Here's a brief overview of the past month's events: I ran my November 18th half marathon pain-free and set a PR. The next night, while baking with Ingrid, I developed a sharp pain in my right foot. On my walk to work the next day, the pain increased and was almost unbearable. I did some research via WebMD and thought I might have a stress fracture. Nonetheless, I spent five days walking around NYC for Thanksgiving, sometimes with intense pain and sometimes with none.
The pain continued into the next week so I went to a doctor. She said it sounded like a stress fracture or a strained ligament. She put me in a boot and instructed me to rest it and avoid walking, running or standing. I stayed in the boot for exactly three weeks and did as I was told while seeing various doctors for x-rays and and MRI. All the tests showed a perfectly normal right foot and I was told I could ditch the boot and start walking and running again.
During my time in the boot, I managed to sweat a good deal. I rode a gym bike on the regular and did a lot of weight lifting. Those things felt good but nothing compares to sweating outdoors in the fresh air. Since I was officially diagnosed with nothing, I have been on 5 runs, three of them in sunny Florida. I am looking forward to slowly increasing my mileage and gearing up to begin what is looking like the scariest training season yet.
In the end, it seemed like much ado about nothing but I also appreciate the fact that I was forced to take a month off from pounding the pavement. It's not something I'd ever have wanted to do on my own but I know a long break is good for the body every once in a while. In the time that I thought I had a stress fracture, I blamed my conversion to minimalist shoes. I thought that my foot muscles were too weak and not prepared to support my bones during a 13 mile run in such un-supportive shoes. The shoes may or may not have had something to do with it. To be safe, I'm currently doing all my running in my old (thick-soled) asics but I'm continuing to run my new way, with a mid-foot strike.