I’m a little bummed out this afternoon. About six weeks ago, I started getting some pain in my left foot, over my arch. My feet are pretty flat, so I pretty much figured that I would eventually have a problem, but there’s never a good time for that, is there?

You won’t be surprised to read that, because I was mid-Bar Mitzvah prep, I put off making a doctor’s appointment until after the big day because we were flying around busily as it was. I wasn’t walking the dog because it was so dang cold, and I basically cut out most other workouts other than the classes I teach.
I went to our Family Practice doctor (as a formality) to get a referral to a podiatrist, because I’ve been lucky enough up to this point in my almost-40 years of life to not need one.

In the meantime, I have speculated wildly with my friends at the health club about what the problem could be. (Because that’s what fitness professionals do!) We all pre-diagnosed me with needing orthotics, because of my crazy flat-footedness. Everyone warned me to check my insurance first, because they are commonly not covered. MY opinion about the matter is, these are my FEET. If they’re not covered, I have to get them anyway! As my friend told me this morning, it all boils down to the feet. If you have foot problems, your knees can get messed up. If your knees get messed up, your hips can get messed up. I am all about preventing that from happenning.

I checked in at the podiatrist’s office today and filled out my paperwork. Their office was really cool: the walls were covered with posters from movies whose titles or pictures had to do with feet. I was impressed with the creativity!

I was shown (promptly: YAY!) into the exam room and shortly thereafter the doctor came in. He was PERHAPS 30, and very, very nice. I really liked him alot. He looked at my feet and pointed out the swelling in my left foot. I kid you not, in the six weeks since this has been going on I have never, ever, ever noticed swelling! Does that mean I wasn’t looking for it, or did my foot decide to show off for the doctor? You decide.

He ordered x-rays as a precautionary measure, and they came up fine. (Yay)

To make a long story short, I have tendonitis in its early stages (“Def Con 1”, as my young, hip doctor described me). Basically, he gave me some pressure wraps for both feet (we have to stay evenly balanced, you know!) and a cloth brace for my left foot. He told me that my shoes are WRONG, WRONG, WRONG and that–for the rest of my life–I have to wear shoes whose soles don’t bend in the middle (they can flex toward the toe, but not over the arch). As if wearing size 11 isn’t enough, now I will have an even tinier selection of shoes! I will also have to get some kind of orthotics (The fitness pros were right! Woo hoo??) and wear them FOREVER.

I have to, for the next several weeks, soak my feet several times per day (or as much as my schedule allows) and take Advil twice a day. I have to–and this was a heartbreaker–avoid being barefoot when possible.

I asked him about my normal physical activity. He said that for the next 4-6 weeks while we try to clear this up, I have to take it easy on the bike in class and not do as much standing up (on the bike). I have to think about using the stairs less at home when possible. When I asked him about walking Roxie in the next couple of weeks, he said, “I wouldn’t. Keep in mind that I have had to recommend surgery for people who start out in your position who end up not taking it easy.”

I totally get that and will do what he has prescribed, but it is just looking like it’s going to possibly get warmer in Chi-town, and I can’t walk my dog! ARGGHHH!!!

But, this too shall pass. I will take care of myself. I will stick to the saddle in spin class and stick to the Bowflex and Boxing at home, and then hopefully in about 4-6 weeks everything can get back to normal.

At least I get to go look for new shoes.

Thanks for listening!