formal consultation for the next day (this was last Thursday before my week off) and he told me all the options I could choose from and recommended the PRP injection as my best treatment. Taking advantage of having this week to recover he arranged for the procedure to happen on Monday giving me the entire week to rest my foot before starting my new job. 

I can’t tell you how impressed I am with Dr. Segler and his services. He is available 24/7 to answer questions. He responds within hours of any emails. He calls on the Weeknd. HE MAKES HOUSE CALLS! 

Doc On The Run check him out for yourself! He works worldwide.


The big day: Dr. Segler worked some magic to expedite getting the equipment and drove up to my home in Napa to perform the PRP injection. He was very professional and took the time to go over everything and answer all the questions I had. He set up a sterile area in my living room where I would be getting my injection. 

First he drew blood from my arm. I told him I bruise easy with blood draws and he said then I would probably have a bruise. But my bruise is very small and almost unoticeable which is great since I expected it to be huge. It’s not. Then he placed my blood in a centrifuge, where it spins my blood for 15 minutes. This separates my blood into 3 sections. The middle section holds the platelet rich plasma which is what will be injected back into my foot to promote healing. 


You can see my foot is all prepped. While my blood was spinning he injected my foot with lidocane, a numbing agent. This was the most painful part. I think I kicked him during one of the injections. Sorry doc. 

Now that my foot was numb and the PRP ready he quickly injected my foot on the spots he had marked on my foot prior. I didn’t feel a thing and afterwards he showed me the rather large needle. Yikes! I kept my eyes closed for all the injections as I was already nervous about it all. I kinda wished I had watched the plasma injections. When I had dared to open my eyes he was already done.

He then wrapped my foot and leg in a wet cast and a couple other layers of gauze or dry cast material. Not sure of the technicalities of it all. He finished it off with a sock.


And lastly, the full length walking boot.

I was given a folder of written instructions and a pain script, he made sure I was comfortable and had my TV remote. ☺️Number 1 instruction: stay off my foot for 48 hours, best… stay in bed. And so here I am. I have crutches if I need to get up, and am to use for the rest of the week. Followed by a week or two in the walking boot. I’m not thrilled to be in the boot for my new job, but at least I won’t be on the crutches and frankly, the more I can stay off my foot the better it will heal and I’m 100% behind that! 

Can I say, walking on crutches sucks! My armpits hurt!! 

Dr. Segler was here for about an hour and a  half. My foot was pretty numb afterwards and that lasted for a few hours. He called me before I went to bed to check on me. How many doctors do that? Um… none! The only pain I felt was during the night. The top of my foot was super achy. I called him at 5:30 am after being up every two hours. He told me to remove the top layer of coverings on my foot. That helped. Last night I still had some pain on the top of my foot. I don’t know why things have to hurt during the night. I think it hurts because my foot is in a flexed position and when I’m sleeping it doesn’t get much circulation. One thing I haven’t felt, heel pain. The only pain I feel is from hobbling around in crutches. All those muscles hurt and make me not want to get up. I guess that will keep me off my feet! Did I mention my armpits HURT! 

So the doc will check in again this week and I will take off the bandages maybe Friday while he is on the phone with me remotely. At that point I will just be in the walking boot for a week, maybe two, hopefully not three. It will just depend on how my body is healing. This has been chronic for so many years, it could take time. I’m hoping not so much time. 

For more information about PRP click this link.  PRP
Keep your fingers crossed for me, say a prayer, send me good positive vibes. I need to get better. I need to run again. I need to be my best self. I need to be me! Whole and healthy. 

Thank you!! I will keep you posted.

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Gobble Gobble, Turkey Wobble

A few weeks back I thought I would be running a turkey trot today. But those plans have changed. I haven’t run in 4 weeks. I haven’t run since the half marathon. This is where my foot has been living the last few days, in the dreaded walking boot.

good times

good times

For the most part, I’m ok with this. I want my PF to get better. It is starting to get there. Unfortunately, not running is starting to take it’s toll. On my mind. In my butt. You get it.

