Friday, August 21, 2015

Plantar Fasciitis in a nutshell SUCKS

I've been struggling this summer with Plantar Fasciitis.  It sucks!  So I've been doing a lot of research and trying everything I read to heal this and get back to an actual running schedule.  Mama lives and breathes with Google calendar and needs her running scheduled again! So here is some info I learned in hopes that maybe I could help some of you as well!

Plantar fasciitis is an inflammation of the plantar fascia, the tissue on the sole of the foot. It is often caused by overuse of the plantar fascia or arch tendon of the foot. The two ends of the tendon attach at the bottom of the toes and at the front of the heel bone by means of fascia, a strong fibrous membrane. The plantar tendon keeps the arch of the foot from flattening completely when the foot carries weight, providing cushioning and shock absorption when you’re walking, running or standing. This tendon also allows you to point your toes. 

plantar-fasciitis-blog-pic    ,

So what causes the plantar fascias to do that?  Walking or running up or down hills, climbing stairs, walking or running on your toes which also includes wearing high heels, or dorsiflexing (pointing your toes up as your heel comes down with each stride) all pull the plantar tendon.  Plantar fasciitis can also be caused by heel striking, tight calves and an inflexible Achilles tendon can also pull the plantar tendon and weaken the attachment of the fascia to the bone. If the plantar tendon is stretched beyond what the fascia is capable of holding, the fascia forms micro-tears and begins to pull away from the bone, causing inflammation. That inflammation hurts like you wouldn't believe by
the way!  Other causes of PF are wearing worn-out running shoes or ones that lack arch support( also
my beloved flip flops),and overpronation (when your feet roll inward too much.)

When the plantar tendon is constantly over-stretched, the body begins to add calcium which becomes
scar tissue after time  where the attachment between the tendon and the heel bone takes place. Over
time, enough calcium is added to build more bone mass in that particular spot, creating a heel spur
that can be even more painful than plantar fasciitis.

In a nutshell imagine waking up in the morning and having a chunk of glass stabbing you in the heal when you try to step down.  Welcome to Plantar Fasciitis! 


  • If you are having pain while running, decrease your distance until the pain subsides, I personally don’t think you need to stop running completely, but don’t try to run your usual as it can make the pain worse. Just lessen the amount of time running. I also had to pretty much change when I run too.  I used to literally fall out of bed throw clothes on and run.  Now the pain is too severe but I'm lucky if I'm not limping around in the evening to get a shorter run in.  Just not as convenient for me. 
  •  Learn to make a mid-foot strike. The body has a natural form of hitting heel first, but that causes more overall problems when running, such as shin splints. Try to train your feet to hit mid-foot, this keeps your Plantar tendon relaxed and reduces the impact to your heels. I wear Newtons so I switched to a mid foot strike several years ago and it actually helped with many other ailments!
  • Having the proper shoes for your foot type is crucial. If you run in shoes that don’t support your foot type (overpronation, underpronation..) it can hurt your performance.  Go to a real running store and get fitted.  Spend the money so you don't live in a Dr. office constantly injured! 
  • Having tight Achilles tendon and calf muscles can cause stress on your plantar fascia.  This may actually be the cause of mine.
  • Stretch, stretch and stretch more!  then Foam roll and get licked by the dog...or 2 dogs 
  • Perform a self-massage by freezing a bottle of water, or anything cold and round you find in your freezer and roll it under the arch of your foot and gently  back and forth from heel to the arch. Repeat for two to five minutes  
  • dorsiflex the affected foot (point your toes toward your knee) as often as you can remember to do so. This stretches your calf and Achilles tendon and will ease foot tenderness. You can do this stretch throughout the day while sitting or all night while you lay in bed wide awake in pain. 
  • You can also stand on a curb or step and hang your feet off it holding on by your toes and stretch really low

I've heard the Graston Technique can help or a trip to a chiropractor.  Next week I'm going in for some Deep tissue work.  Fingers crossed! 
Have you ever suffered from PF?  What healed you? Did it ever flare up again?

Friday, August 14, 2015

Hiking for Heroes

Ok totally dropped the blogging ball this summer!
School is going to start in a week and a half and I think my last post was during "crazy June".  Seriously!!
We have been super busy having summer fun though!
We hiked Mount Washington (you know just 5.5 miles up/5.5 miles down) as part of the "Cops on Top" group where police and their families hiked or climbed the highest point in their state to honor those that have lost their lives.  We are blessed in NH to have beautiful mountains for this activity.  I finished knee PT on Wednesday so no better way to test the knee than an easy little hike(?!). My husband kept saying we would take the easy trail.....ummmkay! I tried explaining no matter what trail we take it won't be easy!  He brushed that off and I agreed to do it.  Little did he know the adventure he was about to take!

At the start of our hike

See he is smiling (1/2 mile in)

So beautiful, don't slip

It is NOT STEEP when there is a ladder built in to the rock face  

Just scurried up that (not as graceful as Catwoman though) 

About to climb up and over that 

After I climbed over it 

Some rock was easier to hike than others

The view from almost halfway up 

I used to work there! (The Mount Washington Hotel & Resort )

Almost to the cabin in the clouds (I got a nice hour break here waiting for the guys)
Literally watched the strorm clouds roll through us -it was crazy! 

Reach out and touch some clouds! 

Heading the mile and a half from the cabin to the the summit 

Sign pretty much says don't do this it will suck the rest of the way

Oh look there is the summit!  What a trick to see it the rest of the way and know what hell  that part was about to be!

Glad I packed my PLOWON just what I needed to hit the summit!

Made it to the summit!

And this is how nuts we all were at the end!

So you will notice all the pictures are from up to the summit and not coming down.  A few reasons.
 - My phone wasn't going to make it (battery) down if I took too many coming down
 - Derek pointed out where the car was at one point and it made me sick to my stomach
 - my feet hurt and I wanted to get off the mountain
 - the cliffs we were climbing down were too steep and dangerous to whip out my phone for a cute (disheveled) selfie
-I hike down with my husband and he was not happy about not being able to take the train down so you also would have had grumpy guy pics

This hike was NOT my idea but I LOVED it!  I would hike it again in a heartbeat! We took one trail up which was a 5.5 mile trek and a different trail down that was just over 5.5 miles down.  I can't wait
for my kids to be old enough (and able ) to do this hike with way in hell hubby will agree to it again!
It was a great cause and great weather (that night the pouring rain began and it poured for 24 straight hours)

Do you like to hike?  What has been your favorite hike?