Monday, June 1, 2009

Blister Hell

I despise blisters of all sorts.

Running the Apex/Enchanted Forest, although as fun as it was, may not have been the most brilliant thing I have done. I had acquired bilateral blisters on the arches of my feet- secondary to the new shoes I bought the other day (and using basic insoles). I was running with my DTR group on Tues (there were only three of us) when I noticed a hot spot forming on my left arch. I ran a bit, not wanting to hold up the other runners (dumb dumb dumb) until it really started to bother me. I finally told them I had to stop, took off my XA Pro shoe for inspection thinking I would find a little pebble of some sort, and scanned my socks.

The shoes looked and felt fine, no pebble, but my socks had a little worn spot on either arch. Weird. I ran my finer along everything, shook my socks off etc. and put my shoes back on. We began running again and I STILL felt the rub. It was very frustrating. If I had been by myself I would have stopped and either turned around to walk back, or rigged a patch in my shoe. But feeling the pressure of running with a group and not wanting to disrupt them I sucked it up and loped along.
I tried hard not to alter my gait as I knew it would just bring on joint pains from irregular body position, so the arches continued to get a beating.

Luckily the run wasn't a long one and I was able to suffer through it til the end. I limped back to my car and climbed in not wanting to face the damage. At home I peeled off my socks and found two liquid filled blisters ready to pop. They actually didn't hurt once I got the shoes off and I was able to walk around on the blisters no problem. I ended up lancing, draining, and covering them for the rest of the night. Thursday they appeared to be doing well enough that I taped them and went for the run at Apex in my XT Wings.

By morning my entire left foot swelled and was shiny tight. It was PAINFUL and cellulitic. I hobbled around afraid I might have caused an infection. BF ran to the store and bought some Epsom salts and continued to pamper me with frequent foot soaks. I re-lanced, re-drained, and re-dressed the blisters. Luckily the fluids ran clear and the soaking helped with the swelling. By the end of the day my feet felt much better, although still very tender. Today I gently cut off the delicate skin of the blisters only too find it was two layers thick. Nasty. It is tender and raw looking but otherwise healthy. Now I just need to let them heal.

So now I am stuck not being able to run for fear I might create more of a monster than I already have. I have the half marathon trail run Saturday and am stressing out that the feet aren't gonna make it.

I got excited yesterday thinking, "well this is a great opportunity to work on my swim for the upcoming triathlon!" I headed out the door to the gym in glee. Ten minutes later I walked into the 24HR Fitness only to be greeted with a big fat sign saying POOL CLOSED FOR MAINTENANCE.

Fuck. as if I want to spend the day in a hot gym when there is nothing I can do but free weights. I can do that at home.

Wait...idea forming = head to local Rec center. Brilliant!
Fifteen minutes later headed up the stairs to the Rec Center- and it's closed.

Sundays suck. And you want to know why I work almost every weekend (earning more money has very little to do with it)?

Because weekends are for:
1. waiting in long lines
2. camping with loud annoying RVers or partying teenagers
3. beating crowds and traffic
4. being shoved off bike paths due to inconsiderate three-abreast chatty walkers
5. hiking trails flowing with irresponsible dog walkers who for some reason refuse to clean up after their dog and allow non-social dogs to run off leash
6. running trails consumed with kamikaze mountain bikers (don't get me wrong, I like mtn bikers- just not those that race the multi-use trails and don't announce their presence as they zoom up from behind me)
7. people biking on the sidewalks
8. having close calls with people biking on the roads running right through stop signs while I am trying to commute responsibly (and being a law-abiding cyclist) to work
9. everywhere you want to go and do always happens to be closed
10. People, people, and more people

I came back home and pouted on the couch. I swear my treadmill tucked up in the living room kept beckoning to me. I considered throwing a sheet over it, "I'm sorry...it's not you, really. It's me!" I finally popped in a workout DVD as a last resort and got my ass handed to me.

I am a bit sore today so life is still good:)

p.s If you don't own a copy already yourself, I highly recommend the book Fixing Your Feet: prevention and treatments for athletes by John Vonhof

I read this book cover to cover prior to my Costa Rica run and felt it helped me significantly. I did still get minor blisters but I was able to manage them (except for the toe thing) and didn't get sidelined by them. My previous copy was borrowed, so this time I bought the 4th edition and am re-reading it to hone my skills for the GTTR.