Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Keep It Coming 

I had to drop out of the Avon Walk after 9 miles this year. My sisters continued on to do 16.3 the first day and the whole 13.1 on the second day. Oh, and by the way - Biggest Sister managed to log those miles with an undiagnosed cracked rib from a fall two days prior. I was having pains in my left heel, and shooting pains in my knees, and it just didn't seem worth risking any serious damage right before the bar review. Anyway, I met them near the end on the second day and walked to the finish with them, but it hurt.

Two months later, still hurting.

So I went to my new doctor today. She was very good, and spent a lot of time getting my whole history, checking different pressure points, manipulating the joints, etc. Her conclusion: plantar fasciitis in the left foot, and patellofemoral pain syndrome (aka runner's knee) in both knees. Oh, and by the way? A frequent contributor to both these issues is weight gain. Yep, those 30 law school pounds just keep jumping up to bite me.

Treatment - ice, rest, stretching, strengthening exercises that don't involve impact or large range of motion in the knees. Better supporting shoes with heel inserts, and don't wear them into the ground (as I always do). And 3 ibuprofen 3x a day for the next two weeks, and we'll check back in mid-August, but sometimes this freaking plantar thing can take months to a year to clear up. But how am I supposed to lose weight if I can't walk, bike, run, etc.? "Can you swim?" she responds.

Technically, yes. Gracefully? No, not really. I actually spent the summer before my freshman year in college cramming for the legendary Bryn Mawr swim test. Fortunately I had a friend who was a lifeguard at an apartment complex that summer, so she tutored me and got me past the test. I still have vivid memories of floating in the corner of the 1904 pool that was in the basement of the 1906 gym (the original gym had burnt down and they built the new one over the old foundation), where I had floated while the 30 or so of us in that shift were doing the five-minute float on your back portion of the test. Yeah, still hear my breathing which I was trying to keep steady while dodging the splashes that were bouncing off the pool edge and back at me. While I was there the new gym opened with its gigantic pool and diving well, but we were stuck in the Katharine Hepburn special.

Lucky for me The Girl, who loves swimming and does laps at the Y, has offered to help me improve. "It's easy - just one, two, three, breathe!" Yeah, easy for her. With me it's more like one, two, thr-try to breathe but snort water instead and then cough and gasp for air. I'm fine if it's just hold my breathe and swim underwater for a bit, then come up, stop, breathe and repeat. But the whole crawl lap thing just isn't my forte.

Maybe I'll get one of those foam kickboard things, so I can just hold it in front of me and kick, with my mouth and nose safely above the fray.

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Posted by Beth Henderson at 7:37 PM