I got the report from the radiologist and finally got some answers that make sense. When I went into the doctor for my foot, my main complaint was pain running along the front outside of my ankle. So when I was diagnosed with a stress fracture in my heel (the calcaneus bone) it didn’t really explain that pain. I felt frustrated because I knew something was going on in my ankle but still had no idea what. I was, however, just hoping the time I was taking off for my heel would heal everything in the end. So imagine my surprise when I read the MRI findings.
1. Stress fracture at the anterior process of the calcaneus.
2. Mild stress reaction at the navicular.
3. Low-grade longitudinal tearing of the peroneus longus.
Apparently, I’m a mess. However, it does explain all the pain I’ve been feeling. The stress reaction in the navicular doesn’t surprise me at all because I had a navicular stress fracture in my other foot a couple years ago. I’d been feeling the same kind of pain on the top of my right foot for a little while. It’s frustrating. The navicular isn’t as common a bone to injure as say, the metatarsals. So for me to injure it in both feet makes me think I must just have a gait issue and I’m not sure how to fix that. On the plus side, that pain is now completely gone.
After consulting my good friend Dr. Google, I figured out what #3 meant.
“Injuries to the peroneal tendons are common but not always clinically significant. They are misdiagnosed as a lateral ankle sprain most of the time, because isolated injury to the peroneal tendons is rare.[2, 3] Injury can occur in one or both peroneus longus and brevis tendons and is typically classified as acute or chronic.
Acute injuries of the peroneal tendons include tendinitis, tear/rupture, laceration, and dislocation/subluxation. Acute injuries typically have 1 of 2 mechanisms as the cause: (1) inversion ankle injury, which is often seen with associated anterior talofibular ligament and/or calcaneofibular ligament disruption, and (2) a powerful contraction of the peroneal muscles with a forcefully dorsiflexed foot.”
AH HA! Now this makes sense. I’m sure that the tear happened at my 50k in February when I turned my ankle. It’s comforting in that I know I’m not imagining things. The pain I’m feeling in that part of my ankle is real. And it’s definitely feeling better than it did a few weeks ago, so I know it’s getting better. Hopefully my take away from all of this is: pain is my body’s way of telling me something is wrong. If I’m limping out of bed in the morning, I should probably take time off. Also, taking time off is okay. I push hard and if my body need a few days or even weeks off, I need to be okay with doing that. 2 weeks of preventative cross training is better than having an injury sidelining me for 2 months. OH and also, I’m not objective when it comes to my training. If multiple people, people I respect, tell me I need to take time off because I’m doing too much, I need to listen. Because then I won’t have to listen to 450 I told you so’s. All I can do at this point is say, you guys were right and hopefully I learned my lesson.
Yesterday I made it around the lake for the first time in forever. My friend and I had our jogging strollers with our walking buddies tucked inside. It was an awesome walk. I started running at that lake. I became a runner there. I’ve probably run that 4.5 mile path thousands of times at this point. I trained for 7 marathons on those trails and roads. I made amazing friends. We’ve shared big news and small news while running that path together. I swear the laughter and tears of those runs still echo through the woods for me. I remember the spot where one friend announced her pregnancy. Or the spot when I realized I just ran faster than I ever had before. Spots where secrets were shared, confessions were made and good friends became great friends. Through the good runs and the bad runs, I found myself there. And it will always have a special place in my heart.
The woods are lovely, dark, and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.
– Robert Frost