Posted by: runsinthefamily | June 25, 2010

PF and Me

Just when I thought it was gone, PF came back for a visit.  Persistent little bugger!

I went to the running group track workout on Tuesday, more worried about my sore knee from the week before than anything else.  We warmed up, stretched, and then started running Coach Q’s version of Billats – this time, we ran a speedy 200 meters, then “floated” a 100, which means our time for the 100 should be run in about the same time it took to run the 200 fast.  First 200, 42 seconds.  Oops.  Maybe should have been a tad slower.  100, 42 seconds.  Not very much recovery, but recovery is my specialty.  Next 200, 50 seconds.  Much better.  And so on, and so on, until I notice my right heel/arch/plantar fascia beginning to feel sore and tender.  I, of course, continued on for another 200, then realized that I really should stop.  Walked over to Coach Q, told him about my foot, and he of course said, “STOP!”  So I did.  Not even any recovery laps.  I just stopped and stretched.

Next day, I happened to be perusing my favorite blogs, and saw Flo’s post on Arnica gel. What the heck, might as well try it, right?  DS #1 also is having an ankle issue currently, so I bought a tube for each of us, two different kinds, thinking we could compare.  Have you ever had your child look at you skeptically?  Yeah, that’s what he did.  In the end, I had him read Flo’s post, and since it mirrored what his ankle is doing, he did try the Arnica gel.  In fact, today he used it four times!  And we do think his ankle looks slightly better.

My PF on the other hand:  well, it was either not running the next two days, or the Arnica gel, or just luck – but it did gradually feel a bit better.  Good enough to let me run with the summer training xc kids this morning. 2.5 miles FAST!!! downhill, ( yay, me! It felt awesome!) and then 2.5 miles up hill, not so fast.

Too much of a good thing is never good.  Too much hill work is also not great.  Foot of course hurts more tonight, although I’m slathering it with the arnica gel and back to doing all the foot stretching and strengthening exercises I can find.  And, horrors, contemplating a cortisone shot.  Did I mention I had one in college, in my hip, and it hurt like H E Double hockey sticks? Yup.  I thought to myself never again, but …..

Coach E suggested a Strassburg sock.  You know, that strange-looking sock contraption that holds your toes up all night to keep your plantar fascia stretched?  I can just imagine the looks my children will give me!  The local running store is unfortunately closed right now, or I would be running out ( er, driving out  I mean) to get one.  But, alas, it will have to wait till tomorrow.  After everyone in the family gets chauffeured to their various places, maybe, just maybe, I will have time to go get one.  And maybe new shoes.  🙂  And whatever other retail therapy will help me kick this PF!!!

Oh!  And best of luck to my virtual running buddies Rebecca and EatDrinkRunWoman!   Run fast tomorrow!



  1. The Strassburg Sock can work wonders!

    I have some suggestions on flexibility/trigger point you can do. See me on Tuesday (if you can make it!!) and I’ll convey the routine.


  2. I think I might be developing PF myself. I’ve been having heel pain which has gotten worse over the past few weeks. It seems to hurt more after I’ve been on it all day rather than in the mornings or during activity. Those aren’t classic pf symptoms, but I still think that’s what it might be.

    It could be from running too far, too fast in my bikilas. I had meant to limit myself to under 20 minutes but did 30 the second time out. Then again it might not be them. It hurts today after standing for several hours in my New Balance 993s, which are a pretty supportive shoe.

    • Mine didnt hurt in the morning right away, but now it does – I point and flex my toes a bunch of time before getting out of bed, and that helps. Even when it wasn’t extra sore, it would hurt more on the days I was standing a lot – like at track meets. 🙂 I hope that’s not what you have though! It is supposed to be more common when you first transition to barefoot/vff’s, but then I think it gets better – as your feet get stronger. I kinda thought you would be okay since you wear them so much!

  3. Hey Connie! Sorry to hear the PF is acting up again. I hope is goes away as quickly as it made its appearance! Retail therapy sounds outstanding! Treat yourself! It always helps me!

  4. Thanks Jodi! 🙂

  5. Yeah, me too. I wore my Vibram Trek’s today and my feet felt better, but still by the end of a five-hour shift the heel was hurting a bit. I’m going to continue wearing a variety of shoes i think. Wearing minimal when my feet want it, but putting on something more supportive when they want that. I also find it helps to wear my old ‘house crocs’. When Crocs get very worn-in they get very thin at the heel and balls of the foot, and thus develop quite a bit of gentle arch support. It feels real good to slip them on after the end of a long day on my feet.

    • Crocs – I remember reading about that somewhere! Something about someone who actually ran races in them because she had so many foot problems, and they were the only shoes that worked. I’ll have to try and find out where I read that!

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