About a month ago, I began to experience pain in my right foot while running. At first, the pain felt like it was along the line where the toes are connected to my feet and would dissipate shortly after I stopped running. Eventually, it moved to the top of my foot and would persist when I was resting. Lsst week, when I was out for a run, I had to walk after only 2 miles because the pain was too severe. I started to worry that a metatarsal stress fracture was to blame so I made an appointment to have my foot examined and took a break from running.
Yesterday, I was finally able to see the doctor. Thankfully, the x-rays showed that I do not have a sress fracture. However, he instructed me to avoid running for another 2 weeks and slowly ramp up my running duration an intensity after that. Based on my symptoms and activity level, he was concerned that I would eventually end up with a stress fracture in my foot. I’m very happy that the injury is not too severe. Typically, recovery from a metatarsal stress fracture involves 6 weeks of rest. In the past, I’ve had injuries that required a long break from running and found the process of getting back in shape to be very difficult, physically and emotionally.
As with any injury, it’s important to understand the cause so those behaviors can be avoided in the future. I probably injured my foot by making too many significant changes to my running at one time. About 2 months ago, I started incorporating speed work into my training by attending track workouts every week. I also recently bought a pair of racing flats started to transition from a heel strike to a forefoot strike. When I can run again, I’ll ditch the racing flats for a while and be more conservative with the amount of impact I put on the forefoot when running. Until then, I will be doing a lot of swimming, biking, and weight training.
Here is some information on metatarsal stress fractures.