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Plantar Fasciitis

Yay, another injury after too much runnning. Let's see how I heal this time...

🕒 5 min read

Category: Sports

Tags: plantar fasciitis, health, running

Alright alright alright. April the 3rd, 2022, I ran my first official half-marathon, in Berlin. Oh boy was it tough! But I did it. 2 hours and 22 seconds, official time. Not bad, although I must admit I was aiming under 2 hours. But let's blame Strava, as it was giving me the finish line 500 meters shorter. Ha ha!

Photo of me running
Me, about to cross the finish line

Of course, a race wouldn't be a race without a propre injury, would it? Well, let's be honest, it's not that bad of an injury, but still. I got... "Plantar fasciitis" (in French: aponévrosite plantaire or fasciapathie plantaire or fasciite plantaire)! To be fair, it started a week prior to the race. I overtrained (I guess). Indeed, I ran 17 kilometers exactly one week before. The next day the pain came. Not too strong, but strong enough for me to call it a discomfort. I ran the race nonethless.

A random Google search tells me that it's

"[...] one of the most common causes of heel pain. It involves inflammation of a thick band of tissue that runs across the bottom of each foot and connects the heel bone to the toes (plantar fascia)."

Easy enough, I can understand that.

As the article describes it, you feel the pain mostly in the morning near the heel, right out of bed, and after a few minutes of walking, it starts to fade away, and eventually vanishes, until the next day.

Out of all the websites that I read (not many in all fairness), the best and easiest treatment is to go easy on exercising for at least a few weeks. I am currently at the end of my first "week off", I'll keep monitoring my pain and see how long it takes to completely heal. I only cycle these days, no more running until the pain is gone. I don't want it to become a chronic pain. Stretching a few times per day is also advised. Wearing a splint at night to hold the whole thing might also be considered. As to me, I'll keep resting for the time being and see how it goes. đŸ€ž

Here is a simple exercice to do at home to help the healing process: Exercice maison pour guérir la Fasciite plantaire / Aponévrosite plantaire

Here are some additional French online resources about it:

UPDATE: 2023-03-31

Dang it's been a year!!! So many things happened! First of all, I ran again more than 10 kms for the first time since the half-marathon... 2 days ago 😅. Why? you ask. I'm glad you asked! That thing took forever to heal... more than 9 months. I think last Christmas I could still feel it from time to time. So what happened? July or August last year, I went to the doctor, cause I was still feeling the pain EVERY MORNING. She confirmed my own diagnosis, I have a plantar fasciitis. Good news, in a way. She advises rest (of course), insoles and physiotherapie. Perfect, let's do this! 6 sessions of physiotherapie later, no changes (or very slight but not because of the therapy). The physiotherapist clearly was not seeing many patients with that sort of injury, she did her best to come up with creative exercises but I am pretty sure that did little. Next, insoles. To be honest, I'm not sure how much this helped. I got them in August or September, I would have assumed that if they worked, I should have seen a rapid improvement - that did not happen. Like I said, until Christmas I was feeling moderate/litte plain quite often. Anyway, during that whole year I basically stopped running, or 3 or 4 kms once or twice... lol. Then, since January this yearb, I pretty much never felt the pain again, at least never in the morning. Every once in a while I would feel some tickling in the foot randomly, just as a reminder that something had happened, but no pain per se, and that would only last a few seconds when walking. And now, as I'm writing these lines, I can't remember the last time I felt any kind of pain in this foot because of this injury! 🎉

If you are reading this because you're injured, you're not alone đŸ’Ș. Give it some time, go easy on running, maybe get insoles, use a massage ball if you have one, do some calf and foot stretching in a staircase, while standing on the edge of a step when facing the stairs (slowly let your heels drop down, repeat a few times). That should do!

UPDATE: 2023-04-02

Just ran 22 kms today!!! 🎉 No pain, felt great!

UPDATE: 2023-10-01

Since April, quite a lot happened. First of all, soon after running these 22 kms, I took up running again more consisently. Over the following few weeks, my foot became sore again at times. For very short amounts of time, occasionally, and rarely in the heel but rather random places in the foot. Mild short pain. I've been monitoring this closely. Nothing unbearable at all. It just happens randomly throughout the day, seating or walking, and does not last. On a scale from 0 to 10, it's usually around 2. Let's see how this goes... I just started muscle strengthening in an attempt to fix this for good.

UPDATE: 2024-04-14

I think I'm 100% healed. In November last year, I bought the Asics Gel-Kayano 30 shoes (they're stability shoes) and increased my running frequency significantly. I'm averaging 25 kms per week these days. No more pain at all, not in the morning, not thoughout the day. I still "feel" traces of that injury though, as if my foot remained a bit weaker than my other foot. I guess it'll stay like that for life, or at least many years. But no more pain at all. Just ran Berlin's half marathon last week, felt great, I even PR'd: 1:41:51!