Hey there #ShokzSquad! For those of you who don’t remember me, I’m Mai, a member of the awesome ShokzSquad. Back in December of 2018, I wrote a guest blog post about my amazing experience at the Honolulu Marathon. This time around, I’m here to talk to you about something not as fun - plantar fasciitis and my continuing road to recovery.
If you’ve never heard of plantar fasciitis, consider yourself lucky. Imagine waking up every morning, planting your feet on the ground to get out of bed, and not being able to fully put your heels down because it hurts too much. That was me every morning for a few months.
Back in March, I began noticing that it was difficult for me to walk around in the morning the day after a long run. I would tip-toe a lot around the house, and throughout the day it became easier to fully put my heel down. I attributed it to not stretching enough and brushed it aside. Later that month, and after a lot of discussion with other running friends, I went to see a physical therapist. All the signs pointed to plantar fasciitis.
I had never been seriously injured before, and after four successful marathon training seasons, I didn’t think I could be. Silly, right? Even after the diagnosis, I figured I’d take a week or two off and it would go away. It didn’t. With a full marathon planned in June, I was desperate to fix it somehow. I went to several PT sessions, stretched every single day, and replaced some long runs with swims instead. Unfortunately, April passed, and without much improvement I made the decision to run a half marathon instead. It was a gut wrenching decision, but it was the right thing to do.
I would like to tell you that I no longer have plantar fasciitis, but that would be a lie. The pain comes and goes, but it’s much more manageable. And I’m hopeful that when 2020 rolls around, I’ll be pain free. I ran my half in June with no pain and have continued to run other halves with less pain.
Being injured sucks, but if life has taught me anything, it’s that almost everything is a lesson. From my injury I’ve learned to be patient. Not everything is a quick fix, and it takes time to recover. I’ve also learned to run slower, and through that I’ve learned to enjoy my surroundings more. Every run I’d find something to appreciate. Sometimes it would be something simple like the breeze on my skin, and other times it’d be the sun on my face or even some awesome community-produced artwork. Being injured has also taught me that I’m not defined by one sport. I also enjoy indoor bouldering, and just today, I discovered that I might even like surfing!