It started Thursday afternoon with a throbbing pain in my left ankle. It was a Rest Day and I’d done virtually no activity all day but sit at my desk. There was no injury, I didn’t fall, I didn’t step wrong. It was just throbbing. I had no idea what it was and hoped it would pass…then it felt like someone was stabbing me in the ankle with a needle.
I called my doctor and they had a cancellation. I was in the doctor’s office about an hour later.
The fill-in doctor checked my ankle and said he thought I was starting to develop Achilles Tendinitis in my left ankle. I’ve had that before. About 4 years ago I got it after running up a sandy dune on the beach. The pain was so excruciating I was stuck on the couch all weekend unable to walk until I finally went into to see the doctor. Last time I wore a boot for 10 days.
The pain in my ankle hasn’t reoccured since the initial pain yesterday but I’m wearing the boot for a week like instructed. He said no running, no elliptical for awhile. He said I can swim. So that’s good.
Causes of Achilles Tendonitis
Achilles tendinitis is an overuse injury. Too much too soon is the basic cause of overuse injuries, however other factors can contribute to developing the condition.
- Increase in activity (either distance, speed or hills).
- Less recovery time between activities.
- Change of footwear or training surface.
- Weak calf muscles.
- Decreased range of motion at the ankle joint, usually cause by tight calf muscles.
- Running up hills – the achilles tendon has to stretch more than normal on every stride. This is fine for a while but will mean the tendon will fatigue sooner than normal.
- Over-pronation or feet which roll in when running can place an increased strain on the achilles tendon. As the foot rolls in (flattens) the lower leg also rotates inwards which places twisting stresses on the tendon.
- Wearing high heels constantly shortens the tendon and calf muscles. When exercising in flat running shoes, the tendon is stretched beyond its normal range which places an ‘abnormal’ strain on the tendon.
Since I was at the doctor I asked about my right foot. For about a week and a half I’ve been having a strange sensation whenever I’m barefoot (never in shoes). It’s at the arch of right foot and feels like a rubber-band stretching. It’s a weird twinge–not painful at all. I wasn’t concerned.
Guess what that was?
Let me start out by saying: I’ve had NO pain in my foot. I can walk, run, jump, stand…I have zero pain and just that weird twinge when I’m barefoot.
The doctor said I caught that early as well and that was a good thing. He said not to be barefoot and gave me a pamphlet to read. Gee thanks.
I burst into tears. I was sobbing uncontrollably in the doctor’s office and the Asshole said “It’s not the end of the world. You’ll be fine.”
As a runner I KNOW what plantar fasciitis is and what it means for a runner. And yes, Doctor Asshole, it is the end of the world.
I have a boot on my left foot for the Tendinitis. Since I’ve been down this road before, I know that it throws off my whole body and causes back pain. For the next week I will be wearing a hiking boot on my right foot to try and make it balanced when I walk and stand. Hopefully that will prevent the back pain.
I’m not in a great mood right now.
That is all.
Jenn at A Girl Who Loves Cupcakes
I’m not a runner so I can’t say much about that but I too am recovering from a bout of Achilles tendinitis and it really does suck. I wore the boot. I swam. I started PT and it’s finally feeling better but it’s been a long process and when you’re in the middle of trying to lose weight and have a schedule full of exercise it feels like the end of the world. It will get better though. *hugs* Just hang in there! We’ll all be here supporting you. Feel free to contact me anytime. You could also ask your doctor about doing the stationary bike. That’s the first thing my PT did and it doesn’t hurt my Achilles at all. But, definitely start PT as soon as you’re allowed to.
Thank you! I emailed you. 🙂
Beth @ Beth's Journey to Thin
Ugh I’m so sorry. 🙁 At least you went to the doctor at the first sign of pain so hopefully itll get better really quick. While injuries that sideline you SUCK no doubt, maybe itll be good for you to focus on some other activities like strength training and swimming and maybe you’ll find other upper body workouts that you love. Try to look at the bright side!
