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My Poor, Expensive Feet.

So, it happened again. It always happens.

I ran a marathon, and a few weeks later my feet hurt enough to prevent me from running.

It started innocently enough. It started with a little numbness in my right foot in the days after the marathon. Then the numbness cleared up, only to reappear every morning when I woke up.  Odd.  Then the numbness started to turn to pain during runs longer than 5K.  Annoying.

Next, out of the blue, I started to wake up with pain on the outside of the heel of my left foot. We’re talking serious pain that would have me dreading standing up on my hardwood floors barefoot in the morning.  But then I would stand up, and there would be no pain. It only hurt when I was laying in bed. Random.

After a week of this, I figured maybe, just MAYBE, I should see a doctor about it.  So on Monday, I walked around the corner to the walk in clinic and had the doctor look at my feet.

I always feel bad when I make people look at, or touch, my feet. They aren’t pretty. They were ugly when I was born, they haven’t improved much, and they really get beaten up with the amount of running I do.  I’m sure some people can run hundreds of kilometers a month and still have pretty feet, but  I am not one of those people!

So the doctor said bone scan, podiatrist, no running.

Just what I wanted to hear 11 days before I am supposed to start training for my next marathon!

Fine, no running. I’ll go for lots of bike rides, and go to the gym and do all kinds of things to move my body.  At least that’s what I told myself. But, one thing I know about myself is that if I am told not to run, I usually pretty much do nothing.  I’m kind of all or nothing like that. But that’s another post for another time.


Anyway, today was the big day. Today I saw the podiatrist for my list of problems.

I love when a doctor walks in the room and says  “Hi, how are you today?”  More often than not I reply “If I was good, would I be in a doctors office?”.

Seriously? If I was good, would I be in a podiatrist’s office? I didn’t think this was the kind of place people go for fun!

Okay, back to the point.

He looks at my feet and asks what he can do for me.  I reply “I’m a marathon runner, I need my feet to work” and then I proceed to explain the laundry list of foot problems to him.  He pokes & prods at my feet, then asks me to lay on my stomach so he can draw on the back of my legs & my feet. Then he sends me for a barefoot walk down the hall.

“Yup, I see your problem, you need……”  and he proceeds to list of what’s wrong with my feet and how he will fix it.

Before I even know what’s happening I’m having my feet casted for a very expensive pair of custom orthodics, I have a purple pad stuck to the bottom of my right foot and I’m told that I can never walk barefoot, not even at home, and I can never wear flat shoes. All my shoes need to have at least a once inch heel.  (this is my kind of doctor if he tells me no flat shoes!!)

So, I’m allowed to run again, as long as it doesn’t hurt.  We’re waiting on the bone scan results, and he has put a rush on the orthodics so that I can have them as soon as possible.

I paid a deposit on the orthotics today, and it should take 2 weeks for the orthodics to arrive.  Once they get here, I will have to shell out a bunch more money to pay the remaining balance.   I’m frustrated and stressed, and wasn’t prepared for this train on my finances,  but there’s not really much I can do about it. I’ve had foot problems for years, and if he can fix them, then that is what has to be done.  My extended medical insurance pays a maximum of $200 for custom orthotics, which won’t even cover half of what I have to pay!

Who was it that said “running is an inexpensive sport, all you need is a pair of shoes & the pavement.”?

Whoever it was, I’m pretty sure they should pay me back the thousands of dollars I have spent on this “inexpensive” sport!

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One Comment

  1. Megan says:

    Have you tried PowerSteps insoles? I was having feet problems while training for my (first) half marathon and someone suggested I go to the local running store to buy some. They were $40, and after I went to see an orthopedist about other foot problems, he commented that that was a better deal than the custom orthodics. It might give you another option. But, yes, I’ve been having feet problems lately (and IT band problems, ugh), and it sucks!