Friday, May 30, 2008

These Feet Were Made For Walking

Seriously. Not running, and certainly not running 26.2 miles. Then again, no one should be running that far. It's not natural. Or particularly smart, for that matter.

I have learned, through the six weeks or so of physical therapy, that not only aren't my feet good for running, but neither are my ankles or my back. Even though running seems like it's all legs and feet, it's really mostly hips. And if you're not stable there, you're completely screwed.

See, my feet are overly flexible. As are my ankles. So when I run, the rest of my body is trying to keep them under control. It hasn't been doing a very good job of it, hence the six hours a week I spend in physical therapy, during which I work on stabalizing and strengthening my hips.

But my back's been killing me, so I went in to get it evaluated. I learned of yet another side benefit of lugging young children around: the side you carry them on gets really strong. Great, right? Problem is, if you're not doing strength training, the other side gets really weak - to the point that I don't even stand straight. My right shoulder is rotated forward.

The left side is doing all the work, which is causing all sorts of problems on my right side, including the pain I've had in my back and is, probably, contributing to my foot issues.

It's amazing I'm even walking upright at this point.

My PT, who I love, does have this one trait that I don't enjoy so much: she's a torturer. She worked my hip flexors to the point that I said "I'm not going to cry, but I could!"

I don't even want to talk about the stretching. I'm just glad my kneecap didn't pop off and break a light in the ceiling. It was also a good reminder why I can't stand yoga.

I do wonder how much more efficient I would be if I didn't have these issues. Not that there's anything I can do about it at this point. I know it's going to hurt Sunday.

I just keep in mind that running is not for wussies.


Suz Broughton said...

I am (well was) a runner and I have the same problem with my feet and ankles being over flexible. It is strange how the body works together. They cause me a lot of problems.
I am glad your PT is working--helped me tremendously.

Jen C said...

Okay, two things:

1) Good luck on Sunday. I will be cheering for you. I actually kinda wish you had a way to twitter how you were doing along the way. I can only imagine how it would read.


2) It makes so much sense about the whole "what side you lug your kids around on" thing. I seriously have wondered about that. My left arm has, like, actual muscle from lugging around Jonah. Meanwhile my right, (which is my dominate side) is actually all wussy and weak. I wonder if people watch me walk and think, "hmmm...perhaps they just released her from the zoo?" and they're just too kind to say anything to my face? ;)

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