Thanks, Beth. I am glad I can still swim and do weights. I know it’s only a week. It’s more the plantar fasciitis that worries me. 🙁
OMG! I’m so sorry!!! 🙁 What a horrible day! I know there’s nothing anyone can really say to make it better but perhaps some man hating music, your favorite booze, and some chocolate will be a temporary solution??? 🙁 Or maybe if there is a punching bag at your gym you can go and put a picture of your Dr on it and punch it until you’re pooped?? Better yet, while you’re punching scream obscenities.
*hug* 🙁 hang in there!!
Screaming sounds good.
Sorry to be an asshole, but as someone who dealt on and off with plantar faciitis for almost two years, trust me, it’s not the end of the world. It’s very manageable. And if you caught it before it really even bothered you, I doubt you’ll have too many problems at all while you have to recovery from the tendinitis. As someone who currently can’t run and has had a few other injuries over the years, now is an opportunity to channel the running energy somewhere else. If you do that, you’ll come back an even stronger runner.
Also, is your doctor a runner? If not, get a second opinion from a specialist or a doctor who runs. It makes the process so much better.
Thanks David. It’s nice to hear from another runner who IS going through this. And I am GLAD it’s not the end of the world. You honestly made me feel a little better.
Oh Lisa–I am so sorry. You are hearing bad news one right after another with your body. You WILL get through this. Listen to the doctor (and perhaps get a second opinion) and take care of your body and it will reward you.
Yay for swimming!
yikes! that sucks! i hope things work out ok!
Well sucky suck. I know you will find the right attitude to get through this.
As for David, I don’t think he’s very sorry to be an asshole at all. I think he’s sorry he’s not sorry. 🙂
I am a runner and I am prone to PF. It has kept me out of several races. BUT it is something you can ward off/prevent/recover from.
Did that pamphlet (!) have “exercises” to do with your feet to keep them flexible? Picking up towels and marbles with your toes? I also like to “massage” my feet on a tennis ball. And, keep my calves well-stretched b/c its all connected.
Last year I had a “twinge” a few weeks before my favorite 10 mi race and was nearly devastated. I found a chiropractor who was a sports injury person who did “granston” (?) treatments. OMG it was painful at first but it worked. My PF got better and I kicked a$$ in that 10-miler.
The info you posted on achilles tendonitis is good and applies to so many running injuries. Over-training and under-stretching have a price.
I hope your AT gets better quickly and your PF stays quiet.
Thank you Coco. And I will ask the docs about that granston treatment! I will try anything at this point.
” And yes, Doctor Asshole, it is the end of the world.” <— LOL 🙂
You're going to get through it, and I'll be here to keep throwing positive thoughts your way! I know the craziness you're going through, I haven't run since November 7th, that's an eternity in runner's years.
Yes! You feel my pain. I knew all you runners would understand how I felt.
I had plantar fascitis in the spring! Taping up my foot worked wonders. And as a PT I’m instructing you to do more calf exercises and stretches. It’s all related – the calf, achilles tendon, and fascia in your foot. Feel better and don’t get too down!! You love swimming and a few weeks off isn’t much in the long run 🙂 (no pun intended)
I’ve been reading about taping my foot. I also read an article that said this lady used duct tape! I was wondering if that was real or urban legend…
Have you tried KT Tape? It’s worked for me, and I’ve heard good things about it with helping PF.
I haven’t. I’m reading a lot about it though. Where did you get yours?
AGHHH. I’ m just getting caught up on your blog…that sucks. I did crack up at Doctor Asshole though…
I’ve had both A (long time ago) and PF (recently) and they are definitely not fun, but you will get better. I had a bad habit of going barefoot and wearing flip-flops all the time and I’ve been told that’s a big no-no. I’m sure people have already told you about rolling your feet on a tennis ball or soup can, also ice after every workout and be really thorough with your calf stretches.
I also got some soft orthotics called Soles from my sports physician that I wear in all my shoes now — they are NOT the stupid $500 ones – they were only 50 bucks and they last forever. . They helped the pain (along with the rolling/ice/stretching) and I feel like they’ve actually improved my running too. Good luck dude!!
Thank you for the tips! I’ll check out those Soles.
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