Something happened at the end of January. Still not quite sure what happened, but something did. I think it was the shoes – they were some awesome pseudo chukkar boots. I’ve had them for a couple of years, and haven’t had a whole lot of trouble with them. When I had some issues recovering from a torn tendon two years ago, I put some Dr. Scholl’s inserts in them. Which elevate my heels a bunch, I think, even on top of the boot heels.
About a month ago, I went out for some testing, wearing the boots since 1) they look cool, and 2) it was snowy, and boots in snow are the BEST. I spent a whole lot of the day on my feet during the testing. No biggie, but I was noticeably sore when I got to the hotel that night.
The next day, I went for one of my typical out-and-backs from the office. Out felt great – I’ve been better than average after the new year about getting out to run, so was pretty excited that we had a sunny, non-windy, non-freezing day in January. I got to the typical turn-around time, and started heading back to the office. With about a half-mile left to go, something siezed up in my calf – kind of like a little knot. That day, I gutted through it, chugged up the hill, and back to the office.
The rest of the day, it was tough to walk – kind of like a charlie horse right at the base of my calf muscle. Stretched it several times. I went to run the next day, got a mile out, and it siezed up again.
Fastforward a month. I’ve taken two whole weeks between runs (ie, run, waited a week, run, waited a week, run) … I think I’m almost out of the woods.
Travel again this week (San Diego is tough when you’re logging 10 hour days). Got in, woke up early on Tuesday, and chugged out 30 minutes, no problem. About 20 minutes in, I got a little worried, thinking that it was going to sieze, but finished without issue. (For a San Diego run, it was strictly unspectacular – along an access road, in the fog, in the dawn twilight)
Today was the real test. Before I headed to the airport, I laced up the sneakers again, set the iPod, and headed off to actually get some San Diego style run in – Point Loma, through the national cemetary out to Cabrillo Point. Ocean views on both sides, a little bit of roller, no humidity, light breeze … left me wondering why people would live there, avoiding winter and getting soft?
Five minutes in – F#ck. The familiar crimp in the base of the muscle on my right calf. F#ck, F#ck, F#ck, F#ck.
Headed back to the car, though, something new happened – the knot started to unwind, little by little, and after 5 minutes of walking, it felt good enough to take a couple of tenative steps at a jog. And wonders of wonders, the knot worked itself out, and the last 20 minutes were great – not even a hint of hurt.
So, I’m typing this, and mildly hopeful that I’ll be able to run again tomorrow. Part of me says that’s probably not the best idea I’ve ever had – but most of me wants to figure out if I’m actually better, or if this is just temporary.