Tuesday, 15 June 2010

I’m back… cautiously! Baby steps, not barefoot, after broken bones

Three months! Three frustrating and claustrophobic months! A few weeks after the X-rays below I had an MRI scan which revealed a stress fracture to the second metatarsal of the left foot, and at least two months of rest. I’ve never been unable to run for this long. It’s been terrible and I’ve been more of an arse to be around. I’ve had dreams of running through the woods near where I grew up on a snowy morning. The exercise bike and in the gym have helped me to stay active, but it doesn’t compare to the freedom and expression of being able to run whenever and wherever I what. This need to go jogging has subsided a little lately, it’s too hot and humid, and of course it’s great being able to do a little session in the gym and watch the World Cup.

I’ve had a long time to think about the question everyone has asked, “will you ever wear the monkey feet again?” Yes, I will. They didn’t cause the pain, I did, and I refused to listen which makes me even more stupid. I doubt I’d ever consider running long distance either barefoot or in the VFFs, but for a few miles on sand or grass I certainly would. You see, it feels fantastic.

My foot feels fine now, but I’m trepidatious about doing too much too soon. Yesterday I set off on my long journey back to running fitness with 10 minutes on the treadmill. Scared of putting too much pressure on my forefoot I was exaggeratingly landing heel first, the polar opposite of what running barefoot was teaching me. It flew past and I was left with pins and needles in my thighs, sore hamstrings and a big smile.

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  1. I've read several accounts of people getting hurt running in Vibrams. I think there is a big difference between any minimal shoe and running barefoot. Last summer I ran in Vibrams, this summer I am running completely barefoot on pavement. The idea is that barefoot on pavement forces you to run correctly.

    Sorry about your injury, hope you get back running soon.

  2. Thanks Matt. I'm trying to take it slowly, but I'm not the most patient man. I think going completely barefoot is a good way to start. I wish I'd spend more time building up slowly, but I will do next time.

    By the way, great blog!