So, there will be no turkey trot, no calorie burn to offset the holiday consumption. Instead I will just enjoy the holiday festivities to the best of my abilities and relax, knowing that in time, I will be able to run, and not hobble around as I am right now. That is when I will get back in shape and feel more “normal.” I hope it’s before Christmas. Please be before Christmas. Please.

Till then, I wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving filled with yummy food, close family and much love. And yes, I am still going to eat these little birds I made.

sugar!! cookies

sugar!! cookies

Hoka Ray!

My son passed by my bedroom today as I was lying there on the bed, feet hanging over the edge, in my new run shoes.  “Oh, you got new shoes,” he says. It was becoming a mini new shoe party in my room.

why do cats love to sit in boxes?

why do cats love to sit in boxes?

Then he said, “well, don’t go out and run 20 miles in them. You know you over do it.” I told him I won’t. I am not sure he fully believes me though. My oldest son is very sweet and he has been worried about me since I started wearing the walking boot a month ago. He was also with me when I got the cortisone shot, my moral support. He constantly tells me I work out too much. lol… hardly. No, really. Although Tom did agree with him that I over do it… sigh. I don’t think so. People do waaaay more than me.

Now, I’m not planning on running at all at the moment. I just got these shoes in preparation to run. And I’m not jumping the gun here. My doc told me the other day to start weaning my self off the boot. Hooray!! A few hours on, a few hours off. The first day (last Friday) it felt rather odd to have a regular shoe on my left foot.

The good news is, my foot is feeling pretty good. I haven’t had any plantar pain at all. Still, I don’t see myself running just yet. Admittedly, I’m scared! I would like to try walking in these groovy shoes I found and see how that makes my foot feel. If I can’t walk, I certainly can’t run.

So, the shoes. They are Hoka One One and relatively new. I have done tons of research on them and was searching for a shoe to provide comfort and support without compromising running style (forefoot strike/natural running). These seem like they will do that and every review I read the person said they loved them. I even found out my ultra running friend Andrew has started wearing them and he loves them too! So they have to be good… yes? What especially got me interested and excited about them is that most people who have had chronic injury, plantars, knee issues, etc, have said that they thought they would never be able to run again until they tried this shoe. Let’s face it, it’s not the most attractive shoe out there. But they are supposed to reduce the beating on the body running does to us runners. Reviewers have said they make running fun, and they have very little soreness, if any, after running long in these.

something ed munster would wear?

something ed munster would wear?

They look like they pack some serious shoe weight with those 2 inch high heels. But in reality they don’t. These babies are about 11.3 oz. I went up a half size in them. Secretly, I like the idea of being up higher. Did you know I miss wearing my regular high heels? I’m sure I’ve whined about it recently.

I got the Bondi B shoes because they are for primarily road runners. You can still run trails on them, but I am a road runner (beep beep) so… these are for me. I did try on the Stinson Evo and liked them too, but they were a little less snug and I liked the fit of these better.

All I’ve done in them so far is wear them around the house, we are going on a couple hours here. So I can’t say yeah or neigh about them truly. I will in time, you can bet on that. I don’t even think I will walk in them much except from car to office etc, in the coming days. I kinda want to see Dr. Chiropractor C. W. and get that official OK. I am seeing him on Wednesday. I can wait till then. Heck, I’ve not run now for 10 full weeks! 10 Weeks! sigh. I’m sure I can go a few more days to get the go ahead to walk. And if that goes well, and I don’t feel any, not any, plantar fasciitis pain… then I will start, very slowly learning to run again. In my Ed Munster shoes. Which, I plan on wearing to work all week, even though I have a desk job. I’ll still be rotating the walking boot with this shoe every two or so hours until I talk to C. W. this week.

Look… even my cat loves them already!

nubby soles and long laces for kitty to attack!

nubby soles and long laces for kitty to attack! it’s been a while for her too.

No News is Good News

Which means, since I am writing this post, the news is obviously bad.

Yesterday I saw the new foot doctor/sports medicine specialist. I’m not sure what I was expecting, but everything she said (in rocket speaking time as docs seem to do) made some sense, typical doc speak. I went over all the therapies I have done the last year. Blah, blah, blah. She suggested an MRI, to see if there is a tear in the fascia-I’m not going to do this at the moment. She also reccomended a cortisone shot-which she said is very painful and I should take a couple Vicodin before they do it. Of course she doesn’t do them and I would have to wait another week to see someone else in her office because they also have an office in San Francisco and rotate back and forth. I’m not sure if I should do this, but am leaning towards it because I would rather do it sooner than later and am tired of waiting for this thing to improve.

In the meantime, I will be wearing this fabulous fashionable walking boot!
All. The. Time. Or at least for the next four weeks until I see her again.

the ugly boot-i did not sleep in this

the ugly boot-i did not sleep in this

She also made me suggested I get a new night splint that they sell. It’s industrial-strength and sized compared to the other I have. It’s is super uncomfortable! I could only sleep wear it last night for a few hours and feel like I’d be better off in the daytime boot to sleep in, since it’s more comfy. But the night boot stretches the calf, so I will have to persevere. I got used to the first one, I’ll get used to this one too.

not much movement with this thing

not much movement with this thing

In the small doctors office room, that felt like it was 110 degrees inside, Dr. W watched me walk. Then when I sat on the examination table, she looked at my feet and told me I have one leg longer than the other. Doesn’t everyone I asked? Yes, a lot of people do, but it makes a difference when you are running, she said. This is what the foot doc I saw a year ago had said. I think I actually liked him better, as far as demeanor-he didn’t seem like he rushed through the visit. But maybe the bead of sweat on her brow wasn’t from working so fast and just from the overheated room. I was sweating in there as was the student shadowing her. Oh well. She also looked at the X-rays the other doc took last year. She said I had a small heel bone spur, but that shouldn’t be an issue. My thoughts were… that was from a year ago… couldn’t it be bigger now? Guess it doesn’t matter. Huh?

Now that my foot is completely immobile, it is bound to get better… right?

IT BETTER!!!

She did say I could continue to ride the bike, as long as it doesn’t aggravate it… I’m actually going to look at bikes this weekend with Tom and I might just buy something this time. I can also do the P90X, just no jumping, etc. I’ll be altering the programs a bit. None of that sounds so inviting or fun at the moment because I am afraid to do any damage and reverse what the boot is doing for me.

When I left her office I sat in my car and cried and called Tom. He is a saint and so supportive, I don’t know what I would do without him. Then I cried on the way home. I cried again when I talked to my girlfriend Lisa. I think it’s a year’s worth of build up that I have held in about this injury. Most importantly, I was crying because the thought of wearing this on my foot for another 4 weeks (or more) with no running scares me that I am going to lose all the fitness I have worked so hard to achieve and I’m going to turn into a giant rolli polli. And that makes me so sad! Why is it so easy to gain weight and so hard to lose it? So not right. So going forward I have to be really strict with my diet.

yep, that's me! stole this from shut up and runs blog

yep, that’s me! (stole this from shut up and runs blog)

NO MORE JUNK FOOD!!! NONE! (commence the tears…)

Serioulsy I think I will be able to manage. The boot hugging my foot is a constant reminder to behave. Then when I’m all better hopefully I won’t be so tempted to partake in all the goodies I love so much.

Maybe the boot will help me ‘kick’ the junk food habit! Ha ha!

So… for the next 4 weeks I’m going to have to get creative here… I’ll need to snaz- up my look (because I’m such a girly girl!) and dress up the ugly boot something like this:

https://www.castmedicdesigns.com/wear-it

This gives me something to feel excited about. Too bad winter is about over because they have some cute bootie looks.

My foot felt pretty good this morning when I took my shower. But I also know now that one day of good feeling doesn’t mean so much.

In retrospect, and as Tom said last night, I should have gotten this boot right after CIM. Then, maybe I would have been healed by now.

I need to know!!
Have you had a cortisone shot for Plantar Fasciitis? Did it help?
Have you had a cortisone shot for something else? Did that help?

Time to Buck Up!

Or something like that.

Last night Tom told me we need to get aggressive with treatment for my plantar fasciitis. It is truly affecting me, my mood, not being able to run, which in turn is going to affect him—my crappy mood.

Let me say this for the record: I am not looking to learn to live with this. I’m looking to cure this thing!

walking boot

walking boot

The Ugly Boot.
We both have been scouring the internet trying to get as informed as we can about this chronic problem. Tom thinks (after he spoke to someone who did this) that I should wear a walking boot brace for um… 6 weeks! That guy he talked to said it worked. Maybe. I looked at them and honestly, at this point, I would do anything. I’m already reduced down to wearing flat shoes all the time, what’s worse? I miss my heels.

So far, these last 3 weeks, this is what I’ve tried (and over the course of the last year).

1. I’ve stopped running completely (the last 3 plus weeks).

2. Therapies: ice, stretching (calf and foot), Nsaids, orthotics and foot brace at night.

3. Do none of the above. This advice from the Sock Doc, whose site I found from Green Girl Running’s blog. Which seemed like a good idea since none of the above have worked for the last year. So that is what I did. No orthotics, no nothing. The SocDoc has a different approach to injuries. He has a great video on planters where he recommends toe grabbing exercises. And to find the real problem which isn’t in your foot he believes. It could be from a muscle imbalance, or hormones or stress (yeah, I’ve got all that!) In his video he said to look for “hot spots” by running your fingers along the tibia bone. Yep… there was some major tenderness… so, Tom massaged that entire area–which was excruciatingly painful. The next day my leg was swollen and still tender. It took a few days to calm down. Now it feels 100% better. The Sock Doc even responded to my query:

Sock Doc says:

Check out the Sock Doc Training Principles as PF is often associated with excess anaerobic training or overall stress. As with anything, the time it takes you to recover depends on what is causing your injury.

And ditch that primitive device (the foot brace) you have in your blog photo!

I threw it in the closet. I don’t know if his advice is sound, but I gave it a shot.

4. Stupidly, I started walking, because I thought it wasn’t going to be as punishing as running. Big mistake. Now, I’m doing zero foot pressure activities. Wah.

5. Last week I used an electric stimulator on my leg and foot. Not sure if it is helping or not, but I remember when I used it last summer on my other calf, the minor bout of plantar fasciitis went away. That could just be coincidence to the fact that I also didn’t run for 6 weeks.

all hooked up!

all hooked up!

6. I cried. Not sure if it was just over not running, but that led to the last post I wrote. Yes, I’m human and vulnerable. It helped a little.

sad michele

sad michele

7. I sought advice from my running friend, Green Girl (Maili). She recommended most of the stuff I’ve tried. We also discussed ART (Active Release Therapy) and she suggested trying Rainbow Light’s TheraMend, which I just took today, for inflammation. I have not been using NSaids at all since last spring to treat this. I hope this helps.

8. I started wearing my primitive night splint again. It does seem to help even though it is not so comfortable. I woke up at 2:45 last night wanting to rip it off but Tom’s words of ‘try to wear it all night’ got the better of me. I did.

9. I’m massaging my calfs and feet at night.

10.  I’ve made an appointment for ART for next Monday. Sadly I have to wait 5 days for that. But I’m hopeful.

If all else fails, I am also considering acupuncture. I’m sure the best piece of advice is wait. Don’t run, don’t walk, don’t bike. Find another temporary outlet. Tom is pushing P90X. I do like Tony Horton videos.

So there we are. Or I am. I am still going to fight this… so, I’m not giving up!! I promise. I was just having a bad day the other day… we all have those.

We keep moving forward, opening new doors, and doing new things, because we’re curious and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths. ~ Walt Disney