Monday, July 23, 2012

It's time for an update and some optimism!

It's time for an update - and some optimism!!!

It's been five weeks and a few days since I stumbled and injured my left foot on the trail.  A week later I visited my Dr to confirm that the problem was in fact Plantar Fasciitis.  I left the office with a Cortisone shot, a prescription for high-powered NSAIDs and an instruction sheet of stretching/massage exercises for the bottom of my foot.

I was hoping for a quick recovery to get back on the trail and continue my journey north.  There were days that I felt like I was getting better and would make it sooner rather than later.  And then there were the other days.  Once people found out my condition, I was swamped with stories of who else had the same problem and how terribly long it took to recover.  The horror stories of lingering pain ranged from months to years.  It was all quite depressing. 

A second visit to the doctor brought a change of meds - a full-fledged steroid treatment to speed up the reduction of the inflammation.  I also threw in three hour-long deep-tissue massages to help get the kinks out and loosen all those tight muscles in my calf muscles, tendons and foot.

There were still days of foot pain, but there were days when it seemed like I was actually improving.  Feeling a little better, last week I returned to the gym for a little exercise.  I concentrated on upper body workouts and to avoid stress on my feet, I took to swimming as my cardio workout.  Finally I took advantage of the whirlpool to soak my feet and let the hot water jets do their thing on my sore foot.

It all seems to be working.  The last few days have been better and better.  Today I am actually pain free and have been really walking without a limp for the first time.  I have a final doctor's appointment for one week from today.  I hope I can tell him that the pain has been gone for a several days.  If he agrees that I won't have an immediate relapse or do any long-term damage, I am now hoping to return to the AT next week! 

Everyone needs to know how great Crystal, Kevin, Robert and Jess have been to let me stay at their house while I recover.  I really appreciate their hospitality, Robert's room and Crystal's cooking!

There's still time to get the rest of the trail finished this season.  I will let you know how things go.  Keep your fingers crossed.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

hang in there, Ziegler...people with big feet are prone to this sort of thing, but you will overcome. or else you'll be somewhere in New England with icicles on your face when you finish. I'll bet ya do just fine. best wishes from Texas, where you wouldn't want to be hiking this time of year....your dried out bones would be all that's left in this heat. best wishes, good luck, and may the meds be with you. Mike B