On the sidelines, sort of
The hardest part about a running injury is admitting that an injury exists. And then when you do admit it, there's still some doubt on whether the injury is real. You just keep running, thinking it's going to go away.
I've been MOSTLY injury free since the end of 2010/early 2011. I've had some things bother me along the way -- the occasional knee or foot pain has caused me to pause and take an extra day or two off, but nothing major had impacted my running.
About 7 or 8 months ago, I started having some pain that felt like plantar fasciitis. Having dealt with "PF" before, I knew I could deal with it and run through minor discomfort. After going through the Runner's World Festival in October, I stepped off the mileage a little bit and didn't have any major problems during the winter -- but the slight bit of pain was still there every once in a while.
Training for Shamrock was subpar (not horrible), but I continued to feel some sort of pain. After Shamrock, I decided to take a small break and see if I could self-manage the pain.
Nearly a month later, I'm finding myself still on a mini-break, running only a very little bit, massaging my foot, wearing a special sock at night and on the verge of calling a doctor to see if this small amount of pain might be more.
First off, I needed the break. I've forced a lot of running and not been happy for a while. Mentally I was eager to train for bigger goals, but physically I needed a month or so to not run much.
Am I injured? If I say no, I'm in denial. If I say yes, I hear a lot of cliche comments that I've heard enough of over the years.
I am fine continuing to self-manage the issue for a couple of more weeks and then seeing where things go.
I have the Rock 'n' Roll Savannah Marathon on my schedule for November and if I'm going to get there happy and healthy, NOW is the time to not run much and start fresh in May and then build from there.