As Tom Petty once said, “the waiting is the hardest part.”

And here I am, waiting – again – to see if the dull, twinge-y, aching where my right big toe meets the rest of my foot is an injury or just discomfort that will feel better with a little rest.

Tim and I did a very hard 15-mile run on Friday after work. My cousin Greg got married on Saturday, so we decided to get our long run out of the way on Friday night. This was the pinnacle of two weeks of escalating training and occurred at the end of what had been a pretty busy and stressful week at work. But nevertheless, I felt good going into it.

The wheels started to come off around mile 11, though. Pretty much everything from my lower back down started to hurt – just a little bit at first, and then more intensely. And with about two miles to go, I was partially aware that I was altering my stride a bit to accommodate for my left knee which had become uncomfortably sore.

But still, we finished the run, and after having some pizza and a beer and a shower, I felt much better. When we got up on Saturday morning to get ready for the wedding, I felt fine. I could definitely tell I had run the day before, but it was totally normal post-long run stiffness; nothing alarming at all.

Maybe wearing high heels the day after an intense run like that wasn’t a good idea. Or maybe altering my stride on Friday to take pressure off my left knee put way too much on my right foot. I’m still learning when it’s okay to push through fatigue and discomfort and when it’s best to stop.

On Sunday, I went for a very short (2.5 miles), slow recovery run and felt absolutely wonderful. But an hour or two later, Tim and I took a walk to pick up a few things at the store, and while making the short trek in flip flops, I noticed the discomfort creeping in. It got progressively worse as we walked home, through that night, and into yesterday morning.

Needless to say, I was pretty distraught yesterday. I kept thinking, what’s wrong with me? Why do my feet always break down? Am I going to have to give up another marathon? Sometimes it is really, really hard to accept that there’s nothing I can do right now, to stop obsessing, to let it go, and to trust that things will work out as they should. The “maybe injury” was like a dark cloud hanging over my head all day, making even little inconveniences or stresses seem like huge obstacles.

But, I religiously iced my foot and took anti-inflammatories throughout the day. And this morning, when my feet hit the floor, I didn’t feel perfect but I felt a lot better. I skipped my planned four mile run today and will probably take a rest day tomorrow too. But, I’m feeling more hopeful about getting back on track on Thursday.

Marathon training is such a fascinating process because every day is a learning experience – when to push yourself, when to back off; when to be disciplined with your plan and when to take an unscheduled rest day. You can plan and plan and do everything “right” and still sometimes things don’t work out the way you thought they would.  Kind of like life, I guess. But I know even though my life has taken some unexpected turns, I’ve ended up somewhere kind of wonderful. Here’s hoping the marathon training works out the same way.

Miles run since last post: 0; total miles for the year: 498.4.



  1. Mary
    September 14, 2011 / 4:31 am

    Love your blog Janice. I hope that this is just a minor setback. Your dedication is inspiring. Xxoo

    • janice
      September 14, 2011 / 1:47 pm

      Thanks! Going to do a short “test run” after work and see how it goes.

  2. Marilyn Catania
    September 14, 2011 / 7:23 am

    Oh Janice, Hope you are feeling better. Ice and rest are good. I love your blog!

    • janice
      September 14, 2011 / 1:48 pm

      Thanks! Feeling better today. Not perfect, but better!

  3. Holly
    September 14, 2011 / 1:43 pm

    Janice, Marcy shares some of your posts with me since I am training for my first marathon and always beating myself up! Your attitude and perserverance are inspirational! Keep it up! I rolled my ankle 2 weeks ago on a Friday 10 mile tempo run and had a 15 mile run on the schedule for that weekend. It was so hard skipping that 15 mile run, but it was the best thing I could have done! I traded it for 50 on the bike and with lots of ice and ibuprofen, I was ready for a short run on Tuesday and my ankle felt great! I realized it wasn’t worth the risk of hurting it more by pushing that 15 mile run! Good for you for listening to your body!

    • janice
      September 14, 2011 / 1:49 pm

      Hi Holly! Thanks for sharing. I’m hoping I have the same result by taking it easy for a few days. What marathon are you training for?

  4. John Pitchford
    September 15, 2011 / 10:10 pm

    I hope it’s nothing serious Honey! Look at the bright side. You can always join me in the half marathon! 🙂


  5. Denise Pitchford
    September 16, 2011 / 12:22 pm

    Totally love that song…The Waiting Is The Hardest Part….Big Tom Petty fan!
    Knowing totally about the waiting thing too! Taking it easy, wearing GOOD shoes for your feet and listening to your body are all goooood. Love hearing how you’re dealing with a little bump in the road. Lessons for me!